KTM's X-Bow shows car makers how things are done

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Austrian firm KTM may be more famous for their hardcore range of offroad-inspired motorcycles, but that doesn't mean they can't teach car manufacturers a thing or too about how things are done in the 4-wheeled world.

In a recent feature by CAR magazine which set out to find the Performance Car of the Year 2008, the KTM X-Bow won the 'track car' group shoot-out, besting competition from Caterham, Ariel and Lotus.

The X-Bow makes around 237bhp and weighs in at 790kg with a top speed of 137mph. It will do 0-62mph in 3.9 sec... which may not sound so impressive if you're used to performance bikes, but apparently for a car that's considered quick.

CAR magazine had this to say about the KTM X-Bow:

"The steering is weighty and full of feel. That torquey turbo engine might not be audible at speed but it's tractable enough that you can leave it in fourth nearly all the time, or nail it through the gears with the shift light on the Palm Pilot-esque display blinking furiously.

"And 229lb ft means going sideways is easy, especially as the big, road-biased tyres provide lots of grip but allow a lot more adjustability and progressive slip than the Lotus".

"Then there are the surprise-and-delight features. The big 40-litre fuel tank, the super-slick adjustable pedal box and the rake-and-reach steering wheel, plus the rubber interior that stood up to a week of constantly wet Welsh weather".

If they think the X-Bow is good fun, they should try a KTM RC8....

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James Keen

By James Keen