KTM X-Bow Models/Series Timeline, Specifications & Photos

Generations: 4
First production year: 2008
Engines: Gasoline
Body style: Convertible (spider/spyder, cabrio/cabriolet, drop/open/soft top)
KTM X-Bow GT photo gallery

The Austrian motorcycle builder KTM launched the X-Bow in 2008 as a track-weapon, feather-light two-seat roadster, and five years later, it made it better for road use.

KTM X-Bow was already notorious among race-car lovers. Its Dallara-designed, carbon-fiber roadster proved to be very fast despite its only 300 hp engine. The secret stood in the vehicle's weight, which was reduced to a ridiculous 790 kg (1740 lbs). But the driver and its passenger had to wear a helmet and a jumpsuit since there was no windscreen nor roof above the cabin.

The Austrian motorcycle manufacturer made an important upgrade for the roadster in 2013 when it decided to install a windshield and side windows but no roof. The X-Bow GT was just 57 kg (125 lbs) heavier than the original X-Bow. KTM included a mandatory windshield wiper.

Since the GT version was designed for Gran Tourismo travels, KTM introduced a set of, specially tailored handbags. Also, there were a few comfort features, such as a heating and ventilation system with controls installed on the center console. Moreover, the Austrian engineers considered installing an illuminated footwell. From inside, the three glass panels inspired a helmet-view for its occupants.

Under the hood, KTM installed the same 2.0-liter engine carried-over from Volkswagen GTI, tuned to produced 300 hp. It was paired to a 6-speed manual and sent its power to the rear wheels.

full description and technical specifications
gasoline engines:

KTM X-Bow GT 2.0 6MT (285 HP)

KTM X-Bow RR photo gallery

KTM tried to make its way into the four-wheel motorsport and built the RR version of its X-Bow roadster, squeezing more power from its Audi engine.

When a motorcycle maker tried to make a car, it took the motorcycling guidebook, and the result was a stripped-down, light roadster. The X-Bow (Cross-bow) was the Austrian roadster made to impress and wow the crowd, while the RR version was tuned for race-weekends. The Austrian brand built it and rented them for those who attended the KTM racing series. It wasn't cheap, but it was with rental vehicles, so drive it like you stole it principle was applied.

The X-Bow was a carbon-fiber bodied go-kart, just way bigger. Its design was very similar to the standard vehicle, but the unpainted carbon-fiber elements looked more spectacular. At the front, an orange tow-hook peaked through the front spoiler, while on the sides, the white decals that showed the vehicle version tried to tell everyone that that was not a regular, 240 hp version.

Since it was a race vehicle built for the adrenaline-seekers, the open cockpit sported a racing-seat with FIA homologation number on it. KTM included a six-point harness. Don't expect anything else than an LCD for the instrument panel, and that's exactly what KTM placed in front of the driver.

Under the hood, KTM installed the same inline-four, turbocharged four-pot engine shared with the S3 but tuned to offer up to 365 hp. That power varied from race to race and depending on the race-engineers. Its six-speed manual gearbox sent the power to the rear wheels.

full description and technical specifications
gasoline engines:

KTM X-Bow RR 2.0 6MT (N/A)

KTM X-Bow R photo gallery

It was in 2008 when the bike manufacturer KTM decided to enter the sports car market with the X-Bow.

The new version was faster, featuring an upgraded Audi turbocharged TFSI engine that developed 296 hp and 296 lb.-ft of torque.

The exterior design was similar and the 2-seater sports car was quicker than most Ferraris.

The KTM X-Bow weighed only 790 kg and rocketed to 100 kph in around 4 seconds.

The small sports car had no windshield, no radio, no windows and no doors. The seats were not designed to be comfortable, they were just a place where the driver and his passenger would be able to sit.

Another featured borrowed from Audi was the keyless ignition.

Practicality wise, … wait. There was no practicality. The 2-seater didn’t have a trunk. Moreover, getting into the car implied climbing the sills and removing the steering wheel. Visibility was not great either, the X-Bow being equipped with only two wing mirrors.

Of course, the above mentioned could be considered downsides. But on the other hand, just like an old saying says, you can’t judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree.

Even if street homologated, with X-Bow was designed for track.

The price of an X-Bow was around $59,000.

full description and technical specifications
gasoline engines:

KTM X-Bow R 2.0 6MT (300 HP)

KTM X-Bow photo gallery

Produced by the motorcycle manufacturer KTM, the X-Bow was a two-seater roadster built for fun, with a turbocharged engine mounted on a feather-light chassis. It was in 2008.

After a constant battle for power, some niche manufacturers convinced their buyers that more important than horsepower is the power-to-weight ratio. In 2000, the American company Ariel started the revolutionary Atom roadster with the engine mounted behind the driver and a rear-wheel-drive. In 2008, KTM introduced its feather-weight vehicle, the X-Bow.

The X-Bow was late to the party with its invention. The world economic crisis started to bite the car-industry and the deep pockets started to shrink. But the aggressive look of the vehicle, with exposed chassis components and two, side-by-side, seats in the open-air cockpit was strange. A big bulge behind the driver protected the engine. The initial model was able to be registered on the road but later on the X-Bow was built for race-track only.

The design was a cooperation between KTM, Audi and Dallara. The final product was launched at the 2008 Geneva Motor Show and the look and the vehicle stunned the media. It was a true race-developed car adapted for the street. It didn't have a roof, a windshield, a radio or anything that was not needed for a race-car. It featured push-rod suspensions in all corners for greater cornering speed.

The carbon-fiber tubular chassis built by the race-car engineering company Dallara and the inline-four engine from Audi, could rocket the X-Bow in 12.3 seconds at 112 mph (180 kph).

full description and technical specifications
gasoline engines:

KTM X-Bow R 2.0L 6MT (240 HP)