Each year, just before the start of the Supercross season, KTM announces the mid-year, limited-edition release
of its Factory Editions. It all started as a way to get factory
riders on the very latest hardware. The first year of the
Factory Editions was also Ryan Dungey’s first year on KTM.
He would have been required to ride the old twin-cam,
carbureted 2011 450SX-F unless KTM honchos could do
something drastic. They did. The company announced the
early release of what was to be the 2012 model, which was
all new with fuel injection and an advanced, single-overhead-cam motor. KTM promised to bring in a total of 500
before the mid-season deadline, so Dungey got to race
the new bike the whole year. Since then, the pre-Super-cross release of the Factory Editions has become a KTM
tradition, even when the new models
aren’t truly new.
This year the 2017 1/2 Factory
Editions fall into the not-truly-new
category. Structurally, the motors
and frames are the same as the 2017
versions. The only differences are in
the cosmetics, exhaust, suspension
and other items that aren’t restricted
by AMA rules, so their release was
immaterial to the race teams. KTM
dealers and fans, however, find the
bikes extremely relevant, as inventory of the standard model has been
depleted. For some, the orange
frame alone is enough reason to wait
for the Factory Editions.
THE REAL CHANGES
Here are the upgrades for the 250SX-F Factory Edition:
1.) It has an FMF Factory 4.1 RCT muffler replacing the
KTM-made stocker. The canister of the FMF pipe is titanium and the end cap is carbon fiber. If you were to buy this
as an aftermarket slip-on, it would cost $500. The head
pipe is unchanged from the standard model.
2.) The fork and shock have small valving changes
designed to make initial travel softer. The shock remains a
WP, and the fork is the WP AER 48 air fork.
3.) It has an orange frame (instead of gray), and the plastic frame guards are a matching shade of orange.
4.) The CNC triple clamps are anodized orange instead
5.) The Factory Edition has D.I.D. Dirt Star rims, whereas the production version has
in-house KTM rims.
6.) The rear sprocket is
7.) The graphics on the tank,
swingarm and fenders are
replicas of what the Troy Lee
Designs GoPro team uses for
the likes of Alex Martin, Shane
McElrath and company. The
big number 26 decorating
every bike is a tribute to Martin,
who finished 2016 very strong.
8.) The seat has a grippy
blue cover, although it doesn’t
have the Selle Dalla Valle logo
like the 450.
MX TEST: KTM FACTORY EDITIONS
The 2017 1/2 KTM 250SX-F Factory Edition has all the same
strengths as the standard model. It’s fast, light and well suspended. Plus, you can tell people your name is Alex Martin.
The bike looks so good, they might believe you.