Originally Posted by JMo (& piglet)
The RFS engine has not been 'current' for a couple of years now, it's the XC4 that is in the current EXC range (which has, amongst other things twin oil chambers and thus even less capacity)... I understand that some riders of the current 450/530 bikes drill the crank cases to allow the oil to circulate better - but I still think they will need a cooler/aux oil tank to improve capacity?
As for using a sleeved down version of the old LC4 engined bikes? Never! I double they would even sleeve a 690 engine to be honest - the bike is physically far larger than it needs to be to compete with the other 450cc class machines?
I envisage something along the lines of a Meca'system style 450, but perhaps with a one-piece rear tank/seat/subframe a la the 690RRs?
KTM have 4 options easily available to them
1) a sleeved down 690RR using the Rallye light approach like they did at the CER in 2008
This was done to great success with the 2005 450RR they made & raced, David Schwarz has said his 2005 Factory 450RR he used in Dakar 2005 is as fast as his 690RR
2) they still make the RFS motors for the quads, Annie Seel bought a new RFS motor from the factory for her Dakar 2010 bike this year, so a RFS motor based bike is easy
3) the XC motor with lots of factory mods to make it last the distance
4) use the Husaberg FE450 bike/motor. There were comments coming out of the factory rallye team this year at Dakar that they are seriously looking at using the FE450 platform for Dakar next year. This coupled with comments back in late 2008 and early 2009 that the next generation RR bikes would have sloper motors like the new Bergs, show very clearly that the benefits of that configuration for rallye are seen