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Imaginary Garage IV – 2011 KTM 450 SX-F Salt Flat Racer


Posted on January 26, 2011 by Andrew in Other. 16 comments

Thrusty demons of desert. Anyone from KTM reading this?

It wasn’t until the morning of the fifth day that we emerged from the dark, twisted forest and onto the salt plain. At first it looked like another planet; or more accurately a planet made of light. It took many minutes for our eyes to adjust to the flooding glare – not helped by the fact that neither of us had food, water or sleep for the entire time. I saw it first. Norman (aka “Sgeechee”) was still surveying the surreal landscape when I grabbed his shoulder and spun him around. It was the same bike we had ridden here on all those days ago, but only just. You’d be forgiven for not recognising it as it was really only the colours that were the same. The rest? Well… it was lower; MUCH lower. And faired. The lightness and tippy-toe stance of the old bike was gone, replaced with a bad-ass single-minded focus that was screaming “speed” like a million wailing megaphones laid end-to-end. We both grinned like idiots and instantly forgot the epic struggle of the last few days. Like ancient heroes we had dreamt a fantastical dream and made it real. We were gods. Motorcycling gods.

At least that’s how I remember it. Ahem. Photoshop can do strange things to a guy’s brain without sleep. Ladies and gentledudes, please meet our latest Imaginary Garage creation – the KTM 450 SX-F Salt Flat Racer. What the hell happened to the original bike, you ask? Come with us now on a journey through time and space…

Step 1. Start with a factory-fresh KTM 450 SX-F and a healthy disrespect for Austrian industrial design. Lower the bike and then lower it again. Extend the swingarm and strip off the unnecessary bits.

Step 2. Add a fairing from KTM‘s 1198 RC8-R. Now I’m feeling the butterflies in the stomach – I’m beginning to think that we really might have something here…

Step 3. Add a belly fairing. Lower the screen, stretch the nose, and replace off-road tires with something better for setting speed records. Add a nice little aerodynamic seat.

Step 4. To finish, a little forced induction, a basic exhaust, and some footrests way back there. Then simply add salt, and ride. Yes, oh yes.

Many dankes to Norman who had the original, and brilliant idea. And for his patience and attention to detail – please enjoy the gloves. Also, thanks for the runners up – Job, Gary and Austin. Missed it by that much. Below is a “city dweller” rough mock submitted by Adam D. Beneath that is a bobber from Travis. Great work, guys. See you next time…