The KTM 300 EXC is one of the most popular enduro models in KTM’s lineup of offroad bikes and for good reason. It’s light, handles well and has an incredible motor that is just as happy to be lugged around as it is to be revved out. I spent a large part of today and yesterday ripping around on the excellent Enduro loop at dirtpark getting familiar with the bike and find the more I ride it, the more I like it. For sure if you are on the gas and in too low a gear you get some pretty mega wheelspin, but I found the best way to ride the 300 was to keep it in a higher gear and in the meat of the powerband, not rev it out like a 125 2 stroke.
Is it better than the 2014 KTM 300 exc? I have no idea, I didn’t ride one, but I did ride a 2012 300 exc and found the new one waaaay easier to ride. It is also not bad at all on a motocross track, and I felt really comfortable doing some laps on it, but on the enduro loop at dirtpark it really excelled. With the massive amount of torque it’s the most similar power band to a 4 stroke I have felt in a 2stroke. Riding position is good, but was very forward focused and also very tall compared to the SX’s I am used to. This is obviously a benefit in tight situations, but took a bit of getting used to coming from the sx-f.
It’s a bike that works as well for top pro’s as for guys just getting started. I asked Jonny Walker the night before Erzberg if he got a chance to test every EXC and he said yes, and that he liked the 300exc the best. Over dinner tonight I asked Mark Gerhardter, who is an intermediate rider and is spending the weekend at Dirtpark with us what he thought about the 300EXC and he said he loved it. He was initially a little nervous about riding the 300, but as it turned out it was much easier to ride than he though and he has now ordered the 6days version.
Price relative to a 4 stroke.
Easy to ride slow AND fast.
You have to mix the fuel :)
The handguards are ok, but you might want to invest in KTM powerparts full guards if you want to avoid breaking leavers and your hands if you hit a tree.
DE rating: 9.5 / 10
It’s a versatile bike. In the words of Enduro21: “The 300 EXC is the king of the Enduro 3 class – there is nothing it hasn’t won. Over the last ten years it has at some point claimed every single major extreme enduro race on the calendar – including the Erzberg Rodeo just a few weeks ago – and is currently poised to claim it’s third EWC title in a row. The big bore two-stroke has also found huge popularity amongst pro and hobby riders alike.
KTM’s alterations have all been based around the delivery of power that the 300 produces. The Austrian marque are extremely happy with their chassis and suspension setup but the development team were keen to improve the rider friendliness of the engine. To achieve this KTM have altered the powervalve timing so it opens 200 RPM later, re-engineered the ignition timing and worked extensively on improving the jetting.”
- New ignition cover with new gasket for improved sealing
- New gasket on inner clutch cover for improved sealing
- New carburettor setting for a better, smoother power delivery
- New 3h battery, which is lighter and guarantees efficient starting
- New shorter gearing on electric starter for higher initial torque and better starting
- Black rims and orange frame as stock
All photos by LSP.