KTM plans expansion on multiple fronts

Publish Date: 
Apr 1, 2007
By Guido Ebert

KTM North America plans to double the size of its facility in Amherst, Ohio.

KTM wants to add 50,000 square feet to the present 53,000 sq. ft. three-building campus plus add 60 new workers in the next five years. KTM NA employs about 70 people in Amerst.

The OEM has a network of about 400 dealers in the United States and 62 dealers in Canada. KTM NA's Amherst location is responsible for distribution of parts, accessories and apparel. It also houses a training area and accounting, sales, marketing and executive offices.

KTM NA opened the Amherst campus in 1999 with 25 people on staff. Since then, the company doubled the size of one building and added another.

For the current expansion, KTM wants to buy two acres behind the current six-acre location. Company officials expect the new building to be operational by January 2008.

KTM NA's Austrian parent, KTM Power Sports AG, reported an annual growth rate of 21 percent in sales and 25 percent in net income since the restart of motorcycle production in 1992. The company's output in 1992 was 6,000 motorcycles with 160 employees; in the last financial year it was 84,421 motorcycles with 1,697 employees.

X-Bow Unsheathed. KTM formally unveiled its car, the X-Bow, last month in what was arguably the best-attended product release at the Geneva Auto Show.

KTM CEO Stefan Pierer says the idea for the X-Bow (see photo, right) came from the company's work in trying to design an on-road sport quad that could be sold in Europe.

While testing revealed such a unit — a "supermotard ATV," as he described it — proved far too dangerous and would be, he felt, "legislated out of existence," designers recognized the possibilities of morphing the unit into an automobile.

Pierer and chief designer Gerald Kiska describe the 1,500-lb. X-Bow as a bridge between motorcycle and car, and say the unit was designed as a high-tech vehicle for experienced drivers who seek "a filter-less driving experience" that is "typical of the brand."

Of course, KTM's slogan is "ready to race."

The vehicle's 220 hp turbo-charged direct-injection 2-liter engine and six-gear transmission come Volkswagen's Audi sibling, the carbon fiber monocoque comes from Dallara, brakes come from Brembo, axles come from Pankl Racing, and the suspension comes from KTM's Dutch subsidiary White Power. (continued)