Most car manufacturers these days are constantly working on making their cars lighter. BMW, for example, invested hundreds of millions of dollors to mass produce carbon fibre reinforced plastics, a compound usually reserved for the most exotic of supercars. A lightweight car is better for fuel economy, better for performance, and better for fun. So when Austrian bike company KTM decided to make a road car there was only one thing it could be – light.
The result was the KTM X-Bow. Launched way back in 2008 this road legal go-cart weighed a mere 790kg, or the same as the passenger seat of a Mercedes-Benz S-Class. Powered by a 2.0-litre turbocharged four pot sourced from Audi, the X-Bow was good for 0-100 km/h in just 3.9 seconds thanks to the 240bhp/176kW and 310NM of torque on tap. Of course only one transmission is available, a 6-speed manual. Suffice to say, as a plaything, the X-Bow was right up there with the likes of the Ariel Atom, Caterham Seven, and BAC Mono. Now though, there’s a new version.
Unlike most track and race ready cars the KTM X-Bow GTR has more bits on it than the road car on which it is based on. Now there’s a full windscreen, more body work, a massive rear wing, and a fixed roof. Apparently it has to adhere to FIA regulations and there’s something in there that says it can’t be an open car, boo and hiss. Nevertheless it’s still one serious bit of kit. It was a joint project between KTM and Reiter Engineering GmbH & Co KG. With a name like that you know this car has been developed by good hands.
Because of the new body, the X-Bow GTR sports a completely different look to the road car. The two are almost unrecognisable. There’s a bit of Le Mans racers and a hint of Caparo T1 in its design, which is no bad thing at all. Underneath, however, it’s all taken straight from the road car. There’s no word on engine specs however it would be safe to assume it’d use a (heavily) tuned version of the same 2.0-litre Audi engine as the road car.
The X-Bow GTR will be ready for delivery to FIA GT4 teams in the Spring. Under the GT4 category it’ll be up against the likes of the Aston Martin Vantage GT4, Porsche 997 GT4, and Corvette GT4. Order books for private buyers will open sometime in April and prices will start from €139,000 ($213,689). KTM have not confirmed a road-going version of the GT4. We can only hope they will in the near future.