Husqvarna 401 Vitpilen concept showcased at the International motorcycle Expo EICMA 2014
In an interview early this year, KTM CEO Stefan Pierer revealed the future plans for the Husqvarna brand. Pierer confirmed that KTM will introduce the Husqvarna 401 Vitpilen and 401 Svartpilen (meaning black arrow and white arrow respectively in Swedish) motorcycles in the European market by the end of 2016 and it seems like the company is well prepared to meet its committed deadline. A test mule of the Husqvarna 401 Vitpilen was recently spied in Spain.
Spy image reported by Visor Down
Surprising though, as opposed to the concept showcased at the International motorcycle Expo EICMA 2014, this test mule was equipped with a headlight and orange alloy wheels from the KTM Duke 390 instead of the futuristic round-shaped headlight and spoke wheels. It is likely that the final product will drop these parts borrowed from KTM and return to the original design. But not all the KTM components would be thrown out of the window. The Husqvarna 401 Vitpilen will share components such as the trellis frame and engine with the KTM Duke 390 that are produced at Bajaj’s Chakan plant in Pune, India. However, these components would be exported to Europe and the motorcycle will be finished in company’s Mattighofen plant.
Mechanically, while the 401 Vitpilen will share the 375cc single cylinder liquid cooled motor with the KTM Duke 390, the former is expected to receive a different state of tune to match the character and image of Husqvarna. Pierer also confirmed that the brand will have models featuring engine capacity as low as 125cc. The 125cc Vitpilen will be based on KTM Duke 125 and was also reportedly spotted along with 401 Vitpilen. While the models between 125cc to the 401 series would be built in India, the larger, 650cc to 1300cc street Husqvarnas, motorcycles would be completely in Europe.
Interestingly, KTM’s top boss feels that that the Husqvarnas have great potential in India but he is having a difficult time convincing Rajiv Bajaj, Managing Director of Bajaj Auto, who is not willing to branch out into another new segment. We sure hope that Mr Pierer has some strong convincing skills and he we get to see the Husqvarnas on Indian roads in the near future. Wouldn’t you agree? Share your views with us through the comments section below.