Last month you may have seen the beat-up standard pipe attached to the 3-hunge following its journey to the Melbourne Enduro-X. Well, all pride in the KTM has been restored with a new expansion chamber and silencer from KTM’s Powerparts division. This top-quality factory-spec exhaust system is specially built for KTM by FMF, which has been building performance pipes for longer than I can remember. Apart from looks, the new pipe and muffler combo feels lighter yet also fits to the bike with the same alignment and precision as the standard pipe and muffler.

The Powerparts gear has restored the crisp, tight feel to the engine when the bike fires into life. That horrible reverberation sound has gone now there’s no crushed pipe vibrating against the frame. But. more importantly, the FMF system seems even quieter than standard. This is a good thing in every way: it doesn’t leave your ears ringing after long rides and is less irritating for the bike haters out there.

As for the power, let’s just say it’s two-stroke perfection! The bottom end is restored to its usual strength but the pull from mid through to top end is now stronger. It’s not intimidating power but it charges hard if you rip on the throttle, so you still have to be accurate with throttle control.

What I like best about the power is that it complements the rear suspension and drives consistently out of turns. This broad, strong power thrusts the bike in a manner similar to that of a 450 four-stroke, only you’ve got a thin little two-stroke between your legs.

I’ve been working on a bit of fitness lately so I can better use the strength of this engine in off-road race conditions. Last month I got the suspension up to a better race spec and I think the engine’s now definitely more race spec. too. There are a few events coming up that I’ll enter on the 3-hunge, so stay tuned for the next issue and I’ll give you the rundown on how it performs.

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