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One of the world’s most manic road-registerable cars, the KTM X-Bow R, is now available in Australia and fully ADR compliant. Launched in Sydney today, the lightweight open-top ‘race car for the road’ has hit the Australian with a price of $169,990 plus on-road costs.

For that money, you don’t get a lot of car, but you get a lot of car.

The low-slung open-top roadster tips the scales at a sprightly 790kg unladen and mated to its 2.0-litre Audi-sourced TSFI direct injection turbocharged four-cylinder petrol engine, pumping out a healthy 200kW of power and 400Nm of torque at 3300rpm, is capable of 0-100km/h in just 3.9 seconds and a top speed of 231km/h.

KTM X-Bow R new sports car from Simply Sports Cars, Sydney www.ktmcars.com.au

Available in only one specification, the X-Bow R can be optioned up with two ‘Powerparts’ packages.

The first, a $15,000 aerodynamic kit adds subtle and not-so-subtle body styling tweaks including a massive motorsport-styled rear wing. The second, a $40,000 performance package, includes the aero kit and a range of enhanced performance parts that will see the X-Bow reach 0-100km/h in just 3.2 seconds.

Under its minimal skin, the KTM X-Bow features a full carbon composite monocoque with an FIA-approved carbon-aluminium sandwich nose box that complies with international motorsport safety specifications.

The aluminium roll hoops can withstand 2.5 times the weight of the car in an event of a rollover. Inside the minimalist cabin, four-point safety harnesses are fitted as standard for both the driver and the passenger.

What you won’t get are creature comforts such as a windscreen, a roof, boot, stereo or air conditioning. The latter two can be optioned if desired, although we’re betting not too many customers will be ticking those boxes.

KTM X-Bow R new sports car from Simply Sports Cars, Sydney www.ktmcars.com.au

To comply with Australia’s strict ADR compliance regulations, the KTM X-Bow R underwent three years of rigorous certification and testing. The process was undertaken by Simply Sports Cars, the distributor of Lotus Cars in Australia, along with parent company KTM in Austria.

Before the X-Bow R could achieve its ADR compliance, the car had to be subjected to Australian-specific crash testing in Europe where it passed with, according to Simply Sports Cars CEO Lee Knappett, “flying colours”.

“I’m delighted to see the X-Bow complied and road registrable in Australia. It has been a huge effort from my entire engineering team to make this happen and I am extremely grateful to them for their perseverance,” he added.

“It’s a truly unique sports car that uses race car technology that you can use on the street, your favourite mountain pass or track. It’s fun to drive at 60km/h or 160km/h.”

KTM X-Bow R new sports car from Simply Sports Cars, Sydney www.ktmcars.com.au

Adding to the X-Bow’s exclusivity, sales in Australia will be limited to just 25 cars annually in order to comply with the Australian Government’s Specialist & Enthusiast Vehicle Scheme (SEVS). That means, the X-Bow can be road registered in Australia despite lacking active and passive safety features such as airbags, traction control and ABS.

Anti-theft devices include an engine immobiliser and, as cheekily pointed out at today’s media briefing, a detachable steering wheel.

All cars will be covered by a two-year/unlimited kilometre warranty while standard servicing costs are not expected to be excessive and start at $325 plus GST and parts.

The KTM X-Bow R is launching in Australia today and will be sold through Simply Sports Cars in Sydney and Motorline in Queensland.

Check back soon for our driving impressions of the KTM X-Bow R.

MORE: CarAdvice Top 5 sports cars




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