KTM Duke 390’s close cousin, the Husqvarna Vitpilen 401, has been spotted testing in India. The Vitpilen 401’s arrival in India has been in the news for quite sometime now and the emergence of a prototype on public roads suggests the launch will happen in next few months.
Vitpilen (White arrow) differentiates itself from the Svartpilen (black arrow) in terms of few characteristic traits. While both adopt cafe racer styling, the former is specced for regular roads while the latter has a dual-purpose flavor. Both motorcycles are expected to be launched in India since Bajaj’s Chakan facility will become their manufacturing base.
The Vitpilen and Svartpilen 401 share their platform with the Duke 390. The trellis frame, WP suspension system, 373 cc single-cylinder liquid-cooled engine, 6-speed transmission and several other components are common. The camouflaged prototype employs KTM’s orange alloy wheels but we expect at least one of the final production variants (Svartpilen) to feature spoke wheels if not both.
Just like the Duke 390, the Husqvarna twins have 44 PS and 37 Nm of torque on tap and benefit from slipper clutch. The braking system from ByBre consists of 320 mm front and 230 mm rear discs, governed by dual-channel Bosch ABS. Whether the motorcycles employ Metzeler tyres or settle for MRF units remains to be seen. Salient features include flat handle bar, LED DRL integrated into headlight, LED taillight, and digital instrument console.
The Husqvarna Vitpilen and Svartpilen 401 would help Bajaj offer much wider choice of premium medium displacement motorcycles to choose from. We expect the twins to be positioned slightly higher than the KTM Duke 390. Rivals will include an assortment of products from its sister brand KTM, Royal Enfield, Jawa, Kawasaki, and so on.
The Husqvarna Vitpilen 401 is expected to be launched in the first half of 2019, most likely as a CBU. Production in India will start in 2020. The KTM-owned motorcycle brand is expected to introduce a whole array of branded accessories as well.