Rockstar Energy and Husqvarna Motorcycles are pleased to announce Rockstar Energy Husqvarna Factory Racing’s rider line-up for the 2017 FIM Enduro World Championship. Featuring a mix of championship winners and highly-promising youngsters the team of Mathias Bellino, Danny McCanney, Pascal Rauchenecker and newcomer Christophe Charlier will be looking for top honors in the EnduroGP series.
A fascinating tussle ensued for the victory at the 2017 Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge. Honda’s Paulo Gonçalves began the last stage with a lead of 33.8 seconds, but starting order is crucial in this form of cross-country rallying and Dakar champion Sam Sunderland delivered a stunning ride on his Red Bull KTM 450 Rally to seal the stage win and earn his first Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge victory.
Starting eighth on the road was an obvious advantage and the Dubai-based rider’s strategy paid off handsomely. Chile’s Pablo Quintanilla bounced back from recent career setbacks to claim second place on his Rockstar Energy Husqvarna – 6min 13.7sec behind the winner - and Austrian Matthias Walkner won the battle with Paulo Gonçalves for third place.
“It feels cool, it’s been a long time coming,” said Sunderland. “This is my home race. I made a good start and it’s been the perfect race for me. It started well but it’s been really hard. I knew that I had to push hard this morning to make up the time quickly and that the first section was important. The team has been great, the bike’s been fantastic and it’s a great way to follow up the win in Dakar.”
CCM Motorcycles is working on a replacement of their very succesful GP450 model. The old BMW G450X engine in the bike is no longer is able to pass EURO4 homologation. Because of this CCM will upgrade the bike with the 600cc engine made by SWM in Italy. You might know this engine from the Husqvarna 630 in the past and now the SWM 650 model. The same engine is also used in the AJP PR7.
The engine will have a 6-speed gearbox which is a nice upgrade over the 5-speed box currently in the GP450. This will make the GP600 Adventure more suitable for highway riding. The engine also has 15 hp and 11 lb-ft of torque more than the 450 engine.
Because the new 600cc engine is 10kg(22lbs) heavier the bike will go through a weight loss program which means replacing some parts with forged carbon fiber. This hightech material is normally used on supercars. This will be the first the time material is used on a production motorcycle.
Above you can see a digital concept made by Adventure Attack. We are looking forward to the final production model in 2019.