Do Adventure Bikes really need Aftermarket Exhausts?
Posted in Industry Blogs
Adventure motorcycle owners don’t tend to worry too much about style and appearance. Let’s face it, when you’re travelling around looking rather like an overloaded packhorse with a pair of wheels sticking out the bottom; and you, the bike, and all the gear is caked in a few weeks’ worth of mud and grime, then keeping the bike gleaming and making sure you’re decked out in suitably coordinated leathers isn’t exactly top of the priority list.
What the eye can’t see…
Neither does the colour or style of the exhaust can matter much; because that, too, is hidden from view behind an assortment of luggage and spare parts and all the other paraphernalia that finds itself dangling from every available part of the bike.
So why would an adventure biker be interested in an aftermarket motorcycle exhaust at all?
Well there’s two very good reasons.
Every ounce counts.
Firstly, for anyone embarking on a big overland bike trip, weight is crucial. There’s no getting around the fact that you need to take a ridiculous amount of stuff with you, and every ounce of weight it adds to the bike is going to make it a great deal harder to handle around those Alpine hairpins, and a whole lot tougher to drag out of the sand or mud, or even across rivers if you’re really going to the extremes.
So it’s obvious that an aftermarket exhaust that saves maybe 5 kilos compared to the OEM equipment means you can take an awful lot more pants with you. Plus that bit of weight saved also equates to a few more miles out of a tank of juice, and as every biker who’s ever miss-judged the distance to the next fuel station knows, half a day wasted trekking to get a can of petrol is NOT what the trip is all about!
The second big reason is the sound. When you’re riding for a couple of weeks or more, then you’re spending a hell of a long time listening to that exhaust note. And a perfect tone goes a long way towards maximising the pleasure of the ride. Let’s face it, on a big adventure trip, the pleasure is all in the thrill of the journey and the connection between rider and machine.
When Adventure Bike Rider magazine tested the KTM1190 Adventure R (here's the article Save weight and upgrade your bike's looks with the Diablo Mini Exhaust) they commented that fitting one of Fuel Exhausts’ Diablo aftermarket motorcycle exhausts gave the bike “a gorgeous purr which rises to a vicious growl when you open it up. The noise levels are slightly increased (though still road legal), and one of the best things is that there seems to be a flat spot in the cacophony when you reach motorway speeds, meaning no droning buzz on long journeys.”
Watch the video below of how a Fuel exhaust sounds on the KTM1190 Adventure:
Best of both worlds.
So you get the best of both worlds with a Fuel Exhaust: the exhilarating grunt and growl when you’re pushing the machine through harsh climbs and brutal terrain, but relative calm as you’re eating up the inevitable motorway miles which feature in every trip; so you don’t get to end the day with a pounding headache brought on by those monotonous hours of having your lug holes pounded by a constantly loud end can.