CFMOTO ready to ramp up the world of motorcycling with new facilities, new segments, KTM joint venture
CFMOTO is set to own motorcycling’s global spotlight in 2021 with the unveiling of several all-new models as the increasingly-global brand’s 2013 joint venture with KTM begins to bear fruit.
The new-model assault will target new two-wheel segments for CFMOTO, including developing and marketing the largest and most powerful motorcycles ever produced by a Chinese manufacturer.
This includes the largest-capacity motorcycle in CFMOTO’s 30-year history: the CF1250, which will debut the company’s 1278cc V-twin powerplant. Producing 105kW (140hp) of power and 120Nm of torque, the engine is a heavily re-engineered version of KTM’s LC8 V-twin, manufactured under licence.
The CF1250 was unveiled in May in the guise of China’s new official Police motorcycle, the CF1250J, which will soon be deployed across the country’s various law enforcement agencies. Furthermore, in a motorcycling first, the CF1250 features a massive 12.3-inch colour TFT dash, which provides an unobstructed display of vehicle information.
Forthcoming models will be born in CFMOTO’s new office and research and development building in Hangzhou, China, which officially opened in August 2020. A new 150,000sqm high-tech manufacturing facility will be operational later this year, with a potential production capacity of 50,000 larger-capacity (790cc-plus) motorcycles per year.
CFMOTO partnered with KTM in 2013 to produce small-capacity KTM-badged models for China – one of the largest motorcycle markets in the world. The joint-venture company is known as CFMOTO-KTMR2R in which CFMOTO holds a majority share of 51 per cent, with the remaining 49 per cent held by KTM. A 25 per cent share of CFMOTO stock was floated on the Shanghai Stock Exchange in 2017.
“We wanted to demonstrate that CFMOTO has the capability to satisfy our customers’ need for larger-displacement models, as part of our intention to provide greater choices for customers in the future,” CFMOTO chairman and owner Lai Guogui says.
“It’s intended as a great showcase of CFMOTO’s access to advanced technology in design and styling. While other companies in the domestic Chinese powersports industry were developing 125/150cc bikes, CFMOTO was making our 650NK model, on which we are already on to the second generation. And while other companies are developing 250/300/400cc bikes, CFMOTO is developing a 1000cc-plus bike. It’s a great proof of CFMOTO’s brand positioning in looking ahead to larger-displacement products.”
Closer to home, CFMOTO has sold more than 25,000 vehicles since its 2005 Australian debut through its Australian-owned distributor, Mojo Motorcycles, and network of more than 80 dealers.
The first cab off the new-model rank is CFMOTO’s first fully-faired sportsbike – the sharply-styled 300SR – which has just arrived in local showrooms with a rideaway price of $5750.
The next, from early 2021, will be the all-new 700CL-X range – CFMOTO’s first full-powered motorcycle – featuring an all-new 693cc parallel-twin engine that produces 55kW (73hp) of power at 8500rpm and 68Nm of torque at 7000rpm. The 700CL-X will be available in Heritage guise in February and Adventure and Sport guises soon after.
CFMOTO Australia director Michael Poynton says he’s excited to be able to finally reveal what lies ahead for the brand.
“CFMOTO is a seriously powerful player in the ATV/UTV markets across the globe, and we knew big, bold moves were on the horizon for the company’s motorcycle division. It’s quite the warning shot, and it’s just the beginning.”
Founded in 1989, CFMOTO has been competing in the motorcycle and powersports markets for more than 30 years. It is China’s largest exporter of quads and utility side-by-sides (or ATVs and UTVs respectively), with an annual production capacity of more than 600,000 units, distributed to more than 80 countries.
Since 2018, CFMOTO has become the top-selling ATV/UTV brand in Europe, with a majority market share in 2019 – well ahead of its nearest rivals.
The joint venture will further expand CFMOTO’s research and development team, which currently comprises more than 200 employees across five countries. The company also owns more than 540 registered patents and independent intellectual rights.
With the resources of an advanced research and development facility, CFMOTO is striding forward towards a world-class manufacturer in the powersports industry and aims to be a premium global powersports brand.