2016 KTM 500 XC-W

2016 KTM 500 XC-W

The 500 XC-W is one of the most powerful enduro machines of its class. Combining low weight and high displacement, high-tech SOHC 4-stroke technology is the right choice for all who are looking for maximum performance, combined with playful handling.


  • AIRBOX: The air filter can be quickly replaced without the use of any tools, thanks to an ingenious airbox design guarantees optimum filter protection from flying dirt while creating maximum airflow for high performance. The airbox covers are manufactured in a 2-component process with in-mold graphics. In addition, two extra flaps on the left cover allow it to be secured with bolts if desired.
  • BODYWORK: The bodywork has been designed ergonomically and functionally in such a way that the whole motorcycle is in perfect harmony with the rider down to the very last detail.
  • FUEL TANK: The large capacity fuel tank is constructed of lightweight polyethylene and specifically designed for off-road use. A ¼-turn bayonet filler cap features a release mechanism for quick and easy refueling.
  • SPEEDO: The speedometer by MAE integrates all the warning and indicator lights, except the turn signals, in a single unit. This gives the cockpit a clean and minimal look, with clear and readily available information.
  • GRAPHICS: New graphics with clear lines visually underscore the exacting standards of what KTM deems a true, cutting-edge off-road bike.
  • HANDLEBAR: All XC-W models are fitted with super strong, tapered Neken handlebars made of high tensile aluminum alloy that can be mounted in four positions. Standard equipment hand guards made of a new 2-component polymer for durability and effective hand protection.

Superior Chassis

  • COOLING SYSTEM: The proven integrated KTM cooling system routes the coolant from the cylinder head through the frame triangle directly to the WP aluminum radiators. A radiator fan is standard equipment for the big displacement 500 XC-W.
  • FRAME: The modern frame design of the 500 XC-W, comprising lightweight, high strength, chrome-molybdenum steel section tubes, combines maximum longitudinal stiffness with optimum torsional stiffness. This guarantees easy handling and precise steering behavior, as well as excellent ride stability. It clearly represents the benchmark in terms of weight and stability. Thanks to the frame design and the rear PDS damping system, impacts at the rear wheel are absorbed and dissipated optimally. For 2016 the frame is protected by a new, robust skidplate.
  • SUSPENSION/DAMPING: The KTM 500 XC-W is fitted with a new front fork featuring newly designed fork boots with shorter offset, increased trail and a new suspension settings, optimally tuned to weight and engine. In addition, the fork features new fork guards allowing for easier cleaning. At the rear, a PDS shock absorber from WP Suspension works with a direct linkage to the upper side of the swingarm. A wide range of setting options for rebound damping and high- and low-speed compression damping are standard and can be adjusted to suit racing and trail conditions.
  • SWINGARM: The cast aluminum swingarm has been developed with state-of-the-art calculation and simulation software and constructed for minimum weight, optimum stiffness and precisely defined flexibility.
  • TRIPLE CLAMPS: The high-end CNC machined triple clamps have been specifically designed for off-road use and ensures precise handling thanks to precision clamping of the fork legs. The rider receives precise feedback from the front wheel, even in the toughest terrain, thereby increasing riding safety and speed.

The Powerhouse

  • COUNTER BALANCER: In order to balance and smooth engine vibrations, the engine uses a counter balance shaft, which doubles as a water pump drive.
  • CRANKSHAFT: The crankshaft and ultra-lightweight connecting rod are made by Pankl from special high-tensile strength steel. The crankshaft employs a plain big end bearing, and two force-fitted bearing shells run directly on the crank pin. The necessary oil feed for this bearing is ensured by the engine's pressure lubrication. This design increases the engine's long-term durability, and lengthens crankshaft service intervals, which is a customer benefit in terms of time, effort and cost.
  • CYLINDER HEAD: A single overhead camshaft activates two titanium intake valves and two steel exhaust valves. The weight-optimized valve train has low friction for improved performance as well as low engine braking action.
  • DDS CLUTCH: The one-piece basket of the DDS clutch (damped diaphragm steel) is machined from solid high-tensile steel in one solid part together with the primary drive gear. This process guarantees unbeatable reliability and, together with the thin steel linings, contributes to the narrow engine width due to a compact rivet-less design. The diaphragm spring makes it possible to implement an additional rubber damping system inside the clutch hub, ensuring reliability for the transmission and excellent traction. Finally, the hydraulic clutch mechanism by Brembo in conjunction with the diaphragm spring provides a very light clutch operation and controllable modulation.
  • ENGINE MANAGEMENT SYSTEM: The Engine Management System by Keihin with electronic fuel injection via a 42mm throttle body ensures a snappy response and maximum engine performance. An oil-cooled 196 W alternator provides sufficient energy for the fuel injection, lighting and other electrical loads. With an optional map-select switch from the Power Parts program, the EMS can allow the rider to select different engine characteristics. In addition, the optional User-Setting-Tool provides the ability to readout engine data with a laptop and change the ignition and injection mapping with just a few mouse clicks.
  • ENGINE: Developed for tough off-road duty, the SOHC engine with 510.4cc is distinguished by an extremely compact design, easy maintenance and excellent durability at a minimal weight. Together with the Keihin EFI system, this provides unrivalled enduro specific performance and rideability.
  • STARTER: The 500 XC-W is equipped with a kickstarter as well as electric starter as standard. The electric starter is well protected behind the cylinder.
  • PISTON: The lightweight, forged bridged box-type piston shares its high performance piston rings with the 450 SX-F.
  • TRANSMISSION: The proven 6-speed gearbox is distinguished by easy and precise shifting.

Wheels and Brakes

  • BRAKES: High-tech Brembo brakes have always been standard equipment on KTM off-road bikes, and combined with the lightweight Galfer Wave discs, they are the ultimate solution in braking technology. Being the class-leading brakes in off-road, they are unchanged for 2016.
  • FRONT AXLE: The front axle has been reduced in size from 26mm to 22mm to reduce weight and offer better front end feel. The adjusted offset from 35mm to 33mm increases trail and provides more stability.
  • FRONT FORK GUARDS: The fork protectors have been adapted to the fork shoes and are also lighter. The open design offers the same level of protection while giving easier access to the fork legs for quicker cleaning and faster maintenance.
  • WHEELS: The black colored aluminum Giant rims with black spokes are mated to CNC machined hubs and lightweight aluminum nipples to achieve maximum stability at minimum weight. These high quality, lightweight black rims have been developed for KTM and offer top performance when fitted with the new Dunlop GEOMAX AT81 tires on all XC-W models.

General Information

Manufacturer KTM
Model Year 2016
Model 500 XC-W
Model Code 500XCW
Color Orange



Front - 260 mm Disc brake

Rear - 220 mm Disc brake


Weight 111.5 kg
Ground Clearance 345 mm
Wheelbase 1482 ± 10 mm
Seat Height 970 mm


Transmission 6-speed
Final Drive 13:50


Engine 1-cylinder 4-stroke engine
Displacement 510.4 cm³
Bore x Stroke 95 mm x 72 mm
Fuel System Keihin EMS
Fuel Capacity 8.5 l
Clutch Wet, DDS multi-disc clutch, Brembo hydraulics
Cooling Liquid


Starting Kick and electric starter
Primary Drive 32:76
Frame Chrome-molybdenum steel central-tube frame

Front - WP USD Ø 48 mm / Travel 300 mm

Rear - WP PDS shock absorber / Travel 335 mm

Rake 63.5 °