The worst kept secret in Matthighofen is out, GasGas is officially heading into street-legal territory with two new KTM based models.
The new LC4 based models have been dubbed ES 700 and SM 700 and finally give GasGas a place in the road market. Where this could lead is anyone’s guess, but with the platform sharing between KTM, Husqvarna and now GasGas, we expect GasGas won’t leave their street range as just two models for long.
Both the ES 700 and SM 700 are based on the same LC4 engine and trellis frame we’ve come to know and love since the introduction of the KTM 690 Enduro and Husqvarna 701. Both also feature a die-cast alloy swingarm and polyamid subframe that doubles as the bikes’ 13.5-litre fuel tank.
The LC4 engine on both models pumps out the same 74hp at 8,000rpm with 73.5Nm of wheelie inducing torque on tap at 6,500rpm, with service intervals set at 10,000km intervals. There’s also a slipper clutch for the 6-speed gearbox to prevent unintentional rear wheel slides when smashing down gears with the factory equipped quickshifter.
There are a few small differences between the two models apart from the obvious wheel sizes.
Both bikes have tyres supplied by Continental as factory fitment, with the ES 700 shipping out with a set of TKC80 tyres, while the SM scores a set of Continental ContiAttack SM EVO hoops for corner-carving dominance.
Hauling it all to a stop sees a massive 4-piston Brembo monobloc caliper and 320mm disc on the SM matched to a single-piston caliper and 240mm on the rear, while the ES tones things down with a 2-piston Brembo caliper on 300mm disc at the front and the same rear brake as the SM.
The other big difference between the SM and ES comes in the chassis setup and suspension packages offered by each. Springing the ES over obstacles is a set of WP XPLOR forks and shock offering up 250mm of travel. The SM, on the other hand, runs with a set of WP Apex units with reduced ground clearance and travel for a more road-biased feel. GasGas has even tweaked the steering head angle between the bikes (ES:62.3 vs SM:63.6) to further tune handling for their respective purposes.
While the electronics packages both feature Ride-by-Wire, Cornering ABS, Traction Control and Ride Modes, they differ in their tuning with the ES featuring an off-road-focused mode while the SM similarly has a Supermoto version. ABS is switchable on both with the Supermoto offering the ability to remove it from the rear wheel only while the ES can switch the system off completely.
GasGas New Zealand has yet to confirm pricing or expected local arrival dates with KR. We’ll keep you posted on any further road-going developments from the red-headed stepchild of the KTM family.