Are you looking for a high-quality motorcycle with a good mix of functional features and nimble dynamics? Husqvarna makes such a bike in Austria. In this Husqvarna Vitpilen 401 review, I’ll describe its specs and features so you can decide if it is the right bike for you.
The Husqvarna Vitpilen 401 is a café racer that has a futuristic look. A KTM 390 Duke engine powers it. This Austrian motorbike features café-racer ergonomics, an avant-garde style, and a compact but powerful engine. It’s not a touring bike, but you can use it as such because of its flexible design.
The Husqvarna Vitpilen 401 has a lot to offer. Being a café racer, it has a forward-leaning stance. It is equipped with a low clip-on handlebar, and its footpegs are rear set. This gives the rider the best riding position for racing and even for touring.
Read on to learn more about the Husqvarna Vitpilen 401, its background, its specs and features, and why it is a good bike to buy.
About the Husqvarna Vitpilen 401
The Husqvarna Vitpilen 401 is a motorbike with a futuristic look. A powerful KTM 390 Duke engine propels it. Combined with its café-racer design, this bike seems to be made for racing. It’s fun to drive it on twisty roads.
Its avant-garde style, café-racer ergonomics plus its compact but powerful engine enables it to provide good road performance. There’s no doubt that you can use this bike for racing because of its forward-leaning stance.
It also has rear-set footpegs and a low clip-on handlebar that makes it fun to ride on the twisties. This bike is definitely able to excite the racer in you. But you can also use the Vitpilen 401 for touring if you’re done with racing.
Husqvarna is not as well-known as the other more popular motorcycle brands like BMW, Yamaha, Harley Davidson, Suzuki, or Honda. But that doesn’t mean that it is a cheap and unreliable brand. To help you better appreciate this brand and this motorbike, here is their brief background.
Introducing the Husqvarna Vitpilen 401
The Vitpilen 401 is a smart and sleek street bike. Most of Husqvarna’smotorbikess are designed for off-roading. Unlike the company’s other off-roaders, the Vitpilen is designed to be used more for blacktops. Yes, it’s small, but it is very versatile.
Since Husqvarna is already owned by KTM, the Vitpilen 401 shares the same DNA as the smaller KTM street motorcycles. The compact KTM 373 cc single-cylinder engine supplies its power. This engine can generate 47 horsepower and 27 lb.-ft of torque. This is the KTM Duke 390 engine.
The Vitpilen 401 has a minimalist aesthetic look that’s full of Scandinavian design concepts. It has a neo-café racer design combined with high-quality hardware such as the 17-inch anodized spoked wheels, WP Apex suspension, and BYBRE brakes. You can also fully customize this bike using parts from Husqvarna’s catalog.
With its KTM Duke 390 engine, the Husqvarna 401 Vitpilen can produce 43 hp at 9,000 revolutions per minute and 37 nM (27 lb.-ft.) of torque at 7,000 RPM. This engine capacity makes the Vitpilen 401 very responsive and torquey throughout its rev range.
This motorbike can really overtake any vehicle at highway speeds quite easily. Its power delivery and throttle feel are something you need to experience. In this area, the Vitpilen 401 is refined and smooth.
When it comes to power handling, the Vitpilen 401 is sporty because of its ergonomics. Its number of gears primarily limits its top speed. Shifting is dependable and smooth, thanks to the shift indicator in the dashboard.
The engine and other parts of the Vitpilen 401 are highlighted by its minimalistic design. Its round headlight, straight seat, and sculpted tank evoke a retro yet futuristic aura. You can see the continuous line design concept from headlight to tail light. The clutter-free look makes this motorbike good to look at.
Ride and Handling
The Vitpilen 401 feels and handles like a sportbike. It has an aggressive riding form. There are plenty of design elements that make it as such, like the following:
- Clip-on handlebars,
- Metzeler Sportec M5 tires,
- Rear set pegs,
- WP Apex inverted fork at the front,
- WP rear monoshock, and
- ByBre brakes.
Handling corner is easy with this café racer. It just falls into any line that you pick up, and it remains there. This is made possible because of its rightly fitted tires and suspension. With its ByBre brakes, braking is sufficient, thanks to the help of its ABS.
Saddle or Seat
The riding triangle of the Husqvarna 401 Vitpilen is basically the same as a sportbike. This triangle is the three points where you come in contact with the bike. Its foot pegs are high and are located at the rear, allowing more sport-bike-like control.
The seat is flat and high, preserving the designer’s idea of a line flowing straight through the bike. It is made of high-quality foam and leather fabric. The clip-on handlebars are mounted lower to make them align perfectly with the fuel tank. Strangely enough, Vitpilen 401’s riding form is even more hunched than other sportbikes.
The Vitpilen 401 is slim between the legs. This offsets its 32.9 seat height which is slightly higher than normal. Though its seat is high, you can still get one foot on the ground if you need to. This makes it easy to ride the bike and stop and go traffic.
One thing doesn’t feel nice to the legs, though. The fuel tank has edges. On short rides, this is not so noticeable. But on long rides, you will feel the edges digging into your thighs, making it a bit uncomfortable though not that much.
Husqvarna Vitpilen 401 Features
The Vitpilen 401 has some attractive features that make it a motorbike worth considering.
Here are the details of these features:
1. Distinctive Lights
The front headlight and rear light of the Vitpilen 401 make it distinct from other motorbikes. These lights are using the latest LED technology. They are more than just designer pieces in that they provide advanced lighting performance and excellent visibility on city streets.
2. Smooth Gearbox
The Vitpilen 401’s gearbox is connected to an Easy Shift sensor. With this sensor, you will be able to seamlessly perform up and down shifts without the need for a clutch. This sensor works by relaying the signal to the ECU as soon as you actuate the gear lever. The ECU matches the engine parameters to allow gear changes at any engine load or rpm.
3. Lightweight but Strong Frame
The Vitpilen 401 has a trellis frame that enhances its character and agility. This frame is made from high-strength chromium-molybdenum steel using robot welding and hydroformed tubes. The result is a lightweight but strong frame that allows nimble handling and provides detailed feedback to the rider.
This frame works harmoniously with the bike’s WP suspension, offering a more confident and comfortable feel. Tight turning in urban streets is easy, thanks to this frame design. Its subframe is also optimized by extending it by 40 mm, enhancing rider comfort.
4. High Quality Suspension
The Vitpilen 401 is fitted with advanced WP Apes suspension. It is crafted to exacting standards ensuring the highest level of craftsmanship and quality. There are 43-mm cartridge forks on the front suspension and a progressive damping system directly connected to the swingarm on the rear suspension.
These high-quality components make possible optimal dynamic handling in challenging urban settings.
5. Dependable Brakes
The Vitpilen 401 uses hydraulic ByBre brake calipers. These brakes are also made with the highest quality standards. They are also manufactured in combination with perforated steel discs measuring 320 mm at the front and 230 mm at the rear.
These brakes deliver confident and controllable braking performance. This motorbike is also equipped with a state-of-the-art Bosch ABS system. It further ensures the highest degree of safety in all braking conditions.
6. Complete Instrument Cluster
Vitpilen 401’s instrument cluster is modern and digitalized. There is just one instrument cluster that houses all the essential metrics you need while driving the bike. It has a speedometer, a tachometer, an odometer, a clock, a couple of trip meters, and a fuel gauge.
There are also a few niceties that include gear position indicator and shift light. It also has a fuel range indicator, although it only gives an estimate instead of an accurate calculation.
7. Big Enough Wheels
The Vitpilen 401 has wheels that are adequate in size for its style. They are 17-inch wheels with anodized spokes. These wheels are one of the design highlights of this motorbike. They offer a distinct sense of style to the bike. These wheels are also robust and are very dependable on challenging and unpredictable urban terrain.
8. Eclectic Exterior
The exterior of the Vitpilen 401 is a combination of classic and modern designs. It has an eye-catching look. Its overall design exhibits its Swedish heritage while its narrow and lightweight bodywork manifests Husqvarna’s progressive outlook.
Husqvarna Vitpilen 401 Specs
The essential specs that you need to know about the Vitpilen 401 are the following:
- Engine – 373 cc liquid-cooled, single-cylinder, 4-stroke gasoline engine
- Maximum Power – 43 hp. at 9,000 rpm
- Maximum Torque – 27 lb.-ft. (37 nM) at 7,000 rpm
- Seat Height – 32.9 in. (835 mm)
- Dry Weight – 333 lbs. (151 kg.)
Full Specs of the Husqvarna Vitpilen 401
Here is a table that will show you the full specifications of the Husqvarna Vitpilen 401:
|Liquid Cooled 4-Stroke, DOHC
|Number of Cylinders
|Number of Valves
|43 hp. at 9,000 RPM
|27 lb.-ft. (37 nM) at 7,000 RPM
|Wheels and Brakes
|Front Wheel Size
|Rear Wheel Size
|Safety & Security
|Auto Indicator Off
|Inverted Telescopic Fork
|Linked type monoshock
|Fuel Supply System
|LED Head Light
|LED Tail Light
|LED Indicator Light
|Low Fuel Indicator
|32.9 inches (835 mm)
|6.7 inches (170 mm)
|326.3 lbs. (148 kg)
|Features and Technology
|Instrument Screen Type
Brief History of Husqvarna
In the motorcycle industry, the brand Husqvarna is not well-known as Harley Davison, BMW, or even Honda, or Yamaha. But it is also a reputable brand having its origins in 1903. This company started making motorcycles at Huskvarna in Sweden.
In the beginning, its motorcycle manufacturing was just a subsidiary of the Husqvarna armament company. This company engineers, designs, manufactures and distributes street motorcycles, supermoto, enduro, and motocross.
Throughout its history, the company experienced various changes in its ownership. In 2013, the KTM AG bought the company and its license rights from Pierer Industrie AG. This acquisition made the Husqvarna Motorcycle GmbH a part of the KTM Group of companies.
Husqvarna now produces its motorcycles at Mattighofen, Austria. The company started producing motorcycles at this plant on Oct. 7, 2013. Today, the company is owned and managed by Pierer Mobility Group.
The Husqvarna Vitpilen 401 is a motorcycle that has a café racer design combined with a futuristic look. It is equipped with a powerful KTM 390 Duke engine. This Swiss motorbike features an avant-garde style, café-racer ergonomics, and a compact but powerful engine.
Its basic design is for racing, but you can also use it for touring. While this bike has its origins in Sweden, it is now being manufactured in Austria.