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2008 Beta Lineup Photo Gallery
2008 Beta Off-road
We sample the exclusive 2008 off-road lineup from the 103-year-old Italian firm, Beta Motor Company. Check out our look at the
2008 Beta Off-Road Lineup
This RR computer is smaller than the one found on RS and RM models.
This is how Italians get air into the airbox. Very cool.
The 45mm Marzocchi Shiver fork wasn’t as good as we hoped for, but the 255mm Braking wave rotor was.
The motors come from KTM, but unlike the Austrian brand, Beta includes a skidplate as stock equipment.
An USFS-approved spark arrestor is standard on all Betas.
A double-cradle molybdenum frame is designed and exclusive to Beta. Only the engine is sourced from KTM.
Beta is proud of the fact that they are a small, intimate Italian company.
These rider ID stickers are a nice touch.
Beta has put forth an enduro machine in the RR form that can compete with the rest of the off-road market.
The RS has blinkers and a license plate holder. The instrumentation and hand controls are slightly different as well to accommodate the street-legal hardware.
RS models have this larger brake light.
Controlling the bike is comfortably simple. It responds well to rider input from the legs or arms.
The factory bikes on hand for display show the racing potential for these machines.
Ground clearance was never a concern on our brief ride.
The motor is just like the KTM mill we’ve come to love – willing, capable and predictable.
The bike doesn’t feel bulky, but it definitely weighs a significant amount. It’s not grotesquely heavy, but a claimed dry weight of 248 pounds seems a little optimistic to us.
The 525 RR was more stable-feeling for our tester even though the chassis and suspension are unchanged.
Hilde had no trouble lofting the 525’s front end in multiple gears, even with the soft, powdery soil.
As factory rider Jordan Brandt demonstrates, the RR models are perfectly capable of tackling big off-road obstacles.
The Betas are fairly willing jumpers, but the suspension is definitely geared to off-road so it uses up the stroke quickly.
Despite having all the same components, the motard version is much easier to touch the ground thanks to the smaller 17-inch wheels. It gives the bike a much more compact feel.
The RS models have everything the competition RR bikes do with the addition of street-legal hardware.
We had no problem finding some soft dirt to explode at the dusty Zaca Station MX Park.
You wouldn’t guess it from this picture, but we had some trouble getting comfortable with the front end. We think many of the issues could have been solved with better break-in and more time to fine-tune.
The supermoto version will likely need suspension adjustments considering it is the same Marzocchi/Sachs setup as on the enduro machines.
Beta has been around since 1904 when it started out as a bicycle company. This little scoot is a Beta Boy from the 1960s.
These are some of the most comfortable stock grips we’ve ever tested.
More RS/RM hardware…
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