Husaberg FE 501e Supermono

 

 

 

Make Model

Husaberg FE 501e Supermono

Year

2000

Engine

Four stroke, single cylinder, 4 valves

Capacity

501 cc / 30.5 cu-in
Bore x Stroke 95 x 70.1 mm
Cooling System Liquid cooled
Compression Ratio  

Induction

Carburetor

Ignition 

CDI
Starting Kick

Max Power

52.0 hp / 38.0 kW

Transmission 

6 Speed 
Final Drive Chain

Front Suspension

WP USD 4860 MA Husaberg Enduro

Rear Suspension

WP PDS 5018 Husaberg Enduro

Front Brakes

Single 260mm disc

Rear Brakes

Single 220mm disc

Front Tyre

90/90 -18

Rear Tyre

140/80 -18
Wheelbase 1490 mm / 58.7 in
Seat Height 930 mm / 36.6 in

Dry Weight

105,7 kg / 233.3 lbs

Fuel Capacity 

9 Litres / 2.4 US gal

New commitment to service / warranty...

Perhaps the most important step in the right direction has come with an increase of the normal 3 month warranty out to 12 months. Husaberg now offers a better warranty than bikes like its KTM brethren (3 months) and Yamaha's WR models.

Husaberg management claim that they are now totally committed to after sales service and support, an area where the brand has been lacking in previous years.

Perhaps even more important for customer satisfaction is that all 2003 Husaberg machines are put through an extensive pre-delivery regimen at the WA based national distribution centre, before being sent on to dealers.

Nothing like your new bike leaking oil the first week you get it, this new system of doing things hopes to prevent such happenings.

Husaberg also claim to be working hard to ensure a large stock of components and service items are always available and warehoused at their Australian distribution centre. I was impressed with my walk around their facility, the manager I spoke to impressed with his common sense approach to how he aims to improve the name of the brand.

Husaberg - History

The Husaberg brand came about from a group of Husqvarna engineers breaking away from Husky to produce their own machines.

They had immediate success in European racing circles and started producing machines for sale. They were then brought in to the KTM fold to help them develop Husaberg further.

In recent years KTM has learnt many lessons in areas of quality control and parts distribution, and this is where the benefits for Husaberg will show through. But each company’s products will remain totally separate.

Now to the bike

I recently covered over 600km aboard one of Husaberg’s FE501 machines.

For this review I sampled the model with some optional ‘SuperMoto’ components, including polished 17” rims shod with Michelin Sport road rubber. An impressive Inox 310mm floating front disc assembly with Beringer four-piston caliper was also an optional extra fitted to the machine.

The FE501 retails for around $12,595, the road wheels and brake are available separately but will add nearly $3000 to the cost of the machine. But then you have a road bike and MX bike in one, you only need to switch the wheels over depending on what you plan to get up to over the coming weekend.

The brake is powerful and does not fade. The disc rotor is fully-floating, thick and robust. Effort through the lever is moderate and feel is quite good.

Combine the impressive braking forces with the motocross based suspension and it is easy to see that in Supermoto trim the machine would benefit from some stiffer springs in the forks, along with a reduction in travel. Husaberg can supply off-the-shelf components to make this simple modification a fuss free affair.

The soft forks held things back a little when braking hard. Also on the exit of fast turns when carrying good corner speed the forks were prone to 'pattering' a little. We were getting pretty excited on the machine though and circulating the Wanneroo short-circuit in around 61 seconds.

However, the rear suspension was impressive in Supermoto trim. The progressive PDS shock behaved extremely well and did not suffer from excessive squat or instability, common on such machines when road rubber is fitted. You would have to be getting fairly serious at the track before any changes to the rear shock were necessary.

The 501cc engine is really strong off the bottom. Surprisingly, it is also quite smooth running thanks to a counter-balancer running off the crankshaft. We ran it up on the dyno at Witch Cycles and saw that it pretty much matched the renowned master of four-stroke grunt, KTM’s 520 EXC, throughout the whole rev range. (Click here for dyno charts).
The more observant among you may have noticed there is no airbox visible on the machine. That is because the 40mm Dellorto carburettor breathes through the frame. The air-filter sits atop the backbone of the frame just under the fuel tank. The air is then passed through the frame to the carburettor.

Electric start is provided, a kick-starter is also fitted. Like most of the more competition-based machines the electric start is handy, but can’t always be relied upon. However it was more reliable than some of the European dirt machines I have sampled, it worked all but a couple of times. However, it must be said that as I got more accustomed to the machine starting became much easier, as is normal with a dirt based machine.

The kick-starter is on the left-hand side of the machine and is aided by an automatic decompressor. A handlebar mounted decompression lever also helps should everything else fail.

The choke is out of the way under the tank of the machine. It is operated by pulling down and twisting rather than the conventional pull in/out type toggle. You have no hope of operating it on the move, luckily it is only needed to fire the beast from very cold and can be disengaged immediately after starting.

The standard muffler is easily derestricted and provides one of the nicest four-stroke single notes I have heard. In derestricted guise it is not overly loud but it does have enough bark to provide aural appeal when ‘getting up it’.

On the move the six-speed gearbox is a gem, clutchless upshifts are always smooth and positive. However finding neutral can sometimes be a little troublesome.

The 9-litre fuel tank is made by Acerbis and has a fuel tap on either side of the machine. A reserve position is shown on the taps but as I found out to my cost, it is there more for show than use. There is actually no reserve cell in the tank. Thanks to the kind gentleman who gave me a lift to the service station. Fuel range is less than 100km in most conditions.

Exotic components abound including Magura tapered bars, CrMo frame, 48mm USP WP forks, WP PDS shock and Brembo master cylinders/levers etc. (See detail shots at bottom of page - click them to enlarge). Unnecessary extras are kept to a minimum so the machine can tip the scales at a fraction over 110kg dry.

The dash is small and comprehensive. It offers many functions such as tripmeters and countdown trips to aid enduro navigation and also features an onboard lap timer function. The buttons to operate the unit are on the left bar, see picture at bottom of page. On the right bar is another switch that allows the rider to switch between two ignition maps as conditions change.

In SuperMoto trim the machine is an absolute hoot on the street. Every roundabout has you begging to throw the machine in sideways and self-control becomes a premium commodity. I didn't really want to take it back after my 600km stint with the bike. But I think my licence is more safe for it...

Down the track we also hope to review the 501 Husaberg as it comes out of the box in the conventional enduro guise. Husaberg also sell a ready to go SuperMoto model called the FS650.

Source MCNews..au