At EICMA 2022, Kove made its first appearance outside of China. The Chinese motorcycle manufacturer impressed with its selection of models which included an enduro, sportbike, naked streetfighter, and race-inspired rally bike. Indeed, not long after its debut in EICMA, Kove took on the gargantuan challenge of the 2023 Dakar Rally, with all three bikes fielded completing the grueling challenge.
Kove is steadily broadening its horizons with the introduction of the 450 Rally. This exciting addition takes inspiration from the formidable machines employed in the Dakar Rally, and here's the catch – it's street-legal. Initially rolled out in Europe, with a particular focus on Italy and Switzerland, Kove's pricing strategy is quite appealing, coming in at just under 9,000 Euros or roughly $9,571 USD for this rally-bred machine.
It's worth noting that in terms of pure horsepower, the Kove 450 Rally may not be the most powerful among its peers. For instance, KTM, Honda, Yamaha, GasGas, and Husqvarna all boast around 57 horsepower, putting them in a similar range. However, what sets the Kove apart is its road-worthy status. With 52 horsepower and 28 pound-feet (40 Newton-meters), it can confidently hit the streets.
Based on the data provided by Italian and Swiss dealers, the Kove appears to be a compelling value proposition. Historically, 450 rally models and Dakar replicas have commanded steep prices, making the Kove's affordability a noteworthy advantage. It's an exciting option for riders looking to combine rally-inspired performance with on-road capability.
When it comes to the Kove 450 Rally's components, it's a blend of renowned brands. KYB provides the suspension, Nissin takes care of the brakes, Bosch supplies the ABS system, and Pirelli contributes the tires. However, one notable aspect is the bike's modest 15-liter fuel tank, which may raise eyebrows given its "Rally" moniker. This means that long-distance journeys between refueling stops might not be its strong suit. In comparison, the KTM 450 Rally boasts a tank with more than double the capacity at 33 liters, emphasizing its advantage in endurance for those who seek extended off-road adventures.
Kove proudly claims that the 450 Rally weighs in at a mere 145 kilograms when dry. Even when loaded with fuel and fluids, it's unlikely to surpass 180 kilograms. This emphasis on keeping the weight down makes the bike a standout in the lightweight category, which can be a significant advantage for riders seeking agility and maneuverability, particularly in off-road settings.