Everything You Need To Know About the Husqvarna Svartpilen 401


The original Husqvarna company made muskets (old-fashioned guns) in a new factory outside the village of Husqvarna in Sweden in 1689. By the late 1870s, Husqvarna turned to making shotguns and hunting rifles. They also started manufacturing stoves, sewing machines, and bicycles. The first motorcycle was built in 1903, making Husqvarna one of the oldest motorcycle companies in continuous production. In 2013, Pierer Industries bought Husqvarna from BMW. At the time, Stefan Pierer was the CEO of Cross Industries (the major shareholder in KTM) and KTM. Pierer soon sold the Swedish brand to the KTM Group.




The Svartpilen and Vitpilen were launched by the KTM-owned Swedish brand in 2016. While the Vitpilen had a more café racer style, the Svartpilen had a more upright, scrambler feel to it. Both took the motorcycling world by storm for their ultra-modern styling, which is certainly unlike anything else on the market. But, how much do you know about the Husqvarna Svartpilen 401? Here are the top 10 things you should know about this bike in 2024.

UPDATE: 2024/03/26 13:38 EST BY UTKARSH SOOD

Husqvarna continues to develop its ever-popular Svartpilen. The 401 still continues to be a respectable model even today and it recently underwent a sizable update. So to keep our readers up to speed on all the latest Husky developments, this article has been updated with all the latest info for the 2024 Svartpilen.

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First Husqvarna Road Bike In 50 Years

Svartpilen Was First Released in 2016


Since the 1960s, Husqvarna concentrated solely on motocross and enduro motorcycles, in which they were exceptionally successful. The company won 14 motocross world championships in the 125cc, 250cc, and 500cc classes, as well as 24 enduro world championships and 11 Baja 1000s. Husky was so good at making dirt bikes, even the legendary Steve McQueen competed on them. They were immortalized beautifully in the famous documentary, On Any Sunday.

But road-based motorcycles seemed to have eluded Husqvarna for a long time. That is until KTM came into the picture and delivered to them one beauty of a single cylinder that Husky wisely chose not to waste. So, in 2016, we saw the first generation of the Svartpilen. The latest 2024 iteration just builds on those soil foundations.

Based On The KTM 390 Platform

KTM – Husqvarna: An Alliance That Continues To Grow Stronger in 2024

2024 KTM Duke 390
KTM


In partnership with Indian manufacturer Bajaj, KTM started producing motorcycles with a 373cc single-cylinder engine in 2013. The resulting ‘390’ was produced in naked ‘Duke’, faired ‘RC’, and Adventure styles. The Svartpilen builds on the idea, serving as a re-styled KTM 390 Duke, and was launched in 2018 using the exact same engine. The result was nothing short of revolutionary, especially for those riders who were turned off by KTM’s disruptive yet divisive looks. Now, in 2024, as KTM has revised its 390 Duke, the Svartpilen receives the benefit of that overhaul as well.

An Exciting Single Cylinder

399cc Of Pure Fun

Husqvarna Svartpilen 401
Husqvarna


As mentioned previously, the Svartpilen has continued to house KTM’s rowdy, single-cylinder, 373cc engine, utilized in the Duke. And as anyone who’s ever ridden the 390 Duke will readily tell you, that is no ordinary thumper. KTMs are known for how great their engines are. It’s kind of their thing, perhaps at the expense of pretty much everything else.

As KTM started utilizing an all-new 399cc for the Duke, it was inevitable that this would trickle down to the small Husky as well. This improved 399cc, 45 horsepower single-cylinder engine expands on the previous model’s excellent high-revving characteristics. With the ability to handle higher gears at slower speeds, this new motor is far more capable than the previous one in all areas.


Engine Specifications

Specification

Husqvarna Svartpilen 401

Engine

Liquid-cooled, single-cylinder

Displacement

399cc

Bore x Stroke

89 mm x 64 mm

Horsepower

44.6 horsepower

Torque

28.9 pound-feet

Transmission

6-speed

Final Drive

Chain

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Designed Unlike Anything Else

It Now Gets A Revitalized Rear Profile

2024 Husqvarna Vitpilen 401 and Svartpilen 401 Stationary
Husqvarna


KTMs are utilitarian trail and road weapons that generate some of the best riding experiences on the planet. What they’re not, however, are awesome to look at. True, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and many may find KTMs not as objectionable as some. In contrast, more than three years after we first became acquainted with Swedish minimalist design, the Svartpilen 401’s design is still recognizable and unique.

It is tremendous what Husky was able to do with the KTM components. Its tank panel extends all the way underneath the rider’s saddle. The overall aesthetics of the head and tail lamp units are quite similar, but the rear section is where most visual changes are. It gets a nice-looking rear fender as opposed to one with a swingarm-mounted number plate. As a result, owners can the bike as a thing of beauty. And though that may not matter to lots of riders, the riders who can appreciate a well-designed machine will undoubtedly find the Svartpilen a genuine joy to own.

Notable Design Features

  • Tank plate
  • New radiator shrouds
  • Pillion grab rail
  • New fenders
  • Fork covers
  • Tinted windscreen


A Scrambler In Looks Only

It Is More Road-Focused Than You’d ExpectHusqvarna Svartpilen 401

There are limitations to those handsome looks, however. Though the Svartpilen may look rugged and off-road ready, don’t let the press photos fool you, as it is decidedly road-biased. Husqvarna is adamant that, despite the chunky Pirelli Scorpion tires, dirt-bike style crossbar handlebars, and narrow seat, the Svartpilen is most definitely not for off-road use. It is perhaps best looked at as an exercise in styling.

It’s a street bike meant to be ridden sitting, and Husqvarna makes no secret of this fact. Take a look at the roadster-like riding stance that makes you lean forward towards the handlebar. Those riders enamored with scrambler and café racer looks, but don’t have the need to take things off-road, could at least own a motorcycle that will scratch that itch.


Electronics Galore

Plus Handy Accessories From Husqvarna

Husqvarna Svartpilen 401
Husqvarna

As great as the Svartpilen looks, Husqvarna has added a fair bit of tech on board. In terms of features, the Husqvarna and KTM are similar, but not identical. In addition to the TFT and switchable ABS/traction control, there is a lean-sensitive electronics package with complete LED lighting.

There is smartphone connectivity for turn-by-turn navigation, making it really easy to navigate with the screen, Norden 901-derived software, and switchgear arrangement. Husqvarna also offers a host of accessories for the Svartpilen in the form of a skid plate, tank rack, grab rail, and more upright bars. This is great news for riders who love turning their bikes into extensions of their personalities by swapping out parts and upgrading components.


Notable Electronics

  • Five-inch TFT instrument cluster
  • Ride modes
  • Traction control
  • Bi-directional quickshifter
  • Cornering ABS
  • Smartphone connectivity

Suspension Is Perfect For Urban Riding

Taken Care By WP Apex

Husqvarna Svartpilen 401
Husqvarna

Husqvarna aimed the Svartpilen squarely at enticing young riders to the brand; riders who would be riding on poorly-maintained city roads, with potholes, bumps, bad patching repairs, and so on. To that end, the suspension is quite capable. And you have the option to adjust things if you want to fiddle around (we don’t recommend that).


Talking about adjustability, the offset WP rear shock offers rebound and preload adjustment, while the WP Apex 43 mm open cartridge forks offer compression and rebound adjustments. A small five-click hand toggle lets you adjust the amount of softness and hardness up front. The process is the same at the back, but a flathead screwdriver is required for that. That said, remember this is not a true scrambler so the travel is not enough to go flying in trails.

Suspension Specifications

Specification

Husqvarna Svartpilen 401

Front suspension

WP Apex USD forks

Rear suspension

Link-less WP Apex monoshock

Suspension travel (front)

5.9 inches

Suspension travel (rear)

5.9 inches

Ground clearance

7 inches

Seat height

32.2 inches


ByBre Brakes To Stop On A Dime

Stop With Ease And Confidence

Husqvarna Svartpilen 401
Husqvarna

The brake calipers are ByBre, which is a low-cost subsidiary of Brembo. They were deliberately chosen for the Svartpilen as they are much softer in feel than full Brembo calipers and therefore suitable for riders not used to the power of strong brakes, such as Asian markets. There’s ample tech to keep you safe too, which wouldn’t seem out of place on a larger, more costly bike. It also gets a Supermoto ABS setting and Cornering ABS. One notable change is that, as a design decision, the braking system has been shifted to the right side of the wheels in order to highlight more of the bike’s features while placed on its side stand.


Braking Specifications

Specification

Husqvarna Svartpilen 401

Front Brake

ByBre, opposed four-piston caliper; 320 mm disc

Rear Brake

ByBre, twin-piston floating caliper; 240 mm disc

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Capable Trellis Frame

Resulting In A More Accessible Seat Height

Husqvarna Svartpilen 401
Husqvarna

The Svartpilen is a slim, nimble motorcycle, with much of the credit to the chassis. It gets a new swingarm and tubular steel trellis frame, both of which are key to a reduced 32.2-inch seat height. Husky made sure that the frame was flexible, and lightweight and worked well with the suspension components of the motorcycles. As a result, for bigger riders, it’s really significantly more roomy and comfy than the latest generation KTM Dukes. And considering that it only weighs 350 pounds, the power-to-weight ratio allows for a thrilling ride.


Chassis Details

Specification

Husqvarna Svartpilen 401

Chassis

Tubular steel trellis frame

Wheel (Front)

110/70 x 17

Wheel (Rear)

150/60 x 17

Weight

350 pounds

Priced To Compete

Far More Affordable Than Its Direct Competitors

2024 Husqvarna Vitpilen 401 and Svartpilen 401
Husqvarna

There is no shortage of small displacement bikes out there. The category is seemingly flooded with fantastic new models, from Royal Enfield’s Scram 411 to Triumph’s Scrambler 400 X. And if you’re new to riding, and want something small to start with, there’s no reason why you can’t find exactly what you’re looking for. With that in mind, Husqvarna priced the Svartpilen fairly aggressively, considering that it is a somewhat premium brand.


The 2024 Svartpilen 401 starts at $5,899, which is not too shabby for the kind of machine you’d be getting. A small, unique package that packs a punch from its single-cylinder engine, all but promising you a thumpin’ good time. Now, we just hope Husqvarna is a good sport and follows this up with a Vitpilen 401!

Key Competitors

  • Triumph Scrambler 400 X
  • KTM 390 Duke
  • Royal Enfield Scram 411



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