IN THE beginning, with the ARC levers, you have to overcome two firmly rooted preconceptions about how brake/clutch levers should be. We’re used to our dirt bike levers being metal (these days that means aluminium) and they should be this one quite thin shape, maybe with just a hint of dogleg before where your index finger will lie. The ARC Memlon Composite levers are not like this, they are shaped broader in the blade and they are a composite (plastic-type) material.
So there’s a little getting used-to required, and yes the feel of these new levers is that they are a little bit broader (and so greater in volume) than conventional – OEM – levers. But such a design brings benefits: they are an easier fit to your fingers and so more comfortable (and hopefully less likely to result in blisters) and curiously you sense less vibration through them. And as for the material, they may be a kind of plastic but there’s zero sense of flex in use, in fact with the smooth finish you’re not sure what they’re made of, you could think they were anodized aluminium. The adjustment system is excellent and you can adjust the levers to your hand size in a very easy way without using tools.
Although so far I have had only the one big fall to demonstrate the effectiveness of the ARC levers – with no damage to the levers, of course – these unbreakable levers give a lot of confidence because you know they will not break (ARC offers a lifetime guarantee). Part of that is the free-moving pivot system, part is due to the Memlon material which will fold back on itself many-many times and always spring back to its original shape. There’s a reason you see ARC levers on so many top racers’ factory bikes – because they work!
The only change I’d like to see would be the inclusion of a rubber boot (as comes with the ARC perch kits) to protect the pivot and screws as the KTM rubber protections don`t fit the ARC levers in the best way.
Typical pricing: US $69.99 UK £49.99