The philosophy of Original Karting, launched in 2016, had already gone a long way towards simplifying the design and use of a top-level kart engine. The worldwide success of the OK in international competition quickly confirmed the soundness of the initial project.
In 2023, the OK-N will take a new step when it adapts the qualities of the OK to national competitions. Offering a single basis for a reliable, high-performance and more accessible category can only broaden the base of competitors in all countries of the world by simplifying racing in many respects. It is an exceptional new asset in the hands of National Sporting Authorities to develop karting.
Simplicity of design
There is nothing superfluous in an OK-N engine. A 125cc, water-cooled, two-stroke, single-cylinder engine with a direct chain drive on the rear axle is as simple as it gets. The elimination of the clutch, electric starter, battery and electrical wiring contributes to the overall weight reduction and increases reliability, in parallel with the limitation of the maximum engine speed to 15,000 rpm. Six major competition engine manufacturers have now responded to the call by homologating their engines to ensure healthy commercial competition for the benefit of competitors.
Simplicity of use
While everything is simple with an OK-N kart, those used to electric starters may have some questions.
Push-starting, a simple action that needs to be brought back into fashion.
As soon as the OK and OK-Junior were launched in 2016, the preliminary doubts of some were swept away by an intuitive action that ultimately posed no problems. Since then, thousands of starts have taken place without a hitch. It should be noted that restarting is possible during a race after an incident, even for the youngest drivers.
A simple three-step procedure
1. Engage the decompression valve on the top of the cylinder
2. Give the kart a brief push with the possible help of a mechanic
3. Release the valve, the engine crackles and it’s off
Simplicity of maintenance
The time saved in maintenance operations automatically generates substantial savings. Remember it has an external water pump, no electrical harness and the associated risks of breakdowns, as well as battery charging incidents, no clutch and no electric starter. As the number of parts to be replaced regularly after wearing out is drastically reduced, the impact on costs is not negligible. Professionals can easily take this into account in their service rates.
Simplicity of the races
The race format developed by the CIK-FIA for the 2024 OK-N World Cup sets the tone for future national competitions. The idea is to reduce costs in meetings which are reduced to a maximum of two days with one chassis, one engine and one and a half sets of tyres. All relevant organisers are invited to follow this scheme.
Two categories for one engine
The OK-N can easily be transformed into an OKN-Junior by simply adding a 26 mm flange to the exhaust. The engine itself as well as the carburettor and exhaust system remain the same.
The OK-N is now
There is no reason to wait for the OK-N. Following the example of the USA, a trend-setting market which organised the first OK-N event at the beginning of February, races are being set up in several countries this season with the aim of an international competition bringing together the first participants under the FIA Karting banner during the “Road to the World Cup – OK-N” which will be organised alongside the 2023 FIA Karting World Championship – OK and OK-Junior in Franciacorta (ITA), as a prelude to the first FIA Karting World Cup – OK-N announced for 2024.
Press Release © FIA Karting