The IAME X30 Thread

Speaking to the growth and popularity here in the U.S. I’m curious to hear from those of you who have decided to run this platform as of late. I picked one up (not installed yet) and I just happen to notice (by dumb luck?) that my local 2 stroke (125 cc) community at my track are rapidly moving to this platform.

So I’m was wondering what reasons it is, or is not, gaining traction at YOUR local level?

My local I would classify as a track where odd ball stuff seems to rains supreme in the historical sense. Lots of Easy Karts in the 2 stroke class and Subaru dominating the 4 stroke world. KA-100 hasn’t caught on except in the adolescent divisions.

What’s the trend at your local? Have you recently began running this platform, or is something else (non X30) gaining popularity?

The exact opposite has happened locally for me. X30 is dying out and KA is getting stronger and stronger.

X30 is fast, fun, and challenging. The downsides I’ve seen are it can be too physical for some, too fast for learning on, expensive to maintain, and a lottery of getting a good motor.

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Lottery in getting a good motor? No kidding, haven’t heard that one yet . . .

There’s a bit more disparity between X30’s performance than some other platforms. At a track like New Castle, the difference between a “good” one and a “great” one could be half a second. At the club level it’s not that big of an issue, but in the national level it gets pretty serious trying to get a “great” one from an engine builder.

Easily the best and most fun engine I’ve ever run. Broad powerband, low vibration, minimal component wear all year aside from short-lived 10-tooth sprockets, reliable starting, charges itself.

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I’m with Charles 20 char

Maybe there has been more found by builders in the last year or so, but X30’s parity was always a selling point when I was running it in USPKS and Pro Tour (2011-2019). I was one of the first to race it here nationally when they introduced it. We actually noted at one of the Pro Tour races how the X30 Senior field was so tightly packed (0.5 from 1st to 30th or something crazy) compared to previous top-level classes, and most agreed a lot of it was down to the parity between engines.

I probably drove 10 different X30s over that span, from different builders as well, and I don’t think any of them were “bad”. As with any engine some felt better than others but I never felt we were losing because of engine disparity.

I haven’t driven on the new pipe yet so maybe that has affected it.

Here in SoCal, the TaG100 (KA/VLR-100) dominate, the X30 entries are 1/3 of KA, especially in club and regional racing. I think it’s responsible for the resurgence in karting in SoCal. KA is just the right amount of HP for the once-a-month racer, requires very little maintenance, extremely simple to operate (no liquid cooling, no exhaust flex), uses very little fuel, doesn’t eat chains, reliable starter and there is a semblance of engine parity (at the club level). I have friends that say that the KA is cheaper and easier to run upfront than LO-206 and most importantly, it doesn’t sound like lawn mower :slight_smile:


We saw the KA 100’s coming into the adolescent ranks but all of them have or are in the process of jumping to X-30. Which is unfortunate because I’ve always heard good things about the KA-100. I was leaning toward going that route, but I’d have nobody to run with locally. Same with VLR 100, you never see them around in my neck of the woods.

I think one thing that might cause a disparity is that the new pipe and ignition are measurably faster than the old pipe and ignition, probably 0.7 seconds per minute, which is a huge gain for a powertrain change. If you’ve got half the field that’s got either a new engine or an upgrade and half the field on the old one, you’ll find a bigger time gap than before. Before everyone at East Lansing upgraded I could use my new engine to pass them on the short straight between turn 5 and turn 6 with no advantage leaving turn 5.

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I can see where the adolescent crowd doesn’t care about reliability and maintainability because they don’t pay the bills. Whereas the older club racer likely works on his own kart and pays the bills does care about the features TaG100 motors. I think the TaG100 motor class will eventually become popular in all areas of the US.

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Anyone have any compare/ contrast or side-by-side pictures of the old pipe and ignition vs the new upgraded version?

I’m a visual type, so I’m not sure if I saw one how to tell which one was what. . . .

New exhaust


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Old style utilized a header, flex pipe, and a Pipe.

New style utilizes a manifold and a 1 piece pipe.

x30 old start
Old ignition used a seperate relay, ecu box and keystart for ignition. With the ecu being the source of the limiter. Black stator and black coil.

The new system utilized the KA100 push buttons. Eliminates ecu, relay and uses less wiring.
Blue coil, blue stator.

I can take a picture of my ignition (new style) when I get home this evening.


I’m a massive massive fan of this, always. Less wiring = less shit to not understand when it goes Pete tong :joy::joy:


Had to look this one up. Pleasantly surprised to discover that I saw this film.

" The phrase “It’s all gone Pete Tong”, where the name is used as rhyming slang for “a bit wrong”, was reputedly first coined by Paul Oakenfold in late 1987 in an article about acid house called “Bermondsey Goes Balearic” for Terry Farley and Pete Heller’s Boys Own fanzine.[4][5][6] It’s All Gone Pete Tong is also the title of a 2004 film which portrays a fictional DJ’s experiences as he realizes he is becoming deaf.[7]"