KTM’s updated 1290 Super is now meaner than ever and is based on their all new design philosophy. With all the top brass at EICMA, it is not a small feat that a single bike receives all the attention, and we are not even talking about the Super Duke. KTM’s own 790 Duke Prototype was an even bigger hit than its 1290 version (who would have though that’s possible), and the below picture will tell you why.
There’s not much to talk about the 790 Duke as of yet, so we will skip that part to last.
KTM 1290 Super Duke R
The KTM 1290 Super Duke personifies the pinnacle of streetfighter brilliance and has long been at the top of its segment The Austrian manufacturer has no plans to leave its helm any time soon and that show in the 2017 update of the bike.
If it was aggressive before, it is a proper brute now. The new 1290 Duke R comes with split LED headlamps with DRLs, sharper fairing, new tank spoilers and new air intakes. The seating position has been made more forward inclined and bars are now longer, lower and further forward.
Other features include a larger TFT full-colour display, new keyless entry system and Cruise control.
Changes on the new Super Duke are not merely cosmetic. The re-tuned 1,301cc LC8 V-Twin engine produces 7 more hp, at 177 hp. Further tweaks have enabled KTM to broaden the bike’s powerband, improve compression ratio (13.6:1) and ensure smoother power delivery in low RPM ranges.
Also new are the 48mm USD front WP forks, which are now stiffer with separates damping circuits, and the heavier rear WP shocks. Multi-stage and lean angle sensitive ABS, Traction control and ‘Super Moto’ mode makes part of the improved Bosch Motorcycle Stability Control (MSC).
While the stock bike is pretty stacked, you can always improve it by opting for the ‘performance’ pack that adds quickshifter, motor slip regulation, and KTM MY RIDE (smartphone integration), or the ‘Track’ pack which adds track mode rider setting, kill wheelie control option, traction control slip adjust and launch control.
KTM Duke 790 Prototype
Though still in its prototype phase, the Duke 790 gives us a lot to look forward to. It also follows KTM’s new design language and is extremely gorgeous. Another exiting design detail is the bike’s under seat exhaust, which, if you remember the gnarly 1290 Super Duke protoype, is unlikely to make its way in to production. However, the one on the 790 Duke feels like the engineers have put some effort in to it, so who knows.
Why we are really excited about the bike is because of its prospects for India. Much like most of KTM’s small displacement bikes, the 790 Duke could also be produced in India. KTM boss Stefan Pierer even hinted the same couple of years back.
If this is the case, the KTM Duke 790 will be first such example of 100% localisation in the country. This could effectively bring down prices to near Rs. 5 lakhs range, which if you don’t know, is for a 120bhp (expected) producing parallel twin cylinder motorcycle.
Other markets like Europe and USA will get the bike priced on par with competition in its class.