SCOOP: Completely Revamped KTM 990 Duke Spotted Testing Near KTM’s Factory In Austria

It’ll boast an up-specced engine based on KTM’s LC8c platform seen on the 790 Duke and the 890. Expect the official debut by end of the year

The KTM 990 Duke was the OG Super Duke before the ballistic 1290 version came along, and if you’re a fan of the former, we’ve got good news for you.

An all-new twin-cylinder KTM naked has been spied testing near the bikemaker’s factory in Mattighofen, Austria. The test mule was flaunting a revised version of its LC8c engine, thus confirming a resurrection of the 990 Duke. This makes total sense. After all, it’d be an ideal next step in KTM’s middleweight lineup, comprising the 790 Duke, 890 Duke, and the 890 Duke R.

2023 KTM 990 Duke Spied Testing

SCOOP: Completely Revamped KTM 990 Duke Spotted Testing Near KTM's Factory In Austria
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There’s plenty to note here, starting with the all-new design boasting vertically stacked LED projectors

One look at the KTM 990 Duke’s test mule and it looks exactly like….a Suzuki GSX-S1000. Yes, unlike the existing KTM 790 and 890 Dukes, the 990 Duke boasts a totally different fascia with two vertically stacked LED projectors, extremely similar to the 2021 Suzuki GSX-S1000. However, fascia aside, all other bodywork - tank shrouds, fuel tank, and the tail section - are all super radical in typical KTM fashion.

SCOOP: Completely Revamped KTM 990 Duke Spotted Testing Near KTM's Factory In Austria
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Coming back to the test mule, another notable aspect is the extra-chunky tail section, possibly hiding under it a repositioned fuel tank

One interesting thing to note here is the comparatively chunky tail section than the existing 890 Duke or even the 1290 Super Duke, hinting that KTM might have moved the fuel tank to the rear.

Similarly, the 990 Duke test mule also has a redesigned swingarm with new casting and a different brace arrangement compared to the 890 Duke. Other than that, though, the cast-alloy rear subframe appears similar to the existing bike.

SCOOP: Completely Revamped KTM 990 Duke Spotted Testing Near KTM's Factory In Austria
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Coming to the suspension, the test mule boasts fully adjustable WP Apex forks and mono-shock, both identical to the 890 Duke R. However, this one gets KTM-branded brakes instead of Brembos, a hint that this is the base-spec 990 Duke comparable to the non-R 890 Duke.

SCOOP: Completely Revamped KTM 990 Duke Spotted Testing Near KTM's Factory In Austria
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And we say so because a test mule of the upcoming bike has been spotted near KTM’s factory in its hometown of Mattighofen, Austria

Finally, we come to the bike’s party piece - its powerhouse. Judging from what we see, the engine setup here is identical to the LC8c, parallel-twin mill which debuted on the 790 Duke, but with a different casing, cylinder head, and bracing, all aimed at bringing it close to the liter-class. Additionally, the bike also gets a new two-into-one exhaust mounted on the lower right side rather than the high-set unit on the 790 and the 890.

Not much can be said about the features currently, but a full suite of electronic aids should be available as standard here

Because of all this, expect a bump in performance to about 130-135 horsepower, 10-15 ponies more than the 890 Duke R.

2023 KTM 990 Duke Expected Launch Timeline

SCOOP: Completely Revamped KTM 990 Duke Spotted Testing Near KTM's Factory In Austria
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Wondering what all these engine changes would result in? Well, swipe up to find out exactly that.

*2013 KTM 990 Super Duke shown for reference

From what we see here, it’s clear that there’s still plenty of testing to come for the all-new 990 Duke, so the launch isn’t exactly close-by.

The official debut, however, will most probably take place by the end of 2022, followed by an official launch in early 2023.

Image Source: 1000PS

Punya Sharma
Punya Sharma
An avid motorcyclist who's always up for a ride to the canyons or the race track. My riding skills are better than my writing skills. ;)  Read full bio
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