2018 - 2019 KTM 790 Duke
KTM launched a fresh assault on the mid-displacement, naked-bike market with the 2018 790 Duke, first of its name. The Austrian bike builders nicknamed it “The Scalpel” for its precise control over power delivery and lean angle with a race-tastic chassis and new, 100-plus horsepower mill. A robust electronics suite brings an alphabet soup of goodies to the table, and ABS, traction control, and variable power-delivery ride modes are just a few of the features on the menu. Even with the dearth of body panels, it’s easy to see the Duke DNA in the details that leave no doubts about its heritage. A bold move in such a competitive market, so let’s see what else KTM throws in to sweeten the deal and be competitive in a crowded field.
2019 KTM 1290 Super Duke R
KTM updated its 1290 Super Duke R ahead of MY2017, and that revised model carries over into MY2019 with a minor change in graphics, but little else. The factory tweaked some hardware on the 1,301 cc V-twin powerplant and increased compression for greater output than the outgoing version. Suspension also was buffed to deliver a stiffer ride with the full spectrum of adjustments so you can dial in just what you want as far as preload and damping values are concerned. The base model comes sans electronics for the most part, but the factory offers dealer-installed packages that address the lack of stock fandanglery and round out the electronics, plus there’s some race-related gadgetry to boot so there’s something for everyone on the new Super Duke R.
2019 KTM 690 Enduro R
The 2019 KTM 690 Enduro R joins its streetwise sibling, the 690 SMC R, in an effort to finish covering all the bases. As its diabolically clever name suggests, the “Enduro” is set up to be street legal so you can drive it down to your favorite off-road locale and skip the trailer and tow vehicle. Far from being just another dual-sport, the Enduro rocks the same top-shelf electronic rider aids as the SMC R to give it a safety and stability far beyond the norm for an off-road machine. The factory also chucked a new frame and top-shelf, WP XPLOR suspension at it to sweeten the deal.
2019 KTM 690 SMC R
KTM souped up its SuperMoto-tastic 690 SMC R for an MY2019 return with more of everything that made its predecessor a success. That’s right; a new powerplant drives KTM’s newest version of its popular jackass bike, and it comes with backup from new control and ride-quality electronics that helps you safely get the most out of the machine. Whether you’re into drifting around turns or trick-riding shenanigans, this hooligan bike has something to offer.
2018 KTM Freeride E-XC
Power capacity is one of the major hurdles EV bikes have to overcome, and KTM seeks to address that issue with its newest electro-tastic Freeride E-XC. This is a second-generation machine that packs half-again more power than the previous gen along with revised graphics and bodywork for a new look as well. KTM’s off-road experience is evident in the lightweight, agile frame and long-stroke suspension components that make this a truly capable machine that definitely furthers the cause of EV bikes in general.
2017 - 2018 KTM 390 Duke
The value of indoctrination is not lost on KTM, evidenced by the fact that they’ve updated and generally spruced up their entry-level unit, the 390 Duke in 2017, and those improvements carry straight over into the 2019 season. New upside-down stems float the front end along with larger, more powerful brakes to help manage the energy from the 44-horsepower engine and 328-pound dry weight. Ride-by-wire tech makes an appearance for a bit of tech you normally don’t see at this price point. Add to this a fresh new look and you have a recipe for success, or so KTM hopes. Let’s dive in and see what else the Austrian bike maker has in store for us.
KTM Heats Up The Off-Road Scene At 2018 EICMA
Top 10 Adventure Tourers of 2018
For some people, adventure is about finding your way through the unknown to see things no one has and doing things most haven’t. But unless you plan on walking, you need the right tool to get there. This is where these adventure touring machines comes in and sweeps you off your feet in the most humble and matured way.
Here are our top ten adventure tourers of 2018 that come with some impeccable versatility to trout the lands across the globe. With the looks and utility of a capable off-roader and the balance and handling of a sport-standard, adventure motorcycles are a bipartisan look at how to tackle paved roads and dirt. Big and powerful engines, long travel suspensions and a higher riding position with multiple rider aids adorn these machines.
My Top Bike Picks Out Of 2018 INTERMOT
The 2018 calendar year may have a bit yet to go before its last gasp, but the 2019 model year is in full bloom with the beginning of the show season and the INTERMOT show in Cologne, Germany. So far, we’ve seen the genuine article for a number of previously-teased machines, as well as a few pleasant surprises from unexpected sources along with some much-needed updates. Today I want to take a look at this show, so buckle up as we head across the pond and check out some of my favorites.
Continue reading for more of my look at 2018 INTERMOT.
Top 10 Sports-Tourers of 2018
Call them bikes that perfectly fill the gap between thrilling sportsbike and the gigantic touring machines, sports-tourers are simply long haul motorcycles with sportbike expectations built to get the best out of that long way home. Here is our list of 2018’s top ten machines offering the same capabilities as touring bikes but without sacrificing any of the sporty performance.
They tend to be a bit lighter and corner well but aren’t the most comfortable. The riding position tends to be a bit more relaxed compared to sports machines, there’s better wind protection, much better pillion comforts, transmission with lower gearing and usually a whole quick release pannier system designed in.
Top 10 Street Motorcycles of 2018
Although not an official segment of motorcycles, our lifestyle for daily transportation in urban communities have given rise to street motorcycles that are lightweight and nimble for the concrete jungle. Being an agile handler while looking the part is how we need our commute through the asphalt.
This is our list of the machines we think can handle those demands better than any other. A motorcycle with an upright riding position, lacking plastic fairings for that narrow lane splitting ability and a lightweight construction for the ease of flickability is what we are looking for, and here are our top ten:
KTM busy testing the sportier ’790 Duke R’
Nicknamed ’The Scalpel’, the 790cc brutal twin-cylinder was KTM’s entry to the hot naked middleweight market. With a quirky 105 hp on tap, this 370 lb orange streetfighter is the sharpest tool under the KTM roof all out to dominate streets.
Now, our friends at MoreBikes have stumbled upon the Austrian manufacturer testing the production version of the sportier ‘790 Duke R’ in action. The snaps showcase the bike sans any graphics and orange wheels instead of the black ones that come on the standard 790 Duke.