The KTM 890 DUKE redefines the word ‘sharp’ by adding an extra edge. Powered by an 889 cc parallel-twin nestled into one of the lightest and most compact chassis around, the KTM 890 DUKE boasts the agility you’d expect from a 600 cc, but with the meaty punch of a bigger twin. It doesn’t rewrite the mid-sized naked bike rule book. It obliterates it.
The LC8c engine shares a great deal of its ferocity with the ultra-sharp KTM 890 DUKE R. Boasting a hard-hitting 115 Hp and 92 Nm, this compact, liquid-cooled 8 valve powerplant, is the most compact twin in class punching way above its weight in terms of output.
The KTM 890 DUKE features horizontally split crankcases, which are aluminum high pressure cast, allowing for reduced wall thickness, less weight and improved engine cooling.
The 8 valve DOHC cylinder head contains twin chain-driven camshafts and one sparkplug per cylinder. Additionally, the camshafts in the KTM 890 DUKE are assembled, which makes them even lighter than forged camshafts. DLC coated finger followers, steel valves and a hydraulic chain tensioner complete the cylinder head assembly.
No one enjoys unpleasant vibes. That is why the KTM 890 DUKE employs the use of balancer shafts placed in front of the crankshaft and in the cylinder head to ensure the smoothest power delivery and minimal vibration.
The slipper clutch allows riders to enter corners confidently without locking up the rear wheel under hard deceleration or when downshifting, while remaining feather-light on the clutch finger.
The engine employs a compact, semi-dry sump system with oil being actively pumped out of the crank case, clutch housing, and gearbox. This ensures any unnecessary oil flow through the motor, reducing power loss through friction. To cool down the oil, the engine is equipped with an oil cooler similar to that fitted to the larger LC8 engines.
Instead of the electronic injection system’s throttle valves being controlled by cables, ride-by-wire processes throttle twist grip movements with the help of electronic sensors and activates the throttle valves accordingly using servo motors. However, our ride-by-wire on the KTM 890 DUKE goes the extra mile: It electronically translates the throttle commands of the rider into the best throttle valve positions for the current riding situation. The new logic of the engine mapping automatically adjusts the fueling per cylinder. Choking, jolting and involuntary wheelies are a thing of the past. Voluntary ones, however, could easily be a thing of your future.
Coated aluminum cylinders are an integral part of the sleeveless engine casing design of this 889 cc parallel twin. This open deck cylinder construction allows for optimal cooling, improved production tolerances and reliability.
Bigger box pistons, but lesser weight and oscillating mass sit at the heart of the KTM 890 DUKE. Featuring a pin bearing with bronze bushing, providing better frictions and maximizing the rev-ceiling of the engine.
A stainless-steel thing of beauty. The middle damper centralizes mass and allows for a relatively small muffler that plays a dramatic soundtrack. Hundreds of test bench runs and complex simulations ensured that this exhaust system contributes decisively to the tractable torque curve and excellent emission standards.
Shorter intake funnels result in better throttle response from the subframe-fitted airbox, while the air intake on the sides, allows the KTM 890 DUKE to keep things cool while you gun it.
The incredible handling characteristics of the KTM 890 DUKE are founded on the dynamic, loadbearing design of the tubular chassis. Engineers had one goal in mind, and that was to keep the chassis as rigid and compact as possible for sharper turn-in and greater lean angles, allowing it to slice through the turns with extreme responsiveness.
The subframe is cast aluminum and houses the airbox. No plastic covers, no additional brackets – everything is cast into two connected pieces to reduce complexity and weight. The triangular shapes in the subframe allow for a stronger, stiffer construction.
The die-cast, open-lattice swingarm is meticulously manufactured and has been optimized for stiffness and stability while still offering excellent flex characteristics. By using a direct link for the rear shock, complexity and parts are reduced.
The KTM 890 DUKE boasts a WP suspension package which has been specifically developed to get the most of the power output and handling characteristics, with a dedicated factory setting, new springs, and additional basevalve fittings in the front fork.
A set of WP APEX 43mm open cartridge upside-down forks take care of things up front, making use of split function technology. The front fork also adopts new linear springs which are not only lighter but also guarantee a more intuitive feel, while the added base valve improves high-speed damping.
The cast aluminum triple clamp stiffness has been tuned to match the flex of the fork, contributing to the sporty handling and excellent feedback. Clever engineering of the triple clamps and the handlebar clamps mean four different handlebar positions are possible for that perfect riding position.
This reliable and sensitive WP steering damper is setup to give ultimate feedback to the rider, while keeping the front wheel steady and uncompromised over uneven tarmac. You won’t even know it’s there, until that one nasty bit of road comes up mid corner.
A high-quality gas-assisted WP Suspension rear shock absorber has been fitted with a new, lighter linear spring which, together with new factory settings, offers improved progression and overall comfort.
The KTM 890 DUKE is fitted with extremely lightweight, light-alloy wheels manufactured in a low-pressure die casting process. Not only do the lightweight wheels make the bike lighter overall, they also minimize the unsprung masses and moment of inertia, with a positive impact on the handling and ride dynamics.
The KTM 890 DUKE is fitted with Continental ContiRoad rubber as standard. These feature ultra-fast warm-up technology, which boasts improved wet weather grip, increased durability, and stability, and offer natural, easy handling on all road surfaces.
Maximum deceleration is ensured at the front wheel on the KTM 890 DUKE by two radially mounted four-piston fixed calipers, revised brake pads, and two 300 mm discs. The rear brake features a single disc and a single-piston floating caliper. All this stopping power is supported by KTM’s Cornering ABS.
A tapered aluminum, 760 mm wide handlebar puts you in full control. It’s adjustable, with 4 positions on the triple clamp and can be rotated in three further positions for that perfect riding position.
The KTM 890 DUKE makes easy work of dialing in the controls with a set of adjustable brake and clutch levers, with careful consideration to ensure easy adjustment with gloves and while on the move.
At 820 mm, both shorter and taller riders can enjoy the bike at full tilt. The seat cover is grippy, allowing the rider to move around the bike easily. This has been developed to work with textile and leather, in keeping with the wide range of riders and riding styles. The pillion seat cover uses the same material and combines sharp looks with passenger comfort.
Cast from aluminum, the foot pegs fitted to the KTM 890 DUKE cater to a comfortable riding position, while still creating maximum ground clearance allowing for impressive lean angles. Adjustable foot pegs are also available as a KTM PowerParts option for those who would like to go all out, and race-ready reverse shifting is also possible without any additional parts.
The KTM 890 DUKE features a unique LED headlight with styling cues taken from THE BEAST itself. This high-performance LED headlight is flanked by two LED strips that function as daytime running lights, ensuring maximum illumination and attention. An LED taillight is also mounted to the KTM 890 DUKE – which will be seen the most by those you overtake.
Like all pilots, DUKE riders need easy access to information. In that regard, the KTM 890 DUKE features an intuitive multicolor, light variable TFT dashboard. Best of all, as the revs rise, the display bars change color to indicate when to shift, either spurring you on or warning you that the engine is too still cold for flat-out backroad attacks.
The KTM 890 DUKE has adopted a vast swathe of rider aids found on the blistering KTM 890 DUKE R, and further refined them to be more user and road-friendly, without hindering any performance.
Riders can choose from four ride modes, namely: SPORT MODE for more aggressive riding, STREET MODE for comfortable urban riding, RAIN MODE for when things get a little slippery, and the optional ultimate attack mode – TRACK MODE. This gives KTM 890 DUKE pilots full power output, the ability to dial down the traction control, smooth out the throttle, and switch off the anti-wheelie for rear wheel antics.
Available as an option, TRACK MODE allows more levels of customization, allowing riders – or racers in this instance – to tailor throttle control, traction control slip level, anti-wheelie functions and launch control as and when they need it.
The KTM 890 DUKE boasts a collection of advanced electronic wizardry which rivals some top-end sportbikes. Most crucially, is lean-angle sensitive Cornering MTC (Cornering Motorcycle Traction control), which reduces engine output at the faintest hint of wheel slip. This is done in an extremely smooth, barely perceptible interference allowing the rider to simply get on with the ride with complete confidence. Depending on the selected ride mode, Cornering MTC also allows for several levels of traction slip at the rear wheel for more spirited riding styles. And for the daredevils, we give you: the off-switch!
The KTM 890 DUKE can be equipped with MSR (Motor Slip Regulation) as an option, which works in the opposite direction of the Cornering MTC. This means there is no chance of accidentially locking up the rear wheel under downshifting or abrupt throttling-off. MSR ensures you retain full traction, complementing the fuction of the slipper clutch in low grip situations.
The KTM 890 DUKE can be equipped with a race-derived Quickshifter+ as an option. This allows upshifting and downshifting to be executed without using the clutch lever, for quicker shift times, more precision when powering out of corners – and sounds pretty awesome too.
SUPERMOTO MODE allows enthusiastic and experienced riders to lock up the rear wheel – a prerequisite for committed supermoto riding and deliberately executed slides. This means ABS is deactivated on the rear wheel, while maintaining ABS function on the front.
A key component of the comprehensive BOSCH MSC assistance package is the lean-sensitive cornering ABS. In a nutshell, this means riders have increased confidence during hard braking, even at extreme lean angles.