Motorbike

KTM 390 Duke (2013 - present) review

Neatly fills the gap between the 200 and 690 Dukes
Details
Manufacturer:
KTM
Category:
Naked
Price:
£ 4500
Overall
3
Average: 3 (1 vote)
In the post-recession era, one zillion horsepower at prices that few people can afford is not the winning formula anymore
Rollicking new engine in a proven chassis package; funky looks
Needs a remap to be A2 compliant; £150 more gets you a CBR500R

LET'S be honest: 180 bhp bikes are not for everyone. Not for me, anyway. Besides the fact that I couldn't possibly convince even one bank manager in the country to sign off on a loan for one, I doubt I would keep it rubber side down, or my licence clean, long enough to make it worthwhile.

Point is, nuclear weapons are all but obsolete. Yes, you still need to have them, but you're not really going to use them, are you? A few smart missiles, or heck, a bunch of rocket-propelled grenades, seem to do a pretty good job of blowing stuff up too. 

Back in 2011, when I first heard a KTM 350 Duke was on the cards, I loved the very idea of it. A 350cc street bike with maybe 35-40 bhp, light, agile, loud and fun (KTM don't do quiet or boring). I immediately bookmarked the Duke as one for the future shopping list, but was gutted to hear that they were then intended only for the Asian market. 

But in the post-recession era, one zillion horsepower at prices that few people can afford is not the winning formula anymore. As this realisation has dawned on manufacturers and punters alike, you now have something like eight or nine models in the 250cc-500cc segment, where just a few years ago you had none at all.

So when the boys in Austria confirmed that a 375cc Duke would be sold in Europe and the UK, evidently on the strength of expected demand, I immediately flicked my mental pages back to that bookmark. Oh yes - still very desirable.  

Read more: http://www.visordown.com/road-tests-first-rides/first-ride-2013-ktm-duke-390/22763.html#ixzz2fA9lBRma

LET'S be honest: 180 bhp bikes are not for everyone. Not for me, anyway. Besides the fact that I couldn't possibly convince even one bank manager in the country to sign off on a loan for one, I doubt I would keep it rubber side down, or my licence clean, long enough to make it worthwhile.

Point is, nuclear weapons are all but obsolete. Yes, you still need to have them, but you're not really going to use them, are you? A few smart missiles, or heck, a bunch of rocket-propelled grenades, seem to do a pretty good job of blowing stuff up too. 

Back in 2011, when I first heard a KTM 350 Duke was on the cards, I loved the very idea of it. A 350cc street bike with maybe 35-40 bhp, light, agile, loud and fun (KTM don't do quiet or boring). I immediately bookmarked the Duke as one for the future shopping list, but was gutted to hear that they were then intended only for the Asian market. 

But in the post-recession era, one zillion horsepower at prices that few people can afford is not the winning formula anymore. As this realisation has dawned on manufacturers and punters alike, you now have something like eight or nine models in the 250cc-500cc segment, where just a few years ago you had none at all.

So when the boys in Austria confirmed that a 375cc Duke would be sold in Europe and the UK, evidently on the strength of expected demand, I immediately flicked my mental pages back to that bookmark. Oh yes - still very desirable.  

Read more: http://www.visordown.com/road-tests-first-rides/first-ride-2013-ktm-duke-390/22763.html#ixzz2fA9lBRma

Rollicking new engine in a proven chassis package; funky looks
Needs a remap to be A2 compliant; £150 more gets you a CBR500R

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