KTM 690 Duke Review
Perfect On and Off Road BikeWednesday, October 23, 2013
KTM will launch 690 Duke in coming months in India. This naked sports bike will try to mark its presence in our Indian bike market. Will it be able to do so? Let’s find out.
Design and Style
Give it a look and you can easily identify it’s a KTM bike. The exposed unique trellis frame and engine of this bike gives it a macho look. This bike will feature split seats placed on its rear cowl. This attractive rear cowl will also feature the LED tail light of this bike. The extended rear fender of 690 Duke originates just below this tail light which carries the number plate and side indicators of this bike. The gap between its fatty rear tyre and tall positioned rear cowl gives it the true naked look when seen from the side. Its visually bulky, steel made, up-raised muffler adds macho character to this bike. Its elongated fuel tank features stylish graphics and looks extremely aerodynamic when seen from the front. The black colored rear view mirrors are mounted on its handlebar. Just above this handlebar, you will notice the front cowl and headlight of this bike which forms it face. This cowl also has an integrated visor which features clear lens indicators on both sides. The bike has a long and sharp front fender which suits its black colored forks which gels well with its multi-spoke alloy wheels. The side extensions of its front fender and disc plate gives sporty look to 690 Duke.
The bike has a combined analogue digital instrument console. It features an analogue tachometer on the left side which houses in a circular dial. All essential LED indicators are placed around this dial. 690 Duke has digital speedometer, odometer, 2-trip meter and fuel gauge which are displayed by an orange colored LCD which is placed on the right side of this instrument panel.
Engine and Gearbox
The bike is powered by a single cylinder, 4-stroke 690cc engine. This liquid-cooled engine churns out a maximum power output of 67 bhp at 7500 rpm while its torque output of 67 Nm comes at 5500 rpm. This engine is mated with a six-speed manual gearbox. This gearbox has one gear down and five gears up-shift pattern.
Acceleration and Performance
After driving this engine, you won’t believe if it’s a single cylinder engine. It’s a highly refined machine which feels like any other four cylinder engine in terms of power and smoothness. The early building of torque and power is the biggest USP of this engine. Moreover, it is extremely light weight at 150 kgs, which helps this bike to achieve the best in class power tor weight ratio. The torque arrives as early as 5500rpm which along with short gear ratios helps this bike to be a ripper. It enjoys instant throttle reaction which proves to be a boon in city traffic. The bike does 0-100km/hr in less than 6 seconds. It can easily cross the speed of 160km/hr without making any noise. The engine never feels strained when pushed hard and shows no signs of vibrations at high speeds. The light clutch and gearbox further improves its acceleration. The bike also has impressive off road abilities thanks to its strong low range which results into powerful throttle reaction.
The light weight of this bike helps it to deliver good fuel economy. It may give you an overall mileage of around 20-25km/ltr.
Comfort while Driving
The up-raised handle bar and well fabricated seats of Duke 690 try to offer you maximum comfort while driving. You don’t have to bend forward to grab its wide handle bar which keeps you stress free on long journeys. The foot pegs are also placed at a convenient position so that you can move your legs frequently while off roading. The space around its fuel tank can be used by the rider to get a good grip over this light machine. The bike offers fantastic road visibility and you will be pleased by the top quality of plastic buttons being placed on its handle bar.
Storage Space and Safety Features
The bike lacks any kind of storage space but it features vital safety features. Its powerful headlight, pass button and brake callipers confirms your safety while driving.
Suspension and Brakes
KTM 690 Duke is equipped with WP up-side down forks of 43mm at its front and gas charged mono shock with swing arm at the back. The powerful braking system features advanced ABS with disc brakes on its both wheels. It has a front disc brake of 320mm with four-piston brake calliper and single rear disc brake of 240mm with single piston calliper.
Ride and Handling
The bike is a brilliant on and off road performer in terms of ride and handling. The bike has a stretched wheelbase of 1466mm which makes its immensely stable at high speeds. You can easily hit the sharp corners with full confidence thanks to its capable suspension system and fatty tyres. The bike strongly holds the road and remains grounded all the time. Its extremely high ground clearance of 192mm gives it stability at slow speeds and improves its turning abilities. The light handling of this bike differentiates it from others and it feels quite nimble and responsive all the time. The off road ride quality of this bike is also magnificent. Its tyres provide you good grip on all terrains and its suspension system digests each and every bump easily. The advanced braking system also does its duty successfully.
Tyre Size, Shades and Variants
The bike is fitted with R17 sizes of tyres. KTM is likely to launch one variant of this bike in two different colors.
The pricing of 690 Duke will decide its destiny in India. With a reasonable price tag, this bike has full chances to succeed in our Indian bike market. It’s a perfect on and off road bike which is filled with massive amount of power and style. Its features, ride and handling will surely attract buyers in India who are in search of a bike which can differentiate them from others on our crowded Indian roads.