KTM 1290 Super Duke R: The beast is rebuilt!

Although it might seem similar on the surface, KTM has completely rebuilt its 1290 Super Duke R for 2020, resulting in a bike that’s even more mean and edgy.

The new Super Duke was unveiled at EICMA today, at the end of weeks of teasers. Here’s what we know: First off, KTM continues to exploit its LC8 engine, once again finding ways to suck more power out of it. Now, KTM says it can make 180 hp at 9,500 rpm, and 103 lb-ft of torque at 8,000 rpm. Displacement remains the same at 1,301 cc, but the gearbox, throttle bodies and exhaust are all new

To go with the power, KTM has also updated the 1290’s chassis, with a composite subframe and new steel tube trellis frame. The swingarm is also longer, to aid stability.

The black paint is slightly less garish. Slightly. And the rest of the bike is still as mean, it seems.

Moving on to the suspension, KTM’s fitted new 48 mm WP Apex forks, and a new Apex shock as well, with updated shock linkage design. The forged aluminum wheels and the triple clamps are also new. Obviously, the bodywork is also new, especially those aerodynamic winglets.

The electronics package comes with much of the same stuff as before (traction control, launch control, rear wheel lift control, supermoto mode, all the stuff you’d expect), but a quickshifter is an optional add-on. Same for motor slip regulation, which controls rear wheel traction when not under power.

Bridgestone S22 tires are stock. The dry weight is claimed to be 188 kg.

All in all, it’s a big step forward for the Super Duke, allowing it to stay in step with the competition. But will it be in Canada for 2020? Maybe—sometimes we have to wait a while to get KTM’s latest and greatest here. And, we haven’t seen a CAD price tag yet either.


  1. As if the thing needed more power, seriously. My own bike has 160hp and I constantly need to remind myself to take it easy.

    I’d put my money on the 890 instead.

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