The new KTM’s 1290 Super Duke R Motorcyclev takes the concept of naked design to a new level. Its revealing, steel trellis frame creates a powerful combination with the Austrian’s street machines. The 1290 Super Duke’s 75-degree V-twin boasts a brand new LC8 engine paired with a cage with 177 horses (with up to almost 104 ft lbs of torque) and a 6-speed transmission. The new resonator chambers on the cylinder heads has made the engine more fuel- and eco-friendly by reducing its carbon dioxide footprint by 10%.
Another impressive element is the bike’s responsiveness, which is made possible thanks to a chassis that comprises a single-sided swingarm, front and rear suspension, and Brembo brakes. The austere frame of the hardware is complemented by a consort of software-assisted componentry that allow for customization of the ride experience. Some of these include Bosch’s Motorcycle Stability Control (MSC) with an anti-lock braking system; Motorcycle Traction Control (MTC) with various driving settings; Supermoto mode for deliberate drifts; and an optional Track mode.
There is a launch control feature—the first that KTM motorcycles has ever applied in its bikes to limit the rear wheel’s spin and front wheel’s lift for stand-out standing-starts. Metzeler M7RR tires worn by 17-inch alloy wheels complete the mechanical beast.
A thin film transistor (TFT) display provides ride information through hands-free connectivity to a smartphone. The controls on the handlebars allow the driver to manage menu options. For additional convenience, the ignition that activates all the action is keyless. The KTM 1290 Super Duke R may be a generational combination of finesses and ferocity—but all of that comes at the price of $17,999.