Exploring the pricy digital add-ons of the KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo

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The KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo sits on the top rate finish of the super-naked magnificence. At £17,899 (2023 pricing) it’s £1399 greater than Yamaha’s MT-10 SP and over £5300 greater than a base spec BMW S1000R.

It’s a fantastically completed indulgence, which stands with competitive hunched shoulders and streaks of shiny orange that glimmer within the daylight. Taut, composed, and extremely fast, it’s true capacity can’t be recognised till you dig additional into your pocket.

Our check motorcycle has been supplied with the Tech Pack, which prices (on the time of writing) £1059.18 and comprises an up/down quickshifter, Suspension Professional, a Monitor Pack together with release keep an eye on, anti-wheelie, music driving modes and extra complicated throttle and traction changes, plus Motor Slip Law (MSR) to forestall the rear wheel locking up throughout intense downshifts. The superb heated grips then set you again an additional £180.36.

All of this brings the fee as much as £19,138.54 – only some hundred quid not up to the 207bhp BMW M1000R bare, which arrives for 2023 at £19,480.

What’s price having?

For starters, a motorbike that begins at nearly 18 grand will have to include a quickshifter/blipper and heated grips as usual. Those aren’t new applied sciences and it feels salty that you just’re charged further for them.

That stated, they’re each definitely worth the funding, offering fuss-free tools adjustments at any revs and holding your arms hotter than nearly another legit fitment grips I’ve sampled. Outdoor of that, the Suspension Professional shines thru as a will have to have if you’ll have the funds for it. To be had one after the other for £252.79, it unlocks the anti-dive entrance forks and an ‘Auto’ environment for each units of springs.

As it’s possible you’ll be expecting, the anti-dive characteristic reduces the switch of power below braking and helps to keep the entrance finish composed with out sacrificing convenience. The Auto environment additionally adjustments the damping in step with your inputs at the pass – getting more difficult or softer relying on the way you’re driving.

I’ve used each every day and would suggest the funding. Somewhere else, the track-focused parts have been helpful throughout an afternoon out at Snetterton closing summer time – particularly the anti-wheelie and complicated modes – however they pass in large part disregarded at the highway. I’ve by no means used the release keep an eye on and will’t call to mind a situation after I would ever actually need to (rather than to sing their own praises, in fact).

Take hold of pain

The hydraulic seize has been a little of a ache throughout my time with the motorcycle. Two times the biting level on the lever has come again to the handlebar grip – pulling you forwards slowly in visitors and leaving you not able to choose impartial at a standstill.

Prior to now re-bled to take away air from the machine, it was once investigated extra totally when the issue surfaced once more a couple of thousand miles later. KTM investigated the problem once more and stated: “After an preliminary inspection of the seize mechanism we bled an excessively small quantity of air from the machine to go back the seize serve as to customary.

“To know the place this air got here from we performed an additional investigation and located an excessively small rating on a seal which was once too small to leak seize fluid however we’re linking to be the supply for the very small quantity of air that we to begin with bled out. We’ve got changed the seal and this seems to have rectified the problem. This inspection and remedying paintings could be carried out below guaranty on a buyer’s device.”

A yr of commuting highlights the flexibility of KTM’s 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo

Revealed: 07.12.22

Cornering on the KTM 1290 Super Duke R Evo on a UK country road

I’m within the extremely privileged place of having the ability to pattern many alternative bikes, and I’d rank KTM’s ballistic 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo among the most productive of them for my 50-mile travel to the administrative center.

It’ll have a claimed 177bhp, be offering bugger-all wind coverage and have sufficient jagged edges to position a porcupine to disgrace, however the Austrian super-naked gives a scrumptious mix of efficiency and plushness to show even the dullest of days into an tournament.

And I’m now not simply speaking about getting you there as speedy as conceivable both. You notice, this efficiency device will also be extremely mild when you want it to be – taking frugal sips from its 16-litre gasoline tank for a examined 53.4mpg. No longer dangerous for a motorbike with a 1.3-litre engine.

With such a lot energy and torque on faucet, the liquid-cooled dual is only breaching tick over at the lengthy, immediately 60mph Lincolnshire roads keeping apart me from MCN Towers.

Popping at the cruise keep an eye on in the course of the color TFT sprint, it’s clean and simple going – permitting me to trundle in convenience and concentrate on dodging bleary eyed drivers and incessant tractor blockades.

With the semi-active suspension switched to ‘Auto’, it soaks up the bumps comfortably – getting more difficult or softer dependant on rider enter. That is specifically welcome within the flatlands of the Fens, which appear to be a hotspot for highway subsidence and potholes.

Being a dual, the motorcycle additionally feels slender between your legs, with the burden held low within the chassis, a very simple achieve to the bars and an inexpensive seat peak of 835mm. I would possibly simplest be 5ft 6in, however I will journey the SDR at low pace with actual self belief, making gradual manoeuvres and filtering a easy and unintimidating process.

Actually, the one factor that has hindered this over the last 6700 miles is the hydraulic seize, which needed to be re-bled round 3000 miles in the past for air within the machine – inflicting the biting level to slowly transfer again in opposition to the bar till it was once nonetheless grabbing with the lever pulled in.

This factor has re-emerged not too long ago and leads me to imagine there may be any other underlying factor at play. What this then additionally method is the motorcycle desires to drag you forwards at each and every visitors gentle and there’s an incapacity to snick into impartial with the engine operating.

The opposite gripe is extra all the way down to my very own laziness and pertains to the shiny orange paint at the rear wheel. When it’s blank, it appears to be like glorious, however holding it spotless is a full-time process.

Video: Dan displays on a yr with the KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo

Revealed: 03.11.22

Having taken the keys to KTM’s 1290 Tremendous Duke Evo R again in February, Information Editor Dan unearths his most sensible 10 best possible bits and 10 worst bits of dwelling with the motorcycle. You’ll watch the overall video underneath and browse previous updates additional down this web page.

On target: Taking the KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo for a scorching date at Snetterton

Revealed: 26.10.22

The previous 5000 miles with the KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo had been a lesson in restraint. Packing a claimed 177bhp between the luminous orange beams of its taut trellis body, it’s easily speedy and can grunt its well past strains of visitors quicker than you’ll say ‘replicate, sign, manoeuvre’.

Clear of the prying eyes and never-ending dashcams of major highway Britain, it turns the snigger issue as much as 11 – conserving a line in addition to any sportsbike and thrusting out of bends with the entire shove of a high-speed teach.

To find how just right it’s when ridden in anger, I headed to a sunny Snetterton 300 with MSV for a play – and to check my 2000-mile-old Pirelli Diablo Rosso IV Corsa tyres.

Regardless of it being the one highway motorcycle within the speedy team, what’s straight away obvious is simply how briskly the KTM is going in a immediately line. It could fortuitously persist with some older superbikes and strip lengths out of track-ready 600s.

Even supposing spectacular, the semi-active suspension did require some further preload on the rear to forestall the bars shaking within the decrease gears and gently weaving at pace, even supposing it was once already in its raciest environment.

Regardless of the loss of bodywork, the sprint is studying neatly into the 150mph vary by means of the top of the epic Bentley Directly. Preventing my head from keeping apart from my frame is an £80.70 tinted fly display, which bolts in at the back of the TFT sprint to neaten up the distance all the way down to the LED headlight.

Even supposing small, it has made this sort of distinction to day by day highway driving, and contributed to a extra relaxing trackday, too.

Some other factor that boosted my day was once the Pirellis, which changed a collection of OE Bridgestone Battlax S22s. There was once not anything improper with the ones, however the Diablos are a minimize above within the rainy and dry and equipped numerous cornering self belief and balance throughout my day.

Alternatively, by means of the afternoon, they have been appearing vital put on, so I used to be hesitant to push on any more at lean.

The one factor that allow the motorcycle down was once a small oil weep from underneath the filler cap, which started to seep out in droplets throughout the afternoon periods.

Watch a video of the day underneath:

The bare reality: What’s scorching and what’s now not at the KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo

Revealed: 01.08.22

A facet view of the KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo

I’ve been lucky sufficient to have the keys to KTM’s £17,899 Tremendous Duke R Evo because the early onset of spring. In that point, we’ve battled heavy rain, a few of the most up to date days on report, hundreds of commuting miles, a go back and forth to the Isle of Guy TT and a scorching date at Snetterton on an MSV Trackday (extra on that at a later date).

I’ve come to understand the Austrian beast really well and skilled it’s best possible and worst characteristics first hand. I’ve additionally dipped into the non-compulsory extras catalogue and begun experimenting with recent tyres. However what’s been just right, and what’s flopped? Learn on to determine…

Digital suspension HIT

The Tremendous Duke R Evo builds on the usual R fashion with digital WP suspension. It may well be £1550 extra (2022 costs), nevertheless it’s the entire higher for it. The usual motorcycle has high quality, totally adjustable package, however the talent to make adjustments on the contact of a button is so price it. I additionally love the anti-dive possibility at the forks, which make the entrance finish really feel so extremely composed below onerous braking. The motorcycle cuts thru corners with crisp composure and makes the large 1290 brute really feel extra like a dainty 890 Duke.

Gas gauge MISS

This may sound like one thing petty to carry up, however the virtual gasoline gauge at the color TFT sprint will also be infuriating whilst you get to the reserve. Get to 50 miles and also you’re greeted with a caution pop-up that appears extra like a breakdown alert than a reminder to refill with gasoline. After which there’s the accuracy – every so often it’s bang on and different instances can really feel like 50 miles if truth be told method part of that. I left paintings one night with ’50 miles’ within the tank. Lower than 10 miles later, it stated I had 10 left.

Convenience HIT

A large, offended great bare has no proper to be this comfy. A thick padded seat, roomy pegs, and a straightforward achieve to the bars make it really easy to are living with day by day, in addition to protecting large miles. Lately, I put in the £80.70 tinted fly display and this has taken usability to a complete different stage. For one thing simplest relatively taller than the clocks, it does a outstanding process of holding the wind off your shoulders and head. It’s a profitable add-on for any SDR proprietor. It additionally neatens up the realm between the headlight and clock brackets, which looks as if a design oversight as usual.

V-twin engine HIT

The digital suspension may be very great, however the roaring 1301cc V-twin stays the birthday celebration piece of the Tremendous Duke R Evo. Finally end up your proper wrist and it’s savagely speedy – perpetually egging you on to move sooner. It’s additionally an overtaking god – browsing on a fats wedge of torque to easily blast previous strains of automobiles. Nevertheless it’s additionally mild and simple when wanted and can clear out thru the city visitors as simply as an A2-compliant bare. It’s an excessively versatile unit.

It’s additionally a bloody scorching unit and round the city and at gradual speeds within the height summer time warmth, it has transform uncomfortably heat between my legs. Actually, on one instance, I needed to abruptly transfer it from a parking zone in a box, when it all started burning in the course of the surrounding lengthy grass. A middle in mouth second!    

Signs MISS

The KTM has self-cancelling signs. I don’t specifically like those at the most productive of instances, however the Tremendous Duke design takes the biscuit. They just don’t keep on lengthy sufficient – failing to closing the period of a highway slip highway, or a short lived build-up of visitors ahead of getting into a roundabout. Both lead them to last more or put a little extra religion again into rider to cancel their very own signs.

KTM seize reasons issues

Somebody who’s adopted my time with the SDR Evo to this point will are aware of it’s now not been with out fault, with electric complications, new switchgear, and a brand new key fob battery all going on. Unfortunately, I will have to record any other factor. This time with the seize.

I realized the biting level getting nearer to the handlebar. I wound out the span and saved a watch on it, however quickly sufficient it was once biting with it squeezed tightly in opposition to the grip – pulling me forwards slowly at a standstill and combating the motorcycle from going into impartial when operating. No longer in need of to do any inner harm, I popped in to look the good folks at Gear4 Bikes in Marketplace Deeping, who mounted the problem in 10 mins.

Air had made its method into the hydraulic seize machine and with the problem mounted, I spoke to KTM UK, who stated: “Air clearly shouldn’t get within the machine. On this example, it’s most probably {that a} small quantity of air has at all times been there however hasn’t been noticeable in decrease ambient temperatures.

“As we’ve were given into a hotter time of the yr, the air within the machine has expanded and led to the problem to be spotted, therefore the wish to bleed the machine. This might be coated below guaranty.”

Great to are aware of it’s coated below guaranty, nevertheless it’s the most recent in a line of problems which are changing into inexcusable.

The KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo is able to (highway) race

Revealed: 22.04.22

After a three-year absence, the TT was once the #1 traveling vacation spot I sought after to discuss with at the KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo this yr.

I like the development, the folks, and the island and when the chance to discuss with arose, I abruptly packed up my KTM tank bag (£180.36) and tough panniers (£452.16) and headed off.

I’d by no means ridden to the TT ahead of and needed to catch a ferry halfway thru apply week. A lifeless as dishwater Wednesday morning highway slog up and around the nation, it was once the very best check to look how the Evo copes with lengthy stints at excessive pace.

Given the inclusion of semi- lively springs and an incredibly pleasant V-twin, I used to be quietly assured – however I wasn’t anticipating it to do relatively in addition to it did. Snicking into most sensible tools and settling into the lengthy haul, the 1301cc motor cruises alongside at little greater than tickover.

With a thick padded seat and room to transport round, I arrived and not using a aches and pains, by no means noticing the extra baggage – because of tweaks to the digital preload. I nearly coated all of the circa 180-mile journey on one tank of juice, too.

The KTM was once proper at house at the Isle of Guy. Upright and comfy, it was once nice for nipping from one viewing level to the following, in addition to filtering thru visitors. There have been additionally heated grips for the ones cold early morning begins and the rumbling twin-pot became heads anyplace we went.

That stated, it did begin to get relatively scorching in visitors and the fuelling proper on the backside of the revs will also be jerky whilst you’re off and on the throttle.

Now the thrill stuff

I couldn’t pass the entire technique to the TT and now not let the Tremendous Duke off its leash just a little.

With a claimed 177bhp on faucet, journeys over the well-known Mountain have been a will have to, with the non-compulsory efficiency settings permitting me to make extra of the one-way direction and loss of pace limits.

In spite of everything, I popped into Ramsey for the run-what-ya-brung dash. An opportunity for guests to put down their quickest 1/8-mile time on their highway motorcycles alongside the ocean entrance, I controlled to only dip below 8 seconds at a most sensible pace of 107mph. That’ll do!

Getting to understand the KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo just a little higher

Revealed: 22.04.25

Once I first reported on my time with the KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo within the Might 4 factor of MCN, I used to be round 1600 miles and two months into my time with the Austrian brute and nonetheless seeking to identify a way of companionship with it.

A look on the spec sheet urged it might be love to start with sight for a efficiency motorcycle nut like me, however we struggled to bond within the early levels, because of a couple of electric gremlins in the important thing and rear surprise (extra on that underneath).

Alternatively, now I’ve had time to position extra recreational miles at the motorcycle, our dating has blossomed and I am getting out for a raucous rip alongside my favorite backroads each time I’ve time to slide out.

It’ll have refined digital suspension to take on each spirited and sedate driving, however it is a motorcycle that rewards aggression – coming alive whilst you begin to push the envelope and let that thudding V-twin off the leash. I’m actually beginning to fall for its thuggish attraction, however there have nonetheless been moments that experience examined my affections.

Oh, now not once more…

Following the former electric problems defined in replace one underneath, the motorcycle was once returned to KTM HQ in overdue April for a once-over. Upon go back, I nipped out to the native petrol station to refill forward of a large journey simplest to find the engine would narrow out each time I became the bars left, the TFT claiming that the kill transfer were activated. So it was once loaded again right into a van to return to KTM, who changed the switchgear to get to the bottom of the issue.

“The wires from the switchgear appeared just a little tight in comparison to different fashions, so we will be able to simplest think that over the years the wires had been stretched and led to the fault,” KTM’s consultant stated.

“We’ve given just a little extra slack to the wiring,” they persevered. “If this have been a buyer experiencing the problem, our mobility provider would have accumulated the motorcycle and brought it to the native broker, who would have mounted the motorcycle and equipped the portions below guaranty.”

Those disappointing demanding situations that experience examined my talent to consider it for lengthy distance rides. However issues are at the up now and because then it’s been just right as gold. I’ve now not even needed to alter the chain, regardless of it coping with all that energy and torque.

It’s additionally stood up neatly to all-weather use and not using a furring bolts, however the fats orange rear wheel is a bloody ache to stay blank and the rear tyre is noticeably squaring after round 2500 miles.

Have a few of that!

I’ve stuffed in as many recreational miles as conceivable not too long ago, motivated much more this yr by means of a long-time pal returning to highway motorcycles after a stint away racing.

Dwelling in Lincolnshire, I’m blessed with some stonking roads on my doorstep and the SDR Evo is proving to be superb anyplace there’s room to make use of its 177bhp motor, whilst tight and speedy corners give the digital suspension and trellis chassis a just right exercise.

So composed, it rewards onerous driving and switches route like a smaller KTM 890 Duke. I will’t get sufficient of it, with the cozy bars and pegs that means I’m now not in agony come the following idyllic Lincs village.

Replace two: Electric woes taint first impressions of our long-term check KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo

Revealed: 22.04.25

The KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo builds at the already extremely succesful Tremendous Duke R with digital semi-active WP Apex suspension, that means much less time twiddling adjusters and extra time winding your proper wrist.

I’m perpetually blown away by means of the usual SDR’s talent to be so extremely mild round the city, with the facility to drag your fingers blank out their sockets whilst you twist the throttle. It’s an actual Jekyll and Hyde bike and after 1600 miles I will hopefully record existence at the Evo is simply the similar.

However now not the whole thing at the KTM has been just right. Simply 290 miles into our time in combination, the engine minimize out, the sprint threw up a preload error and the rear surprise prolonged itself – forcing me to tiptoe the motorcycle to a halt and turn it on and off once more.

A facet view of the KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo

The message has seemed once more since however with out the spring problems. It’s additionally claimed the keyless fob was once out of vary throughout a journey – regardless of it being in my bag – after which at round 1600 miles the motorcycle stopped responding to the important thing altogether.

Not able to start out the bike, I disconnected and reattached the battery – one thing I’d watched the RAC do when my long-term 1290 Tremendous Duke GT advanced the similar drawback two years in the past. It then booted up in an instant, however advanced the similar drawback once more not up to an hour later.

A go back and forth again to KTM HQ printed the important thing fob was once low on energy and the battery has now been changed. In addition they said the problem with the rear journey peak was once led to by means of certainly one of a number of ECUs at the motorcycle and that “within the tournament of a stall, the bike will have to be allowed to move thru its same old get started up process the place all ECUs perform the vital tests ahead of the ignition button is driven.

“On this case we will be able to see the ignition was once driven throughout the ECU checking degree. This has led to battery energy being diverted to the starter machine and has led to a number of of the ECUs to show a failure and in the end impact the rear journey peak. If this occurs once more, transfer the bike off, and get started it once more within the customary method.”

Those electric niggles are this sort of disgrace as it’s an another way cracking piece of apparatus. It’s been an excellent commuter and it eats B-roads for breakfast, however the concern of faults is at all times lurking at the back of my thoughts. Right here’s hoping that is the closing of it.

Replace one: Introducing the KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke R Evo

Revealed: 22.04.25

KTM 1290 Super Duke Evo R

Touch: [email protected]

I can matter the motorcycle to commuting, trackdays, motorcycle nights, and a days away. I spent 2019 at the KTM 1290 Tremendous Duke GT which I liked driving nevertheless it’ll be attention-grabbing to look if KTM have mounted the standard niggles I bumped into ahead of…

Supply By way of https://www.motorcyclenews.com/mcn-motorycles/ktm-1290-super-duke-r-evo/

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