December 17, 2012

KTM Superbike 2013 Preview: KTM 1290 Super Duke R

KTM provides an important and exciting glance into the fascinating future of the Super Duke.” If that means moving its wicked streetfighting 1290 Super Duke R into production, then KTM’s future is exciting indeed.

After much speculation, KTM finally confirmed it is in the process of manufacturing the 1290 Super Duke R at the EICMA show in Milan. And while fans of the Austrian marque are craving a detailed spec sheet on KTM’s highest-powered Super Duke to date, facts about the naked bike are still ambiguous at best.

What is known is that the 1290 Super Duke R will be powered by a bored-out version of the V-Twin installed on the RC8R superbike, the latter an 1195cc liquid-cooled, eight-valve V-Twin. Exact displacement of the 1290 Super Duke R and power numbers haven’t been revealed yet, but the lump in the RC8R put out 152.41 hp on our dyno when tested back in 2011. Numbers tossed around for the new 1290 mill are in the 180 – 200 hp range. Power to the rear will be administered by a ride-by-wire throttle system.

The potent V-Twin is suspended below the tubular frame, the frame comprised of chrome-molybdenum steel. The frame is paired to a single-sided swingarm and a small rear subframe that opens up the look of the rear leaving the lightweight alloy racing wheels with the two-tone KTM orange and white color scheme out in the open for everyone to appreciate. Though dimensions weren’t listed, the rake is tight and racy and the wheelbase compact on this hooligan-bent steed. The motorcycle’s weight wasn’t listed either but carbon fiber used on the fenders and tank shroud should help keep the number down.

Electronics for the KTM 1290 Super Duke R include traction control and ABS, as well as anti-stoppie and anti-wheelie control. KTM states that these can be deactivated by the rider. Though price hasn’t been listed yet, the 2012 KTM RC8R sold for $16,499 so figure it to be comparably priced. KTM says “to look forward to the future and the second half of 2013 in particular,” which we’re assuming is the release date for the 1290 Super Duke R.

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