Not all adventure motorcycles are meant to be big. This is probably the philosophy being pursued by Austrian motorcycle manufacturer KTM when it conceptualized its latest offering.
At the opening of the 2019 Esposizione Internazionale Ciclo Motociclo e Accessori (EICMA) show in Italy, KTM revealed the 390 Adventure, a lightweight, dual-purpose machine that shares its 373.2cc single-cylinder engine with the 390 Duke roadster and the RC 390 sport bike. And if the Europeans are singing hallelujah upon the unveiling of this stunning entry-level adventure motorcycle, there’s much louder cheering from us Pinoys over here.
The reason: Both the 390 Duke and the RC 390 are manufactured at the KTM plant in Laguna, with units being sold locally or exported to China and other countries. We’ve been told that KTM Philippines also wants to manufacture the 790 Adventure and Adventure R at the facility. So, what could deter Team Orange from producing the 390 Adventure here?
While we’re still hoping and waiting for these bright economic prospects to materialize, let’s focus on the hardware of KTM’s new on-road/off-road weapon.
Instead of using the set of spokes we see on the 790 Adventure, the 390 version runs on cast-aluminum wheels measuring 19 inches in front and 17 inches in the rear. KTM has also equipped the 390 Adventure with a WP 43mm fully-adjustable upside-down fork and an Apex rear monoshock that offers 117mm of travel. Stopping duties are performed by a Brembo-designed, made-in-India Bybre brake system clamping on a 320mm disc in front and a 230mm disc in the back.
Seat height is now taller at 33.6 inches, or almost the same loft as the 790 Adventure (32.7-inch low setting, 33.5-inch standard height). For average Pinoy riders, this makes the 390 Adventure easier to flat-foot than its bigger sibling. As for the windscreen, although we find it a bit small for this beginner-friendly adventure bike, there are two settings to choose from.
Whether for its small or big bikes, KTM has a knack for coming up with impressive electronics. The 390 Adventure boasts a full-color TFT display that shows cornering ABS, traction control, and KTM My Ride connectivity. An up/down quickshifter is also available as an option.
We expect the pricing of the KTM 390 Adventure to be competitive, especially if it ends up being manufactured at the Laguna plant of the Ayalas in the future. Let’s keep our fingers crossed, shall we?