The absence of the KTM 390 Adventure from the 2018 EICMA show was a turn-off for enthusiasts who were eagerly waiting to see the dual-purpose motorcycle. However, KTM maintained that the 390 Adventure is on schedule for its 2019 launch. A report from earlier this month added that KTM would make a formal announcement about its Indian launch date by March 2019.
Now, one of the most awaited motorcycles of the year has finally been spotted in India for the first time, and the images were shared by IAB reader Gaurav. The test mule of the adventure tourer was snagged in Pune, and it appears to be almost ready for production. We have also created a render (at the end of the post) of what the production spec 390 Adventure could look like.
The motorcycle isn’t very different from the test mule spotted in Europe earlier this year. However, unlike that model, the Indian 390 Adventure is equipped with wire-spokes. Similar to its higher displacement adventure motorcycles, KTM is expected to launch the 390 Adventure in two variants. One would feature mild off-roading capabilities and come equipped with alloy wheels while the other will be a hard-core off-roader with wire-spoke wheels.
KTM will most likely carry forward the nomenclature from its bigger adventure range and name the upcoming models 390 Adventure and 390 Adventure R. The alloy wheel version will offer the convenience of tubeless tyres while the spoke-wheel variant will cater to anyone who wishes to take the beaten path. The Indian test mule sports 19-inch front and a 17-inch rear wheel, both wrapped in dual-purpose, knobby tyres.
The styling of both motorcycles would be largely identical. At the front would be a full LED headlight with a split style design that was previously seen on the 390 Duke. LED blinkers accompany the LED headlamp while on top is a compact windscreen that should offer some solace against windblasts. Comfort-enhancing extensions on the sides of the headlight to deflect the wind from the rider further. KTM may offer a taller windscreen as an optional accessory.
The front fender has extensions to cover the forks against various elements. Moreover, the forks feature a dust cap, a feature already available on KTM’s existing range of products in the Indian market, to protect the oil seals.
Behind the windscreen is a TFT display that will be identical to the unit that was seen on the 390 Duke. We may also see integrated navigation on the display. Apart from offering a plethora of readouts, the TFT screen comes with smartphone integration via Bluetooth that enables the rider to control calls and music on the go. The motorcycle features the same switchgear as that seen on the 390 Duke.
The handlebar is taller than the unit on the 390 naked roadster and should offer better accessibility to the rider while standing on the footrests. Knuckle guards are not installed on the test mule, but the part will most definitely come as standard. Another adventure style element visible in the photograph is the rider footrest that appears to use a removable rubber.
The shrouds add a muscular look to the tank. The design gets leaner towards the seat to offer an ample amount of space for body movement while off-roading. The tank capacity is unknown, but it should be marginally higher than the 390 Duke for fewer stops between refuelling. A split, step-up saddle follows the fuel tank. The pillion gets a pair of wide grab rails at the back. Surprisingly, the motorcycle does not feature a luggage rack at the rear that was seen on the European test mules. That, similar to the knuckle guards, could be added to the delivery-ready motorcycles.
Sides reveal an exhaust that is noticeably different from the unit on the 390 Duke and should offer a sportier sound. The swingarm looks identical to the one seen on the KTM’s RC and Duke range. A crash guard is installed to offer protection to the body panels while the engine gets a belly pan that appears to be a plastic unit. The off-road spec model should get a metal unit. A LED tail light, accompanied by LED blinkers, number plate illuminator and a reflector form the rear design.
The motorcycle is built around a trellis frame that features a bolted sub-frame - a feature common with the 390 Duke (2017 onwards). Upside-down telescopic forks and a monoshock perform shock absorption tasks. The front forks appear to be adjustable. The KTM 790 Duke does not feature adjustable forks while the 790 Adventure R (premium version) does. KTM is known to set new benchmarks with each new generation, and it would not be a surprise if the 390 Adventure gets the special forks.
The nucleus of the mechanical specifications would be the 373.2cc motor that powers the 390 Duke. The unit on the 390 Adventure will get a different tune for better low- and mid-range power. The adventure spec model may also come with a larger rear sprocket. For reference, the 373.2cc, single-cylinder, DOHC, 4-Valve, liquid-cooled engine on the Duke delivers 43.5 hp of power at 9,500 RPM and 35 Nm of peak torque at 7,250 rpm.
The engine will be paired to a six-speed gearbox and feature a slip/assist clutch. Electronic aids would most likely include switchable dual-channel ABS and ride-by-wire system.
KTM should target the sub-INR 3 lakh (on-road) price zone with the 390 ADV which would cause some intense rivalries with the Royal Enfield 650 Twins (although they belong in a different segment) and its direct rival, the BMW G310 GS.