IAB understands that the KTM 790 Duke could launch in India before July 2019. Amit Nandi, Head of KTM Motorcycles India had clarified in October that the 790 Duke is under evaluation for a launch but nothing is finalised yet.
The 790 Duke was expected to come before the KTM 125 Duke but the launch could have been pushed back to accommodate the introduction of the ABS range.
KTM is expected to assemble the 790 Duke at its Chakan facility via Austrian-made kits. No doubt they would be looking at all possible options in localizing the bike. According Hubert Trunkenpolz, Chief Sales Officer - KTM, the 790 Duke is designed to be assembled in various locations across the globe.
Reports suggest that the 790 Duke is expected to cost around INR 7 lakh (ex-showroom). That said, with Royal Enfield launching the 650 Twins under INR 3 lakh (on-road), KTM has a new challenge in pricing its middle-weight competitively.
Unlike the Royal Enfield 650 Twins, the 790 Duke is a more powerful and a technologically advanced naked streetfighter. The 790 Duke features electronic wizardry like Motorcycle Stability Control, Motor Slip Regulation (MSR), two-way Quickshifter, Cornering ABS with Supermoto mode, multiple Riding Modes and a TFT display for the instrument cluster with Smartphone connectivity via Bluetooth.
The KTM 790 Duke also features Traction Control System, and a dedicated Track Mode with Anti-Wheelie Control, Launch Control, Traction Control Spin Adjuster, Throttle Response and the list goes on. Once launched in India, the 790 Duke will go up against the Triumph Street Triple S, Kawasaki Z900, Suzuki GSX-S750, and the Ducati Monster 821 among others.
The KTM 790 Duke sources power from a 799cc, LC8c parallel-twin engine that is good for 105 PS of maximum power and 86 Nm of peak torque, mated to a six-speed gearbox with a standard PASC slipper clutch. The engine features a secondary balancer shaft to minimalize vibrations and a 270-degree firing order to offer the V-twin like burble.