The New Beast: 2020 KTM 1290 Super Duke R
KTM’s top-of-the-line super naked is back for 2020! The 1290 Super Duke R is a bold and brash super naked motorcycle designed for versatility and practicality. It’s a muscular and powerful motorcycle, ideal for a wide range of purposes including heavy-duty commuting, high-speed thrills, and unparalleled track day domination. It’s every bit as beastly as KTM suggests.
The 2020 upgrade has seen the 1290 Super Duke R evolve into an incredibly mean-looking machine. There’s a new chassis, sharper bodywork, and a fiercer attitude. There’s a bevy of improved riding aids, including upgraded ride modes, next-gen traction control, motor slip regulation, supermoto ABS, and cruise control, to name but a few.
The newly updated 1290 Super Duke R is powered by KTM’s 1,301cc LC8 V-twin engine. The engine comes equipped with a number of interesting new upgrades, including titanium intake valves, updated fuel-injectors, and new torque and economy improving throttle bodies. The power is rated at 180 horsepower and 103 lb-ft of peak torque, putting it in direct competition with the top factory-produced street fighters currently available.
For 2020, the new KTM 1290 Super Duke R is available in two color options: either black or orange. The MSRP is set at $18,699.
On this page: we’ve curated specs, features, news, photos/videos, etc. so you can read up on the new KTM 1290 Super Duke R in one place.
- Price: $18,699
- Key Features:
- Anti-lock brakes (ABS)
- Alarm system
- Engine type: 1,301cc,Liquid cooled, V-twin
- Power: 180 horsepower
- Dry Weight: 189 kg
- Seat height: 835 mm
2020 KTM 1290 Super Duke R Specifications
|Engine||1,301cc,Liquid cooled, V-twin|
|Bore x Stroke||108 mm x 71 mm|
|Lubrication||Forced oil lubrication with 3 oil pumps|
|Clutch||PASC (TM) slipper clutch, hydraulically actuated|
|Suspension Front||125 mm|
|Suspension Rear||140 mm|
|Brakes Front||2 x Brembo Stylema Monobloc four piston, radially mounted caliper|
|Brakes Rear||Brembo twin-piston fixed calliper, brake disc|
|Fuel Tank Capacity||16 L|
|Ground Clearance||160 mm|
|Seat Height||835 mm|
|Curb Weight||189 kg|
2020 KTM 1290 Super Duke R Features
Engine & Exhaust
If it ain’t broken, don’t fix it. But by all means, make it meaner! Boasting 177 hp and 140 Nm, the 1301 cc LC8, V-Twin has undergone a subtle yet impactful development. Optimized to be lighter but retaining its torquey character, this powerhouse is the benchmark of V-twin evolution. And with new engine and linkage mounts that add to the overall structure of the entire package – it quite literally is the part that holds THE BEAST together.
Thinner engine casings and revised water and oil cooler mounts have resulted in a 0.8 kg weight saving. Oil delivery has also been improved by way of a lightweight aluminum oil line, eliminating the need for a double wall system. Additionally, the engine carrier bracket and linkage mount have been integrated into the engine case, allowing for a stiffer connection. This has also resulted in a 5 mm higher swingarm pivot for improved stability and anti-squat.
New topfeeder injectors and 56 mm throttle bodies provide an improved air to fuel mixture at high rpms. This results in more torque and better fuel economy throughout the rev range.
You don’t always need big changes to make big differences. In fact, when it comes to the PANKL gearbox, we’ve made a few small tweaks which have resulted in quicker shift times, shorter shift action and lighter lever modulation. Smoother shift action also comes courtesy of an improved spline shaft and bronzed copper coating on the shift forks. Why do all this? Quite simply – quicker shift times equal faster acceleration.
A new frame concept, which uses the engine as a means to increase torsional rigidity, has resulted in the KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R being 3 times stiffer than its predecessor. This allows for an effortless, confidence-inspiring riding position which translate into an ultimately faster ride. This is achieved by maximizing the feedback from the chassis and the front tire. The frame also makes use of thicker diameter tubes with thinner walls, which is the single biggest weight saving measure on the bike – saving 2 kg compared to the previous model.
Multi-dexterity is the name of the game when it comes to this BEAST’s tail. An all-new and lighter composite subframe combines a number of functions to save weight and increase functionality. The passenger seat, license plate holder and taillights bolt directly onto the subframe structure with no additional brackets or attachments needed.
To increase feel and traction, the pivot point of the single-sided swingarm has been repositioned 5mm higher relative to the output sprocket for more control when putting the power down. Combined with the repositioning of the engine in the frame, a steeper swingarm angle has been achieved, increasing anti-squat.
Ergonomics & Comfort
Finding the optimal seating position is made easy with an adjustable 760 mm wide handlebar. Riders can tailor their preferred reach with 4 positions over 21 mm, front to back, making it easy to attack corners and crucial for hanging on down the straights.
The KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R boasts an all-new TFT dashboard with increased functionality.To access this, a great deal of testing was done to develop robust and intuitive motorcycle switchgear, which incidentally pushes all the right buttons. Riders can now adjust the wheel slip easily via paddle buttons on the switchgear, while in TRACK MODE, or can set two programmable switches for fast access to favored features or setting of their choosing.
Hydraulic brake and clutch levers make for easy one-finger operation, while full reach adjustability ensures they are within easy grasp of even the most reach-challenged riders.
Bodywork & Graphics
There isn’t much to say about the bodywork of the new KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R as there is so little of it to talk about. But that’s exactly how we like it! Aggressive and menacing, the bodywork and panels had to achieve two objectives – tick all the ergonomic boxes and shave weight wherever possible. As such, every panel and plate has been calculated for optimum thickness and minimized where possible. The only thing that remained heavy was attitude.
Almost mantis-like, the new LED headlight doubles as a ram air intake, with air being channelled between the lights, keeping them cool, and directly into the airbox, making for a more efficient burn. Besides looking great, the dual-functionality resulted in cleaner, more compact lines and less overall weight.
Sharp rear end
Thanks to an all-new, lighter composite subframe, the passenger seat, license plate holder and taillights could be seamlessly incorporated into a neat rear end, which keeps a little sting in the tail.
Completely new and made of steel, the 16 litre fuel tank has been crafted to bulk up THE BEAST’s haunches. Also, the new shape and angle have been designed to support the rider on street and on the track.