The day which motorcycle enthusiasts have been waiting since a long time is finally here. Bajaj Auto and KTM have launched the pocket-rocket Duke 390 motorcycle in India today. The KTM Duke 390 is available in 60 cities across 71 KTM dealerships (75 service centres). Bookings start tomorrow, the 26th of June. The Duke 390 weighs 154 kgs (145 kgs without fuel) and KTM has made colour changes to distinguish it from its younger sibling, the Duke 200. The 390 Duke comes with an orange coloured steel Trellis frame with orange alloy wheels and handguards. KTM has revised the spring rates of the shock absorbers to offer a more comfortable ride for Indian roads.
KTM Duke 390 Price – Rs. 1.80 lakhs (introductory and ex-showroom, Delhi), on-road price is less than Rs. 2 lakhs.
The KTM Duke 390 is powered by a 373.2cc, single-cylinder, liquid-cooled, 4-stroke engine which produces 43.5 PS of peak power at 9000 RPM and 35 Nm of peak torque at 7000 RPM, coupled to a 6-speed gearbox. KTM hasn’t re-tuned the Duke 390’s engine for India. The global version of the KTM 390 Duke produces peak power and peak torque at higher RPMs, 9500 RPM and 7250 RPM respectively. The difference in figures is because Bajaj-KTM have published ARAI figures in India. The seat height is 800 mm (the Duke 200 has a seat height of 810 mm) and the tank capacity is 11-litres. ABS (made by Bosch) is standard on the Duke 390 and can be switched off with a press of a button. The Duke 390 uses German Metzeler Sportec M5 tyres.
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KTM has showcased a range of riding wear and accessories at the launch event. KTM is offering loads of accessories for touring including windshield, tank pad, fuel cap sticker, tank bag, rear top case, front and rear crash pads and orange bike cover. KTM has 75% market share in the Indian premium bike space, with the rest share being occupied by Harley-Davidson, Ducati, Aprilia, BMW, Hyosung, Triumph and Kawasaki. Surprisingly KTM mentioned Triumph who don’t sell bikes in India. KTM has sold 11,000 units in India in its 1.6-years of presence. KTM has a large range of motorcycles in its portfolio and over time the company will offer all its products in India.
A video is being played which shows the Duke 690, Duke 1190 and X-Bow. The Austrian company is talking about the KTM brand, what it stands for. Orange Day is a brand building exercise. Duke is the brand name for the streetfighter range, characterized by highest pwoer and lowest weight in its class. It is a naked motorcycle which is very agile. The Duke 390 comes between the Duke 200 and Duke 690. KTM says the Duke 390 is an absolute wild bike. Top speed is 160 km/hr. Engine is 95% different from the Duke 200. Nikasil coating and forged piston has been used in the Duke 390’s engine.
First set of Duke 390 customers come from those who are upgrading from the Duke 200. Others who upgrade from mass sport bikes and tourers like Yamaha R15 and Royal Enfield Bullet 500 respectively are also potential customers. The bike is being compared with the Honda CBR250R, Honda CBR150R, Yamaha R15 and KTM Duke 200. Power to weight ratio is 300 PS/ton. The company has also comapred the 390 Duke to the Kawasaki Ninja 300, Harley-Davidson Iron 883 and Hyosung GT650R. Also being compared with the complete Royal Enfield range. Bajaj-KTM plan to produce 1 lakh units from the Chakan plant by next year while 2 lakh unit production is targeted by 2017.
KTM has already started exports of the Duke 390 and the motorcycle will be shipped to Japan soon. Bajaj Auto has no plans to raise stake in KTM anytime soon. KTM has overtaken BMW Motorrad in overall yearly sales and their next target is to overtake Harley-Davidson which produces 2 lakh units per annum. KTM aims for poll position, both in sales and on the race track. No time frame has been given about when the introductory price will be stopped.