The unveil of the 250cc KTM bikes at Tokyo recently got everyone very excited but these motorcycles aren’t set for an India launch. They won’t be even sold in Europe.
The quarter-litre segment is a sweet displacement category in certain Asian countries like Japan, Indonesia and Thailand, that’s the reason KTM has developed a new 248.8cc engine which has found its way into the new RC 250 and Duke 250. This motor generates 31.3 PS and 24 Nm, being based on the larger 373.2cc single-cylinder missile. Post the unveil, everyone was excited that KTM will launch these machines in India as they are made by Bajaj Auto at their Chakan facility. But neither the RC 250, nor the Duke 250 will be launched in India because they are for markets whose taxation structure favours 250cc bikes.
In fact, KTM won’t be launching the Duke 250 and RC 250 in Europe either, also they won’t make it to the States. So all those having hope of seeing the 250cc KTM in India, you will be disappointed. The obvious reason for not launching the RC 250 and Duke 250 in India is the lack of price point to position them. The gap between the 200 and 390 KTM models is so narrow that a 250 can’t be put in between. Maybe the next generation Duke 200 and RC 200 won’t come and instead only the Duke 250 becomes the entry-level model where the Duke 125 isn’t sold. The next generation of the single-cylinder, sub-500cc KTM Dukes are due in 2017.
Just recently a rumour of a 250cc KTM Enduro being launched in India surfaced. This is not going to happen because KTM CEO Stefan Pierer has made it very clear that the next models to roll out of Bajaj Auto’s Chakan plant from KTM would be Husqvarna motorcycles (the Vitpilen and Svartpilen) in 2017. Work on a lower capacity Adventure bike didn’t reach much further as the underpinnings on the Dukes (trellis frame) isn’t apt for an Enduro model. KTM’s focus is on developing middle-weight bikes in the 500-800cc twin-cylinder space for which Bajaj Auto has been given complete responsibility.