KTM Duke 390 Long-Term Ownership Review: A Journey of Thrills and Reliability

The RC 390 from KTM is currently the most powerful compact sports bike available in India from the Austrian OEM.

The latest iteration of the KTM RC 390 was introduced in India back in 2022. This post in the following sections will shine a light on how it feels to own and ride an RC 390 daily.

Overall appearance

Much like the latest generation of KTM bikes available in India, the RC 390 comes with a brand-new design language. Furthermore, the motorcycle also comes equipped from the factory with a revised chassis as well as enhanced mechanical elements. 

The current generation of the KTM RC 390 resembles the Austrian brand’s line-up of GP motorcycles. The RC 390 comes with layered fairings that not only enhance the bike’s visual appeal. But at the same time, offers the motorcycle a decent amount of aerodynamic assistance from straight drafts of air and crosswinds.

The exhaust canister is protected with a metal mesh at its tip. The tail end of the bike entails reduced visual bulk. KTM offers the current iteration of the RC 390 in three colour schemes.

Overall comfort and ergonomics

The latest generation of the KTM RC 390 is built around a split-type chassis paired with a raked sub-frame bolted on the main chassis. The bike’s seat has a height of 824 mm which makes the motorcycle suitable for tall riders. Short riders would need to struggle a bit to reach the ground with their feet when the bike would stop at a red light. The riding triangle remains aggressive. But the adjustable clip-on handlebar can be raised up or down by 10 MM. Hence, the ergonomics of this motorcycle have improved. Furthermore, the front seat is now wider and equipped with added cushioning. The rear seat however lacks space but is adequately padded. The bike now weighs just 172 KGs (dry). Hence parking the bike or manoeuvring through city traffic wouldn’t be as cumbersome as before. 

The bike’s suspensions have been re-tuned. The setting is on the softer side. Hence, one would not feel the jolts from the broken Indian roads as badly as they did in the previous generation of the bike. 

Overall performance and handling offered on city roads as well as highways

The latest generation of the RC 390 comes equipped with a larger air intake. This single update now allows the 373 cc single-cylinder, liquid-cooled engine to put out 37 Nm of peak torque. The peak power output remains the same at 42.9 bhp. The power delivery of the engine is linear. The engine continues to pull till the RPM reaches the 10,000 mark. The cooling system of the engine has been enhanced as well. The happy place for the engine is between the 3, 000 and 6, 000 RPM marks. The engine is paired with a six-speed gearbox and a slipper clutch. The gearbox also gets KTM’s updated quickshifter technology. The updated chassis offers additional stability to the motorcycle, especially on tight corners and during high-speed overtakes. 

The RC 390 is currently the most powerful compact sports bike KTM offers to Indians. The motorcycle has the right set of features and offers mind-blowing performance thus making this motorcycle perfect for daily rides. Sure the ownership costs are on the steeper end. But hey, one cannot complain when their bike offers best-in-class features, power and torque now can they!?

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