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2013 KTM 1190 Adventure Preview


by Pascal Bastien ,

In order to remain competitive, you have to keep progressing -- and quickly. That's why KTM has completely redesigned its big travel bike for 2013. The KTM 1190 Adventure gains 200 cc and offers two distinct models: one that's mainly suited for pavement, and another one for all types of terrain.

The new 1190 Adventure retains the aggressive styling of its predecessor while growing in size and maturity. It's a real testament to the design expertise of KISKA, which has been designing most KTM bikes since 1992.

The new, sharper front section of the 2013 KTM 1190 Adventure gets an LED-enhanced, restyled headlight, as well as a more angled windshield than the outgoing model. Seat height can be adjusted from 860 to 875 mm, while the tailpipes have moved from under the seat to the right side.

Riders will immediately notice the new instrument panel, which combines an analog tachometer with a digital display in a neat layout. Let's not forget the impressive 23 litre tank capacity (3.5 litre reserve).

Superbike-type engine
Similar to the RC8R superbike, the 2013 KTM 1190 Adventure benefits from the latest evolution of the 1,195cc twin-cylinder engine, which has been revised and improved to increase flexibility at low and medium revs.

The new 1190 Adventure becomes KTM's first motorcycle to use a ride-by-wire throttle, five riding modes (including off-road), and traction control. It also adds combined ABS (the front brake lever actuates both the front and rear brakes) with an off-road mode that allows the rider to block the rear wheel as required -- a prerequisite for committed off-road riding and deliberately executed slides.

The tubular frame is made from chrome-molybdenum stainless steel. It's paired with a premium WP suspension that features an Electronic Damping System (EDS). KTM clearly wants to take on the Ducati Multistrada and BMW R1200GS, both of which had recently taken a lead in terms of electronic riding aids.

2013 KTM 1190 Adventure left side view
Photo: KTM

For more serious off-road riding
The R variant of the 2013 KTM 1190 Adventure stands out with more dirt-oriented components such as a fully adjustable WP suspension (without EDS, though); larger wheels (21” front; 18” rear) that can be fitted with deep-tread, knobby tires; steel crash bars; an orange-painted frame; a higher seat (890 mm); and a smaller, tinted windshield. It's also 5kg lighter than the base model.

With an estimated 148 horsepower, advanced electronic riding aids, and the rally-proven know-how of the Austrian manufacturer, the 2013 KTM 1190 Adventure will undoubtedly climb back onto the podium.