Speaking to India’s Business Standard, KTM CEO Stefan Pierer has confirmed that the KTM 390 Duke will be coming to the US market in 2014 — a full year later than the company’s leaked road map slide projected.
A noticeable absence from this year’s USA model lineup, the KTM 390 Duke is the biggest sibling in KTM’s new entry-level street bike offerings, with the company already seeing the KTM 125 Duke and KTM 200 Duke as successes in the marketplace.
Helping push KTM beyond BMW Motorrad’s yearly sales totals for 2012, the Austrian company is reaping significant benefits from its partnership with Bajaj, which owns a minority stake in KTM. Producing the smaller Duke machines in Bajaj’s Chakan plant, KTM has been able to create a capable, affordable, and enticing motorcycle for new and current motorcyclists alike.
The perfect displacement for the North American market, KTM has long been expected to bring the 373cc machine across the pond, and it came as a surprise when the KTM 390 Duke was not announced at the company’s USA model unveil in Long Beach earlier this year.
Absent too was the KTM 1190 Adventure, which has debuted in Europe, and is expected to have a late-2013 arrival in the US, making one wonder what exactly is going on with KTM’s on-road lineup (instead for 2013, North Americans will get the KTM 990 Adventure Baja as a new model).
Though the saying goes that it is “better late than never,” similar delays are attributed to the sales flop of the KTM RC8, which also suffered from a off-road focused dealer network.
It seems with the KTM 390 Duke, the Austrian brand is looking to try again with its move from the dirt to the street. Hopefully, they will have more success this second time around.
Source: Business Standard