Base Model KTM 890 Duke Keeps Its Edge for 2021

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Right on time, the 2021 KTM 890 Duke has debuted to round-out the Austrian brand’s lineup of sport bikes.

Replacing the KTM 790 Duke in the lineup, the KTM 890 Duke brings with it more power (114 hp / 85 kW) for the same weight (372 lbs / 169 kg dry), while continuing to bring a robust set of electronics and features to the segment.

As the name implies, the KTM 890 Duke uses an 889cc parallel-twin engine. In addition to its 10 extra ponies, the 890 motor offers a bump to 68 lbs•ft (92 Nm) of torque, with 20% more rotating mass to help with low-speed engine response.

There are no shortage of electronics on the 2021 KTM 890 Duke either, with traction control, wheelie control, cornering ABS, and three riding modes as standard (Rain, Street, Sport).

Adding the optional track riding mode, one gets the ability to adjust the nine levels of the traction control, and disable the wheelie control and cornering ABS. There is also a launch control feature, as well as an optional up/down quickshifter.

KTM is a bit cagey about the spec of the suspension pieces on the 890 Duke. The company quotes that the rear shock is “fully adjustable” though we have seen before that KTM’s definition of this spec can differ from everyone else’s. 

The front forks are WP Apex 43 units with split functions and single-rate springs, which seem to imply a fully adjustable fork, but we will have to confirm that.

On the bright side, the Bosch 9.1 MP brake system allows for the rear wheel ABS to be disabled for “supermoto” mode – as it should be.

There is continued good news in the wheel area, as the brake system has seen an upgrade over the 790’s units, with “improved” calipers and more aggressive pads, all mated to dual 300mm discs. The tires get an upgrade too, with Continental ContiRoad doing the duty.

As such, KTM has seemingly addressred all of our major complaints about the 790 model with the specs on the KTM 890 Duke. Despite its drawbacks, we still deemed the KTM 790 Duke to be the best sport bike on the market for the money, which bodes well for the KTM 890 Duke’s future.

Of course, the big question will be cost, and right now there is no word on pricing or availability in the USA. However, we would expect the 2021 KTM 890 Duke to be priced aggressively, likely around the $11,000 mark.

Source: KTM North America