Spy Photo: 2012 KTM 690 Duke

04/27/2011 @ 12:28 pm, by Jensen Beeler13 COMMENTS

MCN is running a photo today that a Austrian KTM enthusiast supposedly snapped at at gas station just down the street from the Austrian company’s Mattighofen headquarters. Coming across what looks to be an early-prototype of the 2012 KTM 690 Duke, we have at least a rough idea of what KTM will likely unveil at EICMA later this year.

Expected to be a few horsepower up on its predecessor, the ~70hp 2012 KTM 690 Duke has always been an urban wheelie machine that KTM would be hard-pressed to improve upon. The most notable changes so far appear to be a new headlight, a more pronounced pillion, and standard exhaust placement, along with a revised chassis and motor.

We’ll have to reserve judgment before actually seeing the machine in person, but one of our favorite parts of the current KTM 690 Duke was the underslung exhaust pipe. Likely having to tackle stricter European pollution controls, the two-part muffler design shown here helps address that issue, although not in the most pleasing of manners. Hopefully the mismatched wheels and all black paint job is a sign that the design-side of the bike is still in flux, and this side-mounted pipe isn’t a permanent element. It probably is though.

The headlight for many will be an improvement over the original design. Though we’d have to tend to agree here, one of the things that have always set KTMs apart has been the standard “face only a mother could love” mantra that seems to permeate through the brand. Like a motorcycling solar eclipse, if you stare at them long enough, you start to go blind to the blunt edges and appreciate the design. The new headlight looks like something straight off a dual-sport though, which may have been just what was laying around the office and not a final design element.

The more we ponder this idea, the more likely that seems to be the case, as we doubt KTM would want to tip that much of the final design this far away from EICMA. As always though, time will tell. Stay tuned KTM fans, as this might a sign that the Austrian company is getting hip to the “spy shot” before release idea that’s been going around the motorcycle industry lately…not that we’re complaining about seeing new bikes.

Source: MCN

  • BBQdog

    Is it me or where the rest of the posts ?

  • Ryan

    Change the exhaust to anything (undertail?!) instead of that current monstrosity and it’s delightfully beautiful bike. I really like the front end, headlight included.

  • collyer

    What if this is a 450 Duke? Hmm? I don’t see them changing the 690 this soon. The Duke II lasted 7 years!!

    70Hp is PLENTY for a street thumper, and more torque/less HP (lower RPM) is more fun anyway.

    KTM is famous for prototyping for YEARS before releasing a production mule, so speculate all you want.

    Flogging my ’07 Super Duke, thinking an ’09/’10 690 Duke would fit in the garage next to it., for shorter shorter trips with more backing in episodes.

    But what do I know. I live in America, most people ask me “what kind of Kawasaki is that?”

  • 76

    No way they are retooling for the 690 already it was new 2 years ago, this is something else, what collyer pointed out seems to make alot more sense

  • Jeram

    its either two things… a 710cc duke or a 350F duke

    if only theyd make a 300EXC-E duke.. Id be down at the dealership in a heart beat

    actually make that s 380 exc-e haha

  • Jeram

    after reading the posts on a few other sites Id say it is a 250/300 duke


    I wish that was actually 300 two stroker duke…. FUN FUN FUN!

  • freako

    i think what KTM is trying to do is separate its models trough design, rather than having a ‘beak’ less SM to make the duke, the spy shot shows its trying to catch the design cues of the super duke and the 125 duke, a proper street fighter rather than a ‘beak’ less SM. im just wondering how will the new SM (if any) will look like..

    SM rider, Malaysia

  • RSVDan

    Look closely at the motor. It is without question the 690 LC4, not a 450 twin cam or 250/300.

  • Ed Gray

    It looks uncomfotably like a Blast. I don’t mean fun I mean that fugly Buell.

  • JB

    Front caliper looks to be std mount not radial=lower spec? Maybe a 450…….hummmm

  • 76

    I agree that is a 690 engine case & cover, but why in the hell retool for this model so soon? I like the light and all but would much rather the SM approach of the current model esp with the seat. I know the Orig Superduke was redone in 2 years but this just seems strange. I think its a Superduke Jr. like a 710 maybe. I guess we will soon find out, there is a new RC8 for 2012 I can bet you that and the rumors around the Superduke is 2013

  • GeddyT

    Ugh. Kill it with fire.
    I thought the original 690 Duke (especially in black and white) was a beautiful bike in every way. This thing is hideous.

    Any links to info about the new RC8 mentioned above would be nice, though!

  • Looks like they slapped on parts from their 690 parts bin. Exhaust from 690SM.

    The 690 LC4 engine is due for a revision, i guess this will be the first bike they fit the new engine.