This is a notable sign. KTM, the off-road and rally specialist, is fueling greater ambitions in the trails-GT segment with its new version of the Adventure. A top-to-bottom review, the Austrian tries his hand at the splits by targeting two tables: the road, slipping between Ducati Multistrada or Yamaha XTZ to aim for the R 1200 GS – and pebbles, Katoche’s favorite area.
No more flattened cube face on wheels. It is a much more streamlined trail that takes over. With small airs of SM-T, high and rounded shoulders, a body sculpted in Californian style, the 1190 makes pass the old Adventure for a Viking carved in raw wood. He loses some on his side "rally factory machine", and leg protection appears to be less effective. But silhouette question, we savor :-).
Technically, road orientation has largely supplanted offroad. The rims are still spoked but the tires no longer have studs. The almost enduro dimensions become much more road (120-70 / 19 and 170-60 / 17). The cube tank is now 23 liters, and ergonomics are taken care of: adjustable windshield, double saddle adjustable to two heights (860 or 875 mm), footrest and handlebars adjustable to 10 mm. The pipe is refined at the top while lower, in the boiler, it plays in a whole other dimension.
Like hypersports, big trails are embarking on an arms race. Today, the benchmark is 150 horsepower. After the Multistrada, it’s the Adventure’s turn to bite into this power. To get it, no secret: you need a big block. The 990 goes by the wayside and is replaced by the engine of the RC8-R. What’s better than a Superbike twin to power a trail?!? It is now the rule, and KTM is doing it with the measure.
No question of grafting it as it is on the Adventure. The 1195 cm3 goes to the flexibility and good manners workshops. By losing a few watts in the operation, the power is redistributed in mid-range, with a peak located at 9500 revs. Above all, by taking only 3 kilos and changing the engine block, the Adventure ensures a hell of a performance increase: 44 horsepower and 2.7 mkg more – a plane !
Potato, and control! It’s hard to imagine a machine of this caliber without electronic assistance. The Adventure 1190 offers ride-by-wire, 4-level traction control (Sport, Street, Rain, Offroad), Bosch 9ME ABS (multiple modes and disengageable), and a double-acting PASC clutch : it requires less grip on the lever, and its limited slip system manages the overflow of torque during deceleration. A steering damper reinforces steering control; with so many horses, the front axle will only ask to take its ease on strong acceleration.
In 2014, the Adventure gains a new asset in its electronics package: MSC stability control. This system regulates the strength of the ABS according to the declination angle. Working in concert with the MTC traction control, it brings a new dimension to active safety:
– the MSC prevents the wheels from skidding when braking on the corner,
– it reduces the righting moment when braking on the angle,
– it prevents tilting forward in the event of emergency braking,
– it prevents the rear wheel from slipping when accelerating to the angle,
– it prohibits take-off of the front wheel during acceleration.
By requesting an update to your KTM dealer, it can be introduced on the first 1190 Adventure, those of 2013.
Big engine, more power, more electronics, and for all that, new chassis. As is customary in Matighoffen, the frame is a chromium-molybdenum tube structure; it weighs only 9.8 kg and allows high rigidity. Also new, the swingarm takes up the profile with visible internal reinforcements, as on the 125 and 690 Duke. Radial braking is provided by Brembo 4-piston calipers, 320mm front discs and 268mm rear. The suspensions, from WP, offer 190 mm of travel. They consist of a large inverted 48 mm fork and a mono-shock absorber – of course fully adjustable..
KTM doesn’t just offer a new Adventure; it must be able to fight on an equal footing with the leaders of the segment. And the innovation in the sector for 2013 is semi-active suspensions. Competing with Ducati’s Skyhook and BMW’s dynamic ESA, here is White Power’s EDS. Either Electronic Damping System: Via a switch on the handlebar, the pilot can adapt the spring preload at the front and at the rear according to 4 modes (solo, solo with luggage, duo, duo with luggage) and also choose between three damping settings (Comfort, Street, Sport).
Once on the road, it’s up to the sensors to take over. They read the route then send the information to the EDS central which takes care of adapting the hydraulics of the suspensions. Note that this type of piloted suspension, which will become commonplace in the medium term, will have been introduced in series by European motorcycles. But what is Japan doing ?
The EDS can be obtained as an option via the "electronic pack", also including a tire pressure monitor, for a financial surcharge of 1000 euros. It will not be available on the R version.
More urban design, overflowing engine, omnipresent high-tech, the Adventure is obviously bourgeois. The completely revisited dashboard also testifies to this. Forgotten the minimalist combined, room for an ultra complete instrumentation. A tachometer with needle in which is embedded an LCD keypad displaying speed, trips, etc…. is completed by another screen intended for driving conditions. The piloted suspension (if present), ABS and traction control settings are displayed there, plus some information such as average speed, fuel consumption, ambient temperature, and the interval before the next service. Note that these intervals have increased to 15,000 km with the adoption of the 1195 cc twin LC8.
Leave aside the philosophy of the 950 and 990 Adventure! The 1190 version loses its originality to carve out a piece of the rich trail-GT cake. More alluring, much more powerful, full of resources, it also offers one of the most affordable prices in the category..
However, the Adventure does not deny its origins. The R version will be there to get off the road: chassis protection, higher suspensions, different wheels, specific saddle, smaller screen, and the famous orange frame.
What you must remember
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1190 Adventure 2013
Model marketed in
230 km / h
The technical aspect
KTM 1190 Adventure 2014
- Tank: 23 liters
- Wheelbase: 1,560 mm
- Dry weight: 212 kg
- Weight in running order: 230 kg
- Train before
- Secondary chain transmission
- Rear axle
(105 x 69 mm)
at 9,500 rpm
at 7,500 rpm