For its first evolution, the KTM 125 Duke did not cut corners. Just to say that she is the most unbridled (way of speaking) of the 1 / 8th of a liter, the little Austrian has given herself a hell of a stroke of the pencil for 2017, with real pieces of Superduke 1290 in it. What to turn it into a real moth of the category.
We don’t look at this Duke the same way anymore. Its significantly sharper profile, more assertive forms and significantly more nervous rear make it a first strike machine. The trim is stretched from start to finish, snapping, and tracing its vehemence on that of the big 1290 roadster. It seems both bigger and more dynamic. The fork head threatens, the shoulders jostle, contents are emancipated. Like the rear loop of the frame, proudly showing off the house’s iconic orange, and now screwed onto the main structure. Or the exhaust that migrates to the side. To satisfy Euro4, not sure that it had enough space under the engine.
KTM took advantage of the change to modify the rider and passenger footrest plates, enlarge the saddles, increase the tank capacity by 2.4 liters (13.4 L in total), install an LED headlight, simplify the shoe, retouch the front fender and improve some elements.
This is the case with the fork. Still supplied by WP, this inverted model 43 mm in diameter promises to be lighter, easier to maintain, but still no adjustment. Shock absorber, swingarm and brakes are retained. For use, the little Duke has disconnectable ABS, a 300mm front disc clamped by a radial 4-piston Bybre caliper and a 220mm rear disc.
Like all the others, the engine had to comply with standards. A small touch-up at the level of the injection and the new exhaust allow to validate Euro4, and this without loss of power. The enthusiastic Austrian mono develops 15 horsepower at 10,000 rpm, or 500 rpm lower than before.
Besides its style, the KTM 125 Duke is very strong with its new dashboard. Nothing less than a color TFT screen, worthy of much higher-end models (1290 Superduke R, SuperAdventure, Triumph 800 Street Triple R & RS, Yamaha R1, Honda CBR 1000, Ducati 1200 Monster, etc …). Note that the device can connect to a smartphone via bluetooth using the KTM MY RIDE (optional), managing calls, the audio player, displaying notifications on the dashboard with handlebar control. A shocking argument for the young clientele to whom this Katoche is mainly intended.
This update results in a significant increase in weight, with 9 kilos taken in the biasse. Almost a trivial matter compared to the obvious appeal of its new plastic. Strengthening its achievements and much more striking in its lines, the KTM 125 Duke is more comfortable and more geeky. No reason to shun this machine, if not a price that places it among the most ‘opulent’ of the 125.
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125 DUKE 2017
Model marketed in
approx. 115 km / h
The technical aspect
KTM 125 DUKE 2018
- Tank: 13.4 liters
- Wheelbase: 1,357 mm
- Weight in running order: 137 kg
- Train before
- Secondary chain transmission
- Rear axle
(58 x 47.2 mm)
at 10,000 rpm
at 7,500 rpm