790 DUKE PROTOTYPE
This is the first official hint Ð beyond multiple spy shots and KTM boss Stefan Pierer confirming the 800Õs existence to MCN during the summer Ð of the style and intent of KTMÕS new family of middleweights.
Powered by an all-new parallel-twin engine of around 800cc, which the firm have dubbed the LC8C (with the ÔCÕ apparently denoting Ôcompactõ), this Duke version looks likely to be the first arrival of what is certain to be a family of bikes from KTM and sister company, Husqvarna. Interestingly, the rumour mill suggests that Husky will debut an adventure styled 800 model during the Milan show.
KTM say the new 790 Duke will bring Òunparalleled poise, telepathic levels of feedback and lightness thatõs off the scaleó to the mid-market Ð which all sounds good. With feet back on terra firma, the more likely certainties are that itõll have a ride-by-wire throttle, multiple rider modes, multi-level traction control and integrated ÔMY RIDEÕ connectivity. We wouldnõt be surprised to find a quickshifter, too.
This is all a little way off though, so donõt expect to be wandering into your local dealer with your bank details any time soon. Weõd expect to see a production version of the 790 Duke unveiled this time next year, with the bike arriving in dealers in 2018. And it might not be alone if Husky are working on the adventure model, too.
It may be a prototype, but expect the real deal to look similar