‘KTM has made a 125 to lust af­ter again’

Motorcycle News (UK) - - This Week -

Like the 390 the new 125 Duke gets a ma­jor makeover. The orig­i­nal 2011 model didn’t ex­actly have qual­ity writ­ten through it like a stick of rock, but this one does. It has the 390’s full colour dash, il­lu­mi­nated switchgear but­tons, LED head­light, new ex­haust, re­vised chas­sis, larger fuel tank, non-ad­justable WP sus­pen­sion, four-pis­ton ra­dial caliper (with 300mm discs), fat 17in tyres (Met­zeler Sportec M5) and a breathed-on (non-ride-by-wire) Euro4 spec en­gine that has a wider spread of power.

Un­like many 125s the Duke is solid, crisp and has the same roomy, big bike feel as the 390. The gear­box is slick, the brakes strong and the new WP sus­pen­sion is nice and sporty - not the usual bud­get wet mush mix­ture of cook­ing-oil-damp­ing and biro-spring sup­port you get on your av­er­age 125. It’s nippy through town and weigh­ing just 137kg dry the 15bhp sin­gle cylin­der has enough per­for­mance to keep up with, and stay ahead of, traf­fic.

The hugely-im­proved 125 Duke is easy to ride and will make you grin every time you turn the key and see that colour dis­play flicker into life. Decades af­ter the demise of L-plated hooli­gans, like the RD125LC, KMX125, RS125 and MBX125, the KTM has made a 125 to lust af­ter. It’s a tad over £4k which is a lot for a 125, but it’s £200 less than a Yamaha MT-125.

Light, nim­ble and nippy enough

Even the ‘split’ front looks ok on the 390

Funky dash can be linked to your phone

Headights mimic big­ger KTMS

Scroll be­tween the dash dis­plays

Quite pos­si­bly the best 125 dash

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