KTM 990 SM T

Cycle World - - Race Watch Munro Indian Landspeeder -

YEARS SOLD: 2010–2013 MSRP NEW: $13,998 (’10) to $13,999 (’13) BLUE BOOK RE­TAIL VALUE: $7985 (’10) to $10,260 (’13) BA­SIC SPECS: Based on KTM’S 990 SM plat­form, the SM T (T des­ig­na­tion for “trav­eler”) ex­pands on the liter-class su­per­moto con­cept with a few tweaks aimed at im­proved com­fort and con­ve­nience. Its 75-de­gree, liq­uid-cooled V-twin is tuned for meaty midrange de­liv­ery, pro­duc­ing an in­spir­ing spread of torque from 3,000 to 7,000 rpm with plenty of over-rev to 10,000 and of­fers a re­laxed throb­bing free­way cruise. The 48mm WP fork and rear dam­per were re­cal­i­brated for re­duced saddle height while strik­ing an ideal bal­ance of bump com­pli­ance and sport­ing ca­pa­bil­ity. Ra­dial-mount Brembo Monoblock calipers pro­vide su­per­bike stop­ping per­for­mance that makes the most of the SM T’s sport ra­dial tires on cast-al­loy March­esini wheels.

WHY IT’S DE­SIR­ABLE: The 990 SM T de­liv­ers su­per­moto back-road per­for­mance char­ac­ter with an added bonus of daily-use ver­sa­til­ity. Its frame-mount mini fair­ing with short wind­screen, hand guards, broad thick saddle, and gen­er­ous legroom have won fa­vor with rider and pas­sen­ger alike. It fea­tures in­te­grated bag mounts for ac­ces­sory pan­niers along with a cast tail rack with grab han­dles and ca­pa­bil­ity to carry a top case. The chas­sis won ac­claim for its su­perb blend of ride qual­ity and ag­ile, sure­footed han­dling na­ture.

THE COM­PE­TI­TION: At the time KTM an­nounced the 990 SM T, pro­duc­tion of the Buell XB12XT Ulysses had just ceased, leav­ing the Du­cati Mul­tistrada 1200, Suzuki V-strom 1000, and Tri­umph Tiger 1050 as the clos­est peers in de­sign if not price. Ul­ti­mately, KTM’S cur­rent 1290 Su­per Duke GT has filled the SM T niche.

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