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KTM 990 ADVENTURE Adventure Motorbike Review

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KTM 990 Adventure - brilliant trail bike
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MCN overall verdict rating is 4

The KTM 990 Adventure is already a brilliant adventure trail bike, but the 2009 adds a little bit more refinement and power. A new crank has smoothed vibes, and touch extra power is not instantly noticeable but welcome all the same.

Engine

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

KTM’S LC8 engine was a impressive first effort for a road engine, but earlier 950 and the previous KTM 990 Adventure had a touch of vibey crudeness that betrayed KTM’s off-road past. A new crank has taken the edge off, leaving the punchy motor with a typical v-twin lumpy but involving delivery. The strong torque is perfect for back-road playing and luggage/pillion carrying alike. 

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

The off-road sized rims and heavily-treaded tyres should spell vague handling, but largely they don’t. The quality WP suspension is plush and only gets a bit wobbly if you start throwing it around at high-speed. Feedback is enough to inspire confidence, and it rarely gets flustered. The KTM 990 Adventure has sports-bike kicking pace on less than perfect roads, or will lollop along enjoying the scenery too.

Equipment

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 3.5

A digital dash, decent rider/pillion seat comfort and a protective fairing make for a happy riding experience. The twin fuel tanks require filling individually, which is a minor inconvenience but helps keep the bike slim-line by tucking fuel storage into nooks and crannies.

KTM 990 Adventure (2009-2012)

Detail Value
New price £9,545
Dealer used prices
£6,460 (2009) - £9,160 (2013)
Private used prices
£5,810 (2009) - £8,240 (2013)
  View full used price info
Engine size 999 cc
Power 106 bhp
Top speed 130 mph
Insurance group 13 of 17
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 4 rating is 4
Engine rating is 4 rating is 4.5
Ride & Handling rating is 4 rating is 4.5
Equipment rating is 3 rating is 3.5
Quality & Reliability rating is 4 rating is 4
Value rating is 3 rating is 4

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4

The build is largely the same as the old model, so it shouldn’t provide too many issues. New black-coated chassis parts look resilient. A handful of owners report engine issues, but by and large they last well. Like most European bikes, more regular checks should keep it happy. Learn how to check oil level in the dry sump correctly.

Value

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 4

At £9695 the KTM 990 Adventure isn’t a cheap bike, but for your hefty outlay you get a versatile bike that will tour, long-distance commute and hammer along back roads at an indecent pace. It’ll even deal with gentle off-roading in novice hands, and a set of full knobbly tyres add enough traction to keep more experienced mud-pluggers happy. Consider the rest of the adventure trailie opposition too – BMW’s R1200GS, Triumph’s Tiger and Ducati’s Multistrada offer serious options. Find a KTM 990 Adventure for sale.

Insurance

Insurance group: 13 of 17

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Model History

2003-2006: KTM 950 Adventure – 942cc carburetted v-twin, tubular steel chassis. New model.
2006-2008: KTM 990 Adventure – Larger 999cc v-twin with new fuel-injection system, new seat and graphics, detail improvements.

Other Versions

KTM 990 Adventure R (2009-current) – Fitted with 116bhp Superduke-spec engine and 55mm taller suspension front and rear. ABS removed. Extra power over standard bike makes for a lot of fun, but is also more flexible and requires less gear changes. The suspension is firmer as well as taller, so is more composed without loss of ride comfort. Seat is less comfortable – £105 gel seat solves this as well as bringing seat height down to more manageable level.

Specifications

Top speed 130 mph
1/4-mile acceleration 13.23 secs
Max power 106 bhp
Max torque 73.8 ft-lb
Weight 209 kg
Seat height 860 mm
Fuel capacity 19.5 litres
Average fuel consumption mpg
Tank range 203 miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group 13 of 17
Engine size 999 cc
Engine specification 6v 75° liquid-cooled v-twin, six gears
Frame Tubular steel
Front suspension adjustment Preload, compression and rebound damping
Rear suspension adjustment Preload, compression and rebound damping
Front brakes Twin 300mm discs, Brembo two-piston sliding calipers.
Rear brake 240mm disc, Brembo two-piston sliding caliper.
Front tyre size 90/90-21
Rear tyre size 150/70-R18

See all KTM 990 ADVENTURE motorcycles for sale

KTM
990 ADVENTURE

7600 miles

£6,995

KTM
990 ADVENTURE

8480 miles

£6,995

KTM
990 ADVENTURE

14745 miles

£6,494

KTM
990 ADVENTURE

25133 miles

£7,750

KTM
990 ADVENTURE

12272 miles

£8,495

Owners' Overall Rating rating is 4(7 reviews)

  • 23000km

    Anonymous

    Average rating rating is 4

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    Owned this bike from new (purchased it in 2010) and now I have some results to share. Good: for 1100km/day trips in any weather except snow at -5 C (still did it but for sure I'm not looking forward to repeat this exercise :), bad roads with or without tarmac, everyday commute solo or with a pillion, for having fun. Bad: rear mudguard cracked, rear cylinder exhaust pipe cracked, chain guard vibrated itself into oblivion, fuel sensor dissolved in Russian petrol, chain is quickly eating through the rubber slider and starting to rub the swingarm, small oil leak from the gear position sensor, first fuel filter lasted for 6000km and its quite a pricey item, stock seat is no good for long trips so had to replace it. In hot weather the bike was constantly overheating at slow speeds so I fitted the second fan and the oil cooler, which sorted the problem completely. Oh, and the official KTM dealer in Russia is awful all around. Despite all this I'm still going to keep this bike because it's the only one which can cope so well with Russian roads and constant abuse.

    15 August 2013

  • For the broken tarmac

    oceaa

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    The Adventure is a fantastic bike which can supply earth shattering journey times without drama. The handling is nothing short of superb. My only gripe has been rusty spokes replace FOC by KTM without quibble now rusting again so will need to speak to them, I would think they would get that bit right?

    09 June 2013

  • 4000 miles in

    ducatigav

    Average rating rating is 4

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    Engine

    now 4000 miles in and the grin still here the bike still feels good the engine lossend up at 2k feels a lot stronger so far the bike is well made standing up to a few winter rides and wet summer ones the main let down is the spokes have already started to rust even had it off road where it did very well and the only let down was my lack of off road skills

    25 June 2012

  • Tried it but not right for me

    conrman

    Average rating rating is 3

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    Engine

    I have tried a lot of these do it all bikes, but the compromise is just not for me. Supporters say they do everything pretty well, but IMO they don't do anything well enough. They are really heavy (this one weighs the same as my old school 2002 Bandit 1200?) so they are a handful in the dirt (I prefer my 250Lb/50hp Husky 610 WXE). The tires and suspension really hold the bike back for me on the road. My garage consists of4 bikes that cost about the same price as this one bike. I also rode the supermoto 990, which was neat, but had poor fuel range, and cost was up there. These bikes just are not the right fit for my needs. Ride one maybe you will like it;)

    20 January 2012

  • 1550 miles in

    ducatigav

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    just got 1550miles on it and is runing well handles realy well and is showing up alot of sport bike riders up on the twisty bits (its only a off road bike lads lol) still glad i went for the R in place of the S but a comfort seat is on xmass list. so pros handels well go like stink to 100 eats pot holes/crap road surfaces good for long runs feels well built and has a the giggle factor every time i ride it is also a bit of a lady magnet comp to the sport bike i had which was a shock. negatives R is very tall bike even at 6,3 im tip toe so unless ur a fan ofthe pies you need the lower seat it also likes a drink even with 20 ltr tank on blasts its only getting 100miles (normal riding 140ish) and could do with a bit more top end (track time only officer) so what would it need to make it a total killer off the bmw (2 years time tho when i can afford another new one) the rc8 engine a fuel gauge/trip thing heated grips that are like the bmw look like they should be there no cheep after market things engine bars as std bigger tank 2 maps sports and touring (for good mpg) round up top bike and far cooler than a old mans bmw

    24 October 2011

  • 1550 miles in

    ducatigav

    Average rating rating is 4.5

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    just got 1550miles on it and is runing well handles realy well and is showing up alot of sport bike riders up on the twisty bits (its only a off road bike lads lol) still glad i went for the R in place of the S but a comfort seat is on xmass list. so pros handels well go like stink to 100 eats pot holes/crap road surfaces good for long runs feels well built and has a the giggle factor every time i ride it is also a bit of a lady magnet comp to the sport bike i had which was a shock. negatives R is very tall bike even at 6,3 im tip toe so unless ur a fan ofthe pies you need the lower seat it also likes a drink even with 20 ltr tank on blasts its only getting 100miles (normal riding 140ish) and could do with a bit more top end (track time only officer) so what would it need to make it a total killer off the bmw (2 years time tho when i can afford another new one) the rc8 engine a fuel gauge/trip thing heated grips that are like the bmw look like they should be there no cheep after market things engine bars as std bigger tank 2 maps sports and touring (for good mpg) round up top bike and far cooler than a old mans bmw

    24 October 2011

  • ktm 990 adv r

    ducatigav

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Engine

    just pick my new 990 adv r one up yest 01,09,11 and what can i say i but 150miles on in the 1st day and loving it its feel nearly as nibble as gsxr600 l0 i part ex for it the power good and smoother that my all 749 on the fueling and at the age of 26 i dont think i be buying a sports bike again and it just dose everything i want and more and still has charm i will post again when i got more miles on it

    02 September 2011

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