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KTM 990 SUPERMOTO TOURING Adventure Motorbike Review

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KTM SMT
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MCN overall verdict rating is 5

The KTM 990 SMT is a new take on the adventure bike theme that manages to combine all the mental fun of a supermoto with the comfort, practicality and ability to cover miles of an adventure bike. It’s being hailed as the current all-rounder King offering all things to all riders. Of more interest to more people is the fact that it’s bloody good fun and way faster than you’d think for a 115bhp V-twin.

Engine

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4

This is far from the most powerful V-twin on the planet but it does have more than enough grunt to turn the KTM SMT into a rapid bit of kit. It can get a little bit lumpy down low but there’s a nicely judged throttle response that makes low speed work easy. Turn up the speed and the big 999cc lump keeps on revving. Enough power for a 140mph top speed. 

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

KTM has taken the 990 Supermoto WP suspension but modified the internals of the forks to take out some travel so the SMT is a bit more composed on the road. The quality of the suspension is first rate but it does get a bit light at the front when the speeds increase. The light steering never gets alarming and the payback is the way the SMT soaks up scabby British roads like it was fine-tuned here rather than Austria. The only slight issue is with the feedback from the standard-fit Continental tyres which isn’t a patch on some rival tyres.

Equipment

MCN rating rating is 5
Owners' rating rating is 3.5

Comprehensive instruments (only missing a fuel gauge), handguards, luggage rack, tall screen, race-spec Brembo brakes, top-line WP suspension, Marcheshini wheels…the list goes on. The panniers are an accessory and aren’t massive or waterproof (but do come with waterproof liners) and there is also a top rack and small bag as well as other accessories like a tankbag. The only thing missing are heated grips, which for nigh-on £10,000 new, the SMT really should have as standard. Compare and buy parts for the KTM SMT in the MCN Shop.

KTM 990 SMT (2009-current)

Detail Value
New price £9,645
Dealer used prices
£5,860 (2009) - £8,900 (2013)
Private used prices
£5,280 (2009) - £8,010 (2013)
  View full used price info
Engine size 999 cc
Power 115 bhp
Top speed 140 mph
Insurance group 17 of 17
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 5 rating is 4
Engine rating is 4 rating is 4
Ride & Handling rating is 4 rating is 4.5
Equipment rating is 5 rating is 3.5
Quality & Reliability rating is 4 rating is 4.5
Value rating is 3 rating is 3.5

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

KTM reliability is pretty good but the V-twins are known to like a drop of oil and need some fairly close attention to make sure the level doesn’t drop too low. Fit and finish isn’t up to BMW standards but it’s still very good. Quality of the components means a high overall standard.

Value

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 3.5

Whichever way you look at it, the asking price of £9595 for the KTM is a lot of money. Sadly, the exchange rate between the Pound and the Euro means there have been some hefty price rises. When you compare the KTM against something like a £9750 BMW R1200GS with ABS then it doesn’t look so bad. Find a KTM 990 SMT for sale.

Insurance

Insurance group: 17 of 17

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Model History

2009 – 990 SMT launched as new model

Other Versions

None

Specifications

Top speed 140 mph
1/4-mile acceleration 11.03 secs
Max power 115 bhp
Max torque 71 ft-lb
Weight 196 kg
Seat height 855 mm
Fuel capacity 19 litres
Average fuel consumption 48 mpg
Tank range 150 miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group 17 of 17
Engine size 999 cc
Engine specification 8 valve, 75 degree V-twin
Frame Steel trellis
Front suspension adjustment Fully adjustable
Rear suspension adjustment Fully adjustable
Front brakes 2 x 305mm discs
Rear brake
Front tyre size 120/70 17in
Rear tyre size 180/55 17in

Owners' Overall Rating rating is 4(7 reviews)

  • Nice one...

    PaulDutch

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    Well,what a bike...! Truely a great allrounder. Good fun for a weekend blast. Been touring on it 2 up and solo, round northern Europe and northern England,very comfy position also got 43-53mpg... I'm impressed,definitly a keeper...

    14 November 2012

  • KTM...mmm

    tman39a

    Average rating rating is 3

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    Engine

    Had mine almost a year and inquired with the KTM dealer about trading in...no problem he says and then Bammmmmmmmm...£6200 with all its extras or £5500 stock.... £4500 drop in under a year...great bike but once you buy one your stuck with it or be prepared to loose a fortune. Won't buy a new KTM ever again...whoever sets the used values is biased towards some Jap bikes and living in the past with regards quality etc. The SMT is a great bike but when depreciation is so steep its seriously putting buyers of new bikes off....non KTM dealers don't even want to touch one. So i'll keep this one til it falls apart etc and fat chance of looking after it properly with dealer servicing which is already expensive. They need to put ' BUYER BE WARE ' on KTM's with them loosing value soo quickly.

    27 April 2011

  • wolf in sheeps clothing

    katumsmt

    Average rating rating is 4

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
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    Engine

    've been riding for 40 years and I think i have finally found a true "all-rounder" Had mine for two weeks now, a slightly higher screen, fuel gauge and self canceling indicators should be standard, engine can be a bit lumpy in the mid range. Great fun, easy wheelies, and handles like its on rails. Three bikes in the garage but I always end up taking this one out.

    24 April 2010

  • the ride that make me smile

    Adhasky

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Ride and Handling
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    Engine

    2 weeks now and I am still smiling every time I parked my SMT at the garage. More than enough power for highway and city riding. Brakes are awesome, cornering is firm and very comfortable. It does and have what I had in mind for a bike. It handles well at 180km/h considering it is a tall bike. Now I can concentrate on my journeys knowing I have a bike that does it all.

    12 March 2010

  • amazing bike

    groeneveld

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Ride and Handling
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    Engine

    after riding all sort of motorbikes for the last 30 years the KTM 990 SMT surprised me in a way i could not understand. What a funbike to ride on. Yes in ain't sheap but when you want to have some great time even when your in a bad mood, try this bike.

    29 July 2009

  • SUPER Moto Travel

    Fixer

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    I've only had mine 3 weeks but my previous bikes were the amazing 950 Adventure and then the RC8. This bike is a combination of the two. The comfort of the Adventure with the speed and handling of the RC8. Capable of going places the RC8 would never get to - the middle of Dartmoor through the lanes for instance - with less buffetting than the Adventure and a huge smile on my face. Yes, it doesn't come with a full load of extras but I didn't want that. I wanted a bike to play on but that would take me to the Alps 'at the drop of a hat'! One amazing motorbike. I honestly think the SM-T will be the bench mark by which all other bikes that are considered as long distance, fun, machines will be judged. My only gripe at the moment is the rain spoiling my fun. Well done to KTM!

    14 July 2009

  • Could be better

    rgv666

    Average rating rating is 3.5

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    Ride and Handling
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    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    Took a test ride of the SMT - made my R1200GS feel like a barge - very torquey engine but wind blast seemed to lighten the front end up above 100 mph - nimble, quick but poorly equipped. Never worth the 10k they want for it - will be keeping my BM.

    13 July 2009

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katumsmt

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katumsmtsays

Wolf in sheeps clothing

I've been riding for 40 years and I think i have finally found a true "all-rounder" Had mine for two weeks now, a slightly higher screen, fuel gauge and self canceling indicators should be standard, engine can be a bit lumpy in the mid range. Great fun, easy wheelies, and handles like its on rails

24 April 2010 21:13

S1000RR

User's Badge

S1000RRsays

This is by far the best bike ive ever owned its fantastic for touring, a + b roads, two up, luggage everything.

Cant recommend it enough, dont fall asleep on a GS get a KTM 990 SMT.

14 November 2009 10:45

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