KTM 390 DUKE (2013-on) Review

Published: 21 March 2014

A2 licence-compliant roadster that's light, nimble and exciting

KTM 390 DUKE  (2013-on)

A2 licence-compliant roadster that's light, nimble and exciting

  • At a glance
  • 373cc  -  44 bhp
  • 55 mpg  -  130 miles range
  • Medium seat height (800mm)
  • Suitable for A2 licence
  • £4,499

Overall Rating 4 out of 5

The current market seems littered with new, learner-friendly bikes, which are A2 licence compatible as manufacturers try to get new riders on board. The new 390 Duke may not have the touring ability of BMW’s G650GS or the sporty appearance of Kawasaki’s Ninja 300, but I think it should win the fun stakes and for most young riders that’s where it matters. It’s light, nimble and exciting, which is impressive considering it only has 44bhp.

Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5

The brakes and suspension are pretty much the same as the 125 Duke, but with different shims and springs and the 390 benefits from far grippier Metzeler tyres. The ABS-assisted brakes are learner-friendly, the seat height is low (just 800mm) and thin, which means even shorties won’t have a problem touching the floor. It’s light and agile so not intimidating for new riders and it’s not too heavy either. On the downside the Duke isn’t very comfortable and the 11-litre tank won’t deliver much range, but overall it’s excellent.

Engine 4 out of 5

Considering the motor only packs 44bhp (it can be restricted to A2 compliant) it feels a lot more as the bike is so light and lively. First gear is over too quickly in a blur of revs, but keep the throttle pinned and acceleration isn’t half bad. Tuck in small enough and the digital speedo will read an indicated 105mph. There’s a little kick at just below 7000rpm which is the sweet spot, hit this mark and the Duke displays an impressive turn of pace.

Build Quality & Reliability 4 out of 5

It may be built in India, but the Duke seems to be well finished. Every bike is quality checked in Austria before being shipped to dealers.

Insurance, running costs & value 4 out of 5

At just over £4,000 you are getting a lot of bike for your cash.

Equipment 3 out of 5

You get ABS as standard and a fairly basic digital dash.

Owners' Reviews

1 owner has reviewed their KTM 390 DUKE (2013-on) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.

We’re currently improving the way this section works, which means we’ve had to suspend the submission of new owners’ reviews for a short period. Please check back soon.

Summary of Owners' Reviews
Overall Rating 4 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 4 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 3 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 4 out of 5
Equipment 4 out of 5
4 out of 5

An eager new puppy!

20 April 2014 by Cripes

Remember the last time you had a new puppy? Well this bike is that puppy. Full of boundless energy and a few whoopsies along the way. The 375cc thumper powerplant is like that new puppy on a leash, snatchy at low speeds but in its element once you... Read more can get it out onto open roads. The brakes are fitted with ABS and bring things to a halt predictably. The suspension has very little travel so Britain's potholed roads can give you a buckeroo ride - best seek out those smoother country 'A' roads. There's a nice dash that gives comprehensive information including fuel consumption and a gear indicator. Prince Philip would certainly guess where it's made, as the cheap plastics and rough finishing are very evident, but the upside is a great value bike - until you get locked into the KTM system, needing expensive valve adjustments and OEM parts. It's been a monster hit in India, where enthusiastic owners articulately discuss the minutest details of this epic bike - and that's where you'll find a refreshingly different angle to bike ownership away from the UK obsession with adventure or sports bikes. Be in no doubt, this is an amazing bike, brimming with character and fizz. If you're bored with the horsepower race and think bikes are getting too big then this is just the bike to titivate you!

Overall Rating 4 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 4 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 3 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 4 out of 5
Equipment 4 out of 5
Read all 1 owners' reviews in full

Facts & Figures

Model info
Year introduced 2013
Year discontinued -
New price £4,499
Warranty term Two year unlimited mileage
Running costs
Insurance group -
Annual road tax £38
Annual service cost -
Performance
Max power 44 bhp
Max torque 26 ft-lb
Top speed 105 mph
1/4-mile acceleration -
Average fuel consumption 55 mpg
Tank range 130 miles
Specification
Engine size 373cc
Engine type Four-stroke, liquid-cooled DOHC, 4v single
Frame type Tubular steel
Fuel capacity 11 litres
Seat height 800mm
Bike weight 139kg
Front suspension WP 43mm inverted forks, non-adjustable
Rear suspension WP rear shock, adjustable spring preload
Front brake 1x300mm discs. Four-piston radial caliper. ABS
Rear brake 1x220mm disc, single-piston caliper. ABS
Front tyre size 110/70ZR17
Rear tyre size 150/60ZR17

History & Versions

Model history

2013: Model introduced

Other versions

The 125 Duke costs £3999

Photo Gallery

  • KTM 390 DUKE  (2013-on)
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