KTM have unveiled a new 690 SMC R and 690 Enduro at EICMA in Milan. The new bikes replace the models that were discontinued in 2017 and were shown alongside the KTM 790 Adventure and KTM 790 Adventure R models at the show.
KTM 690 SMC R
Starting with the 690 SMC R, this latest generation supermoto is powered by the most up-to-date LC4 engine and takes the claim of the world’s most powerful production single-cylinder, producing around 73bhp and 54.2 ft-lb of torque.
Alongside plenty of poke for urban assaults, the new motard also houses two riding modes - consisting of Street and Sport. What's more, cornering ABS, lean angle-sensitive traction control and a quickshifter are now also included.
A Supermoto ABS mode will also allow riders to unlock their true inner-hooligan, helping with more controlled rear wheel slides. This is then complemented by an updated chassis and new subframe, as well as fully-adjustable WP suspension. Fuel range is also boosted, thanks to a 1.5-litre bigger fuel tank.
KTM 690 Enduro R
The latest KTM 690 Enduro R gains the same engine, electronics and chassis upgrades as the above SMC R, however uses them to help explorative riders conquer the rough stuff. Masked by an updated seat and sharper bodywork is an all-new chassis mated to full WP XPLOR suspension adapted from the firm's fully off-road EXC models.
Spyshots show KTM working on a new 690 Enduro and Supermoto
For those of us who have a passion for big singles, 2017 was a sad year as KTM dropped both the 690 Enduro R and the 690 SMC R from their range in Europe. There were rumours that it was to avoid direct competition with sister-brand Husqvarna’s similar 701 Enduro and 701 Supermoto, but in reality it was just a case of the 690s falling foul of the Euro4 regulations.
The engine in the old 690 had been around for a little while and was looking a bit long in the tooth. The KTM 690 Duke received a new engine in 2016 (that also went into the Husky 701) and by the looks of things, the new unit is heading for the Enduro and SMC, too.
The engine was heavily reworked for the Duke: the bore was increased by 3mm but the stroke was reduced, so the displacement is the same but it now revs more easily. The cylinder head was also reshaped, which gave a 7% power boost up to 73bhp along with an increase in torque to 54.48ftlb. Considering these are incredibly light bikes, that’s a lot of power in a small package, so they should be an absolute riot.
As well as more oomph, KTM also treated the engine to a side of refinement by fitting a second balancer shaft. Both the Enduro and the SMC are fitted with larger silencers, which contain the catalytic converter, to get the new bikes through Euro4.
KTM bodywork change
The other big change is to the bodywork, which has been completely reshaped. The fairings on the Enduro and SMC have been slimmed down and also appear to have switched from a two-piece to one-piece. This should make the front end slimmer, to help you get closer to the front of the biker for better control. The seat has also been reprofiled, presumably to make it more comfortable as the old bench seat was straight out of KTM’s "Arse Agony" range.
The Enduro and SMC don’t really have a subframe per-se, using a self-supporting 12-litre fuel tank instead. This has also been reshaped but appears to have remained the same size.
The front suspension on the Enduro model is also different. It appears to be the WP Xplor 48 fork from the 500 EXC-F, which has 300mm of travel compared to the 250mm on the old 690 Enduro – so with a matching rear shock it’s possible the new model will be even more capable off-road. This may blunt its dual-purpose usage slightly, but the incoming 790 Adventure will likely take on those duties. The suspension on the SMC appears to be unchanged. With the exception of the headlight, both bikes have also been converted to LED lighting throughout.
When we previously asked KTM about the demise of the 690 Enduro R and SMC R in the UK, KTM said that they were committed to their LC4 single-cylinder engine platform as demonstrated by the huge development programme that went into the Duke and they assured us that they are far from finished with either model.
- New smoother and more powerful motor
- All-new bodywork, subframe and seat unit
- New suspension
- Expected in 2019
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