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KTM Introduces the 2017 1290 Super Duke GT: Sport Touring Gets a Little Bit Crazy


You may recall our test of KTM’s 1290 Super Duke R. We found a very competent chassis and a motor with crazy amounts of horsepower and torque. How about a bit more comfort and luggage to go along with this hooligan package?  Enter the new 1290 Super Duke GT. Debuted by KTM earlier today, the 1290 Super Duke GT could be the ultimate sporty sport tourer, but you won’t see it until the Fall of next year when it will be released as a 2017 model here in the United States.  Here are some details and specifications from KTM:

2016 1290 Super Duke GT Specifications & Highlights

KTM ends another record-breaking year by launching an exceptional and highly versatile motorcycle, sending the next strong message to the top level of the motorcycling world with the newly developed 1290 SUPER DUKE GT. The technical and powerful base is the highly advanced and READY TO RACE LC8 V-Twin platform. After its appearances in the RC8R racer, the ADVENTURE travel enduros and the SUPER DUKE R naked bike, the 1301cc LC8 now shines in the 1290 SUPER DUKE GT. Bringing this unique naked touring model to the KTM stage will most certainly unlock a new group of customers. Even though it was drafted as a separate model, the GT approaches touring from a sporty angle with the distinct, extremely aggressive character of the 1290 SUPER DUKE R that became famous as the “Beast”.

The core of the SUPER DUKE GT is incredible dynamism. This KTM is the cutting-edge interpretation of a sport bike fit for travel. The 1290 SUPER DUKE GT is not a slimmed-down super-tourer; it is an extremely sporty real-world champion, which for the first time masters the seemingly impossible split between mountainous hairpins, comfortable long distance travelling and even breathtaking track day use. Thanks to intelligent and innovative design and technology solutions, the 1290 SUPER DUKE GT blends the all-day comfort with the high level of performance only a SUPER DUKE can achieve.  Also with the integration of intelligent electronic assistance systems like special ride and power modes, semi-actively controlled WP suspension components, a lean angle sensitive ABS and a KTM-first quickshifter the 1290 Super Duke GT is the complete package.

The 1290 SUPER DUKE GT will be available in North America as a 2017 model in the fall of 2016.


2016 Highlights

  • Advanced LC8 V-Twin engine with dual ignition, electronic fuel injection, Ride-By-Wire technology, slipper clutch and 6-speed gearbox
  • Motorcycle Stability Control (MSC) package with multi-mode Combined ABS, ride mode technology and multi-mode traction control (MTC)
  • Semi-active, electronically-adjustable WP Suspension
  • Quickshifter for clutchless upshifting
  • Electronic cruise control as standard equipment
  • LED Cornering lights with integrated self-canceling turn signals
  • Spark plug selective individual mapping ignition and cutting-edge Keihin engine management
  • Optional hill hold control (HHC) and engine drag torque control (MSR)
  • Ultra lightweight chrome-molybdenum steel trellis frame with an extended bolt-on rear aluminum subframe with integrated mounts for the pannier system
  • Height-adjustable windshield for long distance comfort
  • Heated grips for cold riding weather comfort


1290 Super Duke R SE Specifications
Engine type 2-Cylinder, 4-Stroke, 75° V-Twin
Displacement 1301 cc
Bore/stroke 108/71 mm
Starter/battery Electric starter / 12V 12Ah
Transmission 6 gears
Fuel system Keihin EFI, throttle body 56 mm
Control 4 V / DOHC
Lubrication Pressure Lubrication, 3 Eaton Pumps
Cooling Liquid cooling
Clutch PASC Slipper, Hydraulically Operated
Ignition/EMS Keihin EMS with RBW, Dual Ignition
Frame Chrome-moly Steel Trellis
Subframe Chrome-moly Steel Trellis
Handlebar Aluminum, Tapered, Ø 28/22 mm
Front suspension WP Semi-Active, Ø 48 mm
Rear suspension WP Semi-Active Monoshock
Suspension travel ft./rr. 125/156 mm
Front/rear brakes Disc brake 320/240 mm
Front/rear rims 3.50 x 17″; 6.00 X17″
Front/rear tires 120/70ZR17”; 190/55ZR17″
Steering head angle 24.9°
Wheel base 1,482 ± 15 mm (58.34 ±0.59 in)
Trail 107 mm
Ground clearance 140 mm (5.5 in)
Seat height 835 mm (32.9 in)
Tank capacity, approx. 23 l (6.1  US gal)
Weight, approx. 228 kg (dry) (506.2 lb.)


See more of MD’s great photography:



  1. Alan says:

    Weight of 228 kg is fully fuled not the usual dry weight quoted by most manufactures

  2. John Smith says:

    Excellent engine and frame. I can’t wait until they hire a stylists to make it look like a motorcycle!

  3. Ken House says:

    Priced well above the Super Duke R, which costs $17.3k. Figure $20k at least for the GT. In that price range, the competition is the Multistrada and the GS1200. The BMW 1000 adventure bike is considerably cheaper.

    Bikes in that price range do not exactly jump off of the showroom floor.

    Better to wait for the EBR 1190AX, or pick up a yard-sale EBR 1190SX now and add bags! 🙂

  4. billy says:

    506 dry? That has to be a typo.

    • Patrick says:

      Their website say 506 wet, so yes a typo!

      • mickey says:

        Yea, sorry, that’s just not going to cut it around here. If it doesn’t have 200 un-neutered horsepower and weigh under 400 pounds, it’s just got to be a turd. Plus it has a BEAK. Sorry KTM..FAIL.

  5. Silver says:

    Stunning, but that Spy vs Spy front end it stupid.

  6. motonut_1 says:

    Does it still count as a beak if it’s housing the headlight. I’m calling it the headlight nacelle. It’s not a beak dammit cuz I don’t like beaks and having had a KTM 990 SMT, this bike definitely has possibilities of finding it’s way into my garage.

  7. Skybullet says:

    OK, I plan to buy one unless someone comes out with something I like better. I can get around the simi-transformer look because it has ALL the functions and features I want. What if KTM offered a optional retro/standard fairing, tank and bodywork package? It might surprise the marketing guys and add significantly to the unit volume or even out sell the controversial beak focused styling so many object to.

  8. Blackcayman says:

    I’ve been coming back all day long to look at this bike.

    The performance capabilities are superlative. The looks, well, I’m not quite there yet, give me some more time.

    All that “punch” and the exhilaration up to the redline over and over… would be an amazing, thrilling time. I can imagine strafing the tree lined back roads of Utah on it, it would be a great choice. Sure its more than I can use almost all the time…

  9. mugwump58 says:

    Every time I wait something new pops up and I wait. I guess I can wait till next fall. The poor salesman at the closest dealer, he’s probably getting a little impatient with me… oh well. Hopefully by then there will be some aftermarket bags and topcases to chose from as well, I still tent camp.

  10. Jocko says:

    okay, but why the useless and quite ugly beak up front? absurd.

    • Brian says:

      I may be alone, but I like the beak on this one….it’s more pterodactyl than Woody Woodpecker. Speaking of, the V-Strom 1000 really *does* look like Woody Woodpecker, especially in red. That’s probably the only beak that would actually keep me from buying a bike. Well, maybe the Multistrada too…

  11. fred says:

    where do you put a tank bag on the beast.

  12. marloweluke says:

    228 kg dry is surprisingly heavy. It is a big motor, but still… At least they got the tank size right. 23 liters is proper sport tourer capacity. I think Suzuki shot themselves in the foot with the 1000-GSX-F that has a 17 liter tank. I was hoping that bike would be the ticket but it’s not an option for me with such a small tank. 19 or 20 liters and it would be high on my list.

  13. Norm G. says:

    when the nurse draws blood for my annual physical, I’ve actually seen hypodermic needles less pointy.

  14. PN says:

    That beak looks like the face on Spy vs, Spy.

  15. Mick says:

    More and more people are putting motorcycle engines in small cars to increase the power and cut the weight.

    As engines like these get crashed on to the eBay market, people will be able to use twins. The increased low end torque and greater ease of making a header for the exhaust would make a twin an attractive choice. A twin even makes a noise that is more automotive than the inline fours that are currently so popular.

    • guu says:

      Really?!? Not that the engines wouldn’t be powerful enough, but a motorcycle transmission isn’s designed to handle the extra stress that a car’s weight and grip would cause.

      • Mick says:

        They can handle what the engine dishes out. That’s all that matters.

        • Dave says:

          Sorry, but that’s not all that matters. The amount of strss that this engine can impart on the clutch and transmission will be much greater if it’s moving 1,800lb of car with 16+ inches of contact patch instead of a 500lb motorcycle with 3″ of contact patch.

          • saddlebag says:

            So you’re saying it can’t handle it if it actually has to put the power down that it’s capable of generating rather than have the electronics kick in to keep the wheels from spinning?

            Besides being hideous, having an engine that’s too powerful to be controlled by my hand is really an expensive waste. Not for me thanks.

  16. DucRider says:

    WTF!? … Fall of 2016!? I’m ready to trade now, not a year from now. Why even bother to “release” the bike if we can’t buy one for a year … :\

  17. Provologna says:

    For the 1290 Super Duke, what is estimated fuel consumption ridden moderately to moderately hard? Just curious, because twins sometimes drink like an inebriated sailor.

  18. Stuki Moi says:

    ….and as a first for a sport touring motorcycle, the GT includes a year’s worth of prepaid speeding tickets, covering all 50 states……

  19. todder says:

    Not the best looking paint in gray, but its got all the goodies I want…plus cruise control. I wish they would use a more spacious rear seat to two up riding and more relaxed position.

  20. Jim says:

    Wow that is one ugly beak.

    • stinkywheels says:

      I’m not usually one to criticize a bike on looks, but, what the hell were they thinking? I’m so glad to see maybe a sport tourer instead of adventure tourer but what is it with beaks?

      • jeece says:

        I believe Kawasaki is off the hook in the “who makes the most hideous beak” competition. I love so much of what KTM is doing, but, man that is ugly!

  21. GSjim says:

    Weight looks good but what is with the “sport tour” rider in the pics, well at least he matches the paint job, oh, and what!! chain drive, cmon was this designed as the result of a sport bike/adventure/tour guy designer cage match, oh well at least it has a beak.

  22. turnergande says:

    Woody Woodpecker beak on steroids?

  23. moto says:

    Downsize mine to 30% and I’ll take it. Been trying to get the 390 around here to try out. No chance, guess not many are interested in smaller bikes.

    • dman says:

      +1. A 690 Duke GT would be very interesting. And yes, I know you’re not supposed to sport tour on a thumper, but my DR650 is surprisingly good at it.

  24. sean says:

    My kind of SPORT tourer.

  25. Ron H. says:

    Really?…Fall of 2016 for the US? There’ll be people that won’t wait and will go to other nakedly sport tourers. KTM will be a little late to the dance.

    • Dave says:

      I think they’re already late. I think the hyper-tourer thing is allready winding down and the makes are realizing that there really aren’t that many customers for bikes like this.

      They win the Beak-game, though..

    • Bartman50 says:

      Gee, I guess everyone just has the money lying around to spend on your top scale packaged motorcycle, and just can’t wait to unload their pockets. In my case, I have several on my mind, but do not feel the need to jump on most handily available.


    • sbashir says:

      More practical and useful than the Super Duke: Cruise control. Quick shifter. Luggage. Heated grips. Semi-active suspension. Hill hold control. Cornering lights. ABS/MSC/MTC. 12 months gives people enough time to save up for it. There is not another bike like this.

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