Video: KTM 1290 Super Duke GT first ride

We take the new KTM 1290 Super Duke GT for a quick spin and here’s our first impression of it.

• 1,301cc V-twin
• 173hp / 144Nm
• Selectable ride modes
• Semi-active suspension
• RM125,080 (basic with GST)

Earlier today, we managed to get our hands on the new KTM 1290 Super Duke GT for a quick test-ride thanks to authorised dealers CA Cycle Advance in Kajang. Based off the manic 1290 Super Duke R, the GT debuts as KTM’s first ever sport-touring bike, and here’s what we managed to garner from our brief test-ride.


Firstly, the seat felt supportive, comfortable, as did the GT’s taller handlebar position. The seat is also split into two units so it is easy to remove the rear seat to mount the top box. The bike we rode was kitted out with the optional KTM PowerParts footrests which are placed slightly higher and rearwards, giving a much sportier feel in the overall ergonomics without sacrificing too much on comfort.


Life in the hot seat felt easy thanks to the well thought out positions of the button controls. On top of that, the large digital meter display is easy to read with a quick glance, and it even comes with a gear indicator plus shift light.


On the move, the R version’s wild and monstrous nature clearly wasn’t watered down in GT form. Peak power and torque deliveries felt abundant and excellent across the entire rev-band, even from the lower ranges.


We were limited to just Street mode in our brief ride but even then the 1290 Super Duke GT’s rapid acceleration saw us hitting triple-digit speeds with ease. Suffice to say, this is one sport tourer that can easily bait most litre-class superbikes in the straights.


What deserves praises here too is the smooth and precise action of the six-speed transmission that comes standard-equipped with a quickshifter. Equally brilliant too were the Brembo-sourced brakes that is supplemented with ABS and Cornering ABS suites. The hardware performed beautifully when it came to stopping this Orange mile-muncher, offering plenty of bite and easy lever modulation.


To make this a true touring-friendly bike, KTM have even primed the 1290 Super Duke GT with WP’s semi-active suspension and dampers all-round. By just pressing a few buttons, you could easily set it up in the four modes available – Rider only, Rider with Cargo, Rider with Pillion and Rider with Pillion plus Cargo.


Even in Street mode, the dampers felt highly balanced, offering a supple and comfortable ride during our brief test-ride. As far as handling goes, the light claimed laden weight of 228kg is easy to manage, and the GT felt just as agile as its manic R sibling in fact, and we wouldn’t be surprised to see it at trackdays in Sepang.


Though our brief ride was limited in just Street mode, it was fairly easy to gauge this beastly bike’s true potential and we can’t wait to fully unleash this orange missile with a proper road test soon. As far as first impressions go, the KTM 1290 Super Duke GT felt mighty impressive and worthy of its RM125,080 asking price.


NOTE: We’d like to extend a special thanks to the folks at CA Cycle Advance in Kajang for letting us loose with the KTM 1290 Super Duke GT. The bikeshop is hosting a special two-day test-ride with the GT until tomorrow (August 12) and you can head on over there with the map below and test-ride the beast yourself.


KTM 1290 Super Duke GT Specifications

KTM 1290 Super Duke GT Specifications

Co-founder of Bikes Republic and a motoring journalist by night. He is a self described enthusiasts with a passion for speed but instead rides a Harley and a J300. A man of contradictions, he is just as passionate about time off in the quiets as he is about trail braking into turn one at Sepang Circuit on two or four wheels.

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