2007 KTM 990 Adventure Road Test Rider Magazine KTM Reviews

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2007 KTM 990 Adventure Road

The new model gets electronic injection rather than a new motor management system and brakes.

Photo Credit: Wing

Bill Stermer

25, 2007

I’ll never the day it dawned on me. It was about 20 years and I was riding a 1,000cc sport on a twisty California mountain when I noted a headlight in my So I stepped the pace up a bit. The drew closer.

I got on it harder and in a short straight‚ thumpa-thumpa ‚ the went flying by me on, of all things, a big dual-sport single with mix-master tires.

I couldn’t it! How could 500cc pass that easily? Later, further review, I considered great torque combined lower gearing, lightness, a wheelbase, mega cornering the leverage from that handlebar and (oh, the pain!) a rider could well pulled off that pass. when I realized that a dual-sport motorcycle could be bit as competent as a larger, sportier on a mountain road.

Not to mention in the

Back in our August issue we four faux dual-sport those with the aggressive of big gravel- road bikes but the real-world credentials. Oh, they had all the street cred, but their street tires, exposed plumbing and 17- or 19-inch front exposed them as pretenders, that could be taken but were not seriously intended for the or even gravel travel. the best big-inch, liter-class for back-road/bad-road rides to Alaska and are the BMW R1200GS. and the new KTM 990 Adventure that we here.

Lightness, midrange cornering clearance and a wide help make the 990 Adventure a joy on the

The Adventure was first brought to the States for 2003 as a 950, and for has been revamped as the 990. Its 75-degree V-twin engine has bumped up to 999cc with a increase of both bore and to 101.0 x 62.4mm. In addition the new gets electronic fuel rather than carburetion, a new management system and anti-lock

With its three-way catalytic and a Lambda sensor for each it now conforms to the Euro III emissions

What gives the 990 dirt-road Check out its 21-inch front semi-knob Pirelli Scorpion and its full bash plate no protruding plumbing. Of course, understood that a bike heavy has no business trying to with the XRs, KDXs, RMs and much lighter true bikes, but the Adventure should be to get you down and back any graded road and most two-tracks.

The 990′s liquid-cooled LC8 engine according to KTM, just 126 and retains the dual overhead balancer shaft and dry-sump system of its predecessor. KTM favored the dry design because without an oil pan it have greater ground

2007 KTM 990 Adventure

Its lightweight are designed to minimize oscillating and the bike utilizes a forged, crankshaft. New for 2007 are the camshaft and the 48mm throttle-body injectors, eliminate the need for a fast-idle or lever.

With its 33.9-inch height only those of inseam will be comfortable stopped astride the 990 Adventure. that wide Renthal look down and notice-what’s bike has two fuel fillers, one on side? Two nylon composite tanks place the weight relative to the frame, and more between the axles. They’re by a pair of large plastic and as an accessory KTM offers tube-steel

With the engine’s compression of 11.5:1 you’ll want to those tanks with 5.8 of 91-octane premium fuel. delivered a decent 42.9

The upright seating position is comfortable both on the street and in the

The engine starts with the of a button, and occasionally when would … almost but would always run when The levers are dirt-bike short, and was insufficient room for the little on each hand. Pull in the actuated clutch lever, the six-speed in gear and with 50 lb-ft of torque already at just 2,500 rpm, its low wet weight and gravel-road gearing no need for revving or clutch

The V-twin assumes a characteristic lope, aggressive and hard-edged in All is smooth till about rpm, at which point a bit of begins to intrude upon the When we first got the bike it had 500 miles on it, and long freeway jangled my hands.

However, by 1,000 miles the engine had out and, while some vibration remained, freeway was no problem.

According to KTM the 990′s perimeter frame weighs 24.2 pounds, and soon the weight seemed to melt Still, with a 61.8-inch no one is going to confuse the Adventure an actual dirt bike‚Ķthat’s the job. That stout male-slider WP leading-axle fork and shock each provide 8.3 of travel, and can be adjusted for both and rebound damping; the shock offers a handy remote adjuster.

A few minutes of experimentation, and with fingers and a screwdriver, and I had the dialed in.

Undressed, the 990 shows its compact frame and lightweight

Our test bike had a glitch in its system; a rhythmic jerking and was evident at steady state, riding at around 3,000 to rpm. The situation became problematic on bumpy roads as the system seemed to cycle abruptly over the bumps-which is the thing you want in the dirt. testing the Adventure we were testing a KTM Superduke, which had a injection system but presented no

We also were not enamored of the cooling fan that would automatically in slow-speed situations.

We pressure in the tires to 20 psi and took the out to some local dirt There, it confirmed my expectations when ridden conservatively by a rider this overgrown eater could indeed get some rough areas and jumps, its 21-inch front stepping over rocks and Sand washes were but with my lack of dirt any bike would have so.

While the Scorpions grip and predictably while plonking in second gear, it was easy to the rear tire loose and the big guy around in open areas. At speeds, however, I felt a bear on roller skates and to preserve my remaining virgin by exercising discretion. The press recommend that more dirt riders outfit the with Continental’s TKC 80 tires, in which were developed for KTM.

Wire wheels and twin-piston calipers with ABS are for the street, yet dirt worthy.

The 990 comes with KTM’s anti-lock braking system, a venture with Brembo and The company tells us that its (which is placed under the weighs just 3 pounds; the work independently and are not linked. The brake lacked sensitivity, and into ABS mode more than I wished-which also have been a factor of the

Otherwise, the system delivered stops with minimal at each control. It can be turned off a button on the dashboard for offroad Note that its sibling, the 990 S, does not have ABS but offers a suspension and is considered more worthy.

Any knowledgeable rider who to do some real offroad on a dual-sport will choose a lighter machine and leave the 990 for those with 90-plus-percent riding in mind, so we tested it way. In addition to the usual riding I took the bike on a 700-mile round trip to Seca Raceway in Monterey July for the MotoGP races.

A strapped in front (the area is not steel so a magnetic bag not adhere) and a large nylon bag to the seat and luggage rack ample luggage space. a fuel cap on either side, it was not to remove the tankbag to refuel. KTM hard-sided locking saddlebags and a top with appropriate hardware for the

Sparse instrumentation offers a speedo and analog tach. The low and between them, turns ABS on and

Like a dirt bike the 990 feels tall, but riding it brought back my memories of dual-sport that had passed me so ago. Where the bike impressed was on the backroads, while with friends on their tourers-and running away them. A lot of weight shifting and the tires I had not fully trusted in ABS straight up or in the dirt now gripped sport rubber while over on the pavement.

KTM 990 Adventure
KTM 990 Adventure

The story I’d 20 years ago of torque, light and leverage (my friends would go with the “superior rider” trumping horsepower and displacement true for me on tight, winding Here it was rarely necessary to rev the past 5,000 to 6,000 which kept it in the lower of its 9,500-rpm rev range and out of its vibration

The 990′s gauges, placed that tall, narrow windscreen, include a digital and analog tachometer; there’s a and temperature gauge but no fuel would have been As a compensating factor, in addition to the two the Adventure also has a tripmeter activates with the low-fuel light and counts forward to you of how far you’ve traveled on “reserve.” The keeps the wind off the chest, and the guards keep the hands There’s also an accessory on the dash for a battery charger or garments, and a centerstand, though it a convenient grab handle.

bash plate and tucked-in indicate that this is actually intended for the dirt.

One is that KTM’s press state that the Adventure’s injection, cams and such in the interest of “improved performance.” when we took it to the dyno at Borla Performance, we found things had gone in the other The 950 Adventure we tested in our February issue spun the drum to the of 86.7 horsepower at 8,000 and 61.3 lb-ft of torque at rpm.

The figures on the new 990 were horses at 7,600, and 59.8 at 7,200 rpm, drops of 2.5 to 3.5 percent. Our best guess is the power drop was caused by the glitches, as KTM’s press said the exhaust system was the same. Perhaps it’s due to stringent emissions requirements.

Who bike is great fun to ride!

I’ll have to admit at first, I did not like the Adventure. The glitches made it difficult to around town, and the rear easy lockup was bothersome at I didn’t trust the tires and not ride it fast, and because of the could not ride it slow. once I dialed in the suspension, the tires in leaned-over mode and riding it aggressively, its long-travel and torquey engine conspired to peg the fun

At times like that, figures do not matter. Add in the likelihood its low-speed glitch can be corrected a service (again, the KTM Superduke have this problem) the will be great fun to ride! You can yours in orange or black, for

Just add pavement‚ or gravel‚ and to taste.

If you’re interested in the KTM 990 Adventure, you might also be in Rider ‘s 2009 KTM 990 Adventure .

2007 KTM 990 Adventure

Base $13,998

Warranty: 12 mos. miles

Type: Liquid-cooled,

75-degree V-twin

Rake/Trail: degrees/4.48 in.

Seat Height: in.

Suspension, Front: 48mm fork, adj. for rebound and damping w/ 8.3-in. travel

WP single shock w/ remote

KTM 990 Adventure
KTM 990 Adventure
KTM 990 Adventure


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