As early as October of last year, reports have already been teasing us of KTM’s development of a new 490 engine that will be eventually used for the next generation 390 Duke, RC 390, and 390 Adventure motorcycles. The new 490 engine currently in development is being done in collaboration with Bajaj Auto India.
The new KTM 490 engine will be mounted on the same trellis frame used on the current generation 390 series bikes with minor modifications to accommodate the larger engine to help keep development costs at a minimum. However, the same engine is also expected to be used for the next generation KTM 490 Supermoto and Enduro motorcycles and will get a redesigned chassis with a longer wheel-travel and varying wheel sizes depending on their characteristics. For the Duke, RC, and Adventure range, we can expect the same styling cues and other components seen in the current generation to keep development costs at bay.
The next generation Duke, RC, and Adventure 490’s can be expected to feature Dual-channel ABS, full LED lights, and Fully Digital TFT Display with a larger rear tire. Their 490 cc parallel twin-cylinder, liquid-cooled, 8 valve DOHC engine is expected to generate a power range between 50 hp to 60 hp mated to a 6-speed transmission with a slipper clutch and ride by wire throttle.
While no official announcement yet has been made about these motorcycles, the new 490 Duke, RC490, and 490 Adventure motorcycles are expected to be launched by the end of the year or early 2021. They would also be expected to be displayed at this year's EICMA motorcycle show in November. We can expect and hope that once the next-generation motorcycles land on our shores and its assembly be made within the country, so prices will still remain competitive and affordable just as the current line-up of KTM Dukes, RC’s and Adventure motorcycles.