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Old 07-05-2011, 06:31 AM   #16
BikePilot
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I really want to like the KTM - its nearly the ideal bike for me, but it has two issues that annoy me. First the motor sucks compared to most other sporting twins and second its asthetics are completely uninspired. Its beyond me why KTM can't even match the performance and economy of a 14 year old Suzuki twin, much less modern stuff 106hp and 30mpg from a liter twin? Is this 1995? A stripped down, no-nonsense version of the Multi (HyerStrada?) might suit me better, but I'm not crazy about fiddling with desmo valve adjustments. Sure even though the KTM motor doesn't match japanese stuff from the 1990s it'd still be fun to ride and a heck of a lot more entertaining than the even-firing german things, and you don't see too much of the bike when riding so I may end up with one yet. Fingers crossed that either the Duc will get a bit more stripped/focused or the KTM will get a major motor and aesthetic re-work sometime soon :)

For what its worth I've ridden a 116hp twin and a 138hp twin (same model bikes, different internal motor work) and people who say 106hp is enough and more is of no use are just plain silly ;) You can definitely enjoy that extra hp if you want to.
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BikePilot screwed with this post 07-05-2011 at 06:43 AM
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Old 07-05-2011, 09:45 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hillbillypolack View Post
Ask any KTM owner what they heard and from whom regarding their tank deformation. I can't speak to that, but I would like to know.
I've had my SMT for about 14 months now, and not a word from KTM on the tank issue. I haven't noticed an issue yet, but I haven't looked either. If it isn't dead obvious, like it is for the Monster tanks, then I may miss it.
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Old 07-05-2011, 10:02 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by BikePilot View Post
I really want to like the KTM - its nearly the ideal bike for me, but it has two issues that annoy me. First the motor sucks compared to most other sporting twins and second its asthetics are completely uninspired. Its beyond me why KTM can't even match the performance and economy of a 14 year old Suzuki twin, much less modern stuff 106hp and 30mpg from a liter twin? Is this 1995? A stripped down, no-nonsense version of the Multi (HyerStrada?) might suit me better, but I'm not crazy about fiddling with desmo valve adjustments. Sure even though the KTM motor doesn't match japanese stuff from the 1990s it'd still be fun to ride and a heck of a lot more entertaining than the even-firing german things, and you don't see too much of the bike when riding so I may end up with one yet. Fingers crossed that either the Duc will get a bit more stripped/focused or the KTM will get a major motor and aesthetic re-work sometime soon :)

For what its worth I've ridden a 116hp twin and a 138hp twin (same model bikes, different internal motor work) and people who say 106hp is enough and more is of no use are just plain silly ;) You can definitely enjoy that extra hp if you want to.
The motor sucks? Have you ridden one? It is friggin' awesome! I've never heard of someone saying the KTM 990 motor sucks. Adventure, Superduke, SM, SMT...the 990 LC8 is great in all, just tuned differently for each application. BTW...105 hp is at the wheel, not the crank. It may not be record breaking, but it's pretty good and suits the bike perfectly IMO. Superbike power in the SMT would be pointless.

30 mpg is city riding. Admittedly not great, but is also due to me being ham fisted because it is so much fun to ride...I'm sure I could get a lot better. 40 mpg is typical for highway and twisties. Better would be nice, but 40 mpg is only a few mpg off from most other water-cooled twins.

I'm with you on a stripped down MTS thouh...that would be nice. I'd like to see a Hyper with a small fairing, comfy seat, and larger tank...similar to how KTM tweaked the SM to get the SMT.
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Old 07-05-2011, 12:05 PM   #19
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JJGeo, Did we cross paths on 99 near the Aurora bridge Saturday afternoon? I was northbound on a white '11.

My first tank was 30 on the nose and I'm halfway through my second. Most of the first tank was 4th gear or lower. I can live with it. I've got too many other things to think about when riding the bike...like staying attached to it.
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Old 07-05-2011, 12:10 PM   #20
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JJGeo, can you comment on the 990 SMT vibes at high speed cruising? I'm wondering just how good of a sport-touring bike that it can be. Can you confirm the service intervals as well? I've read 4500 mile intervals, every other one being a major/valve check service.

Thanks!
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Old 07-05-2011, 12:14 PM   #21
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Ive got the Duc 1200S

Got about 3000 miles on it now. The motor is 150bhp awesome. I bought it for the grin factor and it hasnt failed yet. There are no tank issues with the 1200.

A fantastic road bike......however....if you are even thinking of offroad I would give it a miss.
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Old 07-05-2011, 12:24 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by tpulls View Post
JJGeo, can you comment on the 990 SMT vibes at high speed cruising? I'm wondering just how good of a sport-touring bike that it can be. Can you confirm the service intervals as well? I've read 4500 mile intervals, every other one being a major/valve check service.

Thanks!
How high a speed? 70 is buttery.

Those are the intervals listed in the manual.

http://www.ktm.com/uploads/tx_ktmpro...1875637588.pdf
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Old 07-05-2011, 12:25 PM   #23
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JJGeo, Did we cross paths on 99 near the Aurora bridge Saturday afternoon? I was northbound on a white '11.
I think so. I remember passing what looked to be an SMT right about there...didn't get a good look though. I'm still surprised to see one out and about.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tpulls View Post
JJGeo, can you comment on the 990 SMT vibes at high speed cruising? I'm wondering just how good of a sport-touring bike that it can be. Can you confirm the service intervals as well? I've read 4500 mile intervals, every other one being a major/valve check service.

Thanks!
Your service intervals sound right. Oil and basic checks at 4500, and valves at 9000. That may or may not kill it as a tourer for you.

I think it's a great sports tourer. I rode it form Seattle to Salt Lake last year for the WSBK races, and did 2 600+ mile days in the process. It did well and in relative comfort. I haven't ever noticed any problematic vibes during high speed slabbing. 90mph in 6th should be around 4500 rpms IIRC...a pretty smooth spot for the motor. I guess it depends on what seating position, range, and wind protection you're looking for.
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Old 07-05-2011, 12:30 PM   #24
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The motor sucks? Have you ridden one? It is friggin' awesome! .
Yep and yep, you'll note I carefully qualified that it sucks compared to most other sporting twins. Sporting twins, even relatively sucky ones are awesome.

As an example, my '97 TL1000S, suzuki's very first sporting twin, made an uncorrected 116hp to the rear wheel (~72 ft/lbs IIRC) on a 105 degree day (so roughly an SAE 121hp IIRC) and gets 40mpg on my mostly-city commute. It also revs (and pulls with no sign-off) to 10.5k rpm and the power starts lower thanks to a longer stroke.

14 years later KTM is ~15hp down and sucking ~25% more fuel (admittedly the fuel figures depending a lot on bike tuning, rider etc., so I wouldn't push this issue too hard, but it seems clear enough that the KTM uses more fuel than the much-more-powerful ducati which is bad enough).

To be sure the KTM is good enough to be fun and gets the job done. Its undoubtedly more visceral than any four cylinder and more spunky than the German twins. My displeasure with the KTM more a matter of principle - its no where near as good as it could or should be and that just pains me.

As for your idea re the hypermotard, ducati pretty much did exactly that, it was called the MTS1100 - same basic frame/motor as the hyper and very similar suspension, just a bigger tank, fairing and different seat setup.

BTW you can buy a 6.6 gal tank from CA cycleworks for the hyper

I haven't heard of someone with time on other sporting twins who was really pleased with the liter ktms. Most love the chassis and live with the motor. Folks I know with the ktms without experience on other sporting twins generally praise them though. In the abstract its a great, reasonably quick v2 motor, it just isn't on par with the comparable v2s from Honda, Ducati, Suzuki, Aprilia etc. Maybe we'll get some RC8R trickledown soon to fix this situation

As a complete package I don't think I could identify one that's clearly better than the SMT and that's why its on my top-2 bike list - tied with the MTS. The MTS is just a touch heavier and more gadgety than I like so neither is perfect, though both are extraordinarily good. I'll wait a bit and pay down student loans for a while and see what happens. A hyper with a ca cycleworks tank is also an outside option.
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Old 07-05-2011, 12:51 PM   #25
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Yep and yep, you'll note I carefully qualified that it sucks compared to most other sporting twins. Sporting twins, even relatively sucky ones are awesome.
Ah, I get what you're saying now. Better gas mileage would be nice, but whatever, it is what it is. I like the character and quick revving nature. I used to have an 848 and now race a 748, and frankly I don't miss the power for a street bike. Nevermind the ridiculous power of the MTS1200. To me they were frustrating except on the track...all that power and nowhere to use it (well, without losing your license). Maybe I need to move to a different region with better roads and less cops!

I also used to have a MTS1000. Great bike, but in the end too many quirks, and butt ugly. I was hoping the new MTS was just going to be an overhaul with the 1100 EVO motor. Instead they went hig tech., expensive, and water-cooled...no doubt the best thing for the market given the sales success, but not what I was hoping for. Ah well, it's still a very nice bike. I have seen the Hyper tanks...too much wind blast for that bike to be considered. Great fun on back roads though.
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Old 07-05-2011, 12:55 PM   #26
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I agree, I don't need the missing power either - its just the principle of the matter (and the diff from need to want). On the east coast I find I rarely go WOT on the TL on the street. In the rockies one can never have too much power - fast hilly sweepers and hp robbing 10k altitude will do that. That and my CO riding buddy is on a pimped out (~150hp) FZ1.
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Old 07-05-2011, 02:31 PM   #27
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The more I read about the 990 SMT the more I like it.

I wish it had a bit more power as I really grinned when I power wheelied in 2nd gear on my Multistrada test ride. But I can get over that. The only worrisome issue I've read about with the SMT is the gauges/instruments that let moisture in and eventually fade out. How long is the warranty period for KTM's?
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Old 07-05-2011, 02:46 PM   #28
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The more I read about the 990 SMT the more I like it.

I wish it had a bit more power as I really grinned when I power wheelied in 2nd gear on my Multistrada test ride. But I can get over that. The only worrisome issue I've read about with the SMT is the gauges/instruments that let moisture in and eventually fade out. How long is the warranty period for KTM's?
2 years. No gauge problems here and my bike has seen it's fair share of rain. Ducatis gauges are known for the same problem, although my MTS1000 never let water in and it saw A LOT of rain. Maybe I'm just lucky.

I'm pretty sure you can power wheelie an SMT in second as well.
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Old 07-05-2011, 03:18 PM   #29
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I test rode both and the choice was obvious to me
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Old 07-05-2011, 03:22 PM   #30
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I dont seem to have a problem keeping most every other bike in the rear view mirror while on the street.

If your racing above 100MPH then yeah it loses some steam - but I find the motor to be PERFECT for street riding. And yes I have ridden big twins before. Owned a couple including the Tuono. I much prefer the characteristics of the KTM Twin

To each their own I guess.



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First the motor sucks compared to most other sporting twins
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