Can KTM build a significantly lighter 700-800cc twin? Is there a market for it?

Discussion in 'Crazy-Awesome almost Dakar racers (950/990cc)' started by LukasM, Oct 28, 2012.

?

Would you buy a 370 lbs wet, 80-90 HP, 700-800cc twin, priced between 690 and 990?

  1. Tomorrow, bring it on!

  2. Too small, prefer the exisiting 990 and upcoming 1190.

  3. Too big, prefer a single.

  4. Not interested in a KTM.

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  1. DesertSurfer

    DesertSurfer Tail sprayin

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    If I've said it once... I've said it 1000 times!!!

    He'll yes... I'd buy a KTM 790RR. Who the hell wouldn't?

    But this is what I've been hoping for, for years.

    And I'm sure it will eventually happen, once the global economy steps up.

    I waiting a very long time for my 950 S... which in my eyes was a better more modern design to the Africa Twin... that I was never given access to.

    As I've also vocalized to often....The 9xx will continue to get heavier to it's owner from day one because of good old Father Time... trust me.
    #41
  2. Night Falcon

    Night Falcon Tiger Tamer

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    I'm not that interested in an V twin. I think the 690 engine is an absolute cracker with more than enough grunt for most ADV riders needs. The 690 already ticks alot of boxes as it is; for me it isn't about more power so much as a better setup. A 690 engine in a 640adv format :clap

    KTM know enough about the 690 now to elimiate its few reliability issues. Everything is there already to produce a modern lightweight, high tech, quality, purpose built adv bike with 80's Honda like dependability and ease of maintainance. That bike, if it ever gets built, could stand the adv market on its head....the frustrating thing is KTM are soooo close to it with the 690E/R but they pulled the cutain before the final act :dunno
    #42
  3. Jonny955

    Jonny955 Been here awhile

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    Sure they could build it....but who would they sell it to?

    • Touring riders? They'll prefer more luggage capacity, weather protection, passenger accomodation and a bigger tank = more weight
    • Hard core trail/enduro riders? Do they really want more power, weight and thirst than the 690?
    • Dual sport 'one bike does it all' riders? Maybe but they'll need a mix of the above
    • Adventure bike buyers on a budget? If they don't want to spend up to 990 or 1190 levels, would they be prepared to pay sky-high prices for top-spec lightweight construction?
    It does appear that the market appeal is for those who want to ride trails and can put up with a little more weight because it means they have better high-speed comfort to get to there. I'd like to see KTM make something like this but in order to make it marketable in 2013 for global sales, they would end up adding so much to the original concept that it would simply be a lower powered 990 Adventure that is just a little bit lighter and more manageable.

    Look at the price point between the F800GS/Tiger 800XC and the R1200GS/Tiger Explorer. If KTM tried to sell this bike at a competitive level with the 800s they would need volume sales.

    Jon
    #43
  4. BartG

    BartG Been here awhile

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    Instead of ALWAYS talking about what is not made by KTM, buy 1 that is!!

    You want a lighter ADV bike, KTM has just what you need. Slap some soft luggage on the back (sure, its not huge weight it can carry but enough for camping).

    http://www.advrider.com/forums/showthread.php?t=750392

    I`m pretty sure some of you will now explain why this is not good enough?
    #44
  5. LukasM

    LukasM Long timer

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    Our family has 8 KTM bikes in the garage so we buy enough of those that they already make, don't worry.

    We've also adressed the shortcomings of the 690 engine in the other thread but let me recap it for you:

    - Close ratio 6-speed was made for supermoto use where it works well (or for a race bike), sucks balls for an adventure bike.
    - This makes it vibey and tiring to ride at highway speeds (even with a fairing) if you gear it low enough for off road.
    - Spotty reliability track record, I don't know any (except Sherri Jo who babies the bike) that went over 50k without failures (countershaft balancer bearings, rockers, transmission gears, piston rings etc).

    Other than that a chassis in that size and with that kind of rally/adventure setup (or original 690 Rally parts) would be ideal for me. The luggage capacity is fine once you upgrade the tank mounting hardware, with the right racks you can even fit hard luggage (which I'm not interested in).
    #45
  6. BartG

    BartG Been here awhile

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    Talk Flanny into strapping a 990 in this 690 chassis...

    Problem is supply and demand, KTM will need to boost sales with the new 1190`s to allow for a 800 series to become reality. Having 1 now would cannibalize the 990 sales, so I would think, give it another year or 2 and KTM will have your dream bike. Although i`m sure humans being humans, they wont be able to make everyone happy with it.
    #46
  7. Martynho

    Martynho No more Chilegringo.

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    Hey Lukas, even Sherri Jo`s bike grenaded not long after you left. She was lucky to be in Chile where there is a good KTM dealer network when it happened.

    I was really interested in a pimped 690R for all the reasons you quote. However like you the reliability issues always worried me. I also know 3 chaps here who have invested in 690R's fitted with the UK made Rally Raid kits, thay all also own 990's. Guess which bike they tend to end up using most of the time. From what I see the 690's get used for rides you could happily do on an EXC, only more tired with the extra weight.

    Abrazo - Don Martyn
    #47
  8. Martynho

    Martynho No more Chilegringo.

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    Oh BTW, I didnt tell you my 990R recently grenaded at 60k kms :cry. Now getting new rings, valve guides, valve seals etc
    #48
  9. Spark01

    Spark01 V-Twin

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    #49
  10. jerdog53

    jerdog53 Crop Dusting Everywhere

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    KTM has to build a midsized twin!
    There is sales out there they are missing out on, everyone who has purchased a 800GS or Tiger XC could have purchased an 800 twin KTM and probably would have had there been an option.
    I for one don’t need a 1200cc 150HP big duel sport to make up for other inadequacies, I don’t want the cost of a 1200cc bike be it purchase price, insurance or fuel and don’t want to deal with the weight!
    Keep it small, nimble reasonably powerful with provisions for bags and proper fuel range! :deal
    #50
  11. xcflyn

    xcflyn Long timer

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    Could they do it - YES. Will they do it-- hummm ????
    Is there a market -yes but how big and at what cost ? Light is also made possible by material technology that comes at a price. I think AWD is out as well as big tanks,brakes,fairings,instruments beyond the basics, and other little things we still want in the light weight bike. If they built it I would want to buy it , but it also has to fit a budget.
    People mention wet motor instead of dry sump, I thought the reasons for dry sump were not only smaller case but isnt a dry sump more free revving (quicker power) with out the crank in oil ? Thought I read that somewhere ?
    Many people will buy a 990 and add this and that-want more power,awd, bigger fuel capacity, yet still want a lighter bike. I still think a problem with this whole thing is trying to satisfy the mass's. Look at this thread and how we all agree but disagree, if they built what you want then they are bitching, build what he wants and you and others dont like it.
    If KTM read this thread to find the platform for there now 800, they would probably say forget it, we will never please the large majority. And we all know how the internet can hurt a bikes reputation, or help build it.
    I will say one thing- I still love my 990 for what it is and what it can do. For now its the best thing out there- for me.
    #51
  12. Jonny955

    Jonny955 Been here awhile

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    All good until you work out the difference in the costs for design, production, marketing and distribution. there really isn't much in it between a cleverly designed 800 V-twin adventure bike using the latest lightweight materials and a 1200 using the same.

    The market price for the 1200 is much, much higher (probably 30% in most markets) which results in a far more profitable choice for the manufacturer. As I mentioned in my earlier post, you'd really need to sell huge volumes to make the case for the 800.

    I'd only like to see KTM build it if it didn't bankrupt them!

    Jon
    #52
  13. wpbarlow

    wpbarlow Long timer

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    "Probably would" is pretty optimistic and probably unrealistic. More likely is they would have taken 990 sales. Based on my observations and taking with owners, people don't buy KTMs mostly because
    a) they don't know much about them (still!)
    b) what they do know (or think they know) doesn't make them comfortable. Reliability, lack of dealers, maintenance requirements, etc..
    c) seat height
    d) too "unusual" looking (being generous here).

    Anyway it's early in the thread, but I only see about a double handful of people who say they'd buy one of these smaller bikes. And that's at THE adventure bike site in all the world.


    BTW-- I'd probably buy one as I'm 65 and a lighter weight adventure travelling bike is really appealing. But I just don't see a substantial weight savings in the cards (compared to an SE) without sacrificing ruggedness or a reasonable cost.

    BTW2- Highland's new business model purports to give you all you're asking for: the ability to build the exact bike you want. So you have a choice-- whine or buy :lol3
    #53
  14. DirtJack

    DirtJack Adventurer

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    Put it in a 690 chassis, and then just call it an 800. :D
    #54
  15. LukasM

    LukasM Long timer

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    I've added a poll so let's see how many are interested and if not, why not.

    I like the idea and concept behind the Highland, but the results are still not there.

    If KTM would get behind this you know that they could build a sweet bike that would be in another league compared to the offerings from other manufacturers - in the categories they care most about - performance, weight, suspension, etc.

    Just make a slightly bigger version of the 690 as base, from there it's very easy to bolt on supermoto suspension and wheels (which they already have) or offroad suspension and wheels (which they already have). Just like the 690 SMC and the 690 Enduro (R).

    If some people want bigger tank range, a full fairing, or other special parts etc you can let other manufacturers develop them and then offer them in the hard parts catalog, just like the situation is now for all other their bikes with Rally Raid Products, Safari Tanks, Raid Designs, Britannia Composites and dozens of other companies. Doesn't cost anything and enables people to customize the bike perfectly for them.

    I'm not expecting anybody to build the perfect bike for me, but give me the right size chassis and (solid!) engine and I can handle the rest.
    #55
  16. crofrog

    crofrog Long timer

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    BMW F800GS claimed wet weight - 4.2 gallons of fuel = 465
    Tiger 800xc claimed wet weight - 5 gallons of fuel = 442
    KTM 990R claimed weight without fuel = 456

    And for shits and giggles
    KTM 1190adv R claimed weight without fuel = 478lb

    but those middle weights are so much lighter. It's a shame KTM never made a bike that competed with the middle weight bikes.
    #56
  17. LukasM

    LukasM Long timer

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    So you are saying that BMW doesn't know how to build light performance dual sports? What a surprise...

    The 690 is 90 lbs lighter than the 2012 Sertao that has less displacement, why should KTM not be able to do the same with a twin?
    #57
  18. dlrides

    dlrides 1:1.618

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    A modern version of the 640 Adventure with a 750 twin, and I'm in.



    :thumb



    Never going to happen though. They would shorten the suspension, and have gizmos galore. The result would be a 750 that weighs the same as a 990.


    :cry
    #58
  19. triplenickel

    triplenickel Long timer

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    +1
    #59
  20. Schannulleke

    Schannulleke Been here awhile

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    Yes but adding "this and that" to a bike that is 20kg lighter than the current LC8, still results in a bike that is 20kg lighter than that same LC8 with "this and that".

    No bike will be perfect, but that will not keep people from buying the bike. Look at how much 9x0's are modified (fuel tank, wind screen, seat, protection,...) but still the 9x0 is not unsuccessful in sales.

    So no I don' t want the perfect bike from KTM. I want the perfect platform from KTM [or other brand] of which I can make the perfect bike for me, and of which you can make the perfect bike for you, etc.

    Perfect platform:
    - 690 frame (maybe just a little bit stronger, if needed)
    - reliable 700-800cc twin that puts out 80-90 hp
    - lightweight, maybe SOHC as some are suggesting
    - no issues like water pump, fuel pump, weak clutch slave, engine mounted side stand
    - easy maintenance
    - low COG
    - single exhaust

    Modularity in:
    - multiple fuel tank sizes
    - multiple wheel sizes
    - ...

    Et voila we are back at the 7-in-1-bike concept. Not the perfect bike for me, but I will make out of this (perfect) platform the perfect bike for me.

    If they just develop 1 bike and sell it as 1 non-modular bike, the concept will financially drown. That bike will only appeal to a very small market segment and within this market segment it will not be perfect enough for most.
    If they develop a good platform from wich more types of bikes can be made, that platform will appeal a wider market segment and with the modular design can be made perfect for most people.

    BTW: KTM said that they wanted to go more modular, starting with the 1190 and maybe going to a lighter V-twin a the further future.
    #60