KTM 1290 Super Adventure S vs Multistrada 1200 (with some GSw for good measure)

Discussion in 'Moto Bellissima: All Other Dualsports' started by nostatic, Feb 4, 2018.

  1. mortarman

    mortarman Hang it; Fire!

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    Well it's kind of hard to argue with that! I just wish I lived someplace I could do that more than half the year... :(
    #21
  2. nostatic

    nostatic i drank what?!? - Socrates Supporter

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    Upside of SoCal is 12 month riding. I'm closing in on 9K miles on the Multi (bought 8 months ago) and just passed 2500 miles on the KTM (bought 1.5 months ago).

    Downside is housing costs and the necessity to lane split most any time you're on the freeway. But at least it is legal here.

    This past weekend I did a bit more compare/contrast. I tend to be obsessive, and when I fall in love with a bike I then want to get more of that particular brand. So I've been riding the Multi somewhat with a, "maybe I should get the new SDR-GT when it comes out..." feeling. Then I ride the Multi, and wonder why I think such things.

    Saturday was 2-up day on the Multi with some twisties (despite lots of crap on the roads from recent rains). The Multi has been given the "most comfortable" seal by the wife. It has more fore-aft room than the SA-S (or the GSw), plugging in her heated gear is quick/easy. For me, the bike sits fairly low so navigating stoplights/parking lots is quite easy. It will rub a bit if we're working hard in a turn (center-stand scrapes), but putting it in sport mode helps tighten up the suspension. The wife also thinks the Multi is a faster bike, but I think that is more the way the two bikes make power. The Multi comes on hard in a rush, the KTM just pulls straight through.

    So at this point I'm kinda looking forward to hitting the 18K service on the Multi - well, aside from the cost. Mostly just the idea of riding the snot out of the bikes I have because we only have a limited number of days left on the clock.
    #22
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  3. ARiderX

    ARiderX Long timer

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    @nostatic

    Did you ride a 1190 for any length of time by any chance? I have to say that your description of what the KTM does, resonates. I know for a fact that I'd be leaning more towards a KTM instead of the multistrada. I prefer torque and grunt and that freight train thing you describe over peaky and rushy drivetrains.

    That said, I've also decided not to buy new anymore, or even 1-2 year old bikes. (In Europe depreciation is very gradual, bikes are valued and valued honestly. Good for the owner, bad for the bargain hunter). However, some late model 1190's are hitting the market at below 10k euro prices. (which as far as I can see would be completely unreal in the US, that's 12k dollar and above for previous gen 1190s). So if the 1190 would be very similar in character (even though less powerful obviously) I might be tempted.

    I can test ride both of course, but that will take some time before I can get that sorted. And since you describe things so well...
    #23
  4. nostatic

    nostatic i drank what?!? - Socrates Supporter

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    I only had a test ride on an 1190. It didn't really send me - it felt rough around the edges. The 1290 feels like a more composed and sorted animal, but that is based on limited exposure with the 1190. In fact I bought the XRx over the 1190 since they were both at the same dealership.

    Used stuff drops a lot in the US. I seem to recall an 1190 for way under $10K not too long ago, and my Multi is worth about $12 in trade at the moment (bike is less than a year old). So buying used is a smart way to go here - but I like new bikes with warranties so I end up buying new most of the time. At this point my plan is to keep both the SA-S and the Multi for a fair amount of time if they remain reliable. I'd love to put 100K miles on one or both of them. But I do get distracted by shiny new objects :D
    #24
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  5. ARiderX

    ARiderX Long timer

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    thanks. Better save up then. :D
    #25
  6. nostatic

    nostatic i drank what?!? - Socrates Supporter

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    Settled into a routine of swapping bikes for commuting to work, then swapping between day trips on the weekend. If I'm riding the KTM and you ask me what bike I would keep if I could only have one, the answer is, "KTM." If you ask me the same question while riding the Duc, the answer is, "Ducati," though there is a bit more hesitation before responding.

    I liken the KTM to being a GSw on crack, meth, or acid. Or some combination. It will do the quiet/competent thing, but with very little provocation it will get crazy. The Multi otoh...it just really isn't the quiet/competent type. There are times I can putter along on it, and frankly it is more comfortable than the KTM by a hair. Cruise control is the best implementation I've used on a bike. But to get the best out of the Duc, you really need to work the engine. It lives for drama.

    Guys who have moved to the 1260 seem to strongly prefer it to the previous bikes. I didn't sense a night/day difference on a short test ride, and at this point, having the 9K service behind me and needed a new Angel GT in the rear, I don't see swapping bikes any time soon. A whole lot of money for not significant enough (to me) upgrades. I've got the full Termi system and race map, Oberon clutch slave - the bike is comfy and fast.

    Hard to go wrong with any of these. Comes down to a personality matching exercise, and a budget question.
    #26
  7. tyreshredder

    tyreshredder Slip Knot

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    Ive been everywhere man.
    I’m another one considering an adventure bike again, a bike good for 2 up rides, an amount of off road camping trips & something with character & get up n go.

    Appreciated reading your comparisons, insights & honest thoughts. To read about someone who owns both the 1290 & a Multi is perfect for me at the moment. To know you enjoy both equally for different reasons.

    Im coming off a ZX14 with around 190hp, but less of the latest gizmo,s / safety features.
    Not a bad choice for taking the lady out on too.

    Have previously owned an 1190 Kato until like dozens & dozens of others around the world, the engine needed replacement after sucking in dust n crap thru there junk air box & filter set up. Fighting them tooth n nail for some justice. Hope your 1290 has a better design.
    As a bike there up there, as a company they stink. Put me off for life.
    Not sure that the 1290 S with its cast wheels is really any use off road & the R version is too hard core for 2 up riding over extended distance trips.

    Riding a Beemer a few times they do everything well but never seem to stir the soul, somehow bland.

    We went for a decent test ride on the Multi Enduro recently, & it ticked a lot of boxes especially while their at a special knock down price in Oz. The brakes are superb, & made me think how dangerous the brakes are on the 14. My lady enjoys the pillion perch if there’s a good / comfortable ride position, not too cramped, & the adrenalin side of things too. She liked the Multi in lots of ways.
    Pillion in a million.

    Ducatis are winning GP,s too & theres RED ones.
    They sound awesome with the full Termi system, a MUST HAVE.

    Horses for courses of course.

    Looking out for the best deal.

    Ducati here we come.
    #27
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  8. Tripped1

    Tripped1 Smoove, Smoove like velvet.

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    The enduro is also a water buffalo, it carries a hell of a lot of fuel @ 7.9 gallons. My 5.2 gallon tank will get me 300km/ ~200 miles two-up and loaded if I am not thrashing the hell out of it.

    I was eyeballing one when I picked my 2012 Pikes up from the shop, downsides for me,its even bigger and heavier than my big bird, and I prefer 17" wheels for the tire options (I tend to run on the sportier side of ST street rubber) because I am not taking Ducati repair parts prices down anything I couldn't ride on a super sport....which may be a little more than some, but hardly RTW territory.
    #28
  9. nostatic

    nostatic i drank what?!? - Socrates Supporter

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    I get 200 miles plus or minus per tank out of the Multi - a bit more if I'm on the highway, less if I'm working it in the hills. The Enduro is indeed a big bike. Oddly enough I find the Multi to seem reasonably small compared now to the KTM. Mostly the KTM is a tall bike and the Multi isn't by comparison.

    If I had more cubic dollars I'd get a 1260 PP. But alas, I don't at the moment. The other bike that I have been lusting over is the '18 Panigale 959 Corse. But I need that like I need a large hole in the head...
    #29
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  10. RoughestRider

    RoughestRider n00b

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    Thanks for the excellent review. What is the heat like from the engine on the SA-S? The Multi? Rider magazine gave the SA-S a great review but said the heat is the major drawback. Heat would be a deal breaker for me.
    #30
  11. Superadv

    Superadv Been here awhile

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    I currently have the Multi Enduro and the heat is tolerable. prior to this bike I owned the Katoom 1290 SA and found the heat was quite intolerable and one of the reasons for selling it, but will say its engine is better than the MTSE's. i found the suspension and handling on the MTSE superior to the Katoom, as well as seat comfort. to be clear, i haven't demo'd the 2018 version of the Katoom, so perhaps things are different now... I'm very happy with my MTSE, just wish the Termi exhaust wasn't a ludicrous $2700.
    #31
  12. nostatic

    nostatic i drank what?!? - Socrates Supporter

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    With the Multi, going to a full Termi (getting rid of the cat) made a significant difference in heat around town. I find it totally tolerable in LA traffic, but when it is 100F outside, any bike is going to feel hot.

    I don't notice a lot of heat from the SA-S - about the same as the Multi. The reality is that these are big motors with lots of HP. They are going to put out some heat. That said, I end up riding in high temps a fair amount and it is ok. I'm in full gear, so I'm sweating anyway. I still have the cat on the KTM, only did a slip on for sonic improvement.
    #32
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  13. Chipster33

    Chipster33 n00b

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    I have a 2016 Multistrada S with the full Termi, up map and dropped front sprocket 1 tooth. Made all the difference in the world. It now pulls smoothly to 2K rpm and much harder down low. It did drop hwy mileage from 55 to about 50, but still well worth it. Would be very interested in a comparison with the Ktm 1290 and BMW XR to see how much of the power acceleration was narrowed. My seat of The pants dyno guesses 145ish hp. Seems close but 10 hp short of my old 06 R1 LE. That said, I love this motorcycle. The goal when getting it was to have sportbike like handling, brakes and power in a comfortable package with luggage and legit passenger capability, which it achieves in spades. Would love to test ride the KTM as the motor sounds like, well, a Beast. Reliability wise, my only issues have been a dead battery in the bike and fob. The replacement fob battery was also bad, so I carry two spares. The replacement bike battery is a Shorei lithium, which has been great so far. Turns the bike over noticeably faster. The bike came used with 2200 mi, the Urban, Enduro and Touring Packs, so the Termi and sprocket were the last mods, except perhaps a brutally loud horn, that I’ll add. I’ve owned a lot of motorcycles, but his is by far the best overall, although disappointed in the lack of dealers near me and the requirement to use them for most service. Hope to put a ton of miles on it and at least one track day. Only 7k so far. . Thanks fellas
    #33
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  14. nostatic

    nostatic i drank what?!? - Socrates Supporter

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    Quick update. Did our first bit of dirt yesterday on the Multi in anticipation of an impending downsizing. Have to say the bike was rather non-plussed. Didn't push very hard (on Angel GT tires), and we were 2-up but no issues with puttering along.

    Funny because I've said it would be tough to pick between the Multi and the SAS, but as luck would have it, looks like I need to drop down to one bike. Could have flipped a coin but at the end of the day there is something about a Ducati that tugs at my heart strings. So the KTM is up for sale and the Multi will have to in fact be the "do-all" bike. Never a dull moment...
    #34
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  15. nostatic

    nostatic i drank what?!? - Socrates Supporter

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    Quick update number two - looks like the anticipated downsizing has been put on hold so the garage will stay at 2 bikes. Now I get to flog the TKC70s when I get the bike back from the shop :D
    #35
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  16. KleinRS

    KleinRS n00b

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    Good Luck with the sale, m8!
    Excelent reviews!

    Did you have any heat issues with the KTM?

    I own a 1290 SAS and the heat from the engine is burning my legs :(


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    #36
  17. coast range rider

    coast range rider Been here awhile

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    Since you are not downsizing, what about upsizing and spicing up this thread by adding a 1290 SD GT to the mix? $13K brand new on Cycletrader.com.
    #37
  18. nostatic

    nostatic i drank what?!? - Socrates Supporter

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    I don't fit the GT - my knees barely fit in the tank cutouts, and I know from my old MV that I need a bit more space. I was seriously considering one though. I fit the SDR fine, but there is no top box and no sense owning a bike that I can't ride 2-up as that is most of our riding.

    Plus I really can't fit a 3rd bike in our current garage. I even went so far as doing measurements for a Tuono last year as I've got a concrete pad in the back yard where I could park one but it wouldn't fit through the gate. Since we rent I can't just start knocking crap down :D
    #38
  19. nostatic

    nostatic i drank what?!? - Socrates Supporter

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    I don't have any heat issues, but I'm also used to big twins with my Multi. I also wear full gear all the time so that helps with heat. The 1290 feels cooler than the 1190 that I test rode a few years back. With the Multi my solution was going to a full Termi and getting rid of the cat which is a big heat sponge. I'm willing to bet if you put a full exhaust system on the 1290 you'd also drop some heat, but you'll need a Power Commander or other tune solution. But at the end of the day, you've got two big cylinders under you...
    #39
  20. coast range rider

    coast range rider Been here awhile

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    I suggested the SD GT mostly because you have done such a nice job comparing the Multi and SAS here. I forgot about the fact you mostly ride with pillion. GT would not be as nice in that respect. I ride solo and am intrigued by the SD GT having some of the pluses of both bikes, because I like the lower, smaller feeling of the Multi, with the 17" front, but that 1290 engine...
    I simply have to locate a GT in Southern California to test ride.
    Knight Design lowering pegs are highly rated for the GT. I use lower pegs on my Multi, so that would be a no brainer on the GT.
    #40