What is your definition of a sport-touring motorcycle? Do you err on the side of “sport” or do you prefer a more “touring” approach? With the 2019 Super Duke GT—the saddlebag-equipped version of the potent Super Duke R—KTM continues to follow a harder-edged, corners-first course. In fact, this steel-trellis-framed machine is powered by the same titanium-valved 1,301cc V-twin found in the R model and newly remapped for even smoother throttle response. Semi-active WP suspension has Comfort, Street, and Sport settings, monitoring and adjusting damping in real time. Lean-sensitive braking and traction control are also standard, while an optional dealer-installed Track Pack adds three more modes: anti-wheelie off, traction control slip adjust, and launch control.
This year, the 1290 Super Duke GT has a new LED headlight that is said to enhance illumination and improve visibility. Protection from the elements is better, too, what with the more refined overall shape of the fairing, a revised height-adjustable windscreen, and the addition of hand guards. Storage and connectivity have been updated as well. Last but certainly not least, a full-color, 6.5-inch TFT dash offers brightness and clarity in all kinds of conditions.
Likes: Blistering acceleration, guttural V-twin growl, wheelies in spades
Dislikes: A chain-driven sport-tourer with no centerstand? C’mon, KTM…
Verdict: A cross-country-capable sportbike with an appetite for apexes
Cycle World’s Annual Ten Best Bikes
“The best route between two far-divided points on a map is never the straightest one.” So began Cycle World’s rationale for selecting the KTM 1290 Super Duke GT as the Best Touring Bike of 2016. The GT combines a torquey V-twin and stable chassis with many long-haul accoutrements.
2019 KTM 1290 Super Duke GT Reviews And Comparisons
Racy as the 2019 KTM 1290 Super Duke GT may be, carefully curated creature comforts make the Austrian animal a friendly road companion. Cruise controls are now on the left handlebar, for example, so changing or setting speed is more intuitive. Heated handgrips and locking luggage are also standard equipment.
2019 KTM 1290 Super Duke GT Competition
Competition for the 2019 1290 Super Duke GT? Where to begin? Aprilia Tuono? Maybe. BMW R1200GS? Definitely. Ducati Multistrada? Absolutely. And the Kawasaki Versys 1000 LT? Why not? Like the 1290 Super Duke GT, those four machines are powered by high-performance, liquid-cooled engines. V-4, flat-twin, V-twin, or inline-four…you decide.
2019 KTM 1290 Super Duke GT Specifications And Pricing
KTM’s mantra is “Ready to Race,” so it is no surprise the 1290 Super Duke GT comes with competition-developed electronics. A standard quickshifter, for example, allows clutchless up- and downshifts under any engine load so gear changes are quick and smooth. For colors, you have two choices: orange or black.
Manufacturer Claimed Specifications
|Engine||Liquid-cooled, DOHC, V-twin|
|Bore x Stroke||108.0mm x 71.0mm|
|Seat Height||32.9 in.|
|Front Suspension||48mm; Comfort, Street, Sport adjustment; 4.9-in. travel|
|Rear Suspension||Comfort, Street, Sport adjustment; 6.1-in. travel|
|Fuel Capacity||6.1 gal.|
|Claimed Dry Weight||461 lb.|
Cycle World Tested Specifications
|Braking 30–0 mph||N/A|
|Braking 60–0 mph||N/A|