KTM Unveil The 2024 1390 Super Duke R Evo
The Beast gets even bigger, badder, and more advanced than ever.
Updated with pricing.
Say hello to the 2024 KTM 1390 Super Duke R Evo, proof positive that engine size is just a number in KTM’s eyes – but also a remarkable landing spot for all the lessons KTM has learned in its time competing in MotoGP.
Following on the introduction of the 990 Duke, the 1390 carries a similar design philosophy with all-new bodywork. The overall profile is lower, creating an emphasis on the compact chassis packaging. The lines, which we already thought were very sharp, angular, and aggressive are even more so now. All in an attempt to double down on the Super Duke’s menacing appearances. There’s now a new alien-like LED headlight, new tank spoilers with added winglets, and a more compact subframe that ditches the brake light altogether.
A redesigned air intake and airbox means the fuel tank was able to grow by 1.5 liters, for an overall volume of 4.6 gallons. Draped towards the bottom of the extended bodywork that originates from the fuel cell are winglets KTM says add 6.6 lbs of downforce at 161 mph. Yeah, that’s a little ridiculous and has little bearing in real world riding, but as we’ll soon see, winglets are only the beginning of the 1390’s connections to MotoGP.
MotoGP-like Suspension Trickery
For 2024, the Super Duke gets the third generation of WP’s Apex Semi-Active suspension. You already know the fork features electronically controlled magnetic valves for variable damping, giving it a wide range of adjustability, from maximum comfort to track-ready stiffness and support at the press of a button. Here, the SCU (Suspension Control Unit) adapts the damping rates via the magnetic valves in real-time to the riding surface and rider style, based on the information provided by stroke sensors and IMU, in accordance to the ride mode chosen – Auto, Comfort, Rain, Street, or Sport. Upgrade to the Suspension Pro pack (and why wouldn’t you?) and you unlock two further modes: Track and Pro.
Suspension Pro offers three automatic preload auto-leveling settings: Low, Standard, and High. Here, the suspension is able to calculate and adapt the preload automatically based on the weight of the rider and recreate three defined geometries: Auto-Standard, Auto-Low, and Auto-High.
According to KTM, Auto-High amounts to a -10mm sag setting at the rear wheel. Auto Low is theoretically +10mm sag at rear wheel, but this depends on the weight already on the vehicle. For example, a light rider might end up with only 4mm shock preload in Auto-Standard – then Auto Low can only lower by -2.5mm as 1.5mm preload is the minimum setting – which would then roughly translate to +5mm sag at the rear wheel.
Suspension Pro also allows for an Anti-Dive setting, which keeps the front end stiff and stable even under hard braking. However, arguably the most exciting addition is the new Factory Start setting.
Inspired by the launch devices in the MotoGP paddock, which are mechanically (not electronically) operated per the rules, the Factory Start setting reduces the shock Preload to lower the rear when coming to a standstill. This allows for increased weight on the rear wheel and therefore improved acceleration off the line. Interestingly, KTM reps inform us that the Factory Start setting is not linked to Launch Control but is an independent system. Factory Start will deactivate and return shock preload to normal when:
- Vehicle speed reaches 18 mph AND transmission is in 4th gear or higher
- Vehicle speed reaches 18 mph AND throttle is closed
- Vehicle speed reaches 18 mph AND lean angle is greater than 30°
- The rider manually deactivates in the dash
- The Rider switches ride modes
- Or there’s an error in the Suspension Control Unit
Once deactivated, the preload will return to the previously selected Preload Adjuster mode in the dash.
Braking for the 1390 comes by way of Brembo Stylema calipers and dual 320mm rotors. Feeding fluid is a MCS master cylinder. Maximum braking will be a necessity, because this new engine packs quite a punch.
A Bigger, Badder LC8 V-Twin
If we’ve learned anything from KTM, it’s that displacement numbers don’t matter. Team Orange will build its engines however big they want to. In the case of the 1390, the V-Twin engine size is actually 1350cc thanks to 2mm overbore pistons, up to 110mm from 108mm previously. For the first time, the LC8 now gets KTM’s Cam Shift system, better known as variable valve timing and valve lift. This amounts to two separate valve lifts depending on the engine speed, providing optimum torque down low and maximum horsepower up top – all while keeping weight and emissions to a minimum. Despite the new engine, KTM says valve clearance checks are only needed every 37,000 miles (or 60,000 km to be exact).
Of course, bigger engines need bigger throttle bodies to feed it fuel and air. In this case, the throttle bodies grow to 60 mm from 56 mm, and the top-feed fuel injectors are repositioned for better fuel atomization (the lower port injector remains unchanged). Finally, to keep the engine feeling lively through the gears, both fifth and sixth gears are shorter than before.
On the electronic side of things, the 1390 Super Duke sees some interesting updates. For starters, there’s a 5-inch TFT display that has been restructured to make things easier to find. It also includes a USB-C charge port. Beyond that, there’s now a tire pressure monitoring system. The interesting bit is, for 2024, the system has been further refined and now allows for custom pressure settings for track use, with the ability to program in a second wheelset.
As for the aforementioned ride modes, they’re all fairly self-explanatory, especially Rain, Street, and Sport. The optional Performance mode allows a certain level of customization, with a selection of traction control intervention and throttle control. Anti-wheelie can also be switched off and Launch Control can be toggled for perfect starts. Cruise control is also available, with riders having full access to KTMconnect, too.
Switch to the optional Track mode and you get the same level of customization as Performance mode, but the UI and UX is 100% race focused. This also allows for two display settings on the 5-inch TFT display, with a focus on lap times, or telemetry data. In these modes, only key information is displayed with secondary information discarded. Anti-wheelie can be switched off and Launch Control is available for the perfect start out of the grid, but cruise control and KTMconnect are disabled.
An optional all-new Engine Brake Control feature allows riders to set the level of how much engine brake they want to experience in five levels, allowing riders to tailor their corner entry speed to suit their skill level or riding style.
For 2024, the anti-wheelie mode has been revised to offer five separate levels between Very Low & Very High to allow for a specific maximum degree of front wheel lift. And for those who are naturally adept at wheelies, you can turn it off entirely.
The five degrees of front wheel lift up are:
Very Low: 0.36°
Very High: 22.25°
Finally, the ergonomics are slightly different too. Throw your leg over the 1390 Super Duke R EVO and you will immediately be met with an aggressive, performance-focused stance. The tank has been angled slightly outwards for more rider support on the tank surface at braking and improved contact when hanging off into corners. This allows the handlebar to be moved lower for better control without compromising comfort.
Price and Availability
At press time KTM hasn’t disclosed what the 1390 Super Duke Evo R will cost or when it will be available. We’ll be sure to update this information when it becomes available. [Update: US pricing is set at $21,499] What we do know is that there will be two color options available – orange or black – and all the bikes coming to the US will have black wheels regardless of livery. European models have the option of black wheels or orange.
Troy's been riding motorcycles and writing about them since 2006, getting his start at Rider Magazine. From there, he moved to Sport Rider Magazine before finally landing at Motorcycle.com in 2011. A lifelong gearhead who didn't fully immerse himself in motorcycles until his teenage years, Troy's interests have always been in technology, performance, and going fast. Naturally, racing was the perfect avenue to combine all three. Troy has been racing nearly as long as he's been riding and has competed at the AMA national level. He's also won multiple club races throughout the country, culminating in a Utah Sport Bike Association championship in 2011. He has been invited as a guest instructor for the Yamaha Champions Riding School, and when he's not out riding, he's either wrenching on bikes or watching MotoGP.
More by Troy Siahaan