The orange machine maker has recently announced that the company will be launching the new 790 Duke a.k.a ‘The Scalpel’ in the Indian market in a matter of a few months from now. With smaller Dukes in the market such as 200 and 390, KTM has already garnered a decent fan following which is surely going to benefit the brand in making the 790 Duke a success. With its launch, the motorcycle enthusiasts in India are going to a have a number of good options in the middle-weight naked class. And brands like Kawasaki and Triumph Motorcycles are already strengthening their roots deeper with their products such as Z900 and Street Triple S, respectively.
When launched, the Scalpel is going to be priced somewhere in the bracket of Rs 6.5 lakh to Rs 7.5 lakh, and at this price point it locks horns with bikes such as Ducati Monster 797, and the Triumph Street Triple S, so we compare it against the two on paper to find out if it has what it takes to become the new favorite middle-weight naked bike in India.
Starting off from the KTM itself, the bike runs on a freshly made 799cc 2-cylinder, 4-stroke, parallel twin engine, which has been developed from the ground up, especially for the new Duke. However, in the later stages, the engine might also make its way to the RC series of motorcycles. The engine in question comes mated to a 6-speed transmission. The bike develops staggering 103bhp of maximum power and 86Nm of peak torque. Now, the only bike below the 100bhp category in this comparison is the Ducati Monster which runs so an 803cc air-cooled Desmodue twin-cylinder engine and churns out about 75bhp of maximum power and 67 Nm of peak torque which hits at about 5,750 rpm. It also has a 6-speed gearbox. While the British contender, the Street Triple S runs on a 765cc In-Line Three, liquid-cooled engine making about 108bhp of maximum power at 11,250 rpm and 73 Nm peak torque at 10,421 rpm. It also carries a 6-speed gearbox.
The KTM weighs around 169kg (dry), and the Street Triple S weighs close to 166kg (dry), at this weight both the bikes are very close when it comes to their power-to-weight ratio figures. The Monster weighing at 175kg(dry) will have a significant performance gap compared to the other two.
When it comes to safety features and gadgetry the Ducati Monster 797 packs bits such as LCD screen, under-seat USB charging port, Ducati Multimedia System, Ducati Traction Control, and Bosch twin-channel ABS. The Street Triple S has ABS and switchable traction control, Road and Rain riding modes, and an LCD instrument panel.
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But the bike that clearly dominates this argument is the KTM 790 Duke that has futuristic electronics such as riding modes, track modes, traction control, quick shifter, supermoto mode, motorcycle stability control with cornering ABS, launch control, along with a slipper clutch with assist. If that was not all, it will also have the KTM ‘My Ride’ control unit.
Aforementioned, the new KTM 790 Duke will cost you around Rs 6.50 lakh to Rs 7.50 lakh (ex-showroom), Triumph Motorcycles have hiked the pricing on the Street Triple S and it now costs the most in comparison at Rs 9.20 lakh (ex-showroom, Gurgaon), while the Ducati Monster 797 currently retails at Rs 8.03 lakh (ex-showroom, Gurgaon).