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KTM 790 Duke makes comeback for 2023

2023 KTM 790 DUKE

With the introduction of Honda’s Hornet and Suzuki’s GSX-8S, not to mention a whole host of middleweight machinery spanning everything from Aprilia’s Tuono 660 to Yamaha’s MT-07, it’s safe to say that the naked middleweight sector is more savagely populated than ever. But in terms of price against performance, it’s also one of the most impressive sectors for what you can get for your cash, and now, the KTM 790 Duke is making a return to that fold.

First introduced in 2018, the 790 Duke was an impressive bit of kit which ultimately made way for its higher capacity sibling, the 890 Duke, which offers up a little more in terms of performance, and indeed, price. The higher capacity, higher powered and more premium specced 890 Duke and 890 Duke R remain in the range, while the 790’s reintroduction comes off the back of KTM’s newly formed relationship with the Chinese brand CFMOTO. It means that the 105bhp, 790cc powered Duke will be built in China in order to keep the costs down and create a bigger gulf between the two models. KTM have also released a dedicated 95bhp A2 compatible version too, as well as a CFMOTO built 790 Adventure.

While the 790 Duke is largely based on the previously superseded model, KTM have made some changes from the previous version – most notably a revised engine with 20% more rotating mass which, they say, will improve handling and stability.

Despite being a budget model, the 790 Duke features a six-axis IMU to facilitate some pretty fancy electronic rider aids – although a number of these will only be available for the first 1500km, after which they must be unlocked for a fee at a KTM dealership.

Although there’s no current word yet on price, expect the 790s to hit dealerships early in 2023, and they’ll be significantly cheaper than the Austrian built 890s as KTM looks to take on rivals including the new Hornet.

Other models in KTM’s Duke range get a light makeover for 2023 as well, with the 125, 390 and 890 Duke R all getting new colours and graphics ahead of the new season.

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