The KTM 390 Adventure is a brilliant value-for-money performer with excellent dual-sport characteristics
After a long wait, KTM India finally brought down the 390 Adventure at a compelling price tag of Rs 2.99 lakh ex-showroom. The adventure motorcycle (adventure tourer or dual-sport) offers supreme value for money in terms of performance and equipment, and is easily the best choice in its class. However, no vehicle is devoid of shortcomings and the KTM 390 Adventure has a questionable low-end performance.
Of course, an expert can always keep the motorcycle at its peak but in day-to-day riding conditions such as stop-and-go traffic, effortless low-end pull becomes a priority. Abhinav Bhatt, who owns a 390 Adventure (among other interesting motorcycles) has found a workaround for this. On his YouTube channel, Abhinav explains how he improved the 390 Adventure’s low-end grunt by simply swapping its 15-tooth front sprocket with the 14-tooth unit of the KTM 250 Duke.
The 250 Duke sprocket cost him only Rs 195. Yet, the rideability has been massively improved. In fact, Abhinav claims that his 390 Adventure can comfortably cruise at almost 10km/h from a standstill with no throttle input. Being BS6-compliant, the latest KTM products run relatively lean and for the same reason, there is a noticeable drop in response. The motorcycle’s electronics take care of this to a good extent, but not at all times.
After the minor mod to the final drive, Abhinav’s KTM 390 Adventure is able to tackle rough grounds better. He had previously stalled the motorcycle (or more precisely, the motorcycle stalled on him) on second gear a few times, but chances of that happening again seem bleak after the small upgrade (or a worthy downgrade?).
A smaller sprocket generally translates to better acceleration and lower top speed. Depending on the transmission ratio, smaller sprockets could take a toll on highway-cruising abilities as well as fuel economy. After an extensive highway trip, Abhinav observed a slight drop in fuel economy while top speed remained mostly unaffected. On the bright side, his motorcycle could return better fuel economy in the city. Considering the cost-effectiveness of the mod, Abhinav suggests owners give it a shot.
The KTM 390 Adventure is powered by a 373cc liquid-cooled DOHC single-cylinder engine that churns out 43bhp and 37Nm; the highest in its class. The power plant is mated to a 6-speed transmission via a slipper clutch. For the price, you get switchable dual-channel ABS, three-axis IMU, bi-directional quick-shifter (Quickshifter+), lean-angle traction control and more.