Outgoing RC 8C makes 135 bhp of power and 98 Nm of torque, while KTM RC 990 spied testing recently is likely to offer more oomph
KTM big bikes are quite popular in global market. Unfortunately, most of them are not on sale here. In India, 390 Adventure is the flagship, which is set to receive a major update in the coming years. It will also get a new 390 Enduro version, as seen with recent spy shots.
Sticking with big bikes, KTM currently has 890 platform and used to have 1190 platform. In early 2022, new Duke was spotted donning what could be a 990 platform from the Austrian brand. Now, we get to see spy shots of a new faired sports bike prototype.
KTM RC 990 Spied Testing
It looks fairly pre-production and sports a matte black fairing with rough edges. It gets a new design language which is radical over 8C faired motorcycle. Even with a fairing, the chassis on this RC 990 is slightly different than what was spotted on Duke 990 papped earlier. Let’s take a look.
KTM traditionally uses chrome molybdenum steel tubes for its trellis frame. Rear subframe is slightly different than found on Duke 990 test mules. On the Duke 990, KTM used a die-cast aluminium rear subframe and on KTM RC 990 spotted testing, the company has used a bolt-on type aluminium frame.
Even swingarm is kept different for upcoming 990 platform. KTM is using a banana-shaped swingarm on RC 990, while Duke 990 makes do with a regular profile aluminium swingarm. Both of these swingarm designs are different from KTM’s current RC 8C. KTM RC 990 sports a different TFT display as well which is different from the one found on 890 Duke.
Hardware-wise, KTM RC 990 is equipped with a WP monoshock at the rear and WP Apex USD forks at front. These are fully adjustable types that get rebound and compression adjustments. Similar components are found on 890 Duke as well. Braking duties are taken care of by Brembo Stylema calipers.
Specs & Launch
Closer inspection reveals that both rider and pillion footrest placement is not yet finalised. This is because of the testing rig incorporated with the test mule. KTM seems to be offering a decent balance between committed seating position and comfort. This is still a pre-production test mule and hence production-spec model can get a revised seating posture.
We can spot a single projector integrated into the front fairing. Also present are bar-end mirrors. There is a new engine behind the fairing which is said to be close to 990cc in cubic displacement. Outgoing 890 Duke and RC 8C is powered by an 889cc twin-cylinder engine.
On 890 Duke, this engine is tuned to make 120 bhp and 99 Nm, while on RC 8C, it makes 135 bhp and 98 Nm. KTM RC 990 spotted testing is likely to offer more performance than RC 8C. Launch timeline is not known. Looking at the test mule, it is likely to break the covers at EICMA 2023. India launch could be a possibility.