• 2023 KTM 890 SMT PRESS KIT

  • What is the KTM 890 SMT and where does it sit in the KTM model range?     

    We are pumped to reintroduce one of our ultimate Supermoto Tourer. The KTM 890 SMT works on so many levels for KTM. Why? We can mix our expertise for Supermoto track-capable excellence – which means low weight, high torque and responsiveness, big agility but a lot of stability and acute rider feedback – with road-going brilliance and touring prowess. We know, riders want their motorcycles to do as much as possible and the KTM SMT is one of our strongest expressions of versatility. There are not many bikes that are equally accomplished at allowing petrol-heads to attack the hill climb but then also settle in for a comfortable cruise. The KTM SMT is a machine that wants to swallow the mountain pass but then go for miles and miles onwards once at the peak.      

    KTM used to have an SMT: why bring it back?

    We did. The KTM SMT existed when the company’s strong sporting roots began to spread from Supermoto tracks to urban roads and inviting country lanes. This was almost fifteen years ago and was our first earnest attempt at sport-touring. The growing influence of the ADVENTURE market started to cloud KTM SMT’s relevance. The KTM ADVENTUREs and KTM DUKEs became incredibly advanced and superlative at ticking a number of performance boxes. For 2023, we knew that there was a gap again for the KTM SMT, this time using the KTM LC8c as foundation. It was time for a fresh generation, bringing lofty standards to the riding experience and sporty attitude. The chisel was taken to the best components of the prolife KTM 890 ADVENTURE R platform to sculpt a new definition of the Supermoto Sports Tourer.   

    Is the KTM 890 SMT more Supermoto or more KTM ADVENTURE?

    Good question…but an easy one to answer: Supermoto. The sporty feeling of contact, control and performance have been the prime goals for the KTM 890 SMT. Yes, the bike will carry you as long as you want to ride, and with technical specs that any tourer demands, but it will also thrill and turn into a radical road ripper with a big grab of the throttle. The KTM ADVENTURE series banishes any sense of limits or boundaries by taking the long road or the jagged trail, but the KTM 890 SMT is the unshowy master of asphalt; filled with KTM and Supermoto DNA. 

    Why would I buy a KTM 890 SMT instead of a KTM 790 DUKE or KTM 890 ADVENTURE R?

    Because you might want the capabilities of the KTM 790 DUKE but with some of the convenience and touring prestige of the KTM 890 ADVENTURE R. The KTM 890 SMT slides perfectly into that bracket.

    What are the engine specs?

    We’re talking the latest incarnation of the KTM LC8c. It’s a motor that was distinguished by 20% more rotating mass over the original KTM 790 parallel twin, the additional mass elevated corner stability and centralization while not affecting agility. The 890cc engine produces 105 hp at 8,000 rpm through a very compact unit with a reworked airbox. The knock control and dual 46 mm Dell’Orto throttle bodies guarantee optimum momentum with a higher state of ignition. Torque pours through at a rate of 100 Nm at 6,500 rpm. 

    What can be expected from the chassis?

    A bike that will bend easily to your will. KTM’s history and knowledge of CroMo steel construction means the ideal blend of torsional and lateral flex for this particular road ‘weapon’. The engine is used as a stress member. A tight geometry, similar to the KTM 890 ADVENTURE R, will provide that confidence to manipulate the bike at speed and across distances. It’s not always so easy to explain how a motorcycle can be so fixed and firm but also turn-on-a-dime flighty: you’ll just have to try it!

    How is KTM bringing this ‘Supermoto performance’?

    The WP APEX shock (with 180 mm of travel with a rebound adjuster and hand tool for spring preload, just in case of a passenger or dialing in for the hill climb) is angled further forward for a lower, ‘squat’ feel but with premium performance and an optimum seat height. The shock is connected to the signature die-cast open-lattice swingarm; the length of which contributes to the special handling and stability of the KTM 890 SMT. The forks bring the same travel, and the same customization possibilities with ‘split’ functions and adjusters for compression and rebound. The KTM 890 SMT has 17” wheels wrapped in Michelin PowerGP tires (chosen for their excellent grip, durability and fast warm-up phase), which again refer to the sporty origins of the bike. The wheels are light-alloy and less kilos means less unsprung mass and inertia.

    What else about the ergonomics?

    It has been slimmed and refined to pull the rider ‘into’ the KTM 890 SMT for the best possible integration that still supports the legs and body. The ergonomics combine the merits of Supermoto control – the sensitivity and fun – but with practicality needed for sustained outings on the road. We mentioned the seat height: it’s measured at 860 mm across the Supermoto style single saddle, the seat bump also supports riders from sliding back under hard acceleration. The handlebars have six different positions with a 30 mm range of movement and the obligatory steering damper.

    The fuel tank is a bit smaller than the KTM 890 ADVENTURE’s, so what’s the range?

    Fuel consumption from the 15.8-liter capacity is fantastically low at 4.6 l/100 km. The KTM 890 SMT is just as happy pushed through low revs as pinned in higher gears. The fuel tank brings weight higher up, this means less effort in the corners from the rider when tipping over from side to side.

    Electronics will have their influence. What does the KTM 890 SMT have?

    The three standard ride modes (RAIN, STREET, SPORT) can be expanded by an optional TRACK Mode setting that permits the rider to toggle different amounts of throttle and Traction Control through 10 levels. Cornering Motorcycle Traction Control (MTC) is an important feature sensitive to the bike’s pitch and behavior at lean, this means, the rider can go faster in safety.

    Can these be upgraded?

    Of course. There is the chance to add Motor Slip Regulation (MSR, ideal for better control in low grip situations and for fast downshifts) to the software package. QUICKSHIFTER+ (both up and downshifts) and Cruise Control are optional and ready to go with a simple activation process. The KTM 890 SMT also has KTM’s DEMO. The optional extras can be trialled for the first 1,500 km of the bike’s running time, whereupon they can be purchased and activated, or the motorcycle will reset without the additional modes.

    Supermoto is all about spectacular braking and sliding: how does the KTM 890 SMT honor this?

    In fine style with 2 x ultra-powerful four piston radially mounted calipers spinning on 320 mm front discs and a 260 mm rear disc that is clamping down by a double piston floating caliper on the rear. Putting this stopping power into action employs Cornering ABS and as one can imagine on a SMT, all important Supermoto ABS for those Supermoto style slides.

    What can be said about the styling?

    Just one-color scheme but that’s all that’s needed to identify the rapier looks of the KTM 890 SMT. The bodywork is produced from colored, injected plastics with in-mold graphics for more resistance and the theme of protection extends to the amplified side panels and tank spoilers for reduced wear. Supermoto-style handguards will deflect debris and the ‘smoked’ windshield has been specially designed for the best aerodynamic fit. The screen is on top of a double front fender concept that displaces water and protects the rider’s legs and torso better.

    How will the KTM 890 SMT cater for longer rides?

    The 5” TFT dashboard is made from optically bonded mineral glass and is scratch and glare resistant and fully customizable while divulging the easy-to-use infographic menu system for setup preferences. The same software is prevalent on larger capacity KTM models. The KTM 890 SMT works with the KTMconnect App: an application that can be download on a smart device and then synced to the bike. From the confines of the App the rider can make further modifications and follow TURN-BY-TURN+ navigational guidance, make and take calls, listen to music, select via TFT dashboard, access a Support Center, chart service intervals and note maintenance action, and see owner manuals. LED lights (strong visibility while remaining robust and compact), optional heated grip kits are other facets of the KTM 890 SMT.

    KTM PowerParts and KTM PowerWear will cater to the KTM 890 SMT?

    100%. The encompassing collection of KTM PowerParts (accessories and TRACK and TECH modes) and KTM PowerWear (functional to safety to casual apparel) can be tried and bought through any authorized KTM dealer. It’s easy to look the part on the hill, the highway or any hike.

    Why the hill climb launch and who is Chris Fillmore?

    Ah, this is simple. What better way to demonstrate the core strengths of the 2023 KTM 890 SMT than to blast up a locked-off hillside road and then continue the test with a long stretch of riding the other side? Chris is a former AMA Superbike racer – onboard the original KTM RC 8 no less – and 2020 AMA Supermoto Champion. He heads KTM North America’s Road Racing and Flat Track Factory efforts. 

    Chris’s skill and ability led to three Pikes Peak hill climb lap-records; Chris’ first attempt secured him the heavyweight title onboard a 2017 KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R in a time of 9:49:625. 

    The second time around, Chris opted for the agile 2018 KTM 790 DUKE a.k.a. THE SCALPEL, the LC8c package awarded Chris the middle weight title in a whopping time of 10:04:038. 

    2019 saw Chris rounding up his collection of titles, taking the lightweight division record in a time of 10:20:819 on his 2019 KTM 450 SMR.

    2017 KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R

    2018 KTM 790 DUKE

    2019 KTM 450 SMR

    How is the KTM 890 SMT linked to these three distinctly different bikes?

    The 2023 KTM 890 SMT has its routes deeply planted and its DNA stems from all our racing achievements. The KTM 890 SMT has the same big bike characteristics as KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R, it has the updated LC8c engine Chris used in 2018 that secured him the middle weight record and lastly, it has the same playful characteristics as the KTM 450 SMR. Hence the fact, that it is the answer to everything. #42