01. Engine & Exhaust
Built for torque, this liquid cooled 8 valve, DOHC unit delivers peak grunt at 8,000 rpm that is almost immediately followed by a roaring power curve. Meanwhile, an advanced ride-by-wire system guarantees great refinement as well as low fuel consumption and emission figures.
The 8 valve DOHC cylinder head contains twin chain-driven camshafts and one sparkplug per cylinder. Additionally, the camshafts in the KTM 790 DUKE are assembled, which makes them even lighter than forged camshafts. DLC coated finger followers, steel valves and a hydraulic chain tensioner complete the cylinder head assembly.
No one enjoys unpleasant vibes. That is why the KTM 790 DUKE employs the use of two balancer shafts, the first placed in front of the crankshaft and the second in the cylinder head to ensure the smoothest power delivery and minimal vibration.
Nikasil coated aluminum cylinders are an integral part of the sleeveless engine casing design of this 799 cc parallel twin. This open deck cylinder construction allows for optimal cooling, improved production tolerances and reliability.
Forged pistons with three piston rings, combined with a DLC (Diamond Like Coating) coated piston pin allow for lighter piston construction. This minimizes reciprocating weight, which reduces rotating masses, improving overall handling, and maximizing the rev-ceiling of the engine.
The KTM 790 DUKE features horizontally split crankcases, which are aluminum high pressure cast, allowing for reduced wall thickness and less weight.
The slipper clutch allows riders to enter corners confidently without locking up the rear wheel under hard deceleration or when downshifting, and remaining feather-light on the clutch finger.
The engine employs a compact, semi-dry sump system with oil being actively pumped out of the crank case, clutch housing, and gearbox. This ensures any unnecessary oil flow through the motor, reducing power loss through friction. To cool down the oil, the engine is equipped with an oil cooler like that fitted to the larger LC8 engines.
Instead of the electronic injection system's throttle valves being controlled by cables, ride-by-wire processes throttle twist grip movements with the help of electronic sensors and activates the throttle valves accordingly using servo motors. However, our ride-by-wire on the KTM 790 DUKE goes the extra mile: It electronically translates the throttle commands of the rider into the best throttle valve positions for the current riding situation. Choking, jolting and involuntary wheelies are a thing of the past. Voluntary ones, however, could easily be a thing of your future.
A stainless-steel thing of beauty. The middle damper centralizes the mass and allows for a relatively small muffler that plays a dramatic soundtrack. Hundreds of test bench runs and complex simulations ensured that this exhaust system contributes decisively to the tractable torque curve and excellent emission standards.
The airbox sits snugly inside the subframe, with the air intake on either side of the subframe, allowing the bike to keep things cool while you gun it.