No rest for the wicked: the KTM 1290 Super Duke RR roars onto the scene

POSTED: 26/08/2021

KTM continues to surprise, taking the ever-popular KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R platform and forging an even angrier BEAST. Being the first machine menacing enough to wear an ‘RR’ badge, it sits proudly at the top of KTM’s street range as a limited-edition flagship motorcycle, developed around one key statement: Pure Performance.

Only 500 of these ultra-rare Naked machines will be built, with the European allocation being available exclusively via an online pre-order portal.

Based on the latest KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R prototype, the RR is a demonstration of what happens when your R&D department is allowed free reign. It’s a true definition of READY TO RACE, with added exclusivity, exotic componentry, and premium workmanship.

The figures tell the story – 1,301 cc, 180 hp, 180 kg, and 140 Nm, translating into a power-to-weight ratio of 1:1, with enough torque to tear open the bitumen. Make no mistake, this BEAST is all about track-ripping performance. It is a no-compromise Hyper Naked motorcycle that has been conjured up from the darkest depths of the performance lab to decimate lap records.

Weighing in at a whole 9 kg lighter, the RR is more agile, stiffer, and offers better high-speed stability than the standard KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R. The wheels too have gone under the knife, shedding a massive 1.5 kilograms of unsprung weight. These are wrapped in ultra-sticky Michelin Power Cup2 tires, dramatically upping the track readiness of the KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE RR.

However, the biggest area of influence comes in the form of WP’s finest components. Up front, the KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE RR makes use of fully adjustable WP APEX PRO 7548 Close Cartridge forks, together with an adjustable WP APEX PRO 7117 steering damper. At the rear, an APEX PRO 7746 Shock takes charge, which has been custom-made to the specification of the KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE RR.

Carbon fibre has been used extensively in the KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE RR’s construction, with the subframe also receiving the lightweight carbon treatment. This has allowed designers to reimagine the tail of the BEAST, creating a unique single-seat unit, with redesigned LED taillights incorporated into new LED turn signals. These also include KTM’s adaptive brake light as standard.

All of this, not to mention the biggest Euro5-compliant V-Twin engine currently available in a Hyper Naked motorcycle, makes the KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE RR the ultimate backstreet weapon or track day tormentor.

It gets its power down to the ground thanks to a new quick-turn throttle twist grip, with a 65-degree opening angle – a 7-degree reduction over the standard KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE R’s 72-degree grip. This was developed to deliver improved throttle response, but also to reduce the rider’s wrist angle and elbow drop at full opening.

As with all extreme track terrors, this BEAST would not be complete without a lightweight Akrapovic Slip On exhaust system. Made from titanium with a carbon fibre end cap, it provides the ‘bark’ to the BEAST’s bite. For the absolute power-hungry, the Akrapovic Evolution Line full system is available as an optional extra.

Notable features on the KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE RR include:

// The most powerful V-Twin engine to ever power a naked motorcycle
// 180 hp and 180 kg give the KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE RR a 1:1 power/weight ratio
// New WP APEX PRO suspension and Michelin Power Cup2 tires
// New carbon fiber bodywork
// Lightweight lithium-ion battery, saving 2.5 kg
// Ultra-lightweight forged wheels, saving 1.5 kg of unsprung weight
// Carbon fiber subframe with a redesigned single seat
// Prototype-inspired CTG
// Exclusive KTM PowerParts package
// Limited to only 500 units worldwide

The KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE RR isn’t only impressive when it comes to hardware. Under its carbon-scaled skin hides the most complete track-orientated electronics package ever seen on a KTM – and all as standard.

Most notable of all in this package are the advanced Track and all-new Performance modes, which allow riders near-unlimited adjustability options for rear-wheel slip, throttle response, Launch Control, and Motor Slip Regulation.

While the KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE RR already boasts a full range of never before seen components and bodywork, a full range of KTM PowerParts has also been developed for those riders looking to boost its already frightening performance and track-ready viciousness.

And let’s not forget, riders of the ultimate Naked motorcycle need to not only perform, but also look the part. For that reason, a dedicated range of KTM PowerWear has been developed to give KTM 1290 SUPER DUKE RR riders the utmost confidence when at the absolute ragged edge.

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