By John Burns Editor Score: 91.0%
2020 KTM 390 Adventure
Editor Score: 91.0%
I don’t know why I assumed the new baby KTM 390 Adventure would be more of a milquetoast little beginner bike, like most of the other wannabe ADV bikes in its class, but I kind of did. It’s nothing of the sort. We’ve seen the photos (and maybe I failed to read the words), but in the flesh at KTM’s Murrieta, California, HQ, I was a little surprised. Say, this mini-Adventure looks like a full-size ADV bike, not a kiddie toy. Personally, I’d prefer something a bit lower, but as it turns out, looks can be deceiving. Though the 390 looks a lot like the acclaimed new 790 Adventure, it is way lighter.
KTM claimed a ready-to-ride wet weight of 460 pounds for the 790 and the official MO scales later read 467. For the 390, the Austrians say 379 all gassed up. If the margin of error remains 7 lbs, that puts the 390 at 386 lbs – that’s 81 lbs lighter than the already-flyweight 790. (Well, the 790 holds about 1.5 more gallons of fuel, which accounts for about 10 of those pounds.)
That seems impossible, really, given that the 390 uses a chromoly frame much like the one in the 790, with 450 Rally overtones, the same overkill WP Apex 43mm fork and shock linked directly to the diecast aluminum swingarm (a thing KTM says saves weight and enhances feel). The wheelbase is about 3 in. shorter than the 790’s, at 56.2 in., but the seat’s just as high, at 33.6 inches. This is not a kiddie ride; we’re sat …read more