Some model year updates are more important than others and when we’re dealing with KTM’s 2016 refresh for its Duke 690 and Duke 690 R, it’s safe to say the company has put its engineers to serious work.
Sure, it takes a bit of a trained eye to spot the changes when simply stepping into the KTM booth on the EICMA floor, but we can only agree to the enticing tech changes here.
Both the Duke 690 and 690 R are motivated by a 690cc single-cylinder motor. For 2016, the engine gains a new cylinder head, as well as upgraded intake and exhaust systems. The list of novelties also targets the piston, piston ring, connecting rod, as well as the crankshaft, while twin spark plugs with individual mapping complete the technical scenery.
This allows the engine to climb 1,000 rpm higher, but performance was not the only target here. Refinement was also on the agenda, so the unit gets a balancer shaft now.
As a result of all the changes, the 2016 KTM Duke 690 allows the rider to control 73 hp and 55 lb-ft (74.5 Nm), while the R version produces 75 hp.
KTM has also targeted the rest of the Duke, working on the steering geometry to offer better stability and more precise cornering.
With the 2016 law making ABS mandatory, the Duke also received an optional track pack that includes traction control, Motor Slip Regulation, and offers bad weather counseling thanks to the possibility to switch between three riding modes: Normal, Sport and Rain.
The Duke R now comes with an Akrapovic exhaust system, and together with the new graphics and LED blinkers, this is one of the few visual changes for 2016.
Completing the tech package of the R is a fully adjustable WP suspension, along with a Brembo monoblock front caliper.
In terms of the electronics, the R receives all the features mentioned above, as well as a Supermoto riding mode. By: autoevolution