Bike Description for

KTM 790 ADVENTURE

KTM hits 2019 with a new platform for adventure fans; the 790 Adventure and 790 Adventure R. The factory credits its own customer base with the design of this new adventuresome duo, as they’re both based on direct feedback from same. As a result, they come off the showroom floor with a definite head start in the comfort and rideability departments; or at least they will after the Spring ’19 U.S. launch, that is. Today I aim to discover what all KTM has in store for us, and to build the anticipation for this long-awaited pair that will cover both the on- and off-road subgenres.

2019 KTM 790 ADVENTURE & ADVENTURE R DESIGN

2019 KTM 790 Adventure / 790 Adventure R - image 811794
The difference in intended usage creates a divergence in design right off the bat, with the Adventure being the road-oriented model and the ‘R’ being the offroad-tastic sibling.

While it’s unclear how much the riders’ input had to do with the aesthetics, I reckon this is the closest you’re ever likely to get to a true off-the-floor custom. The difference in intended usage creates a divergence in design right off the bat; a full fender contains the fling from the front wheel on the base model, and it rocks a tall screen that punches a hole in the weather for your torso. That’s in stark contrast to the decidedly off-road “R” model that leads off with a tripletree-mount mudguard and naught but a small flyscreen up top.

Naturally, these rides sport different rubber with tire profiles matched to their appropriate machine, but to its credit, the factory opted for laced rims for a bit of an off-road bias no matter which you choose. KTM didn’t abandon its spiky bodywork; it shows up in the cheek fairings that lead with an aggressive angle and completely screen the radiator in profile.

Bash plates at the turn of the cradle come with an added belly pan to protect both the engine and the exhaust system from terrain strikes. Tapered aluminum bars come with a six-position adjuster that let you dial in the bar position to suit your body type and comfort range, and the footpegs are set to allow for a standing posture as well as a comfortable, upright seated riding position.

Both models come with a five-inch color TFT screen as the sole instrumentation, and as if to prove it’s serious about chasing strange horizons with these bikes, the factory made both bikes GPS ready with a mount just above the instrumentation for a global-positioning receiver.

A 5.28-gallon fuel tank gives the flyline that characteristic, adventure-bike hump and a 250-mile range that is certainly more than your butt can handle at a stretch. In the case of the “R model, you’ll appreciate that great capacity and range should you decide to traipse over hill and” dale. The saddle on the “R” is almost benchlike with only a slight shoulder to define the pillion, but the base model rocks a very definite break betwixt pillion and pilot and a strong set of J.C. handles that are sure to instill some confidence in your passenger.

A minimal mudguard mounts the license plate and winkers with the taillight tucked away beneath the seat, and like the rest of the bike, they utilize LED technology for maximum visibility.

2019 KTM 790 ADVENTURE & ADVENTURE R CHASSIS

2019 KTM 790 Adventure / 790 Adventure R - image 811807
Overall, they make for a stable platform that feels eager and nimble, especially with the fuel tanks slung low in the chassis.

The factory chose strength over lightness with a Chrome-Molybdenum frame that uses the engine as a stressed member in order to completely eliminate the downtube- and cradle-sections of the frame, so I guess KTM didn’t completely neglect the scales. A steel-Trellis subframe forms the tail, and the swingarm is die-cast with a shape that’s built for rigidity.

Both bikes rely on blackout rims with polished spokes to mount the 21-inch front wheel and 18-inch rear. But, while the base model’s Avon Trailriders are mainly street-centric, the “R” rolls on Metzeler Karoo 3 tires that are decidedly more dirt-tastic with deep and wide grooves between the street knobbies, and they promise to provide superior soft-terrain performance.

The steering head comes with a damper to take the edge off any potential kickback for an overall increase in stability, and it sets a 25.9-degree rake angle to make these bikes feel eager and nimble, especially with the fuel tanks slung low in the chassis. A set of 43 mm, WP Apex forks float the front end with adjustable compression- and rebound-damping features that let you dial the base model in to suit yourself, but it looks as though the coil-over, direct-link monoshock only delivers the obligatory spring-preload adjustment. That’s a little disappointing.

The “R” boosts the inner fork-tube diameter up to 48 mm for a bit more strength from its WP XPLOR forks, and as with the base model, the “R’s” stems deliver adjustable compression- and rebound-damping features for somewhat limited ride-quality control.

Brakeage is consistent across the board with a pair of four-pot, opposed-piston anchors that bite dual, 320 mm discs to control the front wheel. Out back, a twin-piston caliper and 260 mm disc takes care of business. You can switch between the cornering ABS feature that lets you get the most out of your brakes, even in a corner, and the Off-Road ABS feature that turns off the rear ABS and acutely dumbs down the front-brake intervention to give you some leeway when you want to let it all hang out in the rough.

Model: 790 Adventure 790 Adventure R
Frame: Chromium-Molybdenum-Steel frame using the engine as stressed element, powder coated Chromium-Molybdenum-Steel frame using the engine as stressed element, powder coated
Front Suspension: WP upside-down Ø 43 mm WP USD Ø 48 mm
Rear Suspension: WP Monoshock WP-PDS Monoshock
Steering Head Angle: 64.1° 63.7 °
Suspension Travel (Front): 7.8 inches (200 mm) 9.4 inches (240 mm)
Suspension Travel (Rear): 7.8 inches (200 mm) 9.4 inches (240 mm)
Front Brake: 2x 320 mm radially mounted 4 piston caliper 2x 320 mm radially mounted 4 piston caliper
Rear Brake: 260 mm 2-piston floating caliper 260 mm 2-piston floating caliper
ABS: Bosch 9.1 MP (incl. Cornering-ABS and offroad mode, disengageable) Bosch 9.1 MP (incl. Cornering-ABS and offroad mode, disengageable)