KTM DUKE 390 Issues / Cons

KTM DUKE 390 Issues

The Duke is as light, responsive and easy to ride as you’d expect of a slim and light single. The 375cc dohc, four-valve engine pulls from low revs with a very smooth throttle response. With six gears the KTM Duke 390 was never going to be as effortless as a scooter, but it’s easy to ride in town.


Considering Indian buyers perspective , i have quoted few demerits. The first thing to consider is the Cubic displacement of the motorcycle. The duke 390 incorporates 375cc and the displacement is produced by a single cylinder. Which makes many buyers a setback . You wont be getting a sound of a twin, despite of the huge single cylinder which could have been distributed to a  v twin. The only reason KTM never did this is to ensure the price tag  is within the range. Just look at other twin cylinder platforms , all of them have price tag of more than 2 lacks inr. So what you get is a 375cc with price tag of 1.8lacs inr, isn’t that great. Its like lesser the engine complexity the lesser is the price. If at all KTM converts a 375cc single cylinder motor to v-twin , manufacturing price would sure increase by ~ 40 – 60%.

The other aspect is the looks of the motorcycle. You own a Duke 200 and now a Duke 390, parking it in you garage and a common man won’t even notice a difference, terrible. Both of the bikes share same design except the duke 390 has a bit bigger rear wheel base, graphics and sound. Sound – yes – now it sound more like a Duke 200 the whole square.

People used to complain about long distance capabilities of duke 200 and volla they would continue for 390. If you are planning for a long tour, himalayas , this motorcycle is not for you. Travelling more than 40kms non-stop results pain in ASS, terrible knee pain and for pillion rider the pain is much more. Believe me – i had a bitter experince. SO conclusion

Not built for long distances

We know Duke 200 gives around 28kmpl or less so we wont expect any better in a 390. That still not an issue but combination of 11lts of fuel tank, hmm. So 11 liter tank would give around 220km.


1. PERFORMANCE  -> 4/5

2. RIDE – >  3.5/ 5

3. HANDLING  4/5

4. VALUE  ->  5/5

5. Fuel Consumption -> 3.5/5

6. Looks  3.5/5

7. QUALITY  -> 5/5



11 Responses to “KTM DUKE 390 Issues / Cons”

  1. Abhishek
    November 11, 2013 at 10:56 pm #

    From 30 km a litre, you deduced the 390 will run 160 km with a 11 litre tank?!

  2. avesh kadri
    November 12, 2013 at 9:43 am #

    thanks abhishek for correcting me, duke 390 give ground 18-22 kmpl in city. Past experience with duke 200 and 200 ns, duke give around 28 kmpl while ns gives around 34-37 in city..

  3. avesh kadri
    November 12, 2013 at 9:46 am #

    anyway that 30kmpl was for duke 200..

  4. Surya Pratap
    January 18, 2014 at 12:07 am #

    I disagree with some of your information. I own duke 390 from past 1 month and here is the experience with the Bike.
    1. The seat is comfortable. Yeah not as comfortable as CBR but for me comfortable enough to not complain.
    2. I always got a mileage of 28-30 kmpl in city. I think the highway milage would be around 34 kmpl.

    It’s a great touring Bike.

  5. avesh kadri
    January 18, 2014 at 7:59 am #

    Thanks surya for the review but many of the owners of 390 quoted ~ 25 kmpl in cities.. And regarding comfort its the same as 200. One of my friend did a tour from pune to baroda on his 200, complaining about the stiff ride, pain in a hips and knees. Anyways 390 is the best in its category and totally worth the investment…. Have a safe ride pratap :) .

  6. rituparna saikia
    February 23, 2014 at 10:39 am #

    I bought a KTM DUKE390 on 30th Dec2013.
    The front shock absorber failed in the first 700Km itself. It was repaired in the first service for free but without any proof left for me.
    Last friday it was 3200KM on the odometer and the clutch system failed.
    Somehow I got a service center with the help of Mr. Majeed (Works Manager) which was near the place. I saw a board of KTM in the entrance of the service center.
    I have collected the bike in the evening and what I have found lots of scratch mark on the engine cover.
    What I have learnt out of these is pointed out as bellow:
    1. KTM is not at all reliable and worst than any Bajaj vehicle.
    2. KTM service center people do not have the professionalism or proper tools to service a vehicle in a professional way.
    3. At least one of the bellow of KTM has a serious issue
    a. QAC team
    b. Manufacturability
    c. Of course with a Design team too.

  7. tushar
    March 6, 2014 at 12:11 am #

    Sir pls suggest me a good views of this bike..when the 125 model launch in india??

  8. Atin
    April 4, 2014 at 11:38 pm #

    I disagree with your statement of “Travelling more than 40kms non-stop results pain in ASS, terrible knee pain”…..I got my 390 last week and on 3rd day I rode 125 km nonstop at a speed of max 100. I was comfortable…..further there are many common man who cant even distinguish brand of car by its looks……390 is best bike I owned till date

  9. Bhavik Damani
    April 6, 2014 at 4:40 pm #

    Any1 wants to sale sports bike, intrstd in buying

  10. December 10, 2014 at 8:16 pm #

    the above cons are negligible, as a ktm 390owner {tn37ce9786} for past 14 months and crossed 12000 kms in this months it still gives me 34 kpl at 110 km/hr speed, what u need more, i have done only longer tours ie from villupuram to shimoga 750 kms, coimbatore to shimoga 600 kms, coimbatore to chennai 500 kms all in a single stretch, ie with in 8 to 10 hrs , what u require more, only the cons i have is the distance with the 10 ltrs tank the 300 to 350 kms for 10 lts is really too low, i wish i have a 15 lts tank or more

  11. May 4, 2015 at 5:54 pm #

    i am planning to buy this model…what is the pick up of the bike?

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