KTM Treats Its 890 Adventure Range To a Host Of Dakar Racer-Derived Updates

Photos: KTM

First released in 2021, the KTM 890 Adventure is a high-performance mid-sized adventure bike that offered a decent bump in power over its 790 predecessor. And despite being a fairly new design, the Ready To Race brand has nonetheless already opted to treat the LC8 ADV range to a significant overhaul for the 2023 model year, bestowing the 890 Adventure and 890 Adventure R models with a slew of features derived from the Austrian outfit’s Dakar-winning 450 Rally racer. 

Photo: KTM

Developed with help from eight-time national enduro champion and Dakar Rally competitor Chris Birch, the 2023 “LC890” lineup sports a redesigned suite of bodywork, with a new fairing, hands-guards, navigation tower, spoiler-equipped tank, and cowling — all of which are supported by new forged aluminum brackets and inspired by KTM’s 450 Rally bike. The revised bodywork is also adorned in new graphics created using in-mold technology rather than traditional decals. Also borrowed from KTM’s Dakar racer is the 890’s new suspension, which is comprised of a 43mm WP XPLOR fork and WP APEX rear shock — items that are upgraded to a 48mm XPLOR fork and an XPLOR Progressive Damping System rear mono-shock on the 890 ADV R, which also gains a high-mount MX-style front fender and a R-spec-exclusive livery. This new suspension has been tuned for increased feel and response, though was also designed to mitigate fatigue while riding off-road for extended periods. 

Photo: KTM

Constructed around a powder-coated Chromium-Molybdenum-Steel frame that utilizes the engine as a stressed member, the 890 ADV range is powered by KTM’s liquid-cooled 889cc LC8 parallel-twin motor that’s fortified behind a composite skid plate and good for 103.25hp and around 75ft-lbs of torque. Other highlights and new additions to the range include revised ergonomics, all-LED lighting and indicators, spoked wheels (21” F 18” R) shod in Mitas Enduro Trail tires, a six-axis-regulated 9.3 MP ABS system with a dedicated Off-Road ABS mode, a connected 5” TFT display, a PASC slipper clutch, an optional quick-shifter, and lean-sensitive Motorcycle Traction Control that monitors both rear-wheel slip and front-wheel lofting.

Photo: KTM

The 2023 KTM 890 Adventure and 2023 KTM 890 Adventure R motorcycles are slated to hit North American dealerships this month, and while pricing has yet to be revealed, we anticipate similar numbers to the 2022 models, with MSRPs starting at around $14,000 for the 890 ADV and $15,000 for the R-spec. We also anticipate that KTM may produce an 890 ADV R Rally model like the brand did for the 890 range’s previous model year.