KTM RC390 vs Kawasaki Ninja 300: Tech Specs and Features Compared

Added in: Comparisons

390 vs 300

Comparing the KTM 390 Duke against the Kawasaki Ninja 300 was like comparing oranges and guava (just because the Kawasaki is green and KTM is orange). The fully faired bodywork and an extra cylinder worked in Ninja’s favour while the KTM had an upper hand in terms of price. But now, with the entry of KTM RC390, Kawasaki Ninja has got a more apt competitor. The latest offering from the Austrian motorcycle maker, the RC390 is stylistically more similar to the Kawasaki Ninja 300, prompting us for this quick specs and features comparo.

Before we place the Austrian against the Japanese, let’s have a look at their spec sheet.

ModelKTM RC390Kawasaki Ninja 300
Cubic Capacity373cc296cc
Transmission6-Speed Constant Mesh6-Speed, Return
Fuel System Bosch EFIFuel injection: ø32 mm x 2 (Keihin),with dual throttle valves
Frame TypeTubular space frame made from steel, powder-coatedTube diamond, steel
Weight153.5 Kg172 kg
Fuel Capacity10 litres17 litres
Wheel base1,340mm1,405mm
Seat height820mm785mm
Top Speed (ODO Indicated)179kph180kph
Price (Ex-showroom Delhi)Rs 2,05,000Rs 3,50,000

In terms of power, the KTM RC390, at 43.5PS of power, puts out about four extra ponies against the Kawasaki Ninja 300’s 39PS. The RC390 also outdoes the Ninja 300 in terms of torque. While the Ninja 300 makes 27Nm of torque, the RC390 scales 35Nm. Club this with 166kgs body weight and the RC390 has got a better power-to-weight ratio than the (slightly) heavier Ninja 300. The Ninja 300 has a power-to-weight ratio of 227PS per tonne while the RC390 has a much healthier 283PS per tonne. There is not much of a difference in terms of top whack as the KTM RC390 does 179kph while the Kawasaki Ninja 300 clocks about 180kph (all speeds ODO indicated).

KTM Rc390 India 2

But the department where the RC390 falls behind is the fuel tank capacity. With its 17 litre fuel tank, the Ninja 300 can cover more miles on a full tank of fuel versus the RC390’s 10 litre canister. Also, a short person may find it easier to keep his legs on the grounds on the Ninja 300 as against the RC390 as the latter has a seat height of 820mm versus the former’s 785mm.

Kawasaki Ninja 300R

But the last point (and a major one) where the KTM RC390 outdoes the Kawasaki Ninja 300 hands down is in the price department. In fact, by putting in another Rs 15,000 over the Ninja 300’s price tag, you can actually buy a RC390 along with a RC200. At Rs 3.5 lakh (Ex-showroom Delhi), the Ninja 300 costs nearly Rs 1.45 lakh more than the RC390. But then, what you do get in the Ninja 300 at the Rs 3.5 lakh price tag is an extra cylinder which feels relaxed in three digit speeds on highway cruising. Also, the fit and finish of the Kawasaki is much better than any other motorcycle in the quarter-litre category. The Ninja 300 also gets racing technology based slipper clutch that acts as back-torque limiter and self servo mechanism that enables a lighter clutch lever pull.

We feel that the RC390 is a cracker of a machine and is a steal at the price tag of Rs 2,05,000 (ex-showroom Delhi). The Kawasaki on the other hand appeals to the audience who crave for a premium product and have deep pockets.

So what name are you planning to write on the cheque? Share your opinions through comments below. Stay tuned to Motoroids for more updates from the motoring industry.

KTM Rc390 track
KTM Rc390 road
KTM Rc390 India 5
Ninja 300 review (1)
Ninja 300 review
Kawasaki Ninja 300 (18)
Kawasaki Ninja 300 (19)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  • stani says:

    Great comparo. Hands down RC 390 is better. All ownership reports of the RC seem very positive in terms of reliability and ownership so far. For such a bargain price , Ninja doesn’t even come close no matter what it has better than the RC.

  • Dear Mike,

    The power figures have been taken from manufacturer websites. We have ridden the Ninja 300 but the RC390 was recently launched and hence we are yet to ride it. That is the reason we did a technical specification comparison only.

  • Mike says:

    Where did you get the horsepower numbers? I hope not from the manufacturers? Have ridden both?

  • Dear Chinmaya,

    Thank you for your valuable inputs. The Ninja (including 250R) has been around for almost three decades and has been improved over the years. We believe that KTM will also improvise as time passes by. As Bajaj management said during the launch, they are trying to improve the overall build quality of KTM motorcycles after studying customer response.

    Do keep sharing your thoughts and opinions with us.


  • chinmaya says:

    Thats a nice comparo Suvil. Pretty neutral and to the point. Well, I had already made a cheque for Ninja and if I were to buy a bike today, it would still be Ninja over the RC. The reasons being, better overall quality, a supremely refined twin cylinder engine, crisp gear box, better comfort level on Ninja, a bigger 17 litre tank for those highway trips, plus time reliabilty.

    One big point is the big bike feel and behavior of Ninja which is simply unmatched by others below its price tag. Remember while Ninja has time tested mill RC employs the same Duke 390 engine and hardware which have had some unpleasant issues in its very short history. When you summarize all the above points, Ninja makes sense to someone who is a connoisseur of quality and needs something that has been time tested and feels premium at the same time.