The KTM 1290 Adventure sits at the top tier of the Adventure food chain. Since Ducati rolled out its Multistrada V4, it was only necessary for its rivals to upgrade their offerings, in order to give the Red Italian a tough fight. And KTM has done just that! After rolling out a couple of teasers, the Austrian manufacturer has now taken the wraps off the 2021 1290 Adventure S. While the updated model continues with the same 1,301cc V-twin motor that produces 158bhp and 138Nm, it gets quite a few changes to improve its overall performance.
As expected, KTM has bestowed the 1290 Adventure S with Adaptive Cruise Control system, which is essentially KTM’s version of radar-guided cruise control.
While the updated model continues with the same 1,301cc V-twin motor that produces 158bhp and 138Nm, it gets quite a few changes to improve its overall performance. New pistons are also part of the equation, and KTM also says they offer improved reliability, which always a welcome development. KTM now claims a service interval of 15,000km. The 6-speed PANKL transmission has been reworked too. KTM has installed an improved cooling system for better heat management.
Specs and features
There’s also a new suspension to consider, which features WP Apex Semi-Active Technology. KTM has also made considerable changes to the riding ergos of the 1290 Super Adventure. The seat height has now been reduced marginally, from the previous 860-875mm to 849-869mm. KTM has also pushed the steering back by 15mm and lengthened the swingarm for improved stability. Looking down at your dash, there’s also a new 7-inch TFT display that is mated to a connectivity unit that seamlessly pairs with your smartphone.
Just beneath that display is a nice little cubby with a USB port so you can easily keep said smartphone charged and ready.
The new Adaptive Cruise Control is the product of a collaboration between KTM and Bosch. The system automatically adjusts the distance between the bike and any traffic ahead according to five stages that can be set with the re-designed handlebar switches.