Austrian bikemaker, KTM in collaboration with Indian two-wheeler giant Bajaj Auto is developing two new models with a 500cc parallel-twin engine. This new 500cc engine will be used on the KTM 490 Duke and KTM 490 Adventure. These models will be positioned between the KTM 390 range and the new KTM 890 models. According to the KTM CEO - Stefan Pierer, the new engine will be launched sometime in 2022.
The new 500cc engine will be developed at Bajaj Auto’s R&D center in Pune. KTM’s R&D department will be providing full support. The engine that is being worked upon will power the KTM 490 Duke and 490 Adventure.
"This is being 100 percent developed at the Bajaj R&D centre in Pune, but supported by our R&D guys. It's a parallel-twin similar to the format we have on the 790/890, only 500 cc. This is very important for our 125/200 and 390 Duke customers to trade up to, especially in developed markets as an A2 license bike, while in the so-called emerging markets it'll be a premium product. But it's still under development, and so far we've not decided yet where we're going to be producing that new range of 500cc twin-cylinder models. It could also take place in China, because the transfer of our older 790 engine to CFMoto, our partners there, has worked quite well. Their new production facility which they began building 18 months ago is now ready to go, with production starting at the beginning of 2021," commented Stefan Pierer, KTM CEO in a recent interview to a well-known auto publication.
Furthermore, we can also expect the new 500cc parallel-twin engine to be offered on Husqvarna bikes and Bajaj’s own version spanning naked, sport touring, and adventure bikes. The 500cc bikes will basically bridge the gap between the 390cc and 790cc products in terms of specs, power, and price. As for the price, we can expect the 490 range to cost around Rs 5 lakh (ex-showroom).