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KTM Duke 125 Test Ride Review

  • Published On: 24 December 2018
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KTM has unveiled the baby duke into the Indian market at Rs. 1.40 lakhs.

KTM Duke 125
KTM Duke 125
KTM Duke 125
KTM Duke 125
KTM Duke 125
KTM Duke 125
KTM Duke 125
KTM Duke 125
KTM Duke 125
KTM Duke 125
KTM Duke 125
KTM Duke 125
KTM Duke 125
KTM Duke 125
KTM Duke 125
KTM Duke 125

KTM India as always has listened to its fans and has now brought in the KTM Duke 125 into the Indian market. This baby duke is based on the old Duke 200, unlike the international variant which is based on the new Duke 390. 

The Duke 125 looks like an updated Duke 200

Styling — The KTM Duke 125 looks identical to the old KTM Duke 200. Only the newer graphics and the 125 stickers will help you distinguish it from its elder sibling. It gets three color options - White, Black, and Orange. However, the headlight assembly and the trellis frame is finished in black in all the variants. The wheels are in the traditional KTM orange. The baby Duke also gets all LEDs.

The instrument cluster is well-loaded and the switchgear is of good quality

Instrument Cluster and Switchgear - The instrument cluster too is borrowed from the older Duke. It’s a good thing as this cluster is feature-loaded and is capable of showing a lot of information about the bike. This includes distance to empty, mileage, gear position indicator, engine temperature, fuel gauge, and a clock. It gets twin trip meters, an odometer, and a gear shift light too. The switchgear is backlit and comes in a piano black finish. While the cluster design might be old the build quality and parts used feel very good.

The Duke 125 might not be suitable for short riders

Ergonomics - The ergonomics are too carried over from the old Duke. Having said that the seat has a softer and better cushioning. The seat height is tall coming in at 818 mm. The foot-pegs are also slightly rear-set making this baby Duke a little difficult for short riders. The seating position is upright. The rear view mirrors don’t offer great visibility if the rider is wearing a jacket, the same problem riders faced on the old duke. Another problem is the pillion seat which is not only small but also uncomfortable.

Performance is punchy and the engine is smooth

Performance - The KTM Duke 125 is powered by the same motor as the old Duke 200 only with a smaller bore. The result is 14.3 BHP and 12 Nm of torque from a 124.7cc engine. The engine feels lively in the mid-range. Despite it not revving quickly, the top end is very responsive and the motor redlines at 10,000 RPM. 0-100 km/hr takes 17 seconds while the top speed is 115 km/hr. However, the motor loses its punch post 110 km/hr.

The smooth gearbox complements the engine

The 6-speed gearbox is smooth and the clutch is on the lighter side. The engine feels very refined and you can easily cruise in the 6th gear. There are some vibrations when you redline the engine but for the most part, the engine is smooth and doesn’t heat up. The exhaust note is pleasing.

The Duke 125 gets single-channel ABS

Riding Dynamics - The suspension setup, brakes, and tyres of the Duke 125 are again borrowed from the old Duke 200. This is also a good thing as the suspension is on the stiffer side and the tyres too grip well around corners. The feedback from the handlebar is very good and inspires confidence. Braking performance is good and the bike also gets a single-channel ABS which cannot be switched off. The seat too is comfortable for long rides.

The Duke 125 is a fun motorcycle is budget is not an issue

Verdict - While some might say that at Rs. 1.40 lakhs the KTM Duke 125 is vastly overpriced, you also have to take into account the quality of hardware that the baby Duke offers. The performance may not be on par to similarly priced motorcycles, but the hardware is unmatched. The price may be justified if KTM would have launched the newer version based on the current generation Duke 390. However, if you want to enter the KTM family or need a bike with segment-leading features and good build quality, the KTM Duke 125 is a reliable buy.

Author: Droom

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