5 BEST QUALITIES OF THE KTM 890 ADVENTURE R

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KTM 890 Adventure R photographed in a bushland setting

The KTM 890 Adventure R is one of the Austrian brands’ marque models and is no stranger to Australian adventure routes.

Launched as the successor to the groundbreaking 790 Adventure R, the 890 is in its second iteration and shows no sign of slowing down.

Here are the 5 best qualities of a much-loved machine.

1

The seat isn’t as comfortable as the Nordon 901’s (not many are) but as a bench seat designed to allow full movement, it is outstanding.
We’ve done long road days on the 890 ADV R (read our test here) and found the seat to be a better offering than many others including the Tenere and Africa Twin. It’s impossible to overstate how important a comfortable seat is when you’re staring down hours in that proverbial saddle, but we can all agree that once your arse starts to complain then things go downhill pretty quickly.

2

WP went through some twists and turns before it arrived at the Xplor suspension, which itself has seen a lot of tweaking. As a stock suspension, it does an excellent job at offering comfort in the early stroke but robustness in the mid where most of the hard work gets done.
It works on the road and in the dirt and while it’s not as sensitive to clicker adjustments as KYB kit is, WP managed to nail an impressive stock setup to suit a wide range of riders.

3

The balance of the 890 is undeniably its greatest asset. The drop-down tank design that was borrowed from the rally team and then established in production with the original 790 has proven to be a masterstroke that even Yamaha couldn’t ignore.
The lower centre of gravity gifts the 890 a far nimbler feel than a 900cc motorcycle should in the dirt. The way the front-end plants itself is a big part of why the 890 can be ridden so aggressively and the chassis then compliments the design brief in a way that further encourages you to go hard.

4

The complete electronic suite is smart, but Rally mode is the single most practical and easy-to-use function offered by any manufacturer.
Being able to control the bike’s response to terrain in real-time with just the movement of a finger is good tech. If Honda tried this on the AT it would take five fingers and a weeklong sacrificial ceremony to a Goat God.
The switchblock on the 890 is uncomplicated and intuitive and opting for Rally mode is a no-brainer.

5

The original 890 was a funky-looking beast with an insectoid vibe to it that worked better at some angles than others.
The current 890 looks much better now that the praying mantis head is gone. The subtle blue hue to the fuel tank works well against the cleaner lines in the graphics and the sharper shaping to the radiator shroud gives the bike a more aggressive profile.