KTM is known worldwide for their naked and off-road bikes. One of them, the 200 Duke makes its way to world’s biggest motorcycle market in India. It was launched in India on 24th January, 2012. The bike looks sporty, feels sporty, and don’t go by the 200cc engine, because this monster generate 25 Bhp of maximum power and around 19.2 Nm of maximum torque, which is much higher than the normal 200cc commuter bikes available in India, which deliver 15 to 18 Bhp of maximum power.
Update:KTM-Bajaj has finally updated the RC and Duke series in India. The 2016 models now come equipped with all-time on headlamps (there is no on-off switch now). Other changes made are improved paint quality, NOK seal, better and improved seat, vapor recovery system for fuel tank, new ECU mounts, new pillion seat assembly, adjustable handlebar levers, better cooling via improved radiator fans, increased disc brake thickness, plastic flaps on front forks. The RC 200 and 200 Duke now come equipped with better and improved rear view mirrors, plus these 2 models also get new MRF tyres. The front disc brake size has also been increased from 280mm to 300mm in 200 Duke and RC 200.
Design and Style
The design and concept of the bike is extremely new for Indians. Yes, we have seen bikes like Yamaha FZ before which also carry the naked looks but the premium touch and appeal of this bike makes it one of its kinds. Starting from its front, the bike has very slim headlight with no visor. The front mudguard is also short and simple in size but its big telescopic forks, disk plate and wider tyre makes it look macho. The bike has very small body panels. The tank is big and uplifted and sports Duke on it. The rear mudguard is very sporty and along with its fatty tyre, the bike can hold your attention easily. Small tail light is very simple and its black coloured grab rails and clear lens indicators also complement the overall styling.
KTM promotes the instrument console of Duke as cockpit which features a digital speedometer, odometer, trip meter and fuel gauge. This cockpit also has some LED indicators. The bike uses orange coloured back light in its instrument console. The instrument console is not easily readable and apart from its speedometer, you will have to search for other things in it as it compromises on space.
Engine and Gearbox
The bike uses a single-cylinder, liquid- cooled 200cc engine. This 4-stroke, DOHC engine is very powerful as it churns out a maximum power output of 25 bhp at 10000 rpm. The torque output of this engine is 19.2 Nm which is available at 8000 rpm. The bike is equipped with a six-speed manual gearbox with one gear down and five gears up-shift pattern.
Acceleration and Performance
This is the best engine ever used in any street bike in India. The high refinement of this DOHC engine allows you to rev this bike as hard as possible. The gear ratios are well matched with this engine which makes this bike more energetic. The bike does 0-100km/hour in 9.2 seconds. The crispy gear ratios allow you to move quickly through city traffic without wasting much time. The bike can easily go pass the speed of 135km/hr. The throttle response is very impressive. The power to weight ratio of this bike is incredible due to its lightweight. This bike performs best after 4000rpm and till 10000rpm; there is nothing which will disturb you. The torque production is also satisfactory which reduces frequent gear shifting. The bike easily picks up in any gear and even with a pillion rider; you can easily overtake most of the bikes on highways. It’s a perfect option for highway cruising. Even if you take this bike off road, the high amount of torque is available very early which confirms you a pleasant ride. Take it on any terrain and you will be surprised to see the power delivery of this bike. Its short gear ratios, light weight and responsive engine make it perfect for those who know and like to perform stunts. The bike has something for everyone.
The fuel efficiency of this engine ranges from 28-35km/ltr in city conditions. One can expect these figures to increase by 2-3km/ltr on highways. Despite its power packed performance, these mileage figures are quite respectable for a bike of this size.
Comfort while Driving
The seat of the bike is very comfortable and can hold you for a long time. Foot pegs are placed far behind in order to give your knees a perfect angle to roll back so that your thighs firmly hold the tank of the bike. The wide handles bar is also very convenient and you can firmly hold it with your palm. The shoulders feel much relaxed and even in city traffic, it’s not an issue to use this bike.
Safety Features and Storage Space
It has a very powerful headlight which enables you to get a clear view of road at nights. There is no storage space in this bike.
Suspension and Brakes
It has a very capable suspension system with high-quality upside-down fork at its front and mono shock absorber at its back. Big discs of 300mm at its front and 230mm at its back confirms you a safe ride with complete control on this bike.
Ride and Handling
Its superb suspension, extremely wide rear tyre and a wheelbase of 1361±15 mm gives you a very stable and pleasing ride. Moreover its, lightweight rear swing arm adds to the stability of this bike. It handles really well and it’s not difficult to steer this bike in city traffic. The bike is quite nimble and strong around corners and gives you immense confidence. The tyres hold the road firmly and even on highway also, it’s a very stable bike and its good suspension keeps you grounded at high speeds. Its suspension and handling can also prompt you to take it off road. It can digest any pothole and can easily cross any obstruction with a ground clearance of 165mm.
Bajaj-KTM has priced the 200 Duke at INR 1,42,000 (Ex-showroom New Delhi). At this price it seems to be little over-priced for a 200cc bike but 200 Duke is awesome in terms of looks and styling and is also a very powerful 200cc bike. Yamaha R15 is a 150cc bike but is priced around Rs. 1.14 lakhs and selling very well because it is technically very sound, same is with KTM 200 Duke which features a liquid cooled 200cc engine which generates maximum power of 25 Bhp and also comes with front and rear disc brakes.
It was launched with only one colour option - Orange. But on demand and feedback from customers KTM has launched two new shades: White and Black.
It is priced at INR 1.42 lakhs (ex-showroom, Delhi). This bike is not for everyone and its high price tag is an evidence of it. At this price, it creates its own league and will only appeal to those who are looking for an affordable and real street bike. Moreover, the high quality performance, naked looks and exclusivity are enough reasons for one to buy it. This bike will give you a different identity and if you are ready to spend this much of money on a bike then it’s a complete value for money package.