She is Heavy, She is My Versys.
Of late, have been having difficulties manoeuvring the Versys around the city.
She is heavy and I have a physique matching that of Goofy.
Needed a lighter bike and yet have enough oomph to join the boys on sunday mornings, riding up the nearby hills.
This Austrian lass, the 2012 KTM 690 Duke matched my requirements well.
Weighing in at 330 pounds dry against the Versys 453 pounds, that's a few sacks of potatoes off my toothpick legs.
Yet this single 690 cc thumper pushes 70 HP @ 7500 rpm. That's plenty of horses for a light bike.
Specs are good too. Slipper (anti-hopping) clutch. Switchable ABS. Twin plug ignition. Ride by wire.
After riding junior Duke for a few weeks, comments are :
the 690 is not really ideal for arrow straight highways or long distance touring, for this the bigger 990 SMT/Adventure twins are obviously better choices. but i needed a lighter bike.
being light makes overtaking or being overtaken by large vehicles a nervy affair. cross winds unfriendly.
vibrations at cruising speeds (80 mph/130 kph) numb the fingers..
definitely a fast, fun bike for winding mountain or country roads on any sundays.
then come mondays n week days, it's a great light n nimble commuter bike to attack the congested city streets n arrive for work with a smile.
the styling is less aggressive than last year but has a more comfortable seat.
the KTM being a big bore single, red lines at 8000 rpm (Versys @ 10500 rpm).
she will jerk n then stall in third gear below 2000 rpm.
but the V can do 2000 rpm in third gear n still pull away smoothly.
hence a lot of gear shifting with the KTM. the gear changing is also very soft, unlike the clunky but positive shifts of the V.
the feather light hydraulic clutch helps a lot.
often i hve engaged a mid-gear neutral accidentally on the KTM.
then gassed the bike n left with a screaming engine but not going anywhere.
But I love her. brings out the hooligan in me when i feel naughty yet pretending to be a small nice bike when mom visits.
Big Momma Vs Slim Jean.