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Old 01-16-2014, 10:19 AM   #1
Kedgi OP
Joined: Mar 2011
Location: Shediac NB
Oddometer: 1,388
Pissed My new KTM 990/Why I cancelled a Winter riding Mexico

This is a brief description of why I canceled my Winter in Mexico on my new KTM 990.

In short, the fuel filters are so poorly designed you can't trust this bike.

I am spending my forth night in a motel in San Antonio Texas waiting for new fuel filters to arrive and be installed on my bike.

I left my home in eastern Canada on my new 990 in late October, just ahead of the snow and rode to Houston, where I dropped the bike at a friends house (after a trip to the dealership). I flew home for Christmas and New Years. I returned in early January to Texas to pick up the bike for a long ride in Winter in Mexico, solo, now cancelled.

This bike has had reliability issues since South Carolina, quit dead and left me stranded four times there. I limped in with much effort to the Savannah KTM dealer who doesn't sell the adventure bikes, but he determined I had bought bad gas. A fuel treatment he sold got me going but the bike still had major hesitation issues and stalling.

In the end I got to Texas and took it to Wild West Honda/KTM in Katy TX. I told them I had been having fuel, stalling quitting issues since South Carolina. They "fixed" the bike. My friend picked it up (i needed sprockets and chain and Wild West didn't have them in stock, and I had a flight to catch) and it did indeed seem to be fixed.

I returned in January picked up the bike rode for about an hour and it was a lot better.....for and hour and then it was back to the same old thing.

The bike left me stranded on the side of the road in Port Aransas Tx. Quit dead, without warning while riding at 70mph in busy traffic. I have the pucker marks in my seat to prove it. I am eternally thankful it failed there instead of in Northern Mexico between Reynosa and Monterrey. I'd potentially be writing this, waiting for answers from KTM while eating goat with the Cartels.

To keep the story short, or maybe it's too late for that. It is clogged fuel filters. I have been sitting at a motel for four days waiting on replacements. It is a shop job. This is not a proceedure that can been done in a parking lot. Both tanks have to be remove etc etc etc. It takes hours and costs hundreds of dollars, something like and oil change and valve set, which is also $500. I know I have paid for about 6 of them.

KTM Canada is saying this is all the dealers fault (Wild West in Katy TX) they should have checked the filters. Wild West is saying a filter check wasn't on KTM Canada's maintenance schedule. The point is moot, either way they are both happy to leave me holding the bag for an expensive delay and repair and I still don't trust the bike and have had to cancel my trip and I am faced with a huge bill to ship it home, fly myself back and sell the bike asap. I want to go riding (overland) on a bike I can trust. This KTM 990 is a lot of things trustworthy is not one of them.

The dealer in Katy, when they had the bike apart did not check the fuel filters They were happy to send me riding solo in Mexico after I had fuel issues since South Carolina, without checking my fuel filters. Now I am faced with another huge repair bill. I have spent over $4000 in maintenance on this bike in six months, two of those months it sat in my friends garage, so really about $1000/month of riding.

Contrast that to last year when i rode my KLR 650 to Argentina from my home in Canada and spent next to nothing on maintenance, maybe $800 bucks total.

I am longing for a new KLR 650. I do not trust my KTM 990 to be out of sight of a pickup truck and a ramp. The KTM 990 is not an overland bike, in my humble opinion. I bought it to ride Mexico, planned and saved for months, studied Spanish and am I ever disappointed. What a piece of crap.

Please read my ride report, especially the last 10 pages or so, where there is a lot more detail.

My humble opinion, it's worth what you paid for it but consider it before buying a KTM for overland travel


Kedgi screwed with this post 01-16-2014 at 10:43 AM
Kedgi is offline