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Old 03-20-2013, 10:04 AM   #1
Ding L Berry OP
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Question Tried the Kool Aid

Hi all, this is my first post on the site and have some questions I have read a lot about the KTM brand then decided to tske a test ride, I rode the 2013 690 enduro and was extremely excited about it, however they also had a couple of 990 so i decided to give it a try. Disappointment set in after riding it, the transmission was great however the engine was very lack luster in it performance. The seat height and saddle were much better for me on the 990.

Time to talk about the price for the 690, and it was thru the roof. No dealing at this location and the internet yeilded another dealer with them in stock. Set out on a road trip to the dealers location and then got in the saddle once again, this time the 690 was not as I had remembered in my previous ride. its engine did not seem to make the power of the first one I had ridden. Questions ran thru my mind and the dealer insured me the engines were dynoed at the factory prior to shipping. I then in turm rode their 990 and this one was very impressive. The transmission was outstanding, the engine was extremely smooth and powerful. This Kool Aid was just right. The dealer did not even really discuss price, it was a good deal for either of the bikes however my mind started wondering about the reliability of the brand and the consistacy of the factory making bikes.

My question would be has any one else ran accross this inconsistancy in there experience to purchase a KTM ???
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Old 03-20-2013, 10:23 AM   #2
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The 690 has a switch under the seat where you can select different power delivery settings. So they could have been set different. Also I think in 2013 and maybe 2012(not sure) the "690" is really 690cc. Prior years the engine was 650cc.

As far as the 990 variability, were they the same model and year? Seems like KTM is always tweaking the fuel injection maps so that might have been the difference.

I doubt there is that much variability from the factory in terms of quality control of engines.
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Old 03-20-2013, 10:51 AM   #3
Blue&Yellow
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Most of the power on the 990 comes in the last little bit of twist from the throttle, it's a bit of strange setup. I really like the 990 but I think throttle control is one of it's weakest points - when you want to be smooth it's rough. But when you want to nail it the throttle travel can seem too long instead.

If you think it's a major problem you can get a power commander and some customs maps, or you can just get a 950 instead which has carbs. For better and for worse.

But the 990 isn't slow by anyone's standards, it's a 1000cc V-twin after all. But it only really comes alive after say 4500 rpm and then it goes strong from there.

The 690 is lighter and a single so it has more "thump" off the line but, 0-60 is about the same. And after 60 the 990 leaves it for dead.

Blue&Yellow screwed with this post 03-20-2013 at 11:00 AM
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Old 03-20-2013, 12:19 PM   #4
Orangecicle
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For what it's worth here are my 2 cents. I ride a 950. Love the bike, but it is an absolute pig in the woods. If you ride very tight trails, it's too much -- the 690 rocks there. But if you want to travel quite a bit, the 9x0 is the best. The 690 has an issue carrying much on the rear, which is the gas tank.

I'd never sell my 950, but if I had all the money in the world, I'd buy a 690 and the Defy Quest modifications from KTM Basel to keep the big girl company. :)
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Old 03-20-2013, 03:59 PM   #5
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+1 on the map selector switch. Also its possible the 990's were geared differently. Some models have 17t Fronts others have 16t fronts.

Ive owned both the 690 & 950- each has their pro's & cons. It really depends on your riding area- and the amount of on road/Hwy time vs off road. Hey if you live close(10-30 minutes) to good offroad riding, and you dont plan on doing 300-400-500+ mile days- 690 is a great machine, but I think it fits into a narrow range of usability- Its not particularly great in the woods( like a 350- 450 or 500), due to its power delivery and limited steering range especially in tighter single track, and its not particularly great on the Hwy due to its size- it still feels small.

For me 300mi is an average day( 100+ mi of dirt ) but we often do more. The ride to "DualSport Land" is minimum of 60 miles but can be up to 100miles depending on where we start on the dirt. All that seat time to & from on the 690 took its toll- on the knobbies, and my arse. The deal breaker for me was that 60+ mile ride home on the 690 after doing 200+ miles of dualsport. When I started loading in the truck to avoid the 120 miles to & from the riding areas- I knew it was time to sell it.

What I appreciate about the 950/990 is that it will go just about all the places the 690 can go- & nearly as fast- for me the 950 has turned into the do-it-all bike that is well suited for HWY & Offroad . I dont regret selling the 690 to get my 950. (Having a 450EXC also helped get over the separation anxiety of selling 690.)

Here is some motivation to support your 990 vs 690 dilemma:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oVGry7-gZkg
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Old 03-20-2013, 06:44 PM   #6
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Nice video. That guy can ride!
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Old 03-22-2013, 06:04 AM   #7
Ding L Berry OP
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Thanks for the informative comments.
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