KTM’s entry-level mass-market motorcycle for Indian motorcyclists is the 125 CC Duke.
The bike is the most affordable one in KTM’s India line-up but it is a premium 125 CC street bike!
For starters, the ex-showroom KTM 125 price for 2023 currently stands at Rs. 2, 06,473. Bikers in a price-sensitive market like India would point out that the price is steep for a 125 CC bike.
Experts, on the other hand, say otherwise.
The Duke 125 carries KTM’s read-to-race DNA. Furthermore, the Unique Selling Points of the bike justify its price.
Some of the most attractive USPs of the KTM Duke 125 will be discussed in the following sections.
Best-in-class engine performance
KTM engineers made sure that the 124 CC, BS6-compliant, single-cylinder, fuel-injected liquid-cooled engine is meant for the Indian market.
The engine has received a tuning that enables it to produce 14.3 bhp of peak power. Simultaneously, the rider can get a peak torque of 12Nm in the top RPM range.
The overall performance of the engine can be plotted using a linear graph. In a nutshell, the bike’s engine is performance-oriented and has a linear power delivery mechanism. Thus, the bike can suit the needs of both seasoned as well as novice riders with ease!
Furthermore, KTM bikes all over the globe are known for their rev-happy nature. The same character is carried forward by the Duke 125’s engine. To put things into perspective, the engine has a 9500 RPM redline! This attribute allows the 125 CC bike to cross the 100 KMPH mark in no time! However, the bike’s engine is electronically limited to remain within the 112 KMPH top speed mark.
To match the overall performance of the engine, KTM also made sure that the transmission is precision engineered. In terms of gearshifts, the transmission allows the rider to shift up or down smoothly. The transmission comes with six precision-engineered gears.
Premium looking bike
The overall road presence of the bike when it was launched was a bit ungainly. Not anymore. The latest version of the bike comes with subtle aesthetic revisions allowing the Duke 125 to resemble its sibling the Duke 200.
In simple words, the Duke 125 is a semi-naked streetfighter. The bike comes with its subframe partially exposed. The fuel tank design also has been revised in a bid to enhance its muscular appearance. Furthermore, the shrouds bolted onto the two sides of the fuel tank add to the appeal factor of the bike. The latest iteration of the bike comes with a re-engineered Trellis subframe. This step was taken in a bid to achieve a stubby-looking tail section.
Unmatched OEM packaging
KTM also made sure that the Duke 125 came feature-loaded from the factory. This is the reason why the bike now boasts a sharper-looking headlamp unit. The headlamp unit also comes with an integrated LED DRL. The headlamp is illuminated by a halogen bulb. However, the turn indicators, and tail lamp unit are illuminated by LEDs.
The bike comes with WP Apex series suspensions. The front suspension is a USD fork unit. The rear suspension is a preload-adjustable monoshock.
The latest iteration of the bike comes with the same LED instrument cluster unit but now has an orange backlight.
Second-to-none ride quality
The bike has an aggressive riding triangle. The footpegs are rear set and the handlebar is raised. It means that the rider would sit with the typical streetfighter bike riding stance. A streetfighter bike stance surely can prove to be quite uncomfortable on long rides. But an aggressive stance also offers the rider immaculate command over the bike. Especially on tight corners, during overtakes and on high-speed straight-line runs!
Ample inner thigh support is offered to the rider. This is possible thanks to the design of the fuel tank. The extra padded as well as strategically contoured seat also helps!
To sum it all up, the Duke 125 is a powerful, feature-packed, stunning 125 CCC street bike from KTM. The packaging, the hardware and the riding dynamics of the bike justify the price. However, the reader is requested to take a test ride of the bike before making up their mind.