If you’re looking for a bike with a high-octane racing bike feel that you can take to the streets, KTM’s mighty 990 Adventure just might be exactly what you’re looking for. The 2008 KTM 990 Adventure comes with the power to leave just about any other vehicle on the highway in the dust. This bike can do just about everything besides sit patiently in rush hour traffic. While it can definitely be used for practical purposes, the defining characteristic of this sport bike is that it’s just a hell of a lot of fun to drive.
The KTM 990 Adventure is a rally race style bike that is available for public consumption and can handle the highway as easily as it can handle bumpy back roads. This bike, available in the trademark KTM orange and black (blue is also available), features aggressive styling characterized by molded black covering plastic which gives this bike an almost sinister feel. The sharp lines, front fairing and uniquely shaped and positioned headlight all create a unique look that hints at this bike’s monstrous power. The design is also practical, with a well-positioned windscreen that protects the rider at just about any height and speed.
There’s some concern with big bikes like this regarding stability, but you don’t have to worry about getting up to speed to keep this bike balanced easily. The newly designed chassis features side mounted fuel tanks, which lowers the bike’s center of gravity and really keeps it balanced, even with some rough riding. It’s pretty surprisingly stable at lower speeds, although low speed maneuvering can be tricky. There are plenty of KTM bikes designed for weaving in and out of commuter traffic. The KTM 990 Adventure is for burning up the highway or sharing exhilarating off-road adventures.
Once you get to where the KTM 990 Adventure loves to live though, get ready to have some fun. On the highway, you can really turn this beast loose, as it gets up over 100 MPH no problem, with a top speed of 130 MPH. Passing cars and getting to the front of the pack is a breeze for this engine, which can crank out a formidable 98 horsepower. Off the road, the KTM 990 may shine even more. The 990 Adventure loves to show off its off-road racing bike blood, and it can tackle most difficult terrain at high speed with little difficulty. A huge WP suspension will guide this bike through anything the road cares to throw at it. The clutch is pretty reliable on the way up, though getting from fifth to sixth may not always be as smooth it should be, and downshifting will require some attention.
Then we get to the matter of riding comfort. This bike is built for speed and action, but feeling at home in the bike seat is important. Like many KTM bikes, the seat is a bit high, but this bike is so strong and flexible, you can even spend a fair bit of time riding it standing up. Also, the seat is wide, which can help you get comfortable. That being said, the setup is not ideal for the biggest riders.
The 2008 KTM 990 Adventure it not cheap, but with what it delivers, you wouldn’t expect it to be. When you see and feel everything this sporting bike can do, you might just sell your car, so you could come out ahead financially. If you’re willing to pay a little more, and the thing you really love about the KTM 990 Adventure is its racing characteristics, kick it up a notch to the Adventure S.