Bike Of The Week: The KTM E-Duke

KTM E-Duke inside a building.

KTM’s parent company, Pierer Mobility, has confirmed that their popular Duke series of naked bikes is getting the electric treatment. News of the KTM E-Duke was released as part of Pierer’s 2022 investor relations presentation, and gives us a hint at the Austrian manufacturer’s upcoming electric future.

When news of the Husqvarna E-Pilen concept broke last April, the possibility of a road-going KTM on a similar platform seemed inevitable. The two brands have a long history of rolling out multiple products with near-identical underpinnings, so it didn’t seem too far-fetched. The Duke 390 has the Vitpilen 401, the 690 SMC has the 701 Supermoto, the 890 Adventure has the new Norden 901… The list goes on.

Husqvarna e-pilen concept electric motorcycle in the studio.
Husqvarna’s original E-Pilen concept bike – Husqvarna

Interestingly enough, however, it looks like although the upcoming electric Duke and its Husqvarna stablemate (the production E-Pilen) may share their essential underpinnings, they’re vastly different from the concept we saw last year. Here’s what we know about the E Duke so far.

KTM E-Duke: Overview, Specs, Pricing, Etc.

KTM E-Duke investor slideshow screenshot.

As you might guess by looking at the now-pixelated rendering of the upcoming E-Duke (Pierer originally released a much less blurry rendering, according to the folks at Motorcycle.com), KTM is keeping most of the details on the new Duke tightly wrapped.

The company’s announcement does include a few important details though, most notably being the KTM E-Duke’s fixed battery design and 10kW nominal power rating. These two facts are important, because they tell us KTM (and therefore Husqvarna) are putting the original E-Pilen concept’s strategy of small hot-swappable batteries on the backburner, at least for the time being while they continue the collaborative R&D efforts with Honda, Yamaha, and Piaggio announced last March.

KTM E-Duke original press release rendering.
The original (and slightly less-blurry) rendering of the KTM E-Duke obtained by Motorcycle.com.

Considering the original prototype claimed an approximate 60-mile range using 4.5kWh of power (and an 8kW motor), we expect the new E-Duke (as well as the production version of the E-Pilen) to land somewhere in the 75-85 mile range. That’s because where the concept bike drew power from three 1.5kWh battery packs, the production E-Duke is specced to pack a single, fixed 5.5kWh battery. Granted these production bikes both get more powerful motors than last year’s concept, but the larger capacity and improved efficiency of the fixed battery design should yield some decent dividends.

According to Pierer, these new machines will likely be manufactured in India as part of the ongoing collaboration with Indian manufacturing giant Bajaj. The Bajaj factory is already responsible for producing all of KTM’s road-going two-wheelers under 401cc (RC90, Svartpilen 401, etc.), and Pierer also disclosed that serial production of a “common 48-volt electric two-wheeler platform” in the same factory is also part of KTM’s plan for 2022.

Photo: Schedl R.

This announcement also stated that Pierer’s future growth in the sustainable two-wheeler industry is dependent on the development of more efficient, lighter weight, and lower-cost batteries. We suspect that Pierer is taking this project on themselves, especially considering the Austrian manufacturer recently invested over 28 million dollars into a 20,000 square-meter facility in Anif, Austria focused solely on the design and development of electric drivetrains and related components.

Feature image: Schedl R.

Recent Posts

Copyright © 2019 – 2021, Electric CyCLe Rider All Rights Reserved