Review – KTM 790 Adventure

The KTM 790 Adventure is not an adventure R. It’s a stand alone bike, with a unique personality and skillset. In this review we look at how it compares the R and to the competition in the mid-range ADV market.


The KTM 790 Adventure R is an incredible bike. It’s a bike that we could all be looking back on in 20 years time, with fond memories. Between that, the T700, the 1250 GS and the incumbent Africa Twin we’ve not been more spoilt for good adventure style bikes.

“It wants to be pushed, ridden hard and to make your eyes water with excitement.”

Even beyond the headlines grabbers, the market place is filled with good bikes, such the Tiger 800 and the F 850 GS. The KTM 790 Adventure feels like an assault on those models. While the Adventure R has grabbed headlines, attention and plaudits, the 790 adventure is quietly doing its own thing. It’s been reviewed less, drummed up less interest and yet it’s nearly the same bike.

Expect it really isn’t. While the chassis and engine are identical, KTM have placed a significant rift in character between the 790 Adventure models. This is a bike that feels like an assault on the Triumph Tiger XR mdoels, F 850 GS’s and F 750 GS’s. This bike is all out war on the street biased adventure bike market and it’s brought a shotgun to a nerf gun fight. The KTM is an aggressively suspended, sharp machine in the very style that KTM have made their name. It wants to be pushed, ridden hard and to make your eyes water with excitement.


It’s far less adventure bike than you’d expect. We’ve broken it down a little more in the video above but simply put, the KTM is a bike for the person that likes twisty roads. It’s wants to ridden on alpine passes, sweeping countryside roads and everything else is a chore. It’s not fussed on the part of adventure riding that requires you to ride a long way, or on less than pleasant roads.


When it comes to leaving the dirt, the fantastic chassis of the 790 holds it together, despite having the stiffest, most abrupt suspension in adventure motorcycles. Wether it’s good or bad will naturally fall to wether you like the sound of the characteristics. I had a great time riding it when I was riding it in the right environment. It spread a smile across my face for hours and is filled with the things that KTM are generally doing well. For the full review, click the play button above.


‘Till next time.

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