The KTM 990 SMT was a highly popular “supermoto tourer”—and then it disappeared in 2013. The developing ADV bike market, together with the Duke model line, ate up the SMT’s relevance and KTM eventually put the motorcycle to rest.
For years, KTM enthusiasts have been scrambling to find and buy any of the remaining SMTs. If you’re pining for an SMT of your own, we have good news for you.
KTM has again seen a niche for the SMT and is resurrecting it with the new 2024 KTM 890 SMT.
The Austrian moto manufacturer developed the new SMT based on the 890 Adventure R platform. Yet, KTM has also added into the mix some technical upgrades for enhanced touring capabilities.
As a result, the company has created a bike it claims will propel you up the mountain pass and through any number of miles beyond.
The new 890 SMT draws its power from the KTM LC8c engine—the same one used on the 890 Adventure R. However, KTM has re-tuned the 889cc two-cylinder, four-stroke parallel-twin powerplant for enhanced performance.
The engine produces around 103 horsepower and 73.5 lb-ft of torque, which is again comparable to the 890 Adventure R. KMT says the liquid-cooled engine is designed for better stability and centralization in the corners without a negative impact on agility.
Paired with the powerplant is a six-speed transmission featuring a mechanically operated PASC anti-hopping clutch. Together with the 46 mm dual Dell’Orto throttle bodies, the engine compartment promises high torque and
For its chassis, the 890 SMT makes use of a chromium-molybdenum steel frame, with the engine acting as a stressed element. The street-oriented construction is designed to keep the bike firm while still offering high agility.
Compared to its 890 Adventure R parent model, the 890 SMT’s chassis is slimmer, providing a tighter rider geometry. The design allows the rider to stay close to the bike for sensitive Supermoto-style control while remaining comfortable over longer distances.
One feature contributing to the motorcycle’s slim ergonomics is the reshaped fuel tank. Although it has a volume of only 4.17 gallons, KTM claims the bike’s low fuel consumption will keep the ride going. The company didn’t provide any numbers, though, so we’ll have to judge the mpg for ourselves once we get the chance.
The seat is a Supermoto-style single piece with a back bump to keep the rider from sliding backward during acceleration. The seat height of 33.8 inches combines with an adjustable handlebar (six positions over a 30mm range) for keeping the rider triangle comfortable.
Suspension and Brakes
To soak up surface irregularities, the 890 SMT features WP Apex suspension. In the front is a 43mm open cartridge inverted fork, offering a respectable seven inches of travel.
In the rear, we find a shock providing another 7 inches of travel on top of the 8.9 inches of ground clearance for a cushy ride. The shock has a rebound adjuster and a hand tool for adjusting spring preload on the go.
Connecting to the shock is KTM’s signature due-cast open-lattice swingarm. Its length has been carefully adjusted to provide high handling and stability characteristics.
When it’s time to bring the fun to a stop, two radially-mounted four-piston calipers bite down onto a 320mm disc in the front, while a single two-piston caliper grips a 260mm disc in the rear. Helping the rider brake safely is a Bosch ABS, with both cornering-ABS and Supermoto-ABS.
Finally, we have the 17-inch wheels, which are shod with Michelin PowerGP tires. KTM picked this pair of rubber due to their high grip and quick warm-up phase.
The KTM 890 SMT comes standard with three ride modes, including Rain, Street, and Sport modes. There is an optional Track mode as well, which allows the rider to adjust throttle modes and traction control through 10 levels.
You’ll also find cornering motorcycle traction control on the bike. This system senses the SMT’s pitch and leaning behavior, adjusting traction control interference accordingly for a more confident ride.
Optional electronic goodies include motor slip regulation (MSR), which increases control on low-friction surfaces and during quick downshifts. An up/down quickshifter and cruise control are also available, requiring only a simple activation.
Riders can demo the extra electronics for up to 932 miles. At this point, you can decide to buy them and keep them activated, or have the bike’s computer turn them off.
For controlling the electronics package, the 890 SMT has a five-inch TFT screen with scratch and glare-resistant surfacing. The interface is fully customizable, according to KTM, allowing riders to fine-tune it to their preferences.
The dashboard also enables smartphone connectivity through the KTMconnect App, which allows activating turn-by-turn navigation, phone calls, music control, and more.
It’s KTM, Alright
Style-wise, the 890 SMT comes in a single unmistakably KTM colorway. The fairing, suspension, and swingarm are colored a menacing black, while the fender and rear offer some white touches.
And, of course, there’s the KTM orange sprinkled throughout the bike. The look is completed with sporty KTM graphics.
On the handlebar sit two Supermoto-style handguards and the smoked windshield completes the look. They also work to keep flying debris and wind off the rider.