Go Big with the 2021 KTM 1290 SUPER ADVENTURE R Because Size Matters

Size matters, particularly for adventure riders. Of course, KTM has a wide variety of options to suit whatever engine displacement you fancy for your adventure bike, but the 2021 1290 Super Adventure R is coming in strong with a ground-up redesign with an extensive list of innovative upgrades.

KTM put rough terrain riding first and foremost during the complete rework of the 1290. With an eye on ergonomics, they redesigned the body, lowered the fuel tank, and dropped the center of gravity to make you fall in love with big bikes all over again.

KTM 1290 SUPER ADVENTURE R_static.jpgKTM 1290 SUPER ADVENTURE R_static.jpg

By moving the steering head back by 15 mm, KTM delivers a sharper cornering sensation. Combine that with a longer, open-lattice swingarm for a greater depth of feeling when you throttle down and you’ve got the performance and control that KTM does better than just about any other manufacturer today.


The 1290’s new three-part fuel tank is positioned lower to assist riding equilibrium and holds 6 gallons because fewer fuel stops means more riding time. KTM engineers have analyzed and trimmed every centimeter of the new bodywork in order to provide the right thickness and the optimal rider-bike contact. Like the chassis, the subframe has also been reconstructed and the sporty stepped seat is nice and slim with a little bit of storage underneath.

KTM 1290 SUPER ADVENTURE R_Studio_left.jpgKTM 1290 SUPER ADVENTURE R_Studio_left.jpg

KTM gives you suspension for days in the 2021 Adventure. The fully-adjustable 48 mm front forks have an impressive 220 mm of travel and boast quick modification with a twist of a dial. And, rest easy, because the 1290’s reworked long-travel, adjustable WP XPLOR suspension wasn’t just dreamed up on some Austrian drawing board. KTM is diligent about testing and tuning their systems in the California desert proving grounds, as well as long stretches of varied landscapes across Europe.

Weighing in at 487 pounds and churning out 160 horsepower, the 1290 has the best power-to-weight offering in the segment. So, if you’re going big for your next adventure motorcycle, you really can’t go wrong with the 2021 1290 Super Adventure R.

Photo Credit: KTM

Motorcycle Industry News by Eva Rupert. Follow Eva @augusteva.

Latest Stories

New BMW R1300 GS Adventure Bikes Get Optional Automatic Transmission

New BMW R1300 GS Adventure Bikes Get Optional Automatic Transmission

BMW has revised its iconic and popular big adventure bike, and it now sports a 1.3-liter boxer twin, a boxy…
Gear Showcase: Hygiene, Safety, and Water Storage

Gear Showcase: Hygiene, Safety, and Water Storage

While the flashy and expensive gear like roof top tents may get all the attention, there are few things that…
The Best Toyotas of Overland Expo PNW

The Best Toyotas of Overland Expo PNW

Last week at Overland Expo PNW, there was no shortage of great builds, and amongst them, I found some truly…

Photo by Brett Willhelm


We keep our fingers on the pulse of the Overlanding world. Join the Overland News community and get our email on all things overland—including Overland Expo show updates, offers, and overland-specific articles.