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Old 17th February 2015, 18:25   #1
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Default KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch

KTM has seen a great response since the arrival of the Duke 390. The motorcycles' performance to price balance has made it a favourite for entry level performance motorcycle buyers. Recent reports suggested the possibility of the fully-faired RC 390 getting a slipper clutch. A report by Autocar has confirmed the addition of a slipper clutch, but it's on the Duke 390 naked bike.

It must be noted that while the slipper clutch may have entered at the production end, multiple dealers are unaware of the same and claim that they have not received any communication regarding the update from KTM yet. Customers looking to buy the Duke 390 with the new clutch are advised to confirm its presence at the time of booking as the fresh consignment may not reach all dealers uniformly.

The slipper clutch is used to prevent the rear wheel of a bike from locking up during extreme downshifting/engine braking scenarios. Also known as the back torque limiter, it allows the clutch to slip until the engine speed matches the speed of the bike and doubles up as a safety mechanism. This enables the rider to downshift aggressively and keep the bike stable under heavy braking/spirited riding sessions.

The Duke 390 is powered by a 373.2cc, single cylinder, water-cooled engine that make 43 BHP and 35 Nm of torque. Its fully faired sibling - the RC 390 is likely to feature the clutch in the near future as well.

Source: Autocar

KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch-ktm-duke-390003.jpg

*Image for representation only

Last edited by Tushar : 17th February 2015 at 18:29.
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Old 17th February 2015, 18:32   #2
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Default Re: KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch

An excellent move yet again from Bajaj. Interesting to see such a major change on the bike being done so discreetly. Also, I read somewhere that there would be no changes in the ex-showroom price as well.

I also hope that KTM makes this available as an optional for current Duke owners, for those like me wouldn't think twice before getting it installed.

Certainly going to cause some serious headache for Kawasaki India now!
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Old 18th February 2015, 00:11   #3
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Default Re: KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch

So is there a price hike now ?
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Old 18th February 2015, 09:39   #4
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Default Re: KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch

KTM Duke is a wonderful bike. No doubts. And what makes it more interesting is the price which many can afford. First the ABS as standard and now the slipper clutch. More for less. Brilliant.
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Old 18th February 2015, 09:58   #5
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Default Re: KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch

Quote:
Originally Posted by stanjohn123 View Post
So is there a price hike now ?
From the various reports on the internet, it seems that there might be. I intend to call up the KTM showroom today to check. The other interesting bit is that the service interval on the new Duke 390 has been extended to 7,500 kilometers from the previous 5,000 kilometers.

Also looks like the Duke 200 too has received a bit of upgrades.

http://www.motoroids.com/news/2015-k...rt-durability/
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Old 18th February 2015, 10:59   #6
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Default Re: KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch

Wow. Had this done by Kawasaki on Z250, price would have gotten up by 10-20k, and people would console each other 'Kya kare! Japanese quality hai!'.

Good move by Bajaj.
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Old 18th February 2015, 14:31   #7
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Default Re: KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch

Just got off the phone with my nearest KTM dealer. They say that they have the 2015 Duke 390, but that doesn't have the slipper clutch. No word from KTM on related price hikes either.

It would be wise to wait for a bit until the situation gets clearer.
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Old 18th February 2015, 14:33   #8
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Default Re: KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch

In addition to slipper clutch KTM, what should really sort out is the niggling issues had with the D390 like cracking of alloy wheels, stalling at city traffic etc. I also noted somewhere in the interweb some months ago that KTM is ditching the underbelly exhaust. I guess they have ditched the plan of ditching the underbelly exhaust.
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Old 18th February 2015, 18:10   #9
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Default Re: KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.O View Post
I guess they have ditched the plan of ditching the underbelly exhaust.
Like the way you put that.

As far as rim cracking and stalling issues are there, I haven't faced any. (praise the lord!)
Again, as someone rightly mentioned, no 2 390s are the same.
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Old 18th February 2015, 19:08   #10
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Default Re: KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch

[OFFTOPIC] Talking of the rim cracking issue, I had my heart in the mouth moment during a ride last week while light offroading. Me and my friend was doing about 55-60kmph on a bumpy, unpaved road up the Hessaraghatta grasslands. We were ofcourse speeding on that trail as the nobody was there in the vicinity and then I spotted a pointed rock right in front of me really late and had to go over it without braking! I seriously thought that my rim is done and I would have to limp back home! But as lucky as I can get, the rim emerged unscratched. May be the fact that we were standing on the pegs leaned back and I accelerated a bit taking the load off the front suspension might have saved the rim here! But the point is, I have put my 390 through pretty merciless situations like these constantly and is yet to have a rim crack [TOUCH WOOD ^ 100]! At the same time I am not completely ruling out the possibility of it!

Last edited by aah78 : 19th February 2015 at 19:20. Reason: Post edited on request.
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Old 18th February 2015, 20:44   #11
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Default Re: KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch

Quote:
Originally Posted by barcalad View Post

As far as rim cracking and stalling issues are there, I haven't faced any. (praise the lord!)
Well I have heard a lot of people mention the poor quality rims. But I must say that none of them were owners of a duke themselves. I must say that I am not really a fan of the way it looks. But what I love about the duke is the ABS, the performance to price ratio and the rumored slipper clutch. There's no denying that the Duke's a keeper.
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Old 19th February 2015, 04:06   #12
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Default Re: KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch

Pardon me for saying so and it is just my opinion but I think adding a slipper clutch is a totally unnecessary addition of a complex, unneeded part which will only add weight to the motorcycle.

A slipper clutch serves to protect the engine and the rider if the rider improperly downshifts to too low of a gear ratio but that is basically just covering up for his/her poor shifting decisions and lack of skill when downshifting.

A good rider knows what gear their motorcycle is in, what gear will soon be needed and how to use the clutch and throttle to make the downshift smoothly, without over-revving the engine or causing the rear tire to break loose.

In other words, the slipper clutch is a crutch to help inept riders who make stupid mistakes.

For 90% of the riders and 99% of the riding conditions they face the additional weight and complexity of the device is totally unnecessary.

It does serve the sales department though.
It allows them to boast of the virtues of the unneeded gimmick (assuming they are smart enough to even know what it does).
They hope that this will make their machines seem to be far advanced over the competition.

Perhaps next we shall see something more valuable like LED lighting for all of the lights on our motorcycles? At least that would be something we all can benefit from.
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Old 19th February 2015, 09:39   #13
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Default Re: KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch

Quote:
Originally Posted by ArizonaJim View Post

In other words, the slipper clutch is a crutch to help inept riders who make stupid mistakes.
That pretty much concludes it then. I don't think that its a "necessity". But provided that the price does no surge significantly, isn't that nice to have slipper clutch? The companies should experiment new stuffs and that's how they develop themselves and their machines. I simply welcome it. And I personally think that Duke could really use a little more weight. But that is just my humble opinion.

Irrelevent : Talking about necessities, did the UCE 500 Desert Storm really "need" a FI unit? The Carb in the Bullet 500 seemed to work perfectly and it still does.
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Old 19th February 2015, 11:25   #14
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Default Re: KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch

What I am excited about in this package is the 3 spring setup which makes the clutch operation a breeze. This is the most welcome change for me!

Last edited by GTO : 19th February 2015 at 15:23. Reason: Typo
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Old 19th February 2015, 12:12   #15
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Default Re: KTM Duke 390 gets a slipper clutch

Quote:
Originally Posted by ArizonaJim View Post
In other words, the slipper clutch is a crutch to help inept riders who make stupid mistakes.
I am not sure on that. Last night, excited by this development (and the fact that I am actively evaluating an entry level performance bike), I was going through articles on slipper clutch. Read this article written by a guy who has been into racing for a while now.

"Racing is about far more than power; as the MotoGP warriors are discovering right now, well controlled high corner entry speeds are just as important to a quick lap as sheer grunt.

We fitted a Slipper clutch; it gave us a real advantage, our riders could ride the bike exactly as they wanted, it let the bikes suspension work better coming into and through corners and also let the motor take the abuses of race track use without the constant threat of overrevving. As a result we picked up victories at both Daytona and Donington, first time out."


Source: http://www.sigmaperformance.com/slipperclutch.html

Last edited by nishsingh : 19th February 2015 at 12:13. Reason: Grammar
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