During the Esposizione Internazionale Ciclo Motociclo e Accessori (EICMA) show in Milan, Italy, it was expected that the KTM 790 Duke, also known as “The Scalpel”, would be on display. We had a look at it, and as a successor the 690 Duke, we certainly feel it looks the part.

Using an all new LC8 parallel-twin, The Scalpel is claimed by KTM to put out some 103 hp at 9,000 rpm, and 85 Nm of torque at 8,000 rpm. Coupled with a wet weight of 189 kg, the 790 Duke would be fun, scary, but fun, to ride.

KTM’s new design language of a split headlight with LED DRLs is there, along with a TFT-LCD dashboard in the cockpit. Other standard equipment includes an inertial measurement unit (IMU) driven traction control, like those found on top-end superbikes, cornering ABS, launch control and up-and-down quickshifter.

Showing a finger to the nanny state, the Scalpel also comes with selective switching of its traction control, where the rider can turn off the rear wheel ABS for sideways, locked-up rear wheel cornering action. After all, the original Duke was a hooligan bike, and it would be a shame if the 790 Duke did not carry on the tradition.

Suspension for the 790 Duke, as is typical for KTM machines, is done by WP Suspension, with a 43 mm upside-down fork in front and monoshock at the rear, with braking using KTM OEM callipers. KTM has confirmed that the 790 Duke will be coming in 2018, but as a 2019 model, so expect the Scalpel to start rolling out worldwide in the later part of next year.

More interestingly, KTM has revealed the Scalpel’s sibling, the off-road oriented 790 Adventure R. Standing taller than the 790 Duke, KTM’s adventure bike offering goes right up against the BMW Motorrad F850 GS and the Triumph Tiger 800.

What is notable is the 790 Adventure R is not any bulkier than the 790 Duke, due to the fuel tank being located lower in the engine room. This allows for better mass centralisation – important when riding a motorcycle fast on sketchy surfaces – and coupled with a motocross style slim seat, allows for the rider to get close to the bike’s centre of gravity.

We would expect to see a pre-production prototype of the KTM 790 Adventure R sometime in 2019, but from the press pictures issued, it looks pretty close to being a production model. This will be one adventure bike we’ll be waiting to get our hands on, as KTM does have an enviable reputation for making serious motorcycles, but with a sense of fun.