KTM 890 Adventure R Updates for 2023

The KTM 890 Adventure R, an already capable and popular motorcycle, is getting an overhaul for 2023. Why mess with success? According to KTM, it was to “further offroad excellence, dependability and suitability for whatever lies on the road ahead.” In other words, to make a good thing better.

Improved Adventure Ride

When the road gets rougher and the miles stretch out ahead, comfort matters. To improve aerodynamics and riding pleasure, KTM borrowed bodywork styling from their 450 Rally bike and fitted a shorter windscreen. New graphics make the bike stand out from past models. At road level, KTM modified settings for both ends of the adventure-proven, adjustable XPLOR suspension to reduce rider fatigue over the long haul.

KTM 890 Data on Demand

Not satisfied with the current data package, KTM updated the 5-inch TFT on the 2023 Adventure R and added USB ports. A set of pictograms are said to simplify understanding all the information presented. New features include turn-by-turn navigation (using an app), and the ability to select any of the last 10 phone numbers you’ve dialed or create a favorites list. Wrist-weary adventurers can add optional cruise control.

Braking Better

KTM fitted a 6-axis lean angle sensor and a 9.3 MP modulator to the 2023’s ABS package to improve braking performance under most conditions. The system continuously samples the motorcycle’s speed, pitch, and angle, as well as its general behavior. The 890’s CMU uses the data to issue the appropriate braking commands to maintain traction under braking. The new system also sets ABS to Offroad automatically when the ride mode is either Offroad or the optional Rally mode.

Toast Your Tush

Cold happens, even on summer rides. And when it does, the new KTM 890 R’s optional seat heater is ready to warm you from the bottom up. Add the grip heaters to keep your hands working the controls while your buns enjoy the burn. Ignore the chill with an optional connection package using the KTMconnect app to bring navigation, music, and phone onboard.

KTM Demo Mode: Try Before You Buy

Well really, it’s buy the bike, then ride it with all of the electronic rider aids enabled for 932 miles. That’s 1500 km for the metrics folks out there. At that point, you can pony up for the desired optional aids or packages, or save your cash for gas, food, and more gas. The pay-to-play aids available with Demo mode are Rally mode (aka Roosting mode), KTMconnect, and a quick shifter. The stock ride modes–Street, Offroad, and Rain–are always available, as are traction control and motorcycle slip regulation.

But Wait, There’s More

In the miscellany department, KTM beefed up the engine protection and fitted LED blinkers to the ’23 model. A new gas tank holds the same 5.3 gallons as the old one. Look for the 2023 890 Adventure R to be in dealer showrooms in December, 2022.

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Arden has been riding loaded dual-sports and adventure bikes into the backcountry since high school, following his goal of camping in the middle of nowhere. With stints as a whitewater river guide and National Park Service seasonal in Utah behind him, Arden favors the red rock country, but also enjoys the Mojave Desert and wide open spaces of Nevada. Based in Santa Barbara, California, he has shared stories of his adventures, as well as tests of motorcycles and accessories, in print and on the web for the past 25 years. He's currently riding a Yamaha Ténéré 700 and his aging Suzuki DR-Z 400S.