KTM 690 reliability misery - KTM Forums: KTM Motorcycle Forum
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post #1 of 75 (permalink) Old 09-01-2016, 05:01 AM Thread Starter
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KTM 690 reliability misery

Hi all first time poster.

18 months ago I would have been the most enthusiastic owner of a 2015 690 Duke. The motorcycle was purchased to battle traffic through the length of the city I live in, a 120km a day round trip. I loved the bike to begin with and it was absolutely spot on for it's target duty. Uber light, responsive, well handling and a scalpel to traffic.

I did not have to wait long before electrical gremlins started. Without boring you all with the details the "issues" culminated in the dealer replacing the motorcycle earlier this year. I entered into ownership of the second motorcycle with a positive attitude confident that the first bike was an aberration. My wife noticed the smell of oil first and not long after with a few thousand kilometers on the clock. I noticed the oil light blinking on upon start up one morning. the bike is now drinking oil at a rate I had thought was impossible; Exxon Valdez would be proud of my 690!!

Unfortunately I am not proud of the 690. I have ridden daily to work and back since 1993, year round. This is the 5th motorcycle [6th if you count the fact there have been 2 KTM's] I have owned.

It is without doubt the most unreliable motorcycle I have owned. It has caused me more pain than all other motorcycles I have owned put together. Shortly it will be replaced.

I did not know what else to do after my experience other than to warn others. To take ownership of two motorcycles and receive [essentially] two lemons must be either statistically exceedingly unlikely, or a damning example of what could be at best described blotchy quality control.

Regards, and good luck KTM owners
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post #2 of 75 (permalink) Old 09-01-2016, 07:45 AM
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Cheers and welcome to the forum.

I moved your post to the Duke section to get more "traction".

2012 Yamaha Super Tenere
2008 KTM 950 Super Enduro R

Past Rides
'14 Honda NC700X
'11 Husaberg TE 300
'08 Husqvarna 610 TE
'06 Ducati 1000S Multistrada DS
'04 BMW 1150 RT
'03 KTM 450 EXC
'02 KTM 640 LC4e
'01 Honda XR650R
'00 KTM 520 EXC
'98 Honda XR600R
'95 KTM 620 RXC
'90 KTM 500 MX
'88 Yamaha TT600
'86 Yamaha XT 350
'84 Yamaha IT465 (STOLEN)
'83 Kawasaki KDX 450
'83 Honda CB1000 Custom
'82 Kawasaki KDX 400
'77 Yamaha DT200
'70 Honda CT70

See you at Papa Fernandez!

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post #3 of 75 (permalink) Old 09-01-2016, 09:41 AM
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For like the first 4k miles mine sipped oil like it was beer. After that I might have to top it off just a tad half way between oil changes. I think mines been at the top line in the screen for like 1.5k miles now
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post #4 of 75 (permalink) Old 09-01-2016, 09:42 AM
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Forgot to mention Im at about 9k mIles now....
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post #5 of 75 (permalink) Old 09-01-2016, 10:04 AM
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Well... for what its worth...I cleared 9000 miles yesterday on my '15 and have had no issues...
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post #6 of 75 (permalink) Old 09-01-2016, 11:23 AM
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It's unfortunate....I have a 2013 with 10000km however I don't commute daily and it's rarely exposed to the elements.

If anything I can impart on new owners is th keep the oil level at the top mark....

The official instructions are to let the bike idle and the sit for a period of time to measure the oil level properly..

I just keep it above the top mark when cold...
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post #7 of 75 (permalink) Old 09-01-2016, 12:11 PM
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I think it is very possible to get 2 lemons from the same store if you know what i mean

current -2007 690SM
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post #8 of 75 (permalink) Old 09-01-2016, 03:34 PM
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It is a brand new motor, and a big single at that. Your dealer should have told you to keep an eye on oil levels for the break in period.

Did you notice anything in the oil after the first oil change?
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post #9 of 75 (permalink) Old 09-01-2016, 04:56 PM
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Congratulations, you are 1 in 1000 or 10000 of KTM owners that this happens to.

He probably put some heated grips on his first bike and ****ed up the electrics.

He probably broke in the second bike the "easy" way and now it eats oil. Or he probably lugs it around town in low RPMs.

I am not giving the OP's post any merit because he basically signed up here to moan about his perceived issues.
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post #10 of 75 (permalink) Old 09-01-2016, 05:35 PM
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^ Ouch

KTM's are not perfect, Dead. Considering they are meant to be Brunhildes (Germanic fighters, Ready to Race) they all too often look a little more like Italian Divas (treacherous and moody, otherwise known as Ducati). You have to know when to wring their necks and when to gently soothe them. I use my Kato as a commuter too, but she gets her neck wrung on most trips - it seems she needs that. And, as Alex suggested, she deffo needs to be spanked regularly during the break in period otherwise during all her periods, she will be as moody as. As Wiwwee would say - they need to be raped. I agree, even if I find Wiwwee's terminology a little confronting.

But despite not being perfect, you're going to meet stiff resistance posting stuff like that here, 'cause at some schit the Duke 690 is Un-fugg'n-rivalled.
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Originally Posted by 690arrr View Post
It's literally hard to explain how good they are
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