KTM’s Duke-based world domination plans continue apace. Marked by the attendance of the Malaysian Prime Minister, the Austrian brand just launched a new-model Duke in Kuala Lumpur. The KTM 200 Duke will be priced lower than the Kawasaki Ninja 250 and Honda CBR250R in that market and develops 22bhp, a marked upgrade from the 125’s 15bhp.
Like the KTM 125 Duke, the 200 uses a fairly advanced spec for its engine, particularly given the price and capacity. Four-stroke, liquid-cooling, four-valves, dual overhead camshafts, and fuel-injection should help give it a reasonable spread of torque and power, not just that peak figure, while enabling the engine to meet ever-tightening emissions regulations.
Making 22bhp and weighing 140kg (wet), the 200 does have an appreciable performance advantage of the 15bhp, 125kg 125. The larger bike has a power-to-weight ratio of .16 bhp:kg while the smaller model’s figure is .12.
Other than the larger-capacity engine, the 200 is identical to the 125 Duke. Same trellis chassis, same sharply-creased bodywork, same USD forks and radial brake caliper. KTM is able to bring the Duke in so cheaply — €3,898 in Europe — because it’s made in India from Indian components. The KTM 200 Duke, for the Malaysian market at least, will be manufactured in India, then assembled in Malaysia, enabling it to avoid import tariffs.
As a result, the 200 Duke will be priced at RM 15-18,000 when it goes on sale there next year. The 31bhp, fuel-injected, Japan-made Kawasaki Ninja 250 goes for RM 19,891 in the same market and the Thai-made, 22bhp Honda CBR250R sells there for RM 18,799.
KTM does have plans to introduce the 200 Duke to Indian and other Asian markets, but the model will not reach Europe or North America. In Europe, capacity-based license tiers make the 125cc model far more appealing, while the company plans to bring its littlest Duke to North America in 2013 in the guise of KTM 350 Duke.