Which bike is better?

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  • This topic has 6 replies, 4 voices, and was last updated 3 years ago by TC.
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    I will probably let my little Swedish flicka (Svartpilen 401) go before the warranty expires in 2020. My next bike may be the new Svartpilen 701, or; I am leaning towards the KTM Duke 390. Just wondering if any of you have first hand knowledge with the Duke 390. Obviously, the Duke and the Svartpilen 401 are identical in many ways, but how are they different qualitatively? I would like to know if the Duke is any better in terms of handling, riding position, braking, etc.?


    The Duke definitely fits me, as a shorter rider, better. But as far as I can tell (and I am not an expert) the differences seem to be that the Husky has a better overall build quality and some more premium parts than the KTM.

    Also, looks-wise – the Husky wins hands-down (imho)


    Totally depends on what kind of riding you want to do, how many miles you put on it, what your preferred riding style is etc. And as ThemSheeps mentions, what kind of looks do you like?




    I own a Svart 401 and I have only been able to sit on a Duke 390 (not to test drive it). One thing is for sure, I am 6 feet 2 (188cm) and I feel totally ok on the Svart, and I just don’t fit on the Duke, the distance between footpegs and seat is much shorter, and I also think the footpegs are quite further on the rear.

    As for looks and finish, it’s all personnal and subjective.


    ThemSheeps and TC: Thanks for your input.

    I liked the looks of my Svartpilen 401, but now, not as much.

    A couple of weeks ago, on my last ride into the mountains for this season I stopped for coffee at this little diner; parking next to a group of sport bikes (Triumph, Ducati, etc.). These were serious bikes; my bike appeared to be posing.

    I ride 70% on twisty two lane roads – never off road, avoid freeways whenever I can. Prefer not to ride in city traffic. I ride mostly on Sundays.

    The little Duke fits my needs (as does the Svartpilen). The larger 690 Duke or Svartpilen 701 would also – but the higher insurance is a factor.

    I think the 390 Duke is something I could abuse to a certain degree and not worry about the cosmetics.



    Hey Elbastos – thanks for the input regarding dimensions. That is the sort of thing I need to know. The Svart is nearly perfect for me and I wondered if the little Duke would match.

    I can go sit on one and see.

    I also would like to know if it handles any better. More solid (confident) in the turns…


    Even the Vit 701 is small bike but the 401s are just miniature. I guess they are meant for 1st bikes really and are good for that. If you’re not bothered too much about how the bike looks and you want fun, fun, fun, take a test ride on the 701 Supermoto!


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