If you compare the 1050 to its bigger sister 1190, you will find some minor differences when it comes to equipment. However, it does not mean that the smallest one is the poorest. The engine offers dynamic qualities in line with the Austrian brand motto ‘Ready to race’.
Obviously, the performances are slightly less impressive than the rest of the line, but they are ample enough to take you far, comfortably, and not necessarily too fast. The only downside so far is that the saddle or the suspension cannot be adjusted. For a small rider like myself, a couple of inches lower would have been more than welcomed.
If the bigger models are dedicated to off-road and pure adventure, the 1050 will fully express itself on the road. Comfort and reliability are the main words to describe the machine. Even if the rear brake has a tendency to overheat, it is all about safety. The electronic equipment makes your ride straightforward and the low consumption of the engine, combined with a massive tank, will let you hit the road with no limits.
Dedicated to beginners, this entry model is an asset in itself. It is very forgiving when you make mistakes and when you hit winding roads, it goes through curves so easily that you will ask for more. Once on the highway, the adjustable windshield makes it even more comfortable.
It came to a point where if I was leaning forward, I could not feel any wind. It might not be the case for your pillion rider, as the saddle looks quite high at the back. However, I was on my own for this test ride, so that will be for you to discover.
In other words, I had a blast riding the 1050 Adventure. Despite its status of entry-level model, this KTM bike is very safe and fun to ride – even more when you switch off some of the electronics and choose the sport mode. It is very interesting if you choose to travel long distances with it. The engine is not shy when it comes to performance, even if the KTM lovers might find it a bit limited compared to the upper models.
There are a couple of unanswered questions though. What happens with a pillion rider and with all the cases fully loaded on a mountainous road? The engine might show its limitations then. However, even if competing against the Triumph Tiger or the Suzuki DL 1000, it is quite certain that the 1050 Adventure will be able to stand the comparison.
So, ‘ready to race’? I sure am.