2020 KTM 690 SMC R | Review

2020 KTM 690 SMC R | Review 1

Overall Ratings

Value for money:

In a Nutshell

Revised, no-vibrating engine. Raw look and feel, but refined and packed with the essential electronics. Light and fun to ride. Exciting but not intimidating. Meet the new KTM 690 SMC R.

KTM unveiled the new 690 SMC R back in 2019. It features the popular LC4 engine, but comes with some important updates. No, it’s not just the Euro 5 thing. This single is not vibrating anymore. It run smooth, revs fast, but it’s quite manageable thanks to the smooth acceleration and thanks to an essential but advanced electronics package.

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What We Liked

KTM has its in-house suspension factory – WP, so this 690 SMC R features some last generation WP Apex suspensions which work incredibly on any surface. You can ride it fast through the corners, you can go through some heavy terrain, you can do stoppies, wheelies, everything.

The braking system is provided by Brembo and it’s very efficient. You just have to press it a bit harder and it stoppies right away. Moreover, there’s a ABS dongle available that will allow you to deactivate the ABS on rear and slide as you wish.

The electronics – KTM 690 SMC R features the latest rider aids available on the market: rider modes, traction control, cornering ABS (with supermoto mode), quickshifter, and everything works like magic.

The updated engine is running very smooth, it’s very refined and it doesn’t vibe anymore. Although you can ride it like a hooligan, this bike is also suitable to less experienced riders thanks to a predictable power curve, smooth acceleration and safety net offered by the electronics.

What We Disliked

The headlight is still an old unit – this 690 SMC R deserves a proper LED unit.

The standard exhaust should be swapped for a better-looking unit for extra style and for a proper supermoto sound.

It’s not pleasant to ride it during a hot day in the city.

2020 KTM 690 SMC R | Review 2

Raw Data


  • Transmission: 6-speed
  • Liquid-cooled
  • Power – 55 kW
  • Electric Starter
  • Stroke – 80 mm. Bore – 105 mm
  • slipper clutch, hydraulically actuated
  • 693 cm³ – 1-cylinder, 4-stroke engine
  • EMS – Keihin with RBW, twin ignition


  • ABS: Two-channel Bosch 9.1 MP ABS (incl. Cornering ABS and Supermoto mode Disengegable)
  • Front brake disc diameter: 320 mm
  • Rear brake disc diameter: 240 mm
  • Chain: X-Ring 5/8 x 1/4″
  • Frame design: Chrome-moly tubular space frame, powder-coated
  • Front Suspension – WP USD Ø 48 mm
  • Rear Suspension – WP APEX with Pro-Lever linkage
  • Steering head angle: 63.6°

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