As a highly anticipated 2021 model-year release in the mid-weight adventure motorcycle segment, the KTM 890 Adventure R promised to deliver an unparalleled riding experience over its predecessor, the 790 Adventure R.

And it did just that, attracting attention from some of KTM’s finest ambassadors, including Chris Birch–an eight-time New Zealand Enduro champion and founder of Say No to Slow School, which is taught at the location where KTM World calls home, Highland Park Resort in Georgia. 

For 2023, KTM further optimized the platform based on commentary from riders like Birch. The result is a bike that continues to impress journalists and adventure riders across the globe.

Following is an overview of the 2023 KTM 890 Adventure R, from specifications to model year changes. 

2023 KTM 890 Adventure R: The Powerplant and Electronics

The 2023 KTM 890 Adventure R arrives with an impressive engine that delivers power and efficiency, making it a top choice for adventure riders seeking the perfect balance of performance both on and off the road. 

The heart of the 2023 KTM 890 Adventure R is its parallel-twin, liquid-cooled 889cc engine. This Austrian powerhouse produces an impressive 105 horsepower at 8000 rpm, providing ample power for tackling various terrains and situations easily, from slick rock-strewn paths to backroad twisties.

The KTM 890 Adventure R also offers plenty of rider-friendly torque—around 73 lb-ft at 6500 rpm. This translates to excellent low-end grunt and smooth acceleration throughout the rev range— essential characteristics for any serious off-road adventurer.

For those doing longer distances, MPG matters. Despite being designed primarily for off-road adventures, fuel economy hasn't been overlooked. The efficient design allows riders to achieve around  44 miles per gallon, making it a practical choice for long-distance adventures as well. 

With a 5.3-gallon tank, riders can get as much as 230 miles between fill-ups, depending on terrain and riding style. Also, 60 percent of the fuel load is carried low, beneath the rider’s knees and the footpegs, keeping the center of gravity lower so the bike handles better and feels much lighter. 

KTM also updated the electronics, including: 

  • Traction Control: The traction control system features the latest lean-sensitive MTC (motorcycle traction control) that controls both rear-wheel slip and front-wheel lift. The MTC controls power wheelies for smoother landings on the front wheel. 

  • Ride Modes: Four ride modes—Street, Offroad, Rain, and optional Rally—allow you greater flexibility when adjusting power delivery based on your specific needs.  Rally mode has nine different levels of engine traction control.

  • Optional Quickshifter: The optional quickshifter now comes with both up and down functionality, making gear changes smoother and more efficient.

In addition, KTM provides a free demo mode of all upgrades—including Rally mode—for the initial 930 miles of ownership. 

The 2023 KTM 890 Adventure R's engine specifications and electronics make it an ideal choice for riders seeking a powerful yet efficient motorcycle capable of easily tackling various terrains. 

2023 KTM 890 Adventure R Suspension, Brakes

The 2023 KTM 890 Adventure R has a dirt-worthy suspension setup that provides excellent handling and stability, allowing riders to customize their bike's settings according to personal preferences or trail conditions. 

When combined with the 21-inch front/18-inch rear wheel setup—the 2023 model arrives stock with Continental TKC 80 80/20 tires. The suspension provides a serious off-road feel without sacrificing on-road feel.

Front Suspension: WP XPLOR Forks

The front end of the 890 Adventure R is equipped with WP XPLOR forks, which are specifically designed for off-road use. These fully-adjustable 48mm forks offer a generous travel of 9.4 inches, ensuring smooth performance over rough terrain. 

The fork features separate compression and rebound damping adjustments, allowing riders to fine-tune their preferred settings for optimal comfort and control. Unlock the full capabilities of your Adventure 890 R with suspension tuning

Rear Suspension: WP XPLOR PDS Shock Absorber

Moving on to the rear suspension, you'll find a WP XPLOR PDS (Progressive Damping System)  piggyback shock absorber, which also offers 9.4 inches of travel. This progressive damping system provides outstanding bump absorption while maintaining exceptional stability during high-speed riding or heavy braking scenarios. 

With its adjustable preload and separate high and low-speed compression damping adjustments, riders can easily customize their rear suspension setup according to personal preferences or specific trail conditions.

The 890 Adventure R offers a highly capable suspension setup that caters well to off-road enthusiasts seeking optimal performance on various terrains. With its adjustable components and damping characteristics, riders can fine-tune their bikes for maximum comfort and control during their adventures.

KTM 890 Adventure R Braking System

The ‘23 890 Adventure R arrives with dual 320mm floating rotors squeezed by 4-piston calipers combined with a redesigned front master cylinder, which KTM says improves feedback at the lever. 

Out back, the 2-piston caliper uses isolated pistons and piston plates between the brad pads and pistons. KTM says this new design is paired with a steel-braided brake line and increases heat stability and control during long descents. 

You’ll also notice several new KTM 890 Adventure R accessories. For example, KTM updated the cornering ABS with Bosch 9.3 MP system that uses a six-axis sensor that communicates with the riding modes.

And as on other KTM adventure bikes, when you select the Offroad or the optional Rally mode, ABS is automatically engaged with a setting that reduces front-wheel ABS, and deactivates the rear-wheel ABS for sliding through corners. 

2023 KTM 890 Adventure R: Updated Aesthetics, Ergos, and Gauges

The first thing you'll notice about the 2023 KTM 890 Adventure R is its refreshed aesthetics, many taking cues from the Dakar-winning KTM 450 Rally. The bike features a redesigned front end with a sharper headlight cowl, giving it a more aggressive look. Additionally, the graphics have been updated to reflect KTM's latest branding style.

The exterior is all redesigned, including the fairing, cowling, LED turn signals, aluminum protection around the fuel tank, revised graphics, and a lower windscreen. Although lower, which helps when standing up, the aerodynamics are improvised. 

Ergonomically speaking, the seat height remains unchanged at 34.6 inches, but there are now two different seat options: standard and low-profile versions catering to various rider preferences.

The gauge was also updated, now featuring a 5-inch TFT display with a USB connector. The data is displayed cleaner, the menu navigation simpler, and the surface is now resistant to glare and scratching, something many off-road riders will praise. 

There’s also an optional Connectivity Unit, which connects to the intuitive KTMconnect app for turn-by-turn navigation, music, incoming calls, and KTM roadside assistance. A new phone call-out function also allows a favorites call option, with a maximum of 10 numbers, or the option to call one of the 10 last numbers.

The updated 2023 890 Adventure R offers a more powerful and comfortable ride than ever before. Journalists are already praising the 2023 KTM 890 Adventure R, as are some of KTM’s top riders.

For now, check out this review video of Chris Birch, the New Zealander who helped KTM design the bike:

With its advanced engine specifications, suspension setup, and design changes, the 2023 KTM 890 Adventure R promises to deliver an exciting ride that will make it stand out from other mid-weight adventure models available today.

For parts and repairs, check out our wide selection of KTM parts for any Adventure 890 R year.  

2023 KTM 890 Adventure R Specs


DOHC, liquid-cooled 4-stroke parallel twin; 4 valves/cyl.



Bore x Stroke:

90.7 x 68.8mm



Fuel System:

DKK Dell’Orto w/ 46mm throttle bodies


PASC (Power Assisted Slipper Clutch); cable operated

Engine Management/Ignition:

Bosch EMS; ride-by-wire


Chromoly tubular steel, engine as stressed member

Front Suspension:

48mm WP Xplor inverted fork, fully adjustable; 9.4 in. travel

Rear Suspension:

WP Xplor fully adjustable monoshock w/ PDS; 9.4 in. travel

Front Brake:

Radially mounted 4-piston calipers, dual 320mm discs w/ ABS

Rear Brake:

2-piston floating caliper, 260mm disc

Wheels, Front/Rear:

21 x 2.50 in. / 18 x 4.50 in.

Tires, Front/Rear:

Continental TKC 80; 90/90-21 / 150/70-18


60.2 ± 0.6 in.

Ground Clearance:

10.4 in.

Seat Height:

34.6 in.

Tank Capacity:

5.3 gal.

Claimed Dry Weight:

432 lb.

Contact: 770-748-0771