KTM fires up sportbike comeback with 990 RC R

KTM has confirmed it is returning to the sportbike sector next year after revealing a heavily-disguised prototype.

The all-new 2025 KTM 990 RC R is a dedicated, fully-focused supersport machine homologated for street use.

It is inspired by KTM’s Ready to Race motto with has seen 341 FIM world championships, in virtually all motorbike racing disciplines, since the late 1970s.

KTM last produced an authentic road-homologated performance sportbike for the masses more than 15 years ago.

Now it is harnessing its MotoGP expertise – thousands of track laps, wins and podiums - to fire the 990 RC R to life.

To highlight its racing heritage, a prototype is appearing as a wildcard entry in non-point scoring outings across select European Supersport series.

The principle 990 RC R fuses this racing DNA with the practical demands of the road. Production is due to start in early 2025.

The street-homologated KTM 990 RC R boasts a Euro 5+ ready LC8c engine, with 103Nm of torque at 7,000rpm and 128PS, pumped out through the new condensed stainless steel muffler.

The shifter can be reversed to race-shift as standard.

The steel frame has been engineered for dynamic performance, stability under acceleration on bumpy roads or on racetracks while maintaining agility, especially at low speeds.

Ergonomics are key to the 990 RC R’s behaviour and rider comfort. It also features adjustable footrests, fully-adjustable WP Apex open cartridge suspension and lightweight cast aluminium wheels with Michelin tires.

Despite the disguised styling, the MotoGP heritage is evident with the wind-tunnel-chiselled aero wings that provide stability for braking and cornering and other edges and profiling around the bodywork.

A natural evolution of the current KTM RC line-up, this new motorbike’s s sporting potential allows for a straightforward conversion into a 990 RC R Track edition, poised to make its debut in the second quarter of 2025.

Minimal modifications strip away road-legal essentials, add protective components, fine-tune adjustments and revised racing bodywork including a full exhaust system.

KTM is also producing a behind-the-scenes YouTube ‘docuseries’ about making the 990 RC R a reality. It is being released in instalments in the lead-up to the official 2025 launch of the bike.

Watch the first video about the KTM 990 RC R’s development at www.ktm.com/en-gb/990-rc-r.html