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KTM 125 Duke (2024) - Technical Review

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2024 KTM 125 Duke Review Details Price Spec_02
2024 KTM 125 Duke Review Details Price Spec_03
2024 KTM 125 Duke Review Details Price Spec_04


Price: £4899 | Power: 15bhp | Weight: 154kg | Overall BikeSocial Rating: TBA


The 125 Duke was KTM’s first shot at a small Duke and the 2023 machine is largely unaltered from the design that debuted a dozen years ago in 2011. It’s all change for 2024, though, with a completely new small-capacity Duke range that starts with the comprehensively redesigned 125.

As before, the 125 Duke shares its central structure with the larger 390 Duke (and the 250 Duke that isn’t offered in the UK market), but there are visual clues to pick out the smaller machine. Slightly slimmer side panels jut forward from the sides of the tank, for instance, and the 125 Duke’s new LED headlight, while sharing the revamped family look of the 2024 390 Duke, is shorn of the glitzy DRL strips on the nose panels that flank it.

Beyond that, there’s little clue that you’re riding the learner-legal 125 instead of its much more powerful sister model, and while it can’t match the 390’s performance the smaller bike has a nearly identical chassis promising class-leading handling.


  • The same new look and chassis as the 2024 390 Duke

  • Updated suspension and brakes

  • New, more compact, SOHC engine

  • Not a cheap learner bike

  • Styling won’t be to everyone’s taste


Review – In Detail

Price & PCP
For and against
Engine & Performance
Handling & Suspension (inc. weight & brakes)
Comfort & Economy


2024 KTM 125 Duke Price

KTM have announced the 2024 125 Duke’s price at £4899 which, considering the 2023 model listed at £4,799, is not that much of an increase.

That’s still a lot though, particularly if you’re looking for a short-term, disposable 125 as a stopgap until you can ditch L-plates. If you’re planning longer-term ownership, though, the 125 Duke won’t be a chore to ride, and should hold its value better than many cheaper machines.



2024 KTM 125 Duke Engine & Performance

The engine is essentially a completely new design, sharing its platform and ‘LC4c’ name with the new 399cc single used in the 2024 390 Duke, but with less capacity and a completely different cylinder head.

While the old 125 Duke and even the new 390 Duke feature dual overhead camshafts, the 2024 125 Duke swaps to a more compact SOHC layout. That cuts weight, size and component count, and since KTM already has plenty of experience with high performance, single-cam engines – its 450 motocross bikes also use SOHC heads despite their high state of tune – there’s no reason to see it as a downgrade.

Since the 125 Duke is aimed squarely at the learner market, its power is pegged at 15hp, which arrives at 10,000rpm (500rpm lower than the old model but the same, legally-mandated peak output). The torque is also essentially unchanged at 8.5lb-ft and 7,750rpm.

The new engine also gets ride-by-wire and an assist/slipper clutch. An up/down quickshifter can be added as an extra-cost option, too.



2024 KTM 125 Duke Handling & Suspension (inc. Weight & Brakes)

The new 125 Duke’s frame is identical to that of the 2024 390 Duke, which means it’s a completely redesigned steel trellis chassis with a cast aluminium seat subframe. It’s lighter than before but also boasts improved torsional rigidity.

At the back there’s the same curved swingarm that’s used on the 390 Duke, giving clearance for the neat, underbelly exhaust and providing a mount for the offset rear shock. Like the 390, that shock is a WP APEX unit, although it lacks the 390’s adjustable rebound damping.

The forks are again visually like the larger 390’s, again being WP APEX 43mm upside-downers, but like the rear end they’re non-adjustable on the 125.

Newly-designed, lightweight wheels are again common to both the 125 and 390 Dukes, reducing unsprung and rotating mass to boost both handling and performance thanks to fewer spokes and an open hub design. A lighter front disc and hollow front axle add further weight savings.

Speaking of brakes, they’re identical to those of the 390 Duke, with a four-pot, radial-mount ByBre caliper at the front acting on a super-slim 320mm diameter disc, aided by a two-piston rear and 240mm disc.

Notably, the 125 Duke has a cornering ABS system, which works when leaning as well as in a straight line. It’s believed to be the first cornering ABS system to hit the market on a learner-legal, 125cc bike. The brakes also feature KTM’s Supermoto mode which allows the rear wheel’s anti-lock to be turned off, as standard, and the electronics are designed to remember your settings so there’s no need to delve into menus every time you start the bike.



2024 KTM 125 Duke Comfort & Economy

Until we’ve ridden the 125 Duke it’s impossible to comment on its comfort, but KTM says the seat is lower than the previous model and the uprated suspension certainly promises to be an improvement. No MPG figures have yet been claimed, but a 125cc single isn’t going to gulp unleaded at an embarrassing rate.



2024 KTM 125 Duke Equipment

The 125 Duke might not have the showy LED running lights of the 390 Duke, but its headlight is the same LED unit with the latest evolution of KTM’s family look. LEDs also appear in the taillights and indicators, the latter being the first on a 125 Duke to feature self-cancelling – they turn off after you’ve travelled 150 meters or after 10 minutes, whichever comes first.

On board, the 125 Duke gets the same new 5-inch TFT dash that appears on the 2024 390 Duke, with a bonded glass display and a lap timer as standard. There’s also a speed limiter function – useful if there are speed cameras about – and phone connectivity via KTM’s own app to give turn-by-turn navigation and control over music and phone calls.

Like the 390, the 125 Duke gets redesigned, illuminated bar controls as standard, and a broad options list including protective crash bars, a quickshifter and even the chance to upgrade to the 390’s LED running lights, making it even harder to distinguish the smaller bike from its larger sibling.



2024 KTM 125 Duke Rivals

The market for 125cc learner bikes is vast, with something in every class whether it’s based on style, cost or purpose, but the closest rivals to the 125 Duke are other sporty, unfaired machines like Yamaha’s MT-125, Aprilia’s Tuono 125, Honda’s CB125R and Kawasaki’s Z125. They’re all close on performance, so the big distinguishing points are styling, equipment and, of course, price.


Yamaha MT-125 | Price: £5,102

Power/Torque: 15bhp/8.5lb-ft | Weight: 142kg


Aprilia Tuono 125 | Price: £4,650

Power/Torque: 15bhp/8.3lb-ft | Weight: 144kg


Kawasaki Z125 | Price: £4,299

Power/Torque: 15bhp/8.6lb-ft | Weight: 147kg



2024 KTM 125 Duke Verdict

We’ll give a verdict once we’ve ridden the 2024 125 Duke.


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2024 KTM 125 Duke - Technical Specification

New price




Bore x Stroke

58mm x 47.3mm

Engine layout


Engine details

4-valve, liquid-cooled SOHC, fuel-injected


15bhp (11.2KW) @ 10,000rpm


8.5lb/ft (11.5Nm) @ 7,750rpm


6 speed, chain final drive, assist-and-slipper clutch, optional quickshifter

Average fuel consumption


Tank size


Max range to empty


Rider aids

Supermoto ABS, optional quickshifter


Steel trellis with cast aluminium subframe

Front suspension

43mm USD WP APEX forks, 150mm travel

Front suspension adjustment


Rear suspension

WP APEX monoshock, 150m travel

Rear suspension adjustment

Preload only

Front brake

320mm disc, four-piston ByBre caliper, ABS

Rear brake

240mm disc, two-piston ByBre caliper, switchable ABS

Front wheel / tyre

Cast alloy wheel, 110/70 ZR17 Michelin Road 5 tyre

Rear wheel / tyre

Cast alloy wheel, 150/60 ZR17 Michelin Road 5 tyre

Dimensions (LxWxH)




Seat height



154Kg Wet


2 years/unlimited miles



MCIA Secured Rating

Not yet rated



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What is MCIA Secured?

MCIA Secured gives bike buyers the chance to see just how much work a manufacturer has put into making their new investment as resistant to theft as possible.

As we all know, the more security you use, the less chance there is of your bike being stolen. In fact, based on research by Bennetts, using a disc lock makes your machine three times less likely to be stolen, while heavy duty kit can make it less likely to be stolen than a car. For reviews of the best security products, click here.

MCIA Secured gives motorcycles a rating out of five stars (three stars for bikes of 125cc or less), based on the following being fitted to a new bike as standard:

  • A steering lock that meets the UNECE 62 standard

  • An ignition immobiliser system

  • A vehicle marking system

  • An alarm system

  • A vehicle tracking system with subscription

The higher the star rating, the better the security, so always ask your dealer what rating your bike has and compare it to other machines on your shortlist.