KTM 390 Vs Kawasaki Ninja 400

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Want to invest in a new motorcycle? Take a look at our comparison guide on KTM 390 Vs Ninja 400 – two completely different motorcycles designed for avid riders.

The KTM Duke 390 is the beast of all motorcycles. It is easy to drive, compact, and offers safe driving on the highway. It is best for touring. On the other hand, the Ninja 400 is sold as a sports bike and has a relaxed position. It comes with twin cylinders and a higher BHP than the KTM 390.

When choosing between the KTM 390 and Ninja 400, you might face some difficulty, especially if you are unaware of the specifications and characteristics of each motorcycle. Since both motorcycles are top contenders in the sports bike category, selecting one can get pretty confusing. To help you make your decision, we have compiled this comprehensive guide on the KTM 390 Vs Ninja 400. We will take a deeper look at each motorcycle and compare essential features to help you figure out what you need!

As avid riders, we love to test out different makes and models of motorcycles. Before penning down this review, we tested the KTM 390 and Ninja 400 in various terrains and under different driving conditions. We used our observations to develop an analysis that will make choosing between the two motorcycles easier. Let’s get started!

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Overview of the KTM Duke 390

The KTM Duke 390 is a powerful and compact motorcycle with arm-wrenching command and hair-raising speed. It has high fuel efficiency. If you are interested in the thrill of street motorcycling, this motorcycle is made for you!

The KTM 390 comes with a 373.2 CC single-cylinder four-valve engine with a side-mount exhaust, a ride-by wire, and an airbox. It can produce 5.7% more torque than the Ninja 400 at lower rpm. Even though it has a small and lightweight engine, it runs smoothly across various terrains. Furthermore, it delivers the same performance that avid riders usually expect from a mid-tier sports motorcycle.

With its aggressive looks, top-notch features, and quick and agile handling systems, the KTM 390 is one of the best sports motorcycles on the market. It has a light steel trellis structure that makes it easier for riders to turn and maneuver on different types of roads. It also has 17-inch cast alloy racer wheels that are solid and lightweight, allowing riders to put full power forward with assurance. Whether you are riding through an urban jungle or carving your way through a bendy forest, the KTM 390 guarantees a thrilling riding experience.

The KTM 390’s tires are made of high-quality rubber that keeps it fastened to the roadway throughout the journey. These tires provide excellent traction in both wet and dry conditions. They have exceptional longevity, so you don't have to worry about pushing them to their limits! The motorcycle’s inventive intake and exhaust system and the duteous fuel injection system will ensure you leave the rest of the traffic behind with just the twist of your wrist.

Overview of the Ninja 400

The Ninja 400 is a competent sports motorcycle. Kawasaki launched it as a successor to the Ninja 300 in 2018. Perfect for everyday epic sport riding, this motorcycle offers the largest displacement (399 CC) in the sports motorcycle category. It has a sophisticated four-stroke twin-cylinder that offers reliable suspension, easy handling, ample power, and exceptional ground clearance. The Ninja 400 is solid, capable, and reliable and provides a smooth and manageable ride across different terrains.

The Ninja 400 motorcycle engine delivers the perfect balance of high-performance thrills and easy-to-use power. It provides high performance and superior controllability – characteristics derived from Kawasaki’s typical winning Ninja formula. This duality offers exhilaration and ease of riding to a wide range of motorcyclists – from beginners and amateurs to professionals and experts.

Ninja 400’s chassis dimensions are designed to deliver confident handling and a modern and sporty feel, regardless of the speed. The motorcycle’s relaxed riding position accommodates various motorcyclists and riding situations. The Ninja 400 has stiff and sturdy five-spoke wheels, resulting in low unsprung weight and better cornering stability than other Ninja motorcycles.

Born from the DNA of the original Ninja street bike, the Ninja 400 motorcycle boasts a high-class modern design with an excellent fit and finish inspired by the larger displacement bikes made by Kawasaki. This motorcycle is ideal for beginners entering the sports bike riding scene with a low seat height and stylish LED headlights.

KTM 390 Vs Ninja 400: Top Differences

Even though the KTM 390 and the Kawasaki Ninja 400 both come with unique features of their own and perform exceptionally well in their niches, there are some significant differences between them. These differences include variations in engine size, styles, ergonomics, and the two motorcycles' overall look, feel, and performance.

Let’s take a closer look at these differences:

Engine Power

Engine performance is one of the main factors you need to consider when purchasing a motorcycle. The engine is the powerhouse of a motorcycle. It determines the overall performance and efficiency of your vehicle.

The KTM Duke 390 has a 373.2 CC, liquid-cooled, four-stroke single-cylinder engine. The engine provides an enormous amount of power. At 42.9 HP (32 kW), it is one of the most powerful engines for amateur and professional motorcyclists. The torque of KTM 390 is maintained at 35Nm at 7250 rpm. This motorcycle will take you anywhere you want to go, from dense jungles to well-paved roads.

The Ninja 400, on the other hand, has a classic 399 CC four-stroke, liquid-cooled, parallel twin-cylinder, fuel-injected engine. This engine produces a power of 33.4 HP (24.5 kW). It has a max power of 48.9 HP at 10000 rpm and a max torque of 38.0 Nm at 8000 rpm. It comes equipped with an assist function that delivers an incredibly light clutch pull and produces a vast clutch engagement capacity for ease and confidence.

The top speed of the KTM Duke 390 is 104 miles per hour, whereas the Ninja 400 motorcycle can manage up to 105 miles per hour. Therefore, if speed is your top priority, the Ninja 400 motorcycle will be the better option for you.

Both KTM 390 and Ninja 400 have powerful and potent engines that perform without flinching. The torques and power ranges are also significantly comparable. There is a minor difference in speed between the two motorcycles, but this difference will not alter your overall experience greatly.

Chassis and Wheels

The KTM Duke 390 is constructed using tubular steel trellis and has a net curb mass of 368 pounds, as claimed by the manufacturer. The motorcycle’s bulk is clustered near the center of gravity. This offers maximum movement and grace, enabling motorcyclists to overcome the rush-hour race day after day. The front wheel has a diameter of 4.33 inches, whereas the rear-wheel size is 5.90 inches. The motorcycle’s 17-inch cast alloy racer rims are compact and sturdy, enabling you to push forward with confidence.

On the other hand, the Ninja 400, also a robust, dependable, and sporty vehicle, has a curb mass of whopping 381 pounds. Compared to the KTM 390, it is definitely not a light motorcycle. Adding adventure gear and luggage further increases the overall weight. However, the tube-type trellis frame of the Ninja 400 is lightweight, made for smooth control and handling. The category-leading semi-floating front disc brake provides uncompromising and superior braking performance. An Anti-lock Brake System (ABS) that helps lessen wheel lock-up under specific conditions complements the braking performance.

Seat Height

When selecting a motorcycle, seat height is another factor you should consider. A too high or too low seat can make the riding experience unpleasant and make it difficult for you to handle the motorcycle.

The KTM Duke 390 has a seat height of 32.2 inches. This gives motorcyclists an extremely secure position. The pillion seat also ensures generous comfort for passengers riding along with motorcyclists. The seat is integrated into KTM 390’s bodywork so that the stunning look of the motorcycle is not compromised.

The Ninja 400 has a seat height of 30.9 inches, much lower than KTM 390's seat. The seat is also narrower and allows the rider to reach the ground confidently. It creates a lower center of gravity and enables confident vehicle handling while riding.

Style and Ergonomics

KTM 390’s two-part pillion seat offers first-class sport-biking ergonomics with excellent support for the rider. It enables riders to maintain a super-secure position while also being high enough for ultimate fun around corners. The seat also provides exceptional comfort for passengers.

KTM 390’s lights are nothing less than extraordinary. The aggressively-styled LED headlights are an essential part of the motorcycle’s design. While they look ultra-mean, they are efficient and produce outstanding biking visibility in low light and dark conditions. KTM 390's parking light consists of 20 tiny LEDs and ensures that the motorcycle is highly visible to other drivers on the road. This keeps motorcyclists safe while they dominate the streets.

The Ninja 400 is no less than KTM 390 in terms of style and ergonomics. Along with a narrow and sufficiently-high seat, the motorcycle comes with clip-on style handlebars that offer a raised position for added ease. The forward-sloping footpeg position creates comfortable ergonomics and allows motorcyclists to reach the ground at stops confidently.

The high-quality cockpit of the Ninja 400 motorcycle features a multi-function dash meter and includes a gear position indicator. The twin LED headlights produce intense white lighting in low and dark conditions. They also include position lamps and low and high beams for excellent visibility.

Overall Performance

The KTM Duke 390 offers sharper and better handling than its previous counterparts. The steel trellis frame of the motorcycle boasts racier geometry and a more inclined riding position, shifting more weight to the forward side. As a result, you get an extra feel of how the motorcycle's front end performs. The KTM 390 is a very roomy and comfortable motorcycle. Its straight handlebars and powerful engine offer an overall aggressive feel. If you want to crank things up a notch and train to be a professional street biker, this motorcycle is a good fit for you.

The Ninja 400 is a reliable sports motorcycle and will last you for decades with proper maintenance. Motorcycling enthusiasts mainly use it for street riding. While many sport motorcycles have been introduced in the market in the past few years, the Ninja 400 remains the perfect lightweight adventure ride. In the strictly competitive sports bike space, the Ninja 400 is one of the top contenders. If you are a beginner at sports biking, we suggest getting your hands on this motorcycle.  

Specs Comparison

Motorcycle Feature KTM Duke 390 Kawasaki Ninja 400
Manufacturer KTM Kawasaki
Body type Sports Sports
Mileage 82.3 miles/gal 58.8 miles/gal
Power 43.00 BHP 48.30 BHP
Engine 373.2 CC 399.0 CC
Fuel type Gasoline Gasoline
Curb mass 368 pounds 381 pounds
Fuel capacity 2.9 gal 3.69 gal
Clutch type Wet, multi-plate Slipper clutch
Maximum power 42.9 HP 48.9 HP
Maximum torque 37 Nm 38 Nm
Length 78.8 inches 79.5 inches
Width 32.99 inches 27.9 inches
Height 50.16 inches 44.1 inches
Seat height 32.2 inches 30.9 inches
Front suspension WP USD fork Telescopic fork
Rear suspension WP MoNoshock Uni-track
Transmission type Manual Manual
Tire type Radial Radial

When it comes to sports motorcycles for urban or rural adventures, the KTM 390 and Ninja 400 are both great options. Both motorcycles offer superior power, decent mileage, and high speeds. They also meet the expectations that motorcyclists usually have from mid-tier budget-friendly sports rides. Both KTM 390 and Ninja 400 have stylish bodies that give them the perfect sporty feel. In short, they are the best contenders in the sports biking category.

About THE AUTHOR

Russ Crowley

Russ Crowley

Russ currently owns a Yamaha FZ6N and KTM RC 390. When it comes to vintage bikes, his favorite motorcycle is the feisty BMW R32. He also holds a particular interest in the LAMS segment and triple cylinders. Himself a riding enthusiast, Russ has had experience with racetracks from around the world including Willow Springs Raceway in California and the Imola Circuit in Italy.

Read More About Russ Crowley