KTM 1290 Super Adventure R (2017-2020) maintenance schedule

This is the maintenance schedule and service intervals for KTM’s premium adventure tourer, the KTM 1290 Super Adventure R, made between 2017 and 2020.

The KTM 1290 Super Adventure range was first announced in 2014 for the 2015 model year, and the first KTM 1290 Super Adventure R was released in 2017, with a more road-going variant being the 2017 KTM 1290 Super Adventure S, and a touring model, the Super Adventure T (made in 2017 only).

The KTM 1290 Super Adventure motorcycles are all based around the 1301cc liquid-cooled V-twin engine borrowed initially from the 1290 Super Duke R, but with different cam tuning and a heavier crankshaft. The engine makes 118 kW (160 bhp) at 8750 rpm, with 80% of its peak 140 Nm (104 ft-lb) of torque available at just 2,500 rpm.

There were three models in the KTM 1290 Super Adventure range released for the 2017 model year:

PartKTM 1290 Super Adventure SKTM 1290 Super Adventure T
(2017 only)
KTM 1290 Super Adventure R
Intended use“Sports”“Touring”“Off-road”
Fuel tank23L30L23L
SuspensionWP semi-activeWP semi-activeWP (non-active)
Wheels19/17-inch cast19/17-inch spoked21/18-inch spoked
Min seat height860mm (34 in)860mm (34 in)890mm (35 in)
Weight (without fuel/full fuel)222/238 kg229/249 kg224/240 kg
External featuresNothing notableLuggage, hand guardsCrash bars, hand guards
Comparing key features between the KTM 1290 Super Adventure S, R, and T (2017)

KTM dropped the 1290 Super Adventure T in 2018, so there’s no more version of the 1290 Super Adventure with a giant 30L fuel tank.

The R model was completely new for 2017. It received

  • Fully adjustable WP suspension with 220mm (8.7 inches) of travel
  • 21/18-inch wire spoke wheels
  • Crash protection
  • A split headlight design, with cornering lights

KTM upgraded the range again a few years later with the 2021 KTM Super Adventure R.

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KTM 1290 Super Adventure R Service Intervals

The KTM 1290 Super Adventure R has generously wide 9300 mile / 15000 km  or yearly service intervals.

Whenever you reach that distance or time interval, you change the engine oil and filter, plus clean the oil screens, and change the air filter.

Aside from that, do a number of checks on all coolants, piles, and parts that move for leaks, lubrication, and freedom of movement.

Every two services (18600 miles / 30000 km) do a valve service and change the spark plugs while you’re at it.

Being a liquid-cooled bike, make sure you keep the coolant of the KTM 1290 Super Adventure topped up, and replace it periodically with the correct spec liquid.

Keep the brake fluid fresh, too, particularly if you ride your SAR hard.

What you need to service the KTM 1290 Super Adventure R

The manual for the KTM 1290 Super Adventure R recommends the following spec products.

Part / componentRecommended spec (KTM 1290 Super Adventure)
Engine oilSAE 10W-50 engine oil full synthetic engine oil that meets JASO T903 MA2. KTM recommends Motorex Power Synt 4T 10W-50.

If you regularly drive below freezing (0 degrees C / 32 degrees F), KTM recommends 5W-40 engine oil.
Oil filterThe 2017+ KTM 1290 Super Adventure R takes a HF650 oil filter.
Air filterThe 1290 SAR takes a P-KT12E13-01 high-performance air filter.
Spark plugUse the following spark plugs (2 of each):
* Inside: LKAR9DI-10
* Outside: LMAR7DI-10
Both should be gapped to 1 mm (0.04 in)
CoolantThe 1290 Super Adventure recommends silicate-free coolant with corrosion inhibitors suitable for aluminium motors. KTM recommends Motorex Coolant M3.0, an OAT coolant.
Brake fluidKTM requires DOT 4 or 5.1. They recommends Castrol DOT 4 or Motorex DOT 5.1.
Chain maintenanceKTM recommends Motorex Chain Lubricant and Motorex Chain Clean.
General lubricantKTM recommends Motorex Bike Grease 2000. But you can use any lithium soap-based grease.
Fork oilUse SAE 4 fork oil.
Shock oilKTM recommends SAE 2.5 shock oil.
KTM 1290 Super Adventure R (2017) maintenance parts

Maintenance schedule for the KTM 1290 Super Adventure R (2017-2020)

Below is the maintenance schedule for the KTM 1290 Super Adventure R (2017-2020).

Maintenance schedule intervals for the 1290 Super Adventure R are 15000 km (9300 mi), with a major service (valve service & new plugs) every two intervals.

After the end of the service schedule, keep repeating it in this pattern.

The maintenance schedule in the manual is broken up into two sections — required maintenance and recommended maintenance (but you should do both).

Required maintenance

miles x 10000.69.318.6
km x 100011530Every
[Dealer] Read out the trouble code memory using the KTM diagnostics tool.Year
Check that the electrical system is functioning properly.Year
Change the engine oil and the oil filter and clean the oil screens.
Use JASO MA-spec full synthetic 10W-50, or 5W-40 if your bike goes below the freezing point of water. KTM recommends Motorex Power Synt 4T 10W-50.
Check the front brake linings.Year
Check the rear brake linings.Year
Check the brake discs.Year
Check the brake lines for damage and tightnessYear
Change the front brake fluid. (Castrol DOT 4, as with clutch fluid)2 years
Change the rear brake fluid.2 years
Change the hydraulic clutch fluid.2 years
Check the brake fluid level of the front brake.Year
Check the rear brake fluid level.Year
Check/correct the fluid level of the hydraulic clutch.Year
Check the shock absorber and fork for leaks. Perform service as needed and depending on how the vehicle is used.Year
Clean the dust boots of the fork legs
Check the steering head bearing play.Year
Check the tire conditionYear
Check the tire air pressureYear
Retighten the spokes
Check the spoke tensionYear
Check the rim run-outYear
Check the chain, rear sprocket, and engine sprocket.Year
Check the chain tensionYear
Change the spark plugs (air filter removed)
– Inside spark plug: NGK LKAR9BI-10
– Outside spark plug: NGK LMAR7DI-10
Check the valve clearance (air filter and spark plugs removed)
Change the SAS membrane
Check the cables for damage and routing without kinks (fuel tank removed)Year
Check the coolant level in the compensating tank.Year
Change the air filter, clean the air filter box.
Check the fuel pressure.Year
Check the CO adjustment using the KTM diagnostics tool.
Check the headlight setting
Check that the radiator fan is functioning properly.Year
Final check: Check the vehicle for safe operation and take a test ride.Year
[Dealer] Read out the error memory after the test ride using the KTM diagnostics tool.Year
[Dealer] Set the service interval display using the KTM diagnostic toolYear
[Dealer] Make a service entry in KTMDealer.netYear
KTM 1290 Super Adventure R (2017-2020) Maintenance Schedule

Recommended maintenance

miles x 10000.629.318.6
km x 100011530Every
Check the frame
Check the swingarm
Check/clean the oil nozzle for clutch lubrication
Check the swingarm bearing for play
Check the wheel bearing for play
Grease all moving parts (e.g. side stand, hand lever, chain) and check for smooth operation.
– Use lithium soap-based grease for major moving parts
– Use Motul chain paste for the chain
Empty the drainage hosesYear
Check all hoses (fuel, coolant, bleeder, drainage etc.) and sleeves for cracking, leaks, and incorrect routingYear
Check the screws and nuts for tightnessYear
Check the antifreezeYear
Change the coolant4 years
KTM 1290 Super Adventure R (2017-2020) Maintenance Schedule

Wheels and Tyres for the KTM 1290 Super Adventure R

The KTM 1290 Super Adventure R ships with 21/18-inch spoked rims and “100% tubeless” tyres.

Here are the tyre sizes and recommended pressures for longevity (not optimised for your ride style or desired handling/grip level).

WheelTyre sizeTyre pressure (cold)
Front90/90-21 M/C 5RV TL35 psi (2.4 bar)
Back150/70 ZR 18 M/C 70W TL42 psi (2.9 bar)
KTM 1290 Super Adventure R recommended tyre sizes and pressures

About the 2017-2020 KTM 1290 Super Adventure R

2017 2018 2019 2020 KTM 1290 Super Aventure R RHS rear offroad

The KTM 1290 Super Adventure R is KTM’s biggest adventure touring motorcycle.

KTM has been doing adventure touring for a long time. They’ve earned a reputation for making big adventure tourers that aren’t just capable of crossing deserts — they’re also exciting to ride.

Since launch in the 2015 model year with the original KTM 1290 Adventure, the 1290 range has always been immensely powerful, only matched in recent years by the big adventure tourers from Ducati and BMW, like the Ducati Multistrada 1260.

The KTM 1290 Super Adventure motorcycles are based around the now long-standing LC8 engine. It’s a huge 1301cc liquid-cooled 8-valve 75-degree V-twin that makes 118 kW (160 hp) of peak power at 8,750 rpm in the 2017-2020 incarnation, and 140Nm of torque — with most of that available at 2,500 rpm.

The 1290 Super Adventure R was an all-new model for 2017. It was much more than a big-bore 1190 Adventure R — a lot of it was higher spec.

The KTM 1290 Super Adventure R (2017) was stacked with premium features, including

  • Cornering combined ABS, lean angle-sensitive traction control that allows up to 100% rear wheel slippage for controlled drifting
  • Cruise control
  • Electronic suspension
  • Ride modes (including “off”)
  • A 7-inch TFT display
  • Electronic ignition key
  • Standard tyre pressure monitoring system

Basically — this is an extremely high-tech travel enduro.

Manual for the KTM 1290 Super Adventure R (2017-2020)

The above maintenance schedule comes from the user’s manual for the KTM 1290 Super Adventure R for 2017.

2017 2018 2019 2020 KTM 1290 Adventure R maintenance schedule
Maintenance schedule table for the KTM 1290 Super Adventure R – 2017

You can get the user manual directly from KTM’s website.

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