I'd love to have one of those little 390's
I've heard that about the RC390. I demoed the Duke 390 last year and everyone said the RC390 was significantly different. I have yet to ride one.
A friend was at the KTM demo day a couple of months ago and rode pretty much everything. At the end of the day he said "If they offered me any of these bikes, I'd take the RC390".
This is from a guy that has had lots of bikes, has been riding an L2 750 he bought new and was looking to buy a new ZX10.
A month later he had an RC390 and loves it. We are in an area where it really shines. For the price, he's keeping the 750 and RC390.
I know the area where pmhearns lives and I don't think I'd be happy on a sportbike either. It is just miles of traffic and stop lights. Any half way decent roads (river road) is 25-30 mph, speed bumps, and bicyclists. If you do ride the 20 miles to get to quieter roads, they are straight for miles.
The only thing you have to watch with these bikes is the shit build quality.
Not the quality of the components but the quality of how they were put together.
Built in India and QC there is not so good.
Lots of issues from owners on shit falling apart, blowing gaskets, kick stands falling apart, even a few clutches coming apart.
Good news is if you take the time to pretty much go over the bike yourself and torque everything down again the bike should be good to go.
As for pure fun to ride? Not much compares. The damn thing is sooooooooooooooooo light and makes >40hp.
It just dominates anything else in its class right now (Yamaha R3, Ninja 300, Honda CBR300R).
But there are supposed to be some new bikes coming this year to maybe give the KTM some better competition. New baby gixxer, new cbr.