ECIMA brought many surprises. One among them was the concept bike from the house of Hyosung, ‘GD 450’. The date for the bike’s launch has not been confirmed yet but it’s important that we put it in perspective and compare it with the bike (KTM Duke 390) that it would compete with in India.
The Duke 390 has so far been considered the benchmark in the middle-weight bike segment for the simple reason that it has best figures on offer. The power-to-weight ratio of the Duke 390 lies in superbikes territory and it has been giving difference-anxiety to all its rivals. Can the Korean made GD 450 end its supremacy? Let’s find out.
Hyosung GD 450 Vs KTM Duke 390 (Design and Looks)
The Duke 390 has been well-appreciated for its rims and chassis that come coloured in bright KTM racing orange, but it’s indeed marred by the lack of an alternative option since not everyone might prefer to be that loud. So, what else is there to like? Perhaps everything. The bike takes the minimalism to an all new level and there’s only muscle, no flab. The familiar facia that’s been borrowed from the Duke 200 has no right to exclusivity, it looks pleasing though. The lightweight swing arm is perhaps one of the most aesthetically appealing components that are present on the bike other than the exposed steel trellis frame. The minimal graphics are visible mostly from the side and are in line with the bike’s minimalistic theme.
|Dimensions and Weights||Hyosung GD 450||KTM Duke 390|
|Ground Clearance (mm)||145||170|
|Kerb weight||150 kg||139 kg|
The GD 450 which has not yet made it to the production, but it’s expected that it would largely remain the same. The double projector headlamp unit at front is not exactly appealing to look at and we hope it’s redesigned before the bike goes into production. The GD 450 follows the same minimalistic theme like the competition.
The handle bars look just as wide as the competition, and coupled with short wheelbase and low kerb weight (150 kg), it should make the bike extremely flickable. The GD 450 appears somewhat sophisticated largely due to the body work that’s present beside the tank. A licence plate holder is amiss on the concept bike and it would probably make it look more complete. It’s expected that it would look somewhat like the one present on the younger sibling GD 250 R.
Hyosung GD 450 Vs KTM Duke 390 (Features and Engine)
The Duke 390 as well as GD 450 employ over square engines. We expect the engine of the GD 450 to be rev happy just like the unit on Duke 390. While the Duke 390 delivers its peak power 44PS at 10,000rpm, the GD 450 claims 50PS at just 7,500rpm. If that’s not impressive enough, you should probably take into account the even higher torque figure of the GD 450 (48Nm @ 7000rpm) which is way better than what the Duke has to offer (36Nm@8000rpm)
All of this coupled with low kerb weight (150kg) of the GD 450 gives the bike an absolute enviable stance, at least on paper. The Duke 390 is about 11kgs lighter that should ideally make it somewhat better handler but all of it remains a conjecture until we actually ride and compare them.
|Engine and Capacities||Hyosung GD 450||KTM Duke 390|
|Capacity and type||449cc, single cylinder||373cc, single cylinder|
|Bore X Stroke||96mm X 62mm||89mm X 60mm|
|Fuel tank capacity||11 litres||11 litres|
The Duke 390 comes with a meter console that might make even some of the superbikes envy. You get side stand indicator, rev counter, distance to empty, fuel gauge, riding time, average fuel consumption, engine temperature, programmable gearshift light, service reminder, tripmeter the works. Considering that even the more powerful GT 650 R from Hyosung does not offer a very sophisticated meter console, we expect that the GD 450 would offer something similar or slightly better, but perhaps nowhere near the Duke 390.
Hyosung GD 450 Vs KTM Duke 390 (Suspension, Wheels & Tyres and Brakes)
KTM Duke 390 offers 43mm USD forks from WP suspension and a casted alloy swing arm at rear employs a mono shock (integrated spring and damper) unit from WP that can be adjusted for preload. GD 450 employs the 41mm USD forks that have been developed in-house. The double side aluminium swing arm works with a gas charged hydraulic shock absorber which is also adjustable for preload.
|Suspension, Wheels & Tyres and Brakes||Hyosung GD 450||KTM Duke 390|
|Front Suspension||USD Forks (41 mm diameter)||USD Forks (43 mm diameter)|
|Rear Suspension||Monoshock with double side aluminium swing arm||Monoshock with casted alloy swing arm|
|Front Brakes||Four piston calliper (300 mm disc)||Four piston calliper (300 mm disc)|
|Rear Brakes||Two opposed piston calliper (230 mm disc)||Single-piston calliper (230 mm disc)|
|Wheels and Tyres||Front:120/60 ZR 17 55W Rear:160/60 ZR 17 69W||Front:110/70 -17 Rear:150/60 -17|
Both bikes employ 17inch wheels at the front as well as the rear. There’s a 110 section tyre on the front and 150 section on the rear of the Duke 390. The tyres are from Metzeler so expect phenomenal grip levels. The GD 450 would be using wider set of tyres on the front as well as the rear (120mm front and 160mm rear). We expect that the GD 450 would most likely employ Bridgestone Battlax or similar rubber compound as seen on other powerful bikes from Hyosung.
The ABS comes as standard with the KTM 390 and we expect that it should be available as standard on the competitor too, considering that even the Hyosung offers it as standard on the new GT 300 R and GT 650 R. The GD 450 employs are petal discs on the front as well as the rear (four piston calliper 300 mm disc at front and 230mm disc with two opposed piston calliper at rear) while the Duke 390 employs normal discs (four piston calliper 300 mm disc at front and 230mm disc with single-piston calliper at rear).
So, what does it take to become a winner? Definitely a lot depends upon the specifications and the GD 450 outdoes the KTM 390 in almost every department. The word ‘mileage’ was never mentioned in the entire article for a simple reason that it’s not considered an important aspect of bikes that sell at this price point.
While KTM benefits to a great extent from Bajaj’s service network and has a reach that’s much better than Hyosung. The latter however, is yet to achieve a level of penetration that can inspire more confidence in aspiring new buyers. With time, Hyosung’s partnership with DSK should pay off and we expect the brand to have more visibility.
The GD 450 would most likely be locally assembled unlike the Duke 390 which is manufactured in India. If Hyosung manages to price this right, it might just send KTM back to the drawing board.