6-ft tall rider’s views on 390 Adventure X, Himalayan after Ladakh trip
The Royal Enfield truly shines when the road disappears but the KTM was never too far behind.
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I just came back from a 2400 km trip to Pangi, Zanskar, and Ladakh on my 390 ADV-X. I did the same route (minus Pangi) last year on my BS4 Himalayan. So I thought I would highlight how the 390 ADV compares to the Himalayan on-road and off-road.
- Super tractable and a mile muncher
- No low-end/stalling issue
No doubt the 390s engine is far superior to the Himalayan. I was apprehensive about the low-end torque. Unlike the 390, the Himalayan has loads of low-end torque and can get you out of every situation. But I think KTM has changed something in the 2023 models. The infamous no low-end/stalling is nowhere to be found. I could manage to get myself out of every tricky situation. No stalling, nothing. It just needs to be revved slightly. I easily managed to get my 390 ADV-X out of deep sand, mud, water crossings, steep inclines etc.
Suspension & Handling
- Great handling on smooth roads
- Not-so-great handling off-road
The Himalayan truly shines when the road disappears. The suspension and that 21″ front tyre is a game changer for offroad conditions. That thing just glides over whatever is thrown at it. But my 390 ADV-X was never too far behind the two Himalayans that were in our group. Granted that those two Himalayan boys were expert offroad riders, but I could keep up with them.
My only complaint is that any obstruction like a rock/boulder would completely ruin my intended line. I had to course-correct a lot. While the Himalayan would just glide over, the 390 ADV was a piece of work. In fact, the first water crossing I hit while descending Sach Pass, my 390 ADV-X fell over because it just wouldn’t glide over the boulders. Perhaps it was because I was crossing this stretch the same way I would on my Himalayan. I didn’t face any trouble after this, probably because I understood the 390 ADV’s behaviour.
- Better seat than the Himalayan
- Wider handlebar
I am 6 feet tall and the Himalayan always felt a little cramped. I was never comfortable on it. The 390 ADV felt super comfortable in comparison. The firm seat and the wide handlebar help ride all day without any discomfort. I managed to complete Hanle-Manali (470 kms) in 12 hours without any discomfort. In fact, saddling was also better on the 390 ADV.
- Averages 27-28 kmpl
- Limited range compared to my Himalayan
Perhaps the biggest irritant was the limited range of the 390 ADV, especially when fuel availability was a major issue. I was carrying 10L extra and twice even that wasn’t enough. My Himalayan could easily do 380 kms, compared to my 390 ADV which could do only 320 km.
Overall, this was an awesome ride. The 390 ADV is a solid motorcycle that’ll take you everywhere in comfort and speed. Just don’t ride it like the Himalayan (like I did in the initial days) and you’ll be fine. And don’t worry about the low-end anymore.
Check out BHPian comments for more insights and information.
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