First Ride: Ducati Multistrada 1200

Will Ducati’s complete revision of the Multistrada be enough to steal top all-rounder tag from the BMW R1200 GS?

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Submitted by Tim Skilton on Wed, 03/03/2010 - 21:02

First impressions are positive. The bulbous frog-like expression of the old 1100’s front fairing now looks razor sharp and bang up-to-date, with a hawk-like appearance thanks to the aggressively styled twin air ducts and purposeful looking twin headlights.

To appeal to a wider audience, Ducati has made the brave claim that the new 1200 is a four-in-one motorcycle; sports, tourer, urban commuter and enduro machine. Lanzarote, the second oldest of the Canary Islands proves a good testing ground for these bold claims. Perfectly asphalted roads snake their way around 807 square kilometers of biking nirvana.

At the heart of the Multistrada is the Testastretta L-twin motor as used in the 1198, but radically refined to adapt to each riding mode. Power delivery is smooth, right from 1,250rpm at idle through to the full 150bhp at 9,250rpm. Compared with the superbike engine, there’s more power below 4,000rpm. And with gear ratios altered to make sixth effectively an overdrive, cruising speeds of 80mph are reached with minimum strain on the motor and maintained with much less engine noise.

Want to know the overall verdict? Check out Issue 9 of Visordown Magazine. On sale now.

SPECS
Multistrada 1200 S (Sport & Touring)
Price: £14,295 (ABS)
Engine: 1198cc liquid-cooled, 8-valve L-twin
Power: 150bhp @ 9,250rpm
Torque: 87.5ft.lb @ 7,500rpm
Front suspension: Ohlins 48mm USD forks, electronic compression & rebound adjustment
Rear suspension: Ohlins TTX electronic Monoshock, fully adjustable
Front brake: 320mm discs, four piston Brembo calipers
Rear Brake: Single 245mm disc, two piston caliper
Dry weight: 192kg (claimed)
Seat height: 850mm
Fuel capacity: 20 litres
Top speed 150mph (est)
Tyres: Front, Pirelli Scorpion Trail 120/70 ZR 17, Rear, Pirelli Scorpion Trail 190/55 ZR 17
Colours: White, Red, Black

Multistrada 1200
Price: £10,995 (non-ABS)
Engine: Liquid cooled, 4 valve per cylinder, L-twin, Desmodromic, 1198cc
Power: 150bhp @ 9,250rpm
Torque: 87.5ft.lb @ 7,500rpm
Front suspension: Marzocchi 50mm USD forks, fully adjustable
Rear suspension: Sachs Monoshock, fully adjustable
Front brake: 320mm discs, four piston Brembo calipers (ABS as standard)
Rear Brake: Single 245mm disc, two piston caliper
Dry weight: 189kg (claimed)
Seat height: 850mm
Fuel capacity: 20 litres
Top speed 150mph (est)
Tyres: Front, Pirelli Scorpion Trail 120/70 ZR 17, Rear, Pirelli Scorpion Trail 190/55 ZR 17
Colours: White, Red, Black

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