Ducati plans for supersize Scrambler

1100cc Scrambler teased by Ducati

Posted: 15 February 2016
by Tom Rayner
Ducati Scrambler
Ducati's Federico Sabbioni is a volcano of ideas

DUCATI has dropped its strongest hint yet that an 1100cc supersize Scrambler could be joining the hugely successful family.

Speaking at the launch of the Scrambler Sixty2 in Barcelona, project manager Federico Sabbioni told Visordown: 'We've got the engines, there is room to make something bigger. We'll see, we have a number of ideas and we're thinking about it... there is a volcano of ideas.'

Don't get too excited about the prospect of a 200hp Panigale-engined Scrambler on the horizon, instead Sabbioni insisted that any larger displacement would adhere to the Scrambler's philosophy of a two-valve, air-cooled engine.

He said: 'I think we will continue to apply this kind of engine, we have in the past made a number of different displacements of this engine so we have experience and room to do a different version in terms of engine sizing. There's great possibility to stretch the brand with the 800cc engine, then of course there's also the possibility to make the bigger engine.'

Currently the largest Desmodue in Ducati's range is the air-cooled 800cc engine housed in the Scrambler.

However, the 1100cc Desmodue Evoluzione, last used in the Monster EVO and discontinued in 2013, looks the most likely candidate for the larger model. Of course, Ducati's engineers will need to make the engine Euro 4 compliant.

With Ducati's use of the name Sixty2, a reference to the original 1962 250cc single cylinder Scrambler, Visordown wondered if an affordable entry-level 250 was the next logical step – particularly with the possibility of building the much simpler engine in India or the Far East.

Ducati firmly quashed this idea – suggesting it would be damaging to the prestige of the brand.

'250cc is too small,' said Sabbioni. 'We think this is a bottom line (400cc twin) and we have to respect that and not stretch our brand and our values too much to the lower end. We didn't want to just copy the old Scrambler 30 years later, we want to re-imagine them in a post heritage way, try to add contemporary technology and innovation but keeping the style and inspiration of the old bike.'

The real question is, what would the hipsters make of a 100hp Scrambler?

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new bike, v-twin, desmodue, scrambler, large, 1100cc, sixty2, heritage, retro, ducati

Discuss this story

Could increase the Bug-in-Beard quotient to `Not Cool` levels

And I'd fear for the survival of the turnups with a bigger motor: Such a flagrant style failure of a `one leg up other leg down` entry into the wine bar could be disastrous for the cred.

Nah, it'll never happen...its purely to scare Triumph.

Posted: 15/02/2016 at 14:09

At a technical level it would also need mudguards that work, a larger tank, much better suspension and an increase in service intervals to be worth the extra dosh over the 800.

The performance difference in the real world would be negligible because of the parachute riding position.

Posted: 15/02/2016 at 14:13

Be of a bit of a bastard to get through the looming Euro5s as well won't it.

Posted: 15/02/2016 at 15:01

Glad to hear there are no plans to stick an ugly radiator on what is currently quite a pretty bike. Not sure why you'd need an 1100cc engine on a sit-up-and-beg city bike.

Posted: 15/02/2016 at 15:09

Volcano of ideas.. bigger engine, and ...that's it.
Here's two ideas, get a valve drive train that doesn't use pricey rubber belts and ditch the irrelevant desmo valve design.

Posted: 15/02/2016 at 15:37

Of course there's a market for it, and the performance is a non-issue, otherwise why build a Tuono with 160+ HP, an S1000R with 160 HP, an MT-01 with 160+ HP or any other naked superbike?
Tune it for mid-range grunt, and you have a decent twisty A road or B road bike that can destroy the traffic. Also, give it a fuel tank bigger than a can of beer.
It's a styling exercise at the end of the day, and let's not forget that "Scrambler" is a brand in it's own right, so there's more merchandising tat to sell along with the dream.

Posted: 15/02/2016 at 15:41

Claudio Domenicali mentioned something similar last year: "An 1100cc model can still be a Scrambler as long as it keeps to the same formula and doesn't try to be too technical or make things too complex".

They could very easily blur the lines with this one and build something to slot in just under the Monster 821, which is arguably on the verge of being "too complex" (liquid cooled, TC, RBW / riding modes etc.).

The air-cooled 1100 is a cracking lump of a motor, but I wonder what of that character would survive the Euro4 treatment.

I somehow doubt they'd price it only £800 dearer than the 800, like the 800 is over the 400, too...

Posted: 15/02/2016 at 16:09

And still they don't make a new 1100 (or 1200) hyper....talk about missing the boat....

Posted: 15/02/2016 at 22:49

Figure that new Scrambler 1100 would weigh in a shade over 400 pounds; and with a nearly 100 bhp engine, that would give it twice the oomph of a mid-1970s Bonneville at the same weight. If they make it then I'll give it serious consideration. Frederico....Go for it!

Posted: 16/02/2016 at 00:37

Ducati-spin/knee-jerk reaction to the launch success of the Thruxton-R?

Posted: 16/02/2016 at 01:26

Been looking for a replacement for one of my M1000Sie bikes, I look forward to the test ride

Posted: 16/02/2016 at 06:55

I'd have thought a range of engines to be part of the original plans, assuming success with the basic model.

They did it with the Monster, why not the Scrambler

Posted: 16/02/2016 at 10:06

Mud Doctor is spot on of course there is need for one,Ducati are on a roll along with Yamaha they can do no wrong at the moment.If I had the money I would be buying the new MT10 with yellow wheels.The scrambler style bikes are the ones bringing the non-bikers into the fold at the moment, along with the 125s,how about a scrambler looking 125?

Posted: 16/02/2016 at 12:16

Biased here, But Ive got an old shaped monster, which you can now pick up dirt cheap, which I think is pretty cool, without trying to be cool and doesn't tread on anyone's toes. It's a 20 odd year design now, only a matter of time before their prices start going up so buy 'em now!

Posted: 16/02/2016 at 12:54

what are the service intervals on these air cooled Ducati engines ?

Posted: 16/02/2016 at 14:41


Typically, maintenance interval of 12,000km/annual, 12,000km/annual for oil/filter, 12,000km for valve clearance check, and 24,000km or 2 years for the timing belts.

Belts is `spensive. VERY expensive. Unless you do it yourself.

Dunno 'bout the Scrambler, but almost every Duc I've ever worked on (and I'm an R&D engineer by training but not motorcycles) it was much better to pop the engine out (or rather lift the chassis off) than piss about skinning knuckles and cursing at frame tubes in just the wrong places. That usually implies a hydraulic workbench and the ability to strap the rest of the bike to the ceiling so you can lower the engine.

Then there are 3 or 4 special tools, and of course these days you need the diagnostic software. Ducati don't want owners working on their bikes (typically with good reason: I had a face plant moment once with a HyperMotard-owning tit who was convinced putting hydrogen instead of air in his tyres reduces unsprung weight...)

Posted: 16/02/2016 at 14:58

Hey Frederico......one last thing......if you're going to build a scrambler on steroids then go whole hog and add a late-70s Darma graphics scheme to it. Still gorgeous after all these years.

Posted: 16/02/2016 at 15:08

@ snave never owned a Ducati myself was tempted to a hypermotard a few years back but saw the reliability and service costs and thought nah , plus the dealer was 40 miles away , when Yamaha can do gaps of 24k miles between valve checks which is always the biggest service on nearly all bikes I do wonder why a lot of other marques do not follow suit , I'm sure there are plenty of riders who don't want a £500+ service bill every 2 or three years on top of normal running costs.

Posted: 16/02/2016 at 15:48

Belts can be had for £30 a pair.  As mentioned, it's fitting the bastards in the birdcage of a frame Ducatis have traditionally had that is the issue.

A mate has to put his in soon for it, and he would rather have it done properly and get the stamp in the book than put himself through all that stress without the proper tools etc.


Supposedly you can eke out the valve clearance intervals to 10-12k after the first two.

Posted: 16/02/2016 at 20:34

I can change belts on my 4v duke and my 2v duke in 30 minutes with no special tools ,,,i do all my own servicing without dropping engines and tune ups as well,,I own 3 ducatis and also dont bother with a hydraulic work bench ,, they are the easiest engines of any bike i have ever owned to work on in 40 years of biking ....

Posted: 17/02/2016 at 15:37

But John you're probably not as multi talented in as many disciplines as some on here!

Posted: 17/02/2016 at 18:10

I am now growing a beard which will need to be zz top esq to qualify for a supersize scrambler,Also i am having some jeans made with 18 inch turnups,open face wont be radical enough for a lid so im making one that is just a skull cap
.strongly considering piercings and tatoos,

Posted: 17/02/2016 at 18:29

Do you suppose you'd be shot on sight if you didn't wear the "uniform"? I'd chance it anyway.

@ John Liddell No doubt it's easy when you know what you're doing. Learning can be expensive, though.

Posted: 17/02/2016 at 22:49

Oversize eh? Does it have a bigger wicker basket on the handlebars to carry all the bigger bits that will fall off?

Posted: 19/02/2016 at 18:24

Here it is an idea for Ducati....a real scrambler. With spoke wheels not alloy wheels, proper suspension to do easy trails...
A flat track would not be bad either.

Why not smaller engines with easy and cheap maintenance....

Posted: 20/02/2016 at 08:25

You can get the Scrambler with spoke wheels Sergio! The classic and Urban Explorer have them as standard.

The Scrambler is also more than capable of doing light trails but yes, some slightly softer adjustable suspension would help, but that is a cheap-ish upgrade.

Personally, I think the Scrambler brand absolutely NEEDS a higher performance bike. The current Scrambler is great but for youunger guys like me, who are working our way up the biking ladder, we need something to move up to.

I don't want a superbike or even a super naked with 150+bhp. I want a roadster with 100-120bhp and a few electronics to play with and a simple and classic design.

The Yamaha XSR900 is probably going to be my next bike unless Ducati can produce something compelling and better looking. The XSR is perfect specs wise, it just doesn't have the sex appeal of Ducati's design.

The Scrambler has gotten more admiring comments than any bike I've come across.

Posted: 11/03/2016 at 21:59

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