First Ride

First Ride: Ducati Sport 1000S

Achingly beautiful, plain aching to ride. Another classic stunner from Italy.

Visordown Motorcycle News

Why do women wear stilettos? Despite the discomfort they wear them because walking on tiptoe makes their legs look longer, their bums more shapely and their boobs stick out. It's fashion over function.

Why do you want a Ducati Sport 1000S? The very same reason. Because despite the cripplingly uncomfortable riding position, the 1000S is simply stunning to look at.

I've ridden just about every new bike made in the last five years and can confidently say this latest SportClassic is the most uncomfortable to date. Thanks to the stretched riding position, the firm suspension and a pair of super low clip-ons a 20-minute ride had me feeling like I'd aged about 70 years. Is this what real retro riding is about?

And did I mention the heavy clutch? The 992cc air-cooled engine is the same beautiful motor as used throughout the SportClassic range, complete with bags of torque, a slick gearbox and a great sound. And it also comes with the same super-heavy clutch. Combine the riding position with this and crossing town is akin to medieval torture. An urban runabout this isn't.

Then you try and read the clocks. Despite looking great with funky retro numerals, you can only view half of them, and that's by looking down on them through the screen. Unless you adopt a Paul Smart-esque race crouch that is, and slide back in the seat, rest your chin on the tank and get right under that monstrous slice of retro perspex.

And then there is the suspension. The 1000S is a sporty bike, and so comes with very firm suspension. Every little bump and imperfection in the road is transmitted directly to your already aching body.

But do I care about any of that? Not a bit, because it looks stunning, rides beautifully when the road is right and feels fantastic to be on.

The Ducati 1000S is exactly what a modern retro bike should be. It takes the best styling components of a classic and puts them into a modern chassis that works. I'm certain owners of this bike won't care it's uncomfortable, because they will be making short journeys and enjoying the Ducati for what it is. I'd love to have one in my garage for that sunny Sunday run.

The Sport 1000S is a pair of Jimmy Choo stilettos: expensive and uncomfortable, but makes you look and feel a million dollars.

VERDICT 4/5
Cripplingly uncomfortable but achingly beautiful, so it's excused

SPECS

TYPE - STREETBIKE

PRODUCTION DATE - 2007

PRICE NEW - £7995

ENGINE CAPACITY - 599cc

POWER - 92bhp@8000rpm

TORQUE - 67.3lb.ft@6000rpm

WEIGHT - 188kg

SEAT HEIGHT - 825mm

FUEL CAPACITY - 15L

TOP SPEED - 140mph

0-60 - n/a

TANK RANGE - N/A

Why do women wear stilettos? Despite the discomfort they wear them because walking on tiptoe makes their legs look longer, their bums more shapely and their boobs stick out. It's fashion over function.

Why do you want a Ducati Sport 1000S? The very same reason. Because despite the cripplingly uncomfortable riding position, the 1000S is simply stunning to look at.

I've ridden just about every new bike made in the last five years and can confidently say this latest SportClassic is the most uncomfortable to date. Thanks to the stretched riding position, the firm suspension and a pair of super low clip-ons a 20-minute ride had me feeling like I'd aged about 70 years. Is this what real retro riding is about?

And did I mention the heavy clutch? The 992cc air-cooled engine is the same beautiful motor as used throughout the SportClassic range, complete with bags of torque, a slick gearbox and a great sound. And it also comes with the same super-heavy clutch. Combine the riding position with this and crossing town is akin to medieval torture. An urban runabout this isn't.

Then you try and read the clocks. Despite looking great with funky retro numerals, you can only view half of them, and that's by looking down on them through the screen. Unless you adopt a Paul Smart-esque race crouch that is, and slide back in the seat, rest your chin on the tank and get right under that monstrous slice of retro perspex.

Click here for the Ducati Sport 1000S review page 2 of 2.