It features a matt black frame, black engine with polished fin ends, black seat with grey trim and round black mirrors.
Claudio said at EICMA that their styling department was asked to create “something unprecedented but entirely possible”.
The results are the motard and scrambler.
The Motard will be based on the 803cc Scrambler.
“This is a bike we are working on right now,” said Claudio, so the production version can’t be far away.
Desert X Scrambler
The Desert X is based on the 1100cc Scrambler.
It celebrates the 1990 Paris-Dakar Rally victory by Italian rider Edi Orioli on the Ducati-powered Cagiva Elefant. That bike is in now in Ducati’s museum above their Bologna factory.
“We want to build the future without forgetting the past,” Claudio said.
Interestingly, Desert X is the name of a contemporary art exhibition held in the Coachella Valley in Southern California.
While Ducati already has an 803cc Desert Sled which is more off-road capable, the Desert X will be the 1100cc equivalent.
Scrambler Ducati Desert Sled
Ducati global sales
Ducati says they sold 8304 Panigales last year, confirming its status as the “world’s best-selling superbike with a market share of 25%”.
Two new bikes introduced in 2019 – the Hypermotard 950 and Diavel 1260 – racked up sales of 4472 and 3129 respectively, doubling the overall volumes achieved in 2018 by previous versions.
The Multistrada family performed equally well, scoring a 3% increase compared with 2018 thanks also to the addition of the 950 S and a revamped 1260 Enduro. Deliveries totalled 12,160, the best sales performance since the Bologna-built bike made its debut 16 years ago.
Now, the second-generation Diavel 1260 S has clinched the Good Design Award from the Chicago Athenaeum, Museum of Architecture and Design and the European Centre for Architecture Art Design and Urban Studies.
For 2020 the Diavel 1260 sports two new colour schemes, an all-black Dark Stealth for the standard version and an all-Ducati-red with white trims and red seat tail on the S version.
Speaking of which, Harley-Davidson will release an abundance of unusual products in 2020, including the Bronx Streetfighter range, electric bicycles and motorcycles, and their first big-bore adventure bike, the Pan America.
While our articles on all these bikes scored highly with our readers, the macho Streetfighter won this title bout.
When Ducati launched the Monster more than a quarter of a century ago it instantly became their top-selling range and the Monster 1200S is the pinnacle of the popular breed.
It may now have been usurped by the upcoming Streetfighter V4 with its ugly winglets to keep its front wheel on the ground, but it is still one of the prettiest and most rideable high-powered naked bikes on the market.
When we picked up the Monster 1200S for test from Brisbane Motorcycles, dealer principal James Mutton warned us we may not want to give the keys back.
And he was right.
Not because the Minster 1200S was a track weapon. It most likely is (although we didn’t take it to the track).
Not because it was enormous fun riding through the twisties.
But because it can do all that and with a top box on the back it could tour and be a competent commuter.
It is a bike you could live with for the rest of your life with its low weight, moderate seat height, handsome looks and usability.
Aussie rideaway pricing for the Monster range:
Monster 1200 $22,990
Monster 1200 S Red $26,990
Monster 1200 S Liquid Concrete Grey $27,190
Monster 1200 R Red $30,190
The “S” adds a race braking system, three-spoke Y rim wheels, a carbon front guard, Daytime Running Light and fully adjustable Ohlins suspension front and rear.
Our test bike was also fitted with an aftermarket Termignoni exhaust which added a haunting howl to the already golden tone of this bike.
It’s quite a hefty price hike for the S, but it’s worth it, just for the Ohlins.
Being fully adjustable you can dial it for track work or adjust it to take luggage and pillion and cope with our cruddy back roads where it’s “firm but fair”.
All are powered by the liquid-cooled 1198cc Testastretta 11° DS L-twin with 108kW of power and 124Nm of torque that comes in low and flattens throughout the rev range.
It is a highly flexible engine that doesn’t require a lot of finesse to gain the most from its prodigious resources.
Just roll on and off the throttle for smooth progress through complex corners almost without having to swap cogs.
Just as well as it’s married to a six-speed transmission that can be a little notchy and difficult to find neutral.
At the same time it will grab the odd annoying false neutral between fourth, fifth and sixth gears, even when using the Quick Shift.
This L-twin is a lumpy unit with a lot of character and enormous pull.
Thankfully the top-spec Brembo race brakes on the 1200S are up to the task of hauling its momentum to a halt.
The brake lever has plenty of initial bite, good feel and progression with no fade even when worked.
The rear brake felt a little wooden, but was fine for tightening your line through a corner if you went in too hot.
Riders can adapt the power and throttle as well as cornering ABS, traction and wheelie control levels through the three customisable Riding Modes (Sport, Touring and Urban).
While many manufacturers now provide engine modes, this is actually usable, customisable and convenient.
Urban mode calms the throttle a little for traffic, but the fly-by-wire throttle and fuel mapping are so smooth in Touring and Sport, you don’t even mind the sudden snap of power as it is well and truly controllable.
The modes are easy to access through the handlebar controls and the, at first confusing, full-colour TFT screen which is highly visible in all lighting conditions.
The cockpit is a nice place to be. Riding position is neutral with a slightly aggressive bend toward the flat and wide bars.
Footpegs may be a little high and rearward for some, but even my dicky knees didn’t mind the bend.
Its big contoured and adjustable seat allows the rider to slide forward and back, according to the conditions and adopt your body posture for alert commuting, relaxed touring and attacking track work.
Pillions will also enjoy the moderate reach to the footpegs, the big grab handles and the wide and comfortable seat.
My only concern is the heat generated by the liquid-cooled engine and the header pipes.
In summer traffic it can be quite uncomfortable, especially when the radiator fan kicks in and adds to the sauna.
Shame they don’t have more heat insulation and a fan that directs air down and away from the rider.
The heat issue wasn’t enough for me to dislike the bike, even living in hot Queensland!
James was right; I didn’t want to hand the keys back.
This is a bike I could live with for all riding conditions. It’s friendly and fun.
If you want to be practical about it, just remind yourself that it only needs an oil change every 15,000km or 12 months and a valve clearance check every 30,000km.
A broken battery cable could cause a sudden engine cutout in 2019/20 Ducati Hypermotard models, promoting a safety recall.
Ducati Australia has issued a safety recall through the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission for 34 Hypermotard 950 and 40 Hypermotard 950 SP models.
The vehicle identification numbers of the affected bikes are listed at the end of this article.
The official ACCC notice says:
Due to improper assembly, the battery’s negative cable terminal may break. If the battery’s negative cable terminal breaks, the engine may cut off while riding, increasing the risk of injury to the rider and passenger(s), and other road users.
Owners will be sent a letter asking them to contact their Ducati dealer or service agent “as soon as possible” to make an appointment for an inspection, free of charge.
This is the fourth recall in 2019 for Ducati following an issue with faulty gearshifts in Monster and Super Sport models, and fuel fires and oil leaks in various Panigale V4 models.
With just a few weeks to go in 2019, there have been 25 recalls of motorcycles plus two accessories (Harley bags and a Honda Monkey bike rack).
The most recalls this year was six for Yamaha; followed by 4 for BMW and Ducati; Harley, Honda, Suzuki and Triumph on three (if you count the aftermarket accessories for Harley and Honda); and one each for Kawasaki, Indian, Piaggio and KTM.
That compares with the previous year where Ducati had 6;Indian, Kawasaki, Suzuki, Yamaha, KTM and Triumph 3; BMW, Harley, Husqvarna and Moto Guzzi 2, Aprilia and MV Augusta one each.
Even though manufacturers and importers usually contact owners when a recall is issued, the bike may have been sold privately to a rider unknown to the company.
Therefore, Motorbike Writer publishes all motorcycle and scooter recalls as a service to all riders.
If you believe there is an endemic problem with your bike that should be recalled, contact the ACCC on 1300 302 502.
To check whether your motorcycle has been recalled, click on these sites:
For the Ducatisti tragic who has everything, how about this collection of Ducati racing memorabilia from MotoGP and World Superbikes that is now on sale.
The first load of limited-edition gear includes crankshafts, camshafts, pistons and con-rods with more being added over time.
Each item of memorabilia comes in a smartly styled plexiglass display case together with a certificate of authenticity, a technical description and info on the relative rider and world championship season.
All are personally certified by Ducati Corse boss Gigi Dall’Igna and Ducati CEO Claudio Domenicali who was recently announced as the as the new President of the Italian Motor Valley Association. Motor Valley is the area of Italy that includes most of the auto makers, 15 auto museums and several race and testing tracks.
Unfortunately, Ducati memorabilia items can only be purchased at the Ducati Store in Borgo Panigale, Bologna, and at selected Ducati dealerships.
DesmoSport Ducati Confirms Mike Jones to Race V4 R in 2020
After taking four pole positions and four race wins, along with nine podiums, on his way to winning the 2019 Australian Superbike Championship on the big booming 1299 Panigale R Final Edition, DesmoSport Ducati have now confirmed that Mike Jones will contest ASBK 2020 on the Panigale V4 R.
While it was initially unclear if Mike Jones, now a two-time ASBK Champion, would continue to pursue his racing career overseas as originally planned for 2019, the young Queenslander has removed any doubt about his intentions for the 2020 season.
“While I, like most racers, strive to race in the world championship, the racing in Australia just keeps getting stronger and stronger, and the credibility of the series continues to grow in the eyes of teams around the world. I love riding the Ducati for Ben (Henry) and Troy (Bayliss), and we have a really strong team. All of us agreed that it made sense for me to stay here, to ride the V4R, and defend our title, and by doing that, will only support my long-term goals of racing in the World Championship. I’ve been out and ridden the V4R that Troy’s been developing with Ben, and I’m pretty excited to race it to be honest. It’s not quite like anything I’ve ridden before, with the rpm, power delivery and of course, the wings.”
Ben Henry – DesmoSport Ducati Team Manager
“We’ve always had a strong relationship with Mike, and after winning the title this year, it was more a matter of aligning our partnerships for 2020 and ensuring the teams goals worked with Mikes own before we could move forward. A lot of people, including me if I’m honest, would have been surprised if we didn’t come to an agreement, so I’m really happy to be able to confirm that Mike Jones will race the DesmoSport Ducati V4R in the 2020 ASBK Championship. Mike is not only an incredible racer, but also has a great work ethic, and is willing to put in lap after lap, and give us good feedback to allow us as a team to deliver a better motorcycle come race day, and this is incredibly important in a championship like the ASBK where data from the bike itself is at a minimum. As a team, we still have some work to do, and are looking to finalise some new key partnerships as we get closer to 2020, but we’re excited to not only go racing, but also see what initiatives we can do to ”
“I’m really happy to come to an agreement with Mike for 2020. I know he has aspirations to race in the world championship, and to be honest, I think he’s capable of great results if the right package is around him, so to retain him just goes to show how strong our championship here is becoming, and how good the DesmoSport Ducati team as a package has become. I’m really proud of what DesmoSport has achieved in such a short time, with a tight-knit crew, and I can’t wait to see Mike at full throttle on the V4R.”
Ducati have never been afraid of trying something a little outside the square and this latest officially backed program will have plenty of well-heeled Ducatisti salivating at the chance to secure some pure engineering artistry from the boys, and girls, at Bologna.
Collecting original parts from the bikes that compete in the MotoGP and SBK championships has been many Ducatista’s dream… one that has now come true.
The Ducati Memorabilia project will be giving fans the chance to purchase certified parts from bikes used in recent years by MotoGP and SBK team riders.
The first batch of official Ducati components consists of con-rods, crankshafts, camshafts and pistons, all personally certified by Claudio Domenicali and Gigi Dall’Igna.
To enhance their uniqueness and originality further, all parts come complete with a technical description and info on the relative rider and world championship season.
Memorabilia items can be purchased at the Ducati Store in Borgo Panigale, at Ducati dealerships and, from 2020, also online at www.ducati.com. Each piece is protected in a plexiglass display case and comes with a certificate of authenticity.