When Ducati began using carbon fiber on their bikes, they predictably used it on a limited edition, single-seat Ducati 900 Super Sport. Built from 1992 to 1996 as the Ducati 900 Superlight, the bike used the aforementioned carbon fiber material on a number of its components, particularly the mudguards and the clutch cover.
Initially, the Italian bike maker wanted to build 500 models of the bike, but bumped that up to 900 pieces after incessant public demand. After the 900 Superlight enjoyed success in the market, Ducati built the Superlight II in 1993, replacing the composite wheels with Brembo units and adding a floating rear disc brakes setup. They also fitted in a powerful 904 cc V-twin SOHC Desmo engine that produced 73 horsepower and was mated to a six-speed transmission.
The Superlight II that was auctioned off at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco was model no. 34 of the 1993 series. It came in original condition, had good paint, and is considered one of the rare super bikes that would find a nice home in a motorcycle collector’s garage.
The bike sold for €4,095 ($5,260), below the estimated auction price of €4,500 - €6,000 ($5,800 - $7,700).
There was a point in Ducati’s history when it actually offered budget bikes at, well, budget prices.
Back in the 50’s, one of those bikes was the Ducati 85 Turismo. This particular beauty was catered to entry-level buyers, with powertrain options ranging from 48 cc to 125 cc.
As for the 85 Turismo, the bike was, for all intents and purposes, a simple and economical machine that became known for its commuting and short-distance runs. It was powered by an 85 cc OHV single engine that was mated to a three-speed transmission.
Design-wise, the 85 Turismo was a stud on two wheels. To ensure its appeal despite the simple powertrain options, Ducati designed the bike with an ode to its more expensive SOHC counterparts.
The model that was sold at the 2012 RM Auctions was a very tidy older restoration finished in red with a white tank and good paint and chrome. It was sold at a price of €1,755 ($2,255) which was below its listed bid price of €2,500 - €3,500 ($3,200 - $4,500).
More photos of the Ducati 85 Turismo after the jump
Talk about a bike that was designed to be "bare as bones."
If that phrase needed any more explanation, you only need to look at the Ducati 250 Sprint. This is a bike that came with a minimalist design, as well as Ducati’s new 249 cc SOHC single wide-case engine that was mated to a five-speed transmission.
The 250 Sprint was built for sprint racing and hill climbing, with the latter being a popular form of racing back in Italy during the 60’s and the 70’s. Back then, the Ducati single engines were a popular choice amongst enthusiasts. The 250 Sprint not only came with that powertrain, but they also had a significantly larger Dell’Orto PHF32AS carburetor and twin spark plugs. To save weight, the seat and tailpiece were made from fiber-glass, as was the fuel tank. In addition, the bike also came with rear-set foot-pegs, clip-on bars, and a fly-screen with a Veglia tachometer whereas the wheels came with Borrani rims.
Despite carrying an estimated auction price of about €8,000 - €12,000 ($10,300 - $15,400), the bike was only sold at a price of €4,095 ($5,250) at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco.
Before the Ducati 175 broke into the scene, the Ducati 125 Sport was the quintessential early Ducati single. Fast forward to today’s time, and the now classic bike has become the perfect machine for vintage events anywhere, including the Motogiro d’Italia.
But back then, the Ducati 125 Sport was in a league of its own, weighing only 221 pounds and featuring a 124 cc SOHC single engine that produces 10 horsepower and mated to a four-speed transmission. The 125 Sport was capable of hitting a top speed in excess of 70 mph, and when combined with a design that’s as streamlined as any Ducati bike ever built, it was the perfect on-the-road companion for all those merry joy rides.
This particular 1955 Ducati 125 Sport - CN: DM125S/7564 - comes with a two-tone red and white paint finish complete with a distinctive scalloped fuel tank, signature clip-on handlebars, and fully restored chrome finishes.
Expected auction price at the RM Auction sin Monaco was around €3,500 - €4,500, which is around $4,500 - $5,800 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $4,545.
If you want to talk about a true one-of-a-kind classic Ducati, it doesn’t get any better than the Ducati 860 GT Polizia. On the same vein that the American police rode Harley-Davidsons for years, its European counterpart used Ducatis.
This particular 860 GT Polizia, which was put on auction at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco, was built on a 750GT frame, with 750 tanks and side covers. In addition, it carried a powerful 864 cc SOHC V-twin engine that was mated to a five-speed transmission.
As a 1981 model, this 860 GT Polizia - CN: DM750S/755495 - was used by the Bologna Police Department and came with a windshield, leg shields, and side panniers, as well as a black paint and chrome finish.
Its condition is still impeccable even after all these years, and is highlighted by a relatively low mileage considering its age and the purpose it was used for (patrolling the mean streets of Bologna, Italy back in the 80’s).
Expected bid price for this 1981 Ducati 860 GT Polizia was pegged at around €4,000 - €6,000, which is about $5,200 - $7,800 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $10,606.
It’s hard to imagine that Ducati has been building bikes for as long as they have. But for all those years in production, you’re bound to get a number of models that have become classics in their own right.
Take the 1973 Ducati 450 Desmo Scrambler for example.
With the anticipation of Ducati’s desmodromic valve gear back in the late 60’s, coupled with the success and popularity of the Ducati Scrambler, it figured that the two would somehow be tied-up together to create a completely new bike. That’s when the Ducati 450 Desmo Scrambler was born.
With the technology being fitted into the bike, the 450 Desmo Scrambler became a must-have purchase for Ducati enthusiasts back in the day, in large part because of the bike’s impressive performance credentials, highlighted by a 16.6-second time through the quarter-mile. On top of its performance characteristics, the 450 Desmo Scrambler was also fitted with an individual speedometer and Veglia tachometer rather than the headlight-mounted unit sometimes seen on 250-cc and 350-cc models.
The model that was auctioned off at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco carries the chassis number DM450S/466142. It’s an unrestored model in good condition with a two-tone, black-and-yellow finish with a 436 cc Desmo single engine mated to a five-speed transmission.
Bidding price for the bike was expected to hit €8,000-€10,000, which is around $10,400 - $13,000 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $12,121.
The Ducati 900 S2 was built on the joint platform of the 900 Darmah SS and the 600SL Pantah, with the latter supplying the body work of the bike.
The reason for doing so centered on Ducati’s decision to rationalize its production lines at that time. To their credit, though, they still managed to make a bike that not only looked good, but performed up to the standards of its predecessors.
The Ducati 900 S2 is powered by an 864 cc SOHC Desmo V-twin engine that’s mated to a five-speed transmission. It was also offered with either electric or kick-start options, as well as being fitted with 40-mm Dell’Orto carburetors.
Aesthetically speaking, the 900 S2 was also the picture of attraction - the bike was given a bevy of color options, including bronze with yellow, orange and red stripes, or red and black.
The Ducati 900 S2 that was present at the 2012 RM Auctions is an original model, one that was once displayed in a museum. Expected bidding price for the bikes go for around €5,000 - €7,000, which is about $6,400 - $9,000 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $5,303.
The Ducati 450 Mark 3 was born when the wide-case engine was first introduced in 1968. Not only did this new technology pave the way for bikes like the Scramblers and the Mark 3 Sports to become legendary bikes, but it also gave Ducati plenty of options on where to use this new engine.
In the case of the 450 Mark 3, its arrival in the market in 1969 provided customers an opportunity to enjoy the wide-case engine, not just with the 450 cc, but in either 250 or 350 cc displacements altogether.
But this is all about the 450 Mark 3, which not only came with the aforementioned engine, but also carried an extra gusset along the top tube like Spaggiari’s racer, which featured a wider chain and sprocket and slightly longer Marzocchi forks. On top of that, the bike also featured a new type of Dell’Orto square-slide VHB 29 carburetor while the bullet silencer was replaced by the cut-off Silentium type. In the end, the Ducati 450 Mark 3 became a bike that not only looked the part of a true hardcore cafe bike, but also performed like one too.
The model that was offered at the 2012 RM Auctions in Monaco is an original - CN: DM450M3/700368 - with a Rosso Rubino paint and some splashes of patina, which shows its age. The expected bid price was around €3,000 - €4,000, which is around $3,900 - $5,200 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $6,818.
Go back to the 60’s in Italy and ask what kind of motorcycle was in vogue back then. Chances are, a majority of the people you ask will say "Scramblers."
As one of the most popular wide-case single bikes at the time, the Ducati 450 Scrambler was, for all intents and purposes, a true road warrior on two wheels. It wasn’t intended to be used for off-road competition and in addition to the 450 version, it also came in 250 cc and 350 cc trims. The only reason why the 450 Scrambler didn’t carry a 500 cc engine was because the crank throw wouldn’t clear the gearbox.
Nevertheless, the 450 Scrambler still packed plenty of punch to go along with an impressive frame that included an extra gusset along the top tube like Bruno Spaggiari’s racer, a wider chain and sprocket, slightly longer Marzocchi forks, and a silencer that was changed in 1969 to the cut-off Silentium type.
The Ducati 450 Scrambler - CN: DM450S/467407 - that was auctioned off at the 2012 MTM auctions in Monaco remained in unrestored condition, complete with its original yellow painted body and alloy wheel rims. Expected bidding price for the bike ranged from €3,000-€4,000, which is around $3,900 - $5,200 based on current exchange rates. Actual selling price was $7,955. Well done!
Alongside the 500, 600, and 650 Pantahs in the early 1980s was a range of 350s specifically produced for the Italian market to accommodate a tax break for motorcycles below 350 cc. The 350 XL was one of Ducati’s parts-bin specialties and essentially a 500 SL with a 600 TL handlebar fairing and higher handlebars. More was sourced from the SL Pantah than the TL, including instruments, instrument panel, and rear-set foot-pegs.
The 350 engine was a downsized 500 SL, with smaller valves (33.5 mm inlet and 30.5 mm exhaust). The Dell’Orto carburetors were smaller (30 mm), and there were new camshafts. The lower end, including the five-speed gearbox and wet cable-operated clutch, was identical to the later 500 SL, and the exhaust system was Silentium. The power was still a healthy 40 horsepower at 9,600 rpm. The 350 XL chassis was also very similar to the 500 SL, with gold FPS wheels, Paioli suspension, and small 05-series Brembo front brake calipers. Attractively styled in red and black, the 350 XL was capable of around 170 km/h. The 350 XL offered here is in excellent original condition, with nice paint and chrome.
The Ducati XL350 Pantah was estimated to bring in between €3,000-€5,000, but it actually brought in €585, which is about $745 at the current rates.