Top Speed 2019 Ducati Buying Guide
The 2019 Ducati Lineup Explainedby Allyn Hinton, on
Ducati is among the top names to come out of Europe’s Boot, and is easily the sexiest marque on the market, inasmuch as a machine can have a sensuous nature. The builders in Bologna are also famous for their signature Desmodromic valvetrain and top-notch ride-quality electronics that deliver high-performance along with the safety systems to help you maintain control over the power. While the company made its name on the street and covers most of the blacktop bases, it dabbles in the dirt with an adventure-bike line and an entire Scrambler sub-division to round out the selection.
The Ducati brothers – Bruno, Adriano, and Marcello – founded the Ducati brand back in 1926 as a maker of equipment for the burgeoning radio industry. From its humble beginnings, the factory grew and branched out into other industries, but as with so many other marques, World War II saw the destruction of its facilities.
The brothers hit the ground running in 1946 with their first internal-combustion engine – the Cucciolo (puppy) – to serve as an auxiliary power source for bicycles. In 1954, the company released its first Desmodromic engine that replaced the customary valve springs with a pull-closed cam to eliminate harmonic valve float as a threat at high rpm.
The 1971 range saw the advent of the marque’s first twin-cylinder engine in the 750 GT, and the very next year that same engine carried Paul Smart to victory in the “200 Miles of Imola” race. Another engineering milestone was reached in 1988 with the first four-valve engine, and again this was followed by victory on the track in 1990 with a win at the World Superbike Championship.
In 1994, the 916 Superbike was named Motorcycle of the Year, a title it backed up with another WSBK win at the hands of British racer Carl Fogarty; a performance he would reprise in 1999. In 2003, the marque expanded into the adventure-bike market with the Multistrada line, and again expanded into the sport-cruiser sector with the first Diavel in 2011. Both of the above expanded their footprints again in ’14 and ’15, respectively, with the Multistrada 1200 S D|air and XDiavel against the backdrop of continued racetrack success. The 2015 model year also saw the Scrambler family that originally ran from ’62 to ’76, resurrected and expanded with a selection of engine sizes and capabilities.
Desmodromic: A style of valve closure that uses a pair of cams on each valve – one to push the poppet open, and the second to pull it closed – in a bid to mitigate high-rpm, harmonic valve float.
Testastretta: This is a “Narrow Head” engine that first saw light of day in ’01. It was superseded in ’07 by the Testastretta Evoluzione (evolution).
Ducati Skyhook Suspension (DSS): An automatic, self-adjusting suspension system that monitors chassis attitude and dynamically tunes the system to maintain stability. It’s indicated by an “S” in the model title.
VHC: The Vehicle Hold Control feature holds the rear brake for a total of 9 seconds to allow you to put both feet on the ground during take-offs on a grade.
DVT: The Ducati Variable Timing system rotates both the intake and exhaust cams relative to their drive gears in order to broaden the powerband, specifically toward the bottom end without sacrificing performance at the top end.
DPL: The Ducati Power Launch system lets you hold the R-b-W throttle wide open while the actual rpm count lands in the mid-range, and once you dump the clutch, it smoothly increases power as you accelerate to help you nail your holeshots.
DSL: The Ducati Slide Control works with the Ducati Traction Control (DTC) to limit how much the system will allow you to slide in the corners.
DQS: The Ducati Quick Shift feature lets you work your way both up and down the range sans clutch action.
D|air: This system turns a riding jacket into a wearable air bag that inflates to protect the rider in case of a crash or laydown.
The Diavel is both sporty and laid back – a sport-cruiser that definitely falls out on the sport-end of the spectrum. Power comes from a 152-horsepower, Testastretta DVT 1262 engine, and both the base model and the “S” variant come with most of the factory’s top-shelf electronics
|Diavel 1260||$19,995||1,262 cc|
|Diavel 1260 S||$22,995||1,262 cc|
You could say that the XDiavel is one step closer to “cruiser” on the evolutionary scale with forward foot controls in place of the mid-mounts on the base Diavel. This rearrangement of the rider’s triangle puts the rider in the windsock position with a vertical torso so there’s but little pressure on the wrists and shoulders. Most of the bike is just like its brother, except the “X” has a trim rear end with a small but tasteful p-pad.
|XDiavel S||$24,295||1,262 cc|
If you’re looking for a bike that’s strictly for fun and games, the Hypermotard line is a good place to start. It comes in a base Hypermotard 950 with an “SP” version that boasts an improved equipment package. No matter which you pick, both are powered by the same 937 cc engine that delivers 114 horsepower and 71 pound-feet of torque to a machine that weighs in at only 392 pounds, dry. They also come ready for trick-riding/hooliganism, and can be set up for track days by way of removable passenger footpegs and integrated mirror/turn signals.
|Hypermotard 950||$13,295||937 cc|
|Hypermotard 950 SP||$16,695||937 cc|
Ducati’s Monster line covers a wide swath within the market with its naked good looks and powerful range of engines that start out at the entry-level and progress all the way to the track. At the bottom tier, the Monster 797+ brings the essentials, but little else, with ABS as the only electronic ride-quality feature. The Monster 821 takes things up a notch with a larger lump and the addition of traction control for added safety. At the top of the food chain we find the Monster 1200 series that comes in a base model, “S” variant and bona fide racing “R” version, and these come with the full spectrum of ride-quality and safety gear in the electronics suite. Horsepower from the above three engines measure in at 73, 109, 147 and 152 horsepower, respectively.
|Monster 797+||$9,295||903 cc|
|Monster 821||$11,995||821 cc|
|Monster 821 Stealth||$11,995||821 cc|
|Monster 1200||$14,995||1,198 cc|
|Monster 1200 25°Anniversario||$19,995||1,198 cc|
|Monster 1200 S||$17,395||1,198 cc|
|Monster 1200 R||$19,395||1,198 cc|
The multi-surface Multistrada line starts with the 950 that delivers 113 horsepower along with Ducati traction control and Bosch cornering ABS. If rally-style riding or globetrotting is your thing, the Multistrada Enduro brings a healthy dose of off-road capability to the table along with an expanded electronics suite. It adds Riding Modes, Power Modes, Vehicle-Hold Control and Wheelie Control to the mix along with a 158-horsepower, 1,262 cc engine. Finally, for the road-warriors that keep to the tarmac, the 1260 Pikes Peak is for you with its boosted electronics package that’s tailored for the hill-climb it’s named after.
|Multistrada 950||$14,395||937 cc|
|Multistrada 950 S||$17,195||937 cc|
|Multistrada 1260||$18,695||1,262 cc|
|Multistrada 1260 S||$20,995||1,262 cc|
|Multistrada 1260 Pikes Peak||$25,495||1,262 cc|
|Multistrada 1260 Enduro||$21,995||1,262 cc|
The Ducati Panigale range comes with superbike-style body panels and a selection of engines that start with the 150-horsepower, twin-cylinder “959” model, and progress through the 234-horsepower “V4 R” that comes ready for competitive track duty. The electronics suites are equally impressive with a veritable alphabet soup of ride-quality and safety gadgets. This is the bike for you fiery-eyed elbow draggers out there.
|959 Panigale||$15,495||955 cc|
|959 Panigale Corse||$17,895||955 cc|
|1299 Panigale R FE||$39,900||1,285 cc|
|Panigale V4||$21,495||1,103 cc|
|Panigale V4 S||$27,895||1,103 cc|
|Panigale V4 S Corse||$29,995||1,103 cc|
|Panigale V4 Speciale||$39,995||1,103 cc|
|Panigale V4 R||$40,000||1,103 cc|
Ducati splits the difference between the Monster and the Panigale with its Supersport brothers. The base model and “S” variant are both just as aggressive and streamlined with a bit of a cutaway in the panels to give a glimpse of the frame and powerplant. Both models run a 937 cc mill that churns out 110 horsepower and 69 pound-feet of torque and come equipped with traction control, Riding Modes, and Bosch ABS across the board. You can shape the rider’s pocket somewhat since the windshield comes with an adjustment range of 50 mm (1.96 inches). This pair are made for riders who are looking for a comfortable commute without sacrificing sporty looks and performance.
|Supersport S||$15,195||937 cc|
The Scrambler line fulfills a dual role; it resurrects a classic motorcycle style and is geared toward the entry-level rider, for the most part. Certainly that’s the case at the bottom tier where we find the 399 cc Sixty2 with its pop-culture-inspired panache and friendly, 41-horsepower engine. The bulk of the Scrambler line runs an 803 cc L-Twin with 73 horsepower, 49 pounds of grunt and Cornering Bosch ABS, while the top-tier machines boast a 1,079 cc mill with the same ABS protection. Versatility is the hallmark of the Scramblers.
|Scrambler 1100||$12,995||1,079 cc|
|Scrambler 1100 Special||$14,395||1,079 cc|
|Scrambler 1100 Sport||$14,995||1,079 cc|
|Scrambler Café Racer||$11,995||803 cc|
|Scrambler Desert Sled||$11,995||803 cc|
|Scrambler Full Throttle||$10,995||803 cc|
|Scrambler Icon||$9,395||803 cc|
|Scrambler Sixty2||$7,995||399 cc|
Ducati 959 Panigale / 959 Panigale Corse
See our review of the Ducato 959 Panigale / 959 Panigale Corse.
Ducati 1299 Panigale R FE
See our review of the Ducati 1299 Panigale R FE.
Ducati Diavel / Diavel S
See our review of the Ducati Diavel 1260 / 1260 S.
Ducati Hypermotard 950 / 950 SP
See our review of the Ducati Hypermotard 950 / 950 SP.
Ducati Monster 797+
See our review of the Ducati Monster 797+.
Ducati Monster 821
See our review of the Ducati Monster 821.
Ducati Monster 821 Stealth
See our review of the Ducati Monster 821 Stealth.
Ducati Monster 1200 / 1200 S
See our review of the Ducati Monster 1200 / 1200 S.
Ducati Monster 1200 R
See our review of the Ducati Monster 1200 R.
Ducati Multistrada 950 / 950 S
See our review of the Ducati Multistrada 950 / 950 S.
Ducati Multistrada 1260
See our review of the Ducati Multistrada 1260.
Ducati Multistrada 1260 S / S D|air
See our review of the Ducati Multistrada 1260 S / S D.
Ducati Multistrada 1260 Enduro
See our review of the Ducati Multistrada 1260 Enduro.
Ducati Multistrada 1260 Pikes Peak
See our review of the Ducati Multistrada 1260 Pikes Peak.
Ducati Panigale V4 / V4 S / V4 Speciale
See our review of the Ducati Panigale V4 / V4 S / V4 Speciale.
Ducati Panigale V4 R
See our review of the Ducati Panigale V4 R.
Ducato Panigale V4 S Corse
See our review of the Ducati Panigale V4 S Corse.
Ducati Scrambler 1100 / 1100 Special
See our review of the Ducati Scrambler 1100 / 1100 Special.
Ducati Scrambler 1100 Sport
See our review of the Ducati Scrambler 1100 Sport.
Ducati Scrambler Café Racer
See our review of the Ducati Scrambler Café Racer.
Ducati Scrambler Desert Sled
See our review of the Ducati Scrambler Desert Sled.
Ducati Scrambler Full Throttle
See our review of the Ducati Scrambler Full Throttle.
Ducati Scrambler Icon
See our review of the Ducati Scrambler Icon.
Ducati Scrambler Sixty2
See our review of the Ducati Scrambler Sixty2.
Ducati Supersport / Supersport S
See our review of the Ducati Supersport / Supersport S.
Ducati XDiavel / XDiavel S
See our review of the Ducati XDiavel / XDiavel S.
Read more Ducati news.