Ducati has had a busy year and is in Milan for the EICMA to show off the fruits of its labor. Duc always has a strong presence at this show, and who can blame them since the factory is in the same neck of the woods? Time is short, but so far the machinery unveiled at the show looks really good, and what I see certainly bodes well for the bike builders from Bologna.

Continue reading for more on Ducati at the EICMA show.

Scrambler Cafe’ Racer

Ducati Makes A Big Showing In Milan
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Right now, I’m going to look at the smaller stuff; namely the new additions to the Scrambler family. First we have the Scrambler Cafe’ Racer that borrows from one of my very favorite bike styles— somewhat.

A teensy, chopped down front fender and tire hugger in back certainly show concern for keeping weight to a minimum, but I don’t find that particularly cafe’-tastic. We’ve got no sort of flyscreen or bullet fairing up front, the same fuel tank that we see on the rest of the Scrambler line so it comes sans knee indents, and just the merest suggestion of a cafe’-racer shape at the ass end.

Sure, the clip-on bars that pull the rider forward are almost right, but the way the subframe tapers off to nothing from beneath is a little off-putting, and the swingarm mounted number plate is just wrong. The pop-off cover on the p-pad is a nice touch if you like the solo look with the option of riding two up, but that’s not enough to make this bike very interesting, and it certainly doesn’t make it a cafe’. Pencil me in as Doesn’t See The Point.

Scrambler Desert Sled

Ducati Makes A Big Showing In Milan
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Next is the Scrambler Desert Sled, a rough-n-ready, dual-surface bike that carries the tripletree-mount front fender and rear mudguard one expects to see on a serious off-road fighter. Street-knobby tires come with generous street flats but look like they will come alive in the softer stuff. Like its sister, the Cafe’, the 803 cc, Ducati Desmodue L-twin drives this little ride, and the 75 ponies it generates is surely enough to have fun with on either of these rides.

I have to say that to me, this looks like the most capable of the Scrambler models even if it isn’t quite as retro. Let’s face it, most of the “scrambler look” is based on homemade bikes using ’60s and ’70 UJMs as the canvas but Ducati used that original look as more of a guideline than an actual rule. Having said that, this ride has more of a function-over-form design that certainly has a charm all its own. What’s next Duc, a “proper” dirtbike?

Once the show is over I’ll be covering these bikes in greater detail along with some of the other Duc products, including some net-new designs and other improvements to existing family lines.

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Image Source: ducati.com

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