Ducati takes safety to the Nth degree with its 2015 Multistrada 1200 S Touring D|air. Yeah, I realize that "motorcycle safety" is something of an oxymoron, but the features on this bike are almost enough to make one change how we think about that phrase. Road-sensing technology, variable engine mappings, lean-angle sensors and a wearable airbag system are just a few of the innovations that improve safety and reduce the amount of rider skill needed to handle this machine.

Continue reading more about Ducati Multistrada 1200 S D|air

  • 2015 Ducati Multistrada 1200 S D|air
  • Year:
    2015
  • Make:
  • Engine:
    Ducati Testastretta DVT with Desmodromic Variable Timing, L-Twin cylinder, 4 valve per cylinder, Dual Spark, liquid cooled
  • Displacement:
    1198 cc
  • Price:
    16495

Design

2015 Ducati Multistrada 1200 S D|air High Resolution Exterior
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The factory calls it a “multi-purpose tour bike”, but one could be forgiven for calling it a sport bike, or even a superbike, at a glance. Although I question the wisdom of calling anything a tour bike that comes stock with absolutely zero cargo capacity, Ducati does offer baggage for an additional charge. All that aside, there is no denying the attention given to ergonomics. The rider- and passenger-triangles are designed for maximum comfort, and the adjustable seat and windshield height ensures that the comfort envelope expands to include a range of body types and personal preferences. A passenger grab handle has been added for additional passenger security when the rider decides to get a little bit twisty with the throttle. Although this is not an off-road bike by any stretch of the imagination, there are times that even street riders will encounter exceptionally rough roads. Ducati kept this in mind while laying out the rider triangle, and designed it to allow the rider to comfortably control the bike while standing up on the footpegs. This attention to detail will allow you to tackle those country roads while protecting your tailbone and kidneys from the excess shock.

Apparel

2015 Ducati Multistrada 1200 S D|air
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Ducati teamed up with Dainese to produce the innovative D|air Street Jacket/Vest. The system is comprised of collision-sensing technology on the bike that controls an airbag system within the jacket, and is designed to protect the riders and passengers back, collarbones and thorax in the event of a wreck. I must admit that while I chuckled at first at the mental picture of a rider bouncing down the road while inflated like a pufferfish, the benefits of protecting these vulnerable areas dampened my mirth considerably, especially when I saw that the system prevents excessive head movement – helping to prevent neck injury – if you go down for a roll. Additionally, the super-smart sensors can tell the difference between a non-event and a life-threatening one, and the airbags are designed so that they do not themselves cause internal trauma when they deploy. The system is very light, and operates wirelessly, so you never have to wrestle with any sort of tether or dead-man switch. As a rider who wears full leathers year ’round, but is perfectly willing to trade momentary comfort for protection, I am really on-board with this technology. Now, if they will just make one that will fit inside my leather vest-over-jacket....

Chassis

2015 Ducati Multistrada 1200 S D|air Exterior
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A sophisticated frame design strikes a nice balance between touring comfort and agility. The 60.2-inch wheelbase provides decent steering stability at speed on the highway, and the sphincter-tightening 47-degree maximum lean angle guarantees that you can take the corners as hard as you dare. The generous contact patch provided by the front 120/70R and rear 190/55R Pirelli Scorpion Trail II tires mounted on sporty triple-Y spoke rims further aids cornering ability. A twin-channel Bosch 9ME multi-calibration ABS works with the Brembo brakes to help prevent overbraking and wheel lockups in the turns.

The 48 mm front fork and a Sachs monoshock on a single-sided swingarm provide suspension. The Ducati Skyhook Suspension (DSS) — so named because the bike feels as though it is suspended from above — receives input from an Inertial Measurement Unit, and varies the damping in the suspension to adapt to changing road conditions while cornering. This all means that you can take the corners harder and with greater confidence than ever before. The DSS goes even further by providing four preset riding modes, and four custom riding modes that allow you to reconfigure the suspension for road conditions and passenger/cargo load.

Drivetrain

2015 Ducati Multistrada 1200 S D|air Drivetrain
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Powering this machine is the brand-new Ducati Testastretta DVT engine, which provides a gut-wrenching 100.3 pound-feet of torque and 160 horsepower. Part of this power is due to the Independent Dual-Spark configuration that increases flame-front propagation, ensuring complete combustion with lower emissions. One cannot think of Ducati without also thinking of their signature Desmodromic valvetrain, and they take that technology a step further in this engine with the Desmodromic Variable Timing (DVT) system. Each camshaft is fitted with an oil-pressure-actuated phaser that divorces the camshaft rotation from the timing belt position by up to 45 degrees to provide the most advantageous valve timing for any given engine speed. This makes for a high-performance engine that doesn’t punish you for operating at lower speeds.

Price

Though not available (yet?) in the U.S., this bike can be had in the U.K. for £16,495. Bear in mind that while it does come stock with many really cool features, saddlebags are not among them, so you will have to skin the checkbook for a bit more coin if you want to truly tour on this scoot.

He said:

"Folks, this bike is nothing short of incredible! The features read more like something from a work of science fiction than an actual production bike. I have always had respect for Ducati, mainly because of the Desmodromic valvetrain technology that allows you to wind the engine up tighter than Dick’s hatband without valve-float, but the addition of variable timing is really impressive. While the style of the bike is a sharp departure from what I would normally ride, if I had access to this machine I promise I would fill her up and ride it like I stole it!"

She said

My wife and fellow writer, Allyn Hinton, says, "This is an awesome bike. A bit too tall for me, but you tall folks will have a blast. It’s mad-fun in the corners and the Skyhood Suspension makes it ride like a dream. Years ago, I saw that inflatable safety vest used by rodeo riders. It’s saved a lot of folks from serious injury and props to Ducati for taking it to the high level of tech. I’m still laughing at the image of "a rider bouncing down the road while inflated like a pufferfish," but yeah, it’s body airbags."

Specifications

Engine Type: Ducati Testastretta DVT With Desmodromic Variable Timing, L-Twin Cylinder, Four Valve Per Cylinder, Dual Spark, Liquid Cooled
Displacement: 1198.4cc
Bore X Stroke: 106x67.9mm
Compression Ratio: 12.5 to 1
Power: 160 Horsepower at 9,500 rpm
Torque: 100.3 Pound-Feet at 7,500 Rpm
Fuel Injection: Bosch Electronic Fuel Injection System, Elliptical Throttle Bodies With Ride-By-Wire, Equivalent Diameter 56 Mm
Exhaust: Stainless Steel Muffler With Catalytic Converter And Two Lambda Probes, Aluminum Tail Pipes
Gearbox: 6 Speed
Primary Drive: Straight Cut Gears, Ratio 1.84 to 1
Ratio: 1=37/15 2=30/17 3=27/20 4=24/22 5=23/24 6=22/25
Final Drive: Chain; Front Sprocket 15; Rear Sprocket 40
Clutch: Light Action, Wet, Multiplate Clutch With Hydraulic Control. Self-Servo Action On Drive, Slipper Action On Over-Run
Frame: Tubular Steel Trellis Frame
Front Suspension: 48mm Fully Adjustable Usd Forks. Electronic Compression & Rebound
Damping Adjustment: With Ducati Skyhook Suspension (DSS)
Front Wheel: Y-Shaped Three-Spoke In Light Alloy 3.50 X 17
Front Tire: Pirelli Scorpion Trail II 120/70 R17
Rear Suspension: Fully Adjustable Unit. Electronic Compression And Rebound
Damping Adjustment: Electronic Spring Pre-Load Adjustment With Ducati Skyhook Suspension (DSS). Aluminium Single-Sided Swingarm
Rear Wheel: Y-Shaped Three-Spoke Light Alloy 6.00 X 17
Rear Tire: Pirelli Scorpion Trail II 190/55 R17
Front Wheel Travel: 6.7 inches
Rear Wheel Travel: 6.7 inches
Front Brake: Dual 330 mm Semi-Floating Discs, Radially Mounted Brembo Monobloc Evo M50 Four-Piston Calipers, Two-Pad, Radial Pump With Cornering ABS As Standard Equipment
Rear Brake: 265 mm Disc, Two-Piston Floating Caliper, With Cornering ABS As Standard Equipment
Instrumentation Five Inch Color TFT Display
Dry Weight: 469.6 Pounds
Curb Weight: 520.3 Pounds
Seat Height: Adjustable 32.5 to 33.3 Inches
Wheelbase: 60.2 Inches
Rake: 24 Degrees
Trail: 4.3 Inches
Fuel Tank Capacity: 5.3 Gallons
Number Of Seats: Dual Seat
Standard Equipment: Riding Modes, Power Modes, Ducati Safety Pack (Cornering ABS + DTC), Ducati Wheelie Control, Cruise Control, Full Led Headlamp With Ducati Cornering Lights, Hands-Free, Backlit Handlebar Switches, Bluetooth Module For Multimedia System, Ready For D Air And Anti-Theft Preparation
Warranty: 24 Months Unlimited Mileage
Maintenance Service Intervals 9,000 Miles
Valve Clearance Check: 18,000 Miles
Emissions And Consumption: Standard Euro 4
Price: £16,495
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