With the Ducati Multistrada 1200 S on the way to Borgo Panigale

Genre all-rounder – a class that still has no name

I have to admit, when I saw the Multistrada for the first time, it was about 2009 – the old model with the air-cooled 2-valve and the very “independent” design, so I wondered who would need a motorcycle and at the same time for the speedy Drive, the long tour and trips on bad roads was built. Not fish, not meat that can not go well, so I was sure, and the circle of friends agreed. A few years later, we know that everything is fine. The Multistrada 1200 met technical as well as optical requirements and sold like sliced ​​bread. Even BMW, not necessarily known to set new trends in the motorcycle market, has now jumped on the bandwagon of this genus that still has no name – or actually, it is just too long and would be something like this:

What’s new about the Multistrada – and what makes it unique?

If one stands before the new Multistrada of the year, 2015, one wonders at first glance already what the model should be so new. Already the predecessor model liked the short test 2013with agile handling, high comfort, and high safety. Often enough, she set the benchmark in the, let’s call her athletic all-rounders from now on. The competition does not sleep and the everlasting duel BMW Ducati is now also being played out by the sporty all-rounders. Probably that is why at 2015 he Ducati Multistrada hardly a screw remained in place. The innovations outside concern above all a better ergonomics, better wind protection by a new covering, which has grown in the upper range by 4 cm and in the lower range by 2 cm. However, the biggest technical changes are to be found under the plastic.

  • illuminated handlebar switch
  • The 12-volt socket in the cockpit (there are no compartments)
  • Cruise control (from 50 km / h to 200 km / h)
  • Skyhook EVO suspension (only S version, networked with engine electronics)
  • Brembo M50 calipers with 330 millimeter double discs (S only)
  • Floating brake caliper rear
  • Full LED headlights with cornering lights (only S version, networked with engine electronics)
  • Bosch curves ABS
  • Ducati Wheelie Control
  • Ducati Multimedia System (S only)
  • TFT color display (S only)

Already in the rough reading falls on the buyer of the “normal” Multistrada 1200 to do without much. As with the Panigale, so it will probably create only a few multis without the “S” from the halls in Modena, where the final assembly of motorcycles is done.

Driving experience Multistrada driving experience Test of the Multistrada 1200 S

A little bit excited, I faced the multi – after all, the new acquisition of a bike is also shortly for me. The first contact with the multi showed above all one thing – one is the big one. Small people already need to reach the toe tips around the floor – the seat height is 825mm – 845mm (lower bench with 800mm – 820mm available).

The first few kilometers were in the moderate “Urban” mode. In addition to the reduced engine power, instead of 160 hp 100 hp are available, here are all security systems at the highest stage and the Skyhook Evo suspension could also translate with sofa. Why Ducati, however, in Urban Mode waived the tachometer I do not understand – do not want city drivers to be informed about the speed of the engine?

After the city limits of Bologna had been reached and the motorcades stood by mountains and curves, the model was set to “Sport. ” In addition to the full power of 160 hp, a tachometer and modified characteristics of gas and the electronic control systems were now available. Already after one kilometer, it was clear – a completely different motorcycle this multi – one makes the fun. With a light-footedness, even tight curves can be driven with the wide handlebar and the upright seating positions at high speed. Incredible here – the electronic suspension irons everything smooth what it gets under the wheels – wild acceleration over nasty transverse joints? No problem – conscious driving of dangerous potholes in an inclined position? The multi does not disturb. Only a little transparency and feeling for the front wheel I missed – but this never led to an uncertain atmosphere. The suspension acted in Sport mode pleasantly taut – but never with exaggerated severity. Beyond doubt are the brake discs (diameter of the S: 330mm) with Brembo M50 Monobloc saddle from the Panigale – a pity I could not compare, whether the difference to the 320 mm Brembo M4 Monoblocs the Standard Multi is present. A pressure point, dosage, and effect showed clearly – there is more. 330mm) with Brembo M50 monobloc saddle from the Panigale – a pity I could not compare, whether the difference to the 320 mm Brembo M4 Monoblocs the Standard Multi is present. A pressure point, dosage, and effect showed clearly – there is more. 330mm) with Brembo M50 monobloc saddle from the Panigale – a pity I could not compare, whether the difference to the 320 mm Brembo M4 Monoblocs the Standard Multi is present. A pressure point, dosage, and effect showed clearly – there is more.

The Bosch Curved ABS was able to compete in the tight mountainous curves nasty roadway show what it can – very relaxed safely and quickly get into braking up to high slopes. So really disturbed me when driving with the Multi only three things – the position of the lever, this was very difficult to achieve. Since I have already criticized this at the Panigale, this can also be due to the same time purchased boots. Less annoying there was the slight swirling of the windshield – I put it higher remained an ugly “visible edge” – this certainly everyone feels differently. But the biggest drawback was – I could not move the Multi in the wild, surely this bike is more than 20 kilometers of sports mode on public roads.

Leisurely we went back to Borgo Panigale in Touring mode. Although the full 160 hp is available here, these are used more gently. Just as smooth is the chassis and the control electronics (in all modes incidentally adjustable). For long distances or leisurely tours the best choice. A great feature is the way the cruise control is on all Multis series. Once set, you can comfortably rest the gas hand. By braking intervention, clutch or the actuation of the throttle grip against the direction of rotation of this is deactivated again. Quite secretly, I then tried the Enduro mode – here, the performance is cut to 100 hp – plus there is a deactivated rear-wheel ABS and with a clear warning message in the display and traction control allows the slip.

Are you missing information about the engine? These are in the next paragraph.

DVT – Ducati’s new technology clearly explained

Ducati’s latest creation – the Testastretta (. To German “narrow head”) DVT has a real innovation – a variable valve game called D desmodromic Variable T IMing. Using oil pressure, the engine timing can be permanently adapted to the current driving conditions. For this purpose, adjusters are mounted on all four camshafts. In conjunction with the optimization of injection and ignition, the engine’s performance was reduced by 7 percent and 8 percent compared to consumption. For all Saubermen – incidentally, the engine already meets the strict Euro IV emission standard for motorcycles and is equipped with knock sensors that recognize eg, lousy fuel and thus adjust the ignition timing individually.

And how is it going? Well – above all, very relaxed. If you are used to Ducati Motors having bad manners, you have to get used to them just as much as those of us who love the formidable punch from the speed cellar. With a sharp tongue, you could call the engine boring, but that would be unfair – after all, the multi wants to be the friend for every day and every situation. Slightly delayed, the engine takes on gas to then moderate from the speed basement start and increases with speed – from about 4,500 revolutions of this boost is then intense, accompanied by a beautiful not too loud sound. The engine undoubtedly has a bite and more power than the Nomalo would need; however, he can never produce this “wow” that I love so much. For the engine convinced with the most excellent manners, no tearing on the chain, no brute load changes and a finely tuned transmission with smooth-running clutch – Quasi everyone’s Darling with high power reserve for sporty driving. This fits the test consumption, which has leveled off on the track at 5.1 liters. Added to this are insanely long service intervals of 15,000 KM – the dreaded control of the valve clearance control is only necessary every 30,000 km.

The agony of choice – The multi has earned the name

Who wants a multi needs two things above all – a lot of money and the ability to make decisions – Ducati really wants to have the right offer for every taste – in addition to the already mentioned differences between standard and “S” versions, different packages are offered Motorcycle with either crash bars, underride protection, and additional headlights ready for the great ride on unpaved roads, or make possible by means of various suitcase systems the big tour. For sporty drivers, as usual for Ducati, multiple options for customization using carbon accessories or sports exhaust systems are available.

Conclusion & criticism – not athletes, not Tourers, not Enduro – anyway, sorry just awesome

Quite a lot of lines for a few kilometers of driving fun and that’s precisely what it was – 2015 he Multi convinced me, it made me want more and showed me that these not fish, not meat motorcycles not in vain these successes. It has never been easier to be faster, more comfortable, and more relaxed. The fact that a little emotion remains on the track may be to be taken for granted in the sum of the characteristics. However, a few critical remarks should not be missing because of all the euphoria. The first criticism is really for bean counters – the very useful heating grips (yes – I actually tried the heating grips in warm Italy) have a switch that seems to want to hide – without taking my hand off the throttle it was not possible to switch on the heating grips – as a little reconciliation the display always gives a current status about the selected level.

The second point of criticism is already something profound – it concerns the “grandiose” Keyless ignition system. This requires the key only in the vicinity of the vehicle and locks / unlocks only the ignition, but not the tank lock and rear lock. If you forget the key so at home next to the Motorcycle you look at the next time, you turn off the engine in the tube. Much worse, however, and even experienced. If you leave the key in the rear lock, you can safely roar, and yes, you will lose the key and then experience the same at the next start attempt. Even worse – if you have the key or finally misplaced, you can start the bike by code. The driver himself should change this – if you do not, any halfway savvy user can start and steal the multi. Somehow not wholly thought out, or missing the clear hint to many end customers to change the code accordingly.

The third point of criticism concerns electronics as well. The new multimedia system now also allows smartphones to be paired via Bluetooth so that SMS messages can be displayed or even telephoned while driving. For sensible use undoubtedly useful, but in addition to the many information and settings a new possibility of distraction and therefore the final appeal – eyes on the road and not on display – that is probably even more obvious for motorcyclists than for the car drivers.

Incidentally, there is also more information on the subject in the Multistrada Forum.

Technical data & pictures Ducati Multistrada 1200 S

  • Liquid-cooled V2 in L-shape, DVT – variable valve control
  • 1198 cc, bore x stroke – 106 x 67.9
  • Compaction: 12.5: 1
  • 160 hp at 9,500 rpm, 136 Nm at 7,500 pm
  • Euro IV emissions standard
  • the anti-hopping clutch in oil bath, hydraulically operated, power-assisted
  • Steel grid frame
  • Upside down fork/mono strut, manually adjustable, electronically at S variant
  • Spring travel front/rear each 170 mm
  • Front brake: double disc 320 mm with four-piston calipers (330 mm disc at S), curves ABS
  • Rear brake: 265 mm disc with two pistons caliper, curves ABS
  • Traction Control, Wheelie Control, Cruise Control, 4 Driving Modes, Skyhook EVO Suspension (S only)
  • 235 KG weight ready to drive
  • Seat height: variable 825mm – 845mm
  • Tank capacity 20 liters
  • The LED light (only S)
  • Keyless Go
  • TFT color display (S only)
  • Price: from 18.490 € (S variant, standard from 16.490 €)

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