What is this?
The Ducati Monster is the primal naked, the bike that has taken minimalism to another level and single-handedly created Europe’s most popular class. This model also managed to save the Italian manufacturer from destruction, since since 1992 Ducati has managed to sell more than 350,000 copies of the Monster. Time for a serious makeover, Bologna must have thought. And they took it seriously by starting from a blank sheet of paper.
The Ducati Monster uses the L-twin we know from the Hypermotard, the Multistrada 950 and the Supersport. The block has a displacement of 937 cc, collects a power of 111 hp and has 93 Nm of torque. The bike gets a brand new frame, with a refined headset that is mounted directly on the block and weighs only 3 kilograms. Along with a host of other diet applications, the Ducati Monster’s weight is reduced to 166 kilograms – 188 kilograms in road condition.
In terms of electronics, the Ducati Monster is with the times. The naked comes with both traction control and lean angle-sensitive ABS, which can be completely adjusted to personal preference (via different riding modes). Also available as standard; a quichshifter and a launch control function for even faster traffic light sprints. And all that for 11,290 euros. You can also order the Ducati Monster as a Plus, then you get a compact windshield and a duo seat cover on top. Loop 2022, the Ducati Monster S blessed with better hardware will join the range.
What is changing?
There is quite a bit of criticism about the rather slick appearance of the new Ducati Monster, which is seen as a design icon by motorcycle enthusiasts. You can hardly call the Italian ugly, but lines lack the visceral side of its predecessors. That design trend is not new; just like we noted earlier with the Multistrada V4, Ducati seems to put emotion aside. They just want to make good engines, engines don’t need a cloak of love to be coveted.
You notice that as soon as you get on. You’re just sitting right on the new Ducati Monster, without anything poking your leg and pinching the nerves in your neck. It also drives very easily, no bucking in the low revs, no heavy clutch and no headstrong steering behavior. And thus, the celebrated Testretta block gets the stage to shine. The Ducati Monster has a high-quality feel and is particularly user-friendly, while the lightweight construction ensures that the performance and handling are convincing.
The new Ducati Monster dives into a different spectrum. Less of a brutal, crumpled Frankenstein Monster, than a more sophisticated Dracula. Which may make the popular naked even more seductive. After 30 years, the Ducati Monster has finally come of age. And that’s a good thing, even if a bit of character is lost.
Source: Read the full test report in Motorcyclist magazine, which can be ordered via www.motorrider.be or for sale in the newspaper or bookstore.