There is an old adage that says you should never meet your idol – you might be disappointed. Well, I have always been a huge fan of the Ducati Multistrada. It epitomizes everything I want in a bike. Upright seating position, long distance touring capabilities and fun in the twisties. This is a very difficult combination to get right, but Ducati hits the sweet spot with the Mutistrada. And to top it all, it looks gorgeous as well.
The model I had on test was finished in white. In contrast with the red trellis frame it makes for a very attractive combination. Personally I prefer the white to the Ducati red. In S guise the Multistrada offers even more in terms of trim. Keyless-go means you just keep the key in your pocket, while pressing the on-button lights up the full colour TFT instrumentation. The amount of information may be overwhelming but soon enough your eyes instinctively fall on the information you want to see. The Multistrada even connects to your phone via Bluetooth to record your journey. And the end of a trip, you can see your trip details, even down to your maximum lean angles.
Ergonomically, the Multistrada cockpit is a nice place to be. The bike is a lot more compact than the 1200cc may suggest however the seat is wide at the back and then tapers sharply towards the tank. With eager riding, you tend to end up close to the tank, but when you can stretch the Ducati’s legs moving back offers plenty of support. The windscreen is manually adjustable with a simple mechanism – that you can adjust on the go.
Peel back the body panels, and at its heart you will find a Testastretta engine, producing 160 horsepower. Sculpted around it, is a beautiful trellis frame as only the Italians can. You can dial back the power in Urban and Enduro modes to around 100 horsepower, but the Ducati never disappoints. Power delivery is savage, and at full tilt you can feel the electronics interfere just enough to keep the bike pointing in the right direction and feeding all the power to the Pirelli shod rear wheel.
As a package then, the Ducati Multistrada offers you a capable long distance tourer, an athletic sport bike and a very mild soft roader. But in looks, it beats all comers in the segment of the market. Be prepared to answer questions about your Multistrada wherever you park. So for once, I met my idol and left with a huge grin on my face. – Brian Cheyne