Ducati has long been a household name for race-bred machines, and ever since the launch of the Panigale V4, it is continuing to charge ahead. At EICMA 2018, they dropped the 1260 motor into the already manic Diavel. Then updated its resident hooligan, the Hyperstrada, to make it lighter and faster. Ducati even decided that Multistrada 950 customers shouldn’t miss out on the 1260’s luxuries, giving us the new ‘S’ variant. Oh yes, and that bonkers Panigale V4R, which you can read more about here.
Multistrada 950 and Multistrada 950 S
Ducati, like every other manufacturer, realised a while back that not everyone wants over a 1200cc bike to ride around, and were more than happy with something less powerful, which is why we got the Multistrada 950. But the traditional recipe of smaller being ‘entry level’ technologically speaking is over, which is why for 2019, the 950 gets updated, along with an ‘S’ variant that steals almost all the tech and creature comforts from its elder sibling. The standard variant gets cosmetic updates to closer resemble the 1260, but the ‘S’ gets the whole suite of electronics. Ducati Skyhook Suspension, Traction control, cornering ABS, cornering lights, hill hold, cruise control, quickshifter and a full colour TFT screen. Basically the only reason you’d want a 1260 now is if you want a bigger engine. This is a good move from Ducati, and we hope to see other manufacturers follow suit. The age of the middleweights is truly upon us now!
Diavel 1260 and Diavel 1260 S
Ducati launched the Diavel 10-years ago, and it has redefined power cruisers ever since. And with the 2019 models, it gets its first proper overhaul, with a new engine too. The 1262cc mill now finds its way here, churning out 159 bhp at 9,500rpm and 13.2 kgm at 7,500rpm, because obviously the older one was a tad slow, right? The design gets a proper update too, with the teardrop shape evolving into a more muscular, edgy and aggressive shape while still maintaining distinctly Diavel lines. The twin header pipes are now hidden (sigh), and tank shrouds are more prominent, coupled with full LED lights and a slightly sharper tail section. In terms of equipment, and this is where the ‘S’ distinguishes itself, the standard gets Marzocchi forks and rear suspension, only adjustable for preload. The ‘S’ on the other hand gets fully adjustable Ohlins suspension, front and rear, coupled with mono-bloc Brembo brakes straight from a superbike, besides a quickshifter and cornering ABS. There really isn’t another bike like the Diavel, and with these updates, it just makes it that much more lust worthy.
Hypermotard 950 and Hypermotard 950 SP
Rich hooligans of the world can rejoice! With rumours floating around that the Hypermotard is nearing its demise due to poor sales, Ducati reassured us by proudly displaying their commitment to the wheelie-happy amongst us. The updated 950 and 950 SP don’t get a new engine, but the 937cc mill does get ride-by-wire throttle now making 114bhp at 7000rpm and 9.8kgm, 80% of which is available from a wheelie friendly 3000rpm.There is a new exhaust system, clutch and electronics suite complete with a six-axis IMU for cornering ABS, traction control, wheelie control and a quickshifter (optional on the standard variant). Riding ergonomics have been revised too with a slimmer seat and wider handlebars to aid more of that nefarious riding, and weight has been dropped too. The SP obviously gets the premium Ohlins fully-adjustable suspension along with lighter Marchesini wheels, Brembo M4.32 monoblock brakes and carbon fibre sprinkled around, to make that little bit more special. So get those cheque books ready, and that front wheel in the air, as the Hypermotard is here to stay.