This bike is awesome. It's a tool for humiliating sportbikes and something you could reasonably ride all day. It's what you would get if a SuperMotard and an MH900e would have a kid. You can count on the new engine making its way into supersports and monsters by 2003.
Pierre Terrblanche has always loved this type of bike. The Gran Canyon was one of his favorite designs and a motorcycle he actually owned. He's taken the concept a whole bunch further with this bike. I really hope Ducati imports a few of these to the US.
The bike inspires a lot of confidence that the eventual 916/996/998 replacement should really rock.
The Multistrada is so ugly im embaressed for both ducati for showing it and myself for looking at it....what are they thinking........how they can make something as beautiful as the 998 and something as ugly as the multistrada is beyond me......
If they're trying to crack into the adventure tourer market, they're going to have a tough time. The key in that market is not speed or style but reliability, service-ability, support and ruggedness. The BMW GS defines the high end and the KLR650 the low end. The Tiger is a weak player not because of it's power or style (both are great) but because most riders don't trust them 40 miles in the back country. (What would sell boatloads here in the states is the Africa Twin, but I guess Honda doesn't want to sell any more bikes here.)
Maybe they have a different marketing strategy in Europe. In any event, I wish them well.
"The Multistrada represents an entirely new niche"
Bull. It's either a sport-standard or a street-only dualsport (an oxymoron, but so are the Tiger, R1150GS, and CapoNord). Its exactly the same in purpose as the F650CS. Fancy headlights and exhaust don't mean it gets to start a new genre. Its an interesting addition to existing genres, but hardly a new concept.
Let's see- after this year's Paris Dakar, BMW gave up racing in it. I'm surprised you didn't mention KTM.
Oh, the Duc. It's Sweet! How many 916/916 owners do you know that *actually* ride their Ducs on a regular basis- not many I bet. Why? Besides being an object to make up other personal deficiencies, the 916/996 is a friggin torture rack.
The Multistrada on the other hand has the "Ducati look", and actually appears that it might be comfortable for the long haul yet sporty enough to blow away the squids on any weekend up in the hills.
This bike literally looks like a scooter body on the M900 cassis. I certainly would not expect such a quirky beast from Ducati...Maybe from BMW. If I were in the market for a real "adventure touring" bike, I would shoot streight for the KTM LC4 Adventure. Sure, the KTM is only a 650cc single but it has that huge 7+ gallon gas tank and P-D rally looks. Unfortunately it is a bit pricy at 8k+.
I'd like to go on record as saying that the 996/998 ain't that great looking. To me, it just looks slab-sided, antiquated, and awkward. I like what Aprilia is doing style-wise, but IMO Japan has got it all over Ducati in creating clean, beautifully-sculpted machines.
Sorry to disagree, you can certainly not like the 996/998, but I don't understand the Japanese comment if your talking about sportbikes.
The Japanese must make great running bikes by donating the design department's funding to the engineering department, and it shows. They must have one designer for the 4 companies. Cheesy graphics over me too body panels, (with a bit of exception going to Yamaha).
Oh, and the multistrada looks terrible in the front quarter pictures.
Oh man that's bad. Now don't get me wrong, I even like old bmw K bikes but that Duc is just... well really ugly and I'm not into discussing seating positions. A 916 or GSXR1000 are really comfy at 100mph through the tight twisties while a wing is comfy on the straights - different bikes but they all have their own style. Definitely on the style front I would have expected a lot more from Ducati - a lot more.
I agree with a previous post that the 996 is not too beautiful but it's a form/function thing (original 916 defined sport bike styling - now that was an original piece) but the mh900e, the 900ss, etc are really nice looking bikes as in well styled. My comments on ugly actually refer to the 'un-cohesiveness' of the styling. It just has no lines... er, actually it has a lot of them but, I guess that's the problem.
As far as a new niche... marketing lingo for, we're catching up. I'll take a BMW R1100S, GS, or Transalp, Duke, TDM (do they make those anymore?) or whatever as those bikes have some serious style. You may not like their style but at least it's well thought out and maintained from front fender to exhaust tip.
Just my opinion - beauty is an individual thing though.
For everyone who can't get the damnable Shockwave stuff to work, MCN has a batch of pictures up, too.
And yeah, the fairing's ugly, but God, it's not nearly the rolling crisis that everyone's reaction makes it out to be. Maybe it'll make more sense in real life, with a better grasp on proportions and things. (Besides, it's modern Euro-design; it's not that it looks good, it's that it's logical and symbolic.) Although you'd think Terblanche could come up with something other than that slavishly MV Agusta-ish headlamp.
All the same, I'm hoping I score some kind of lottery win soon, because I now find it very necessary to squirrel away an unaltered 748 (red monoposto, please) before something happens to that particular once-in-a-lifetime design, should this prove to portend some of Ducati's future styling trends.
I thought it was ugly till I saw the side shots, now I know its ugly... Looks as if it was produced by Microsoft, each division working on a different portion and not talking to the others. Then at the end trying to package it in some manor that makes sense. Appears as if they failed miserably... This thing makes a GS look awesome, no small feat I may add. (personally I like the GS, but I think nobody will argue that the GS is "odd" in appearance). Someone mentioned it looked as if they took the front end of a scooter and morphed it on, I agree. Reminds me of an older Honda Elite gone wrong...