Uncrating the 2010
Ducati Multistrada 1200S!
by Rick K. for webBikeWorld.com
Multistrada 1200 Has Arrived!
The weekend of May 15, 2010 marks the official rollout
of the new Ducati Multistrada 1200. Most of the
Ducati dealerships will be uncrating their first
Multistrada, a 1200S model.
I asked Donnie Unger, the owner of
Motorsports in Winchester, Virginia, if I could
videotape the uncrating process and take some photos, and
he kindly agreed.
I couldn't have picked a better place,
because Donnie knows Ducatis. He raced them for
more than 19 years, winning 13 Regional Championships,
and he's also one of the very few Ducati Certified
Master Technicians in the U.S.A.
My guess is that not many motorcyclists have actually
witnessed the uncrating process, so I thought this would
be an interesting topic to cover. I took about an
hour of video and filled up a PCMCIA card with photos,
running down both camera batteries in the process.
But, I had to distill it all down into something
meaningful, so here's an extended slide show and video
for your viewing pleasure.
I'll let the images do the talking on this one -- all
I can say about the Multistrada is...wow! What an
incredible motorcycle and after seeing it live, I
honestly think Ducati has
jumped the curve by at least a couple of generations
over anything else on the market.
The features are
extraordinary, but what's really interesting is the way
everything has been implemented on this bike. The
Ducati engineers have really thought through the entire
logic of using all this technology, and they've done it
in a way that makes a lot of sense.
If you haven't already, be sure to read our full
report on the Multistrada
1200 introduction. I hope to follow this up with a ride report within
the next few weeks, but I wanted to get this out to you
as quickly as possible, so without further ado, here's
the slide show and the YouTube embedded video of the new
2010 Ducati Multistrada:
Video: Uncrating the Ducati Multistrada
1200S (NOTE: Be sure to select 1080p from the YouTube
drop-down for best quality!)
Dealer Launch for
the Multistrada 1200 by Bob S. for webBikeWorld.com
For the last several days, a lineup of
brand-new Ducati Multistradas have been on view,
greeting people walking into the garage of the
InterContinental Hotel in Austin, Texas.
Can't you just hear the butler ask "Your
Ducati, Sir? Would you like the red one, or the
The event was the introduction of the
motorcycle to the dealer network in North America.
Representatives of about 80 dealers in the US and Canada
learned about the bikes in class and went through the
briefings regarding what makes the MS1200 a unique bike.
But most of all, the dealer group had this selection of
these beauties to ride around the Texas Hill Country for
Not only that, alternate bikes were
available. So when your dealer says that the Multi
does this or that different than a BMW or some other
ride, he probably will have personal experience invested
in what he says.
A lot has been written about riding the
new 'Strada and this was a Ducati family event that was
not open to the press. So webBikeWorld didn't get
a chance to ride the bikes at this opportunity and that
Regular readers know that the
webBikeWorld writers are fans of the breed and have
spent our own dollars on the earlier Multistrada, Sport
Tourer, and Classic. In this venue, we had access
to the bikes and the Ducati North American reps, who
were able to answer a few questions that we've had and
heard from others.
First off, which dealers will be the
first where the general public will be able to see and
test ride the new bike? Ducati has about 80
dealers around the US listed on their website who are
getting the bikes today and tomorrow. When the
dealer doors open on Saturday, those are the dealers who
should have one on the floor for you to see. Other
dealers will get their bikes within a month.
We were interested in how the bike was
priced and there was no single simple answer. For
a start, the 'Strada is a new evolutionary step. A
new version of a true cross-over, in being a single bike
that is able to expand on the multiple mission idea,
partly from dimensions and partly from the
chameleon-like technical abilities.
Dimension-wise, the bike will cut out
it's own niche. It's much sleeker to look at than
the R1200GS and KTM Adventure. The wheels are
works of art in themselves.
Obviously, the wheel and tire selection
were not intended to take the bike up boulder paths that
a huge GS or KTM might, but the Pirelli Scorpion Trails
will be fine on the typical gravel roads and dirt paths
that we really experience. The 'Strada feels light
and personal by comparison and that lighter weight will
be a blessing for long days when not on paved roads, and
for track days.
Being on the new Multi found that Ducati
has slightly spread the ergo relation of the
seat/bars/pegs from the original Multi relationship,
which could get cramped. Combined with the new
seat, long days should be no problem and the seat also
isn't as awkwardly high as those of the KTM or BMW
(lowering links will be available).
Technically, the 'Strada is a chameleon
and that's going to be part of what will be interesting
as these bikes reach their customers. Setting the
mode to urban for the morning commute, the suspension
changes and the throttle delivery loses the sharp edge
that it can have with another button push.
Airplanes and cars have been able to do
this for years and there have been a few previous
motorcycles that were configurable. The Öhlins
suspension and fuel control system in the MS1200 seem to
get it right and expand on the evolution.
Select Sport mode and this “multi-road”
bike has sporting capabilities that will satisfy anybody
who is not on a full-tilt race motorcycle and on a
full-tilt track. Remember where this 1200 comes
from? It will be able to leave the GS and KTM
Adventurer or new Tenere 1200 in the dust.
Ducati found that if they keep their
machines technically ahead, the benefits will draw prove
themselves and the market will be successful. For
example, select a riding mode and you can actually see
the MS1200 suspension change to where you need it to be.
The throttle response will change, too.
Obviously, some people want a simple
motorcycle. But for owners of the new 'Strada,
long gone will be the days of having to learn the number
of clicks for the shock, fork adjustments, etc.
Actually, most buyers have no idea about how to set
their motorcycle up anyway. Many motorcycles spend
their entire existence with the suspension settings that
existed when they left the factory, and guess how people
This Duke will make for fun days hanging
out with the Adventure and GS crowd, as well as with
KLRs and V-Stroms. None of these was ever intended
to be a true dirt bike. But at the same time, this
is the cutting edge of multi-use motorcycles. This
one will also surely get you into trouble when you
literally hang with the GSXR and R1 boys. Of
course, you then can press the Urban mode button and
ride home with your kidneys intact.
I was also curious about the luggage.
The bikes all have the mounting points and the bags were
designed by Givi. Looking at the bikes, the
mounting points are different than those of any Givis we
know. The upside is that luggage will be available
immediately from Ducati, and with the mounting points
already there, we are sure that the aftermarket will
quickly provide alternatives for bags. Probably
for the windshields and other items, too.
The bike has drawn a massive interest
from the motorcycling public. Not just in terms of
press, but also in sales. While the bikes will hit
the dealer floors in two days, you'll have to keep your
eyes open for a canceled sale if you want one.
Ducati is currently in the enviable position of
essentially having an owner named for each bike for the
next three months.
wBW Flash Slide Show:
Details of the Ducati Multistrada