2010 Ducati Multistrada
‘A new biking concept’. That was the brief
given to the Ducati designers when they started work
on the original Multistrada. It arrived on the market
in spring of 2003 and created a new and exciting segment,
typical of the Bologna manufacturer. A new vision
which combined sports performance with trail-blazing
capabilities while providing an extremely comfortable
ride and unrivalled versatility.
Initially produced with the air-cooled 1000 DS engine,
which was later upgraded to 1100cc in 2006, the Multistrada
immediately made a name for itself with its bold personality.
Thanks to an impressive technical specification it
soon became synonymous with pure riding pleasure,
being equally at ease on mountain roads and motorways,
ideal for long distances while agile and manageable
Now, Ducati have taken the concept further, with
a design that satisfies all the demands of a motorcyclist
combined into one bike: a Multistrada with the emphasis
on Multi, a sportbike which is powerful and fun but
also easy to ride and whose first priority is safety
The new Multistrada 1200 has arrived.
Ducati wanted to produce a motorcycle to tackle any
kind of journey and road surface, a motorcycle that
used technology derived from the Bologna-made race
bikes in MotoGP and World Superbike. A bike that had
no limits and could transform itself to suit the rider’s
demands and not the other way around. A motorcycle
that is four bikes in one.
From a supersport to a tourer for long journeys with
a passenger and luggage, to an everyday bike which
could breeze through the daily commute and also tackle
off-road routes with the agility of an enduro. The
goal was a versatile bike able to achieve impressive
levels of performance at all times and in all places.
A bike that didn’t exist until now!
Ducati have once again pushed the limits of motorcycle
design by adding Italian innovation to the elegance,
style and technology which characterises the motorcycles
that come out of its Bologna factory. All it needed
was a heart, the perfect engine to realise the potential
of this new design. The obvious starting point was
the World Championship-winning engine, the Testastretta,
used on the Superbike 1198 and work started to create
the perfect power characteristics for the Multistrada
1200. Engineers in Bologna have succeeded in harnessing
the immense power of this engine, making it smooth
and adaptable to suit to any occasion. They have created
the new Testastretta 11° engine, a significant
step forward in balancing performance with usability.
MULTISTRADA 1200: FOUR-BIKES-IN-ONE!
Four different motorcycles, available at the touch
of a button, change the fundamental characteristics
of the new Multistrada 1200. Power and torque delivery,
suspension settings, and traction control can be changed
– even while riding – to enable the motorcycle
to adapt to the needs of the rider and not the other
way around. With the Multistrada 1200, Ducati introduce
the concept of four-bikes-in-one with four Riding
Modes: Sport, Touring, Urban and Enduro.
The Sport Riding Mode provides the rider with an
adrenalin-fuelled ride, where 150hp and incredible
torque delivery are combined with a sports-oriented
suspension set-up. To impart precise and focussed
handling like a sportbike, it also slightly reduces
Ducati Traction Control intervention to level 3 for
expert riders whose ‘comfort zone’ is
closer to the limit.
The Touring Riding Mode is still programmed to produce
150hp; however, the power characteristic is designed
in a touring configuration with much smoother torque
delivery, but ready to respond when needed. Safety
is enhanced with the most advanced ABS technology
and with the Ducati Traction Control system set to
level 5 (intermediate intervention), specifically
intended for a stable and relaxing ride. The suspension
set-up is ideal for touring, ensuring maximum comfort
for both the rider and passenger.
Navigating through the urban jungle requires an even
more manageable motorcycle that can be used 365 days
a year, whether travelling to work or grabbing a coffee
in town. Selecting the Urban Riding Mode instantly
changes the power to 100hp, and the suspension to
the perfect setting for tackling the maze of city
streets full of speed bumps and drain covers. The
traction control level is set to 7, providing high
system intervention so the rider can enjoy enhanced
safety even in the most chaotic of stop-start traffic.
Should the journey aboard the Multistrada 1200 leave
the beaten track, it has the capability to take off-road
routes in its stride. Agile and lightweight and with
high, wide handlebars, serrated footrests and specially
designed tyres, the Multistrada also features an Enduro
Riding Mode which instantly transforms the bike with
a smooth 100hp engine, higher suspension, and the
option to disable the ABS. Traction control is reduced
to the minimum of level 1 for almost no intervention.
The four-bikes-in-one concept uses three technologies
which interact to instantly change the chassis set-up
and character of the Multistrada 1200. Fitted as standard
equipment on all versions, the electronic ride-by-wire
system administers three different engine mappings
to change the character of the engine, while Ducati
Traction Control (DTC) uses eight levels of system
interaction to enhance control. For the ‘S’
version, Ducati Electronic Suspension (DES) instantly
configures the suspension set-up to suit ‘rider
only’, ‘rider with luggage’, ‘rider
and passenger’ or ‘rider and passenger
The ride-by-wire system is an electronic interface
between the twistgrip and the engine which decides
the ideal power delivery of the engine depending on
the Riding Mode selected and the rider’s throttle
input. The twistgrip no longer uses a throttle cable,
but instead delivers a signal to the control unit,
which in turn operates the throttle body butterflies.
The ride-by-wire system enables three different engine
mappings to adjust the total power output and the
way in which it is delivered. The three maps offer
150hp with a sports-type delivery, 150hp with a progressive
delivery and 100hp also with progressive delivery.
DUCATI TRACTION CONTROL (DTC)
The racing-derived DTC is a highly intelligent system
which acts as a filter between the rider’s right
hand and the rear tyre. Within milliseconds, DTC is
able to detect and then control rear wheel-spin, considerable
increasing the bike’s safety and performance.
The system offers eight ‘levels of sensitivity’,
each programmed with a level of rear wheel-spin tolerance
in line with progressive levels of riding skills classified
from one to eight. Level one is programmed to offer
the least amount of interaction while level eight
uses the most amount of interaction. DTC is an integral
part of the pre-programmed Riding Modes on the Multistrada
1200; however, its setting can be customised by the
ÖHLINS SUSPENSION WITH DUCATI ELECTRONIC
The ‘S’ versions of the Multistrada 1200
are equipped with the latest generation 48mm Öhlins
suspension featuring the innovative Ducati Electronic
Suspension (DES). The brand new fork technology enables
spring pre-load and rebound and compression damping
adjustments electronically controlled via the instrument
panel. The Öhlins rear monoshock is also adjusted
electronically in spring pre-load and rebound and
The electronic suspension adjustment can either be
made by using the pre-set riding modes, which have
been developed by Ducati test riders, or in independent
mode, which allows riders to use their own personal
settings. Adjustments made via the instrumentation
send a signal that initiates electronic actuators
mounted on the suspension units.
TESTASTRETTA 11° power and control,
the ideal travelling companion
The starting point for the complex and innovative
Multistrada 1200 project was the engine.
As a prestigious model the motorcycle had to be powered
by the most advanced, evolved twin-cylinder engine
to come out of the Ducati factory. It had to be the
Testastretta Evoluzione used on the world-beating
The challenge, however, was to produce an engine
that would be enjoyable to use in all conditions and
able to adapt to the rider’s character and not
the other way around. Making the best ever L-Twin
performance engine smoother and more user-friendly
was indeed a challenge, but Ducati’s innovative
designers and engineers met the challenge by creating
the revolutionary Testastretta 11° engine.
For a motorcycle intended for touring, the smoothness
and user-friendliness of the engine is key to achieving
an effortless and comfortable ride. The main engine
characteristic that enabled this configuration was
the valve overlap angle.
The overlap angle is defined as the interval of crankshaft
rotation, measured in degrees, during which both the
intake and exhaust valves are open at the same time.
This overlap occurs between the end of the exhaust
stroke and the start of the intake stroke. High performance
engines, which are subject to compromising smoothness
for extreme power delivery, use high values of this
parameter in order to benefit from the pressure waves
to improve engine performance by maximising volumetric
On the new Testastretta 11° engine, this angle
has been reduced from 41°, used in the Testastretta
Evoluzione engine which powers the 1198, to just 11°.
As a result, the fresh inlet charge flow is less compromised
by the exiting exhaust gases, resulting in a much
smoother combustion in addition to improved fuel economy
and lower exhaust emissions. Unburnt hydrocarbon emissions
(pre-catalyser) are reduced by up to 65% and specific
fuel consumption (and consequent CO2 emissions) by
up to 15% (Euro3).
With its 150hp and 12.1kgm (87.5lb-ft) of torque,
the new Testastretta 11° sets a new standard for
Ducati twin-cylinder engines. Tests on fluid dynamics
through the ports and in the combustion chamber have
resulted in a modified power delivery profile and
specifically the torque. New intake and exhaust ports
combined with a radical adjustment of the cam timing
and slight reduction of the compression ratio have
enabled Ducati to achieve a favourable torque curve
at low rpm, which remains strong through a wide range.
This particular characteristic considerably enhances
the Multistrada 1200’s ridability.
The gearbox and final drive ratios have also been
optimised to enable the use of a higher-ratio 6th
gear. This solution not only enables reduced fuel
consumption, but also achieves increased riding comfort
by reducing ibration. To give a practical example,
if the 1198 reaches its top speed in 6th gear, the
Multistrada 1200 is able to reach it in 5th gear and
maintain it effortlessly in 6th.
The Multistrada 1200 features an oil bath clutch
with ‘slipper’ function and super-light
feel at the lever. Its design uses a progressive self-servo
mechanism that presses the plates together when under
drive from the engine, enabling the reduction of the
clutch spring rates. This results in a much lighter
clutch lever at the handlebar, ideal in stop-start
traffic or long journeys. When the drive force is
reversed, the same mechanism reduces the pressure
on the clutch plates, enabling them to provide a race-like
‘slipper’ action, which reduces the destabilizing
effect of the rear-end under aggressive down-shifting
and provides a much smoother feeling when closing
the throttle or down-shifting under normal riding
189kg sets a new benchmark
Constantly reducing weight is part of the design
brief for all Ducati models. Less weight enables maximum
performances both in terms of dynamic behaviour and
safety. A lighter motorcycle will brake in a shorter
distance, accelerate faster and be easier to steer.
Every single component of the Multistrada 1200, therefore,
has been designed to achieve weight reduction without
compromising its load-bearing capacity. With a dry
weight of just 189kg (417lb) the Multistrada 1200
is lighter than any other road enduro, touring or
sport touring bike currently available. The light
weight combined with an excellent chassis set-up ensure
exceptional handling, a key factor for sports, touring,
urban or enduro riding.
This weight saving is the result of applying new
technologies to Ducati’s design and engineering
of all major components. Crankcases are now cast using
Vacural® technology and frame components use welded
Trellis tubes, cast alloy elements and hi-tech polymers.
Further savings have also been made with the single-sided
swingarm in aluminium and the fuel tank has been developed
using blow moulding technology in pursuit of the best
compromise between capacity and weight.
Furthermore, the layout of the exhaust system, which
is simple and minimalistic, uses two primary manifolds
flowing directly into the triple chamber single silencer.
Apart from carrying out the 2-1-2 compensator function,
the silencer also contains the catalyser and sound-absorbent
materials. The two compact and lightweight aluminium
alloy end pipes depart in a low, lateral configuration
to keep the overall weight to a minimum.
ERGONOMICS AND COMFORT
The Multistrada 1200 has undergone an extensive ergonomic
study using both CAD and repeated prototype testing,
in order to guarantee a high level of comfort with
a fully loaded bike for long-range touring.
The ‘ergonomics triangle’ of handlebar,
seat and footpegs has been designed for both the rider
and passenger, in order to optimise comfort while
providing a commanding and upright riding position.
The Multistrada 1200 feels spacious and seats two
people in complete comfort, even with the top case
and panniers in place. Underlining its multi-tasking
intention, ergonomic attention was even applied when
designing the riding position while standing on the
footpegs, off-road style.
The wide, tapered steel handlebars have been designed
for maximum comfort and ensure a commanding riding
position enhanced by a generous steering lock of 76°
(38° left and right). In addition, the handlebars
have been mounted on anti-vibration isolators, specially
designed to balance riding comfort with precise road
The Multistrada 1200 seat immediately transmits a
sense of comfort. Constructed in two separate sections
for the rider and passenger, they were designed with
particular focus on form and cushion density to ensure
maximum comfort during long journeys. A confidence-inspiring
passenger grab-handle offers a secure and comfortable
The footpeg position represents part of the optimum
‘ergonomics triangle’ for both the rider
and passenger with added consideration to ground clearance
during maximum lean angle and position of pannier
luggage. The footpegs have rubber inserts that insulate
vibration, removable to expose a motocross-style serrated
edge that provides enhanced boot grip when riding
The Multistrada 1200’s rear view mirrors have
both vertical and horizontal adjustment and increased
surface rea to provide the most efficient visibility.
Two handy onboard stowage areas are built into the
motorcycle, one suitable for mobile phones or toll
road tickets situated in the right cockpit side panel
and a larger 3 litre area situated under the passenger
IDEAL FOR LONGER JOURNEYS
The Multistrada 1200’s screen is designed with
60mm of vertical adjustment to ensure efficient wind
protection for all rider heights and effortless high-speed
riding over long distances.
The fuel tank has been developed using a new moulding
technology which enables a favourable balance between
capacity and weight. Subject to riding style, the
20 litre (5.3 gallon US) capacity provides more than300km
(186 miles) of riding pleasure between fuel stops.
Two 12V power outlets situated on either side of
the area below the rider’s seat can be used
to power up to 3A (fused) accessories such as thermal
apparel, intercoms or mobile phone chargers.
A special connection point for powering the GARMIN
satellite navigator (optional feature) is situated
near the instrumentation.
DESIGN: “Character” of the Multistrada
EXHAUST: style and sound
For Ducati, design is not just creating an attractive
look. It is about knowing how best to combine exciting
appearance with intelligent function and outstanding
performance. The Multistrada 1200’s exhaust
tail pipes are a feature that perfectly demonstrates
Their innovative design is well integrated with the
motorcycle’s overall shape and positioned so
as to improve overall weight distribution. The tailpipes
are short so they do not impinge on the space needed
for the large panniers. The internal structure of
the silencer is designed to achieve the characteristic
Ducati sound without ompromising compliance with sound
and hydrocarbon emission standards (Euro3).
The frontal air intakes, which are carbon fibre on
the ‘S’ Sport version, are not just a
characteristic design aesthetic, but carry out the
important function of acting as air flow conveyors,
one to the oil coolers and the other to the airbox
to feed the engine.
The single-sided rear swingarm is also a good example
of Ducati’s blend of design and functional engineering.
It is made using a single piece casting, with fabricated
and welded sections creating a strong, hollow and
lightweight component that contributes considerably
to the Multistrada’s sure-footed handling.
The headlight is a characteristic feature of the face
of the Multistrada 1200, its symmetrical layout uses
four halogen lamps, two for low and two for high beam
to provide excellent illumination. In addition, the
front and ear side lights use LEDs, and feature a
special shape of intense white light guidance, which
both improves road illumination and makes the motorcycle
more visible to other road users.
CHASSIS SET-UP: frame, brakes and suspension
All components used on the Multistrada 1200 are of
the highest quality both in terms of design and build,
and technical specification. Their selection and subsequent
assembly is the result of a design brief based on
Chassis geometry, such as wheelbase, swingarm length,
and rake, trail and offset is the result of a quest
for the best balance of stability at high speeds and
dynamic agility. The chassis is designed to achieve
lean angles of up to 45° and the combination of
reduced weight and generous steering lock of 76°
(38° left and right) makes tight manoeuvres at
low speeds very easy to manage.
The Ducati signature Trellis frame uses large diameter,
light gauge tubing with two central cast aluminium
sections and a Trellis rear subframe. The frame has
19% more torsional rigidity than the Multistrada 1100.
The high pressure, die cated, magnesium front subframe
reduces the high, frontal weight and contributes to
chassis feel and control. Even if the front suframe
is hide below the fairing, it is precious and beautiful
designed: why? Because we want our bikes to be beautiful
inside as they are outside.
Pirelli worked alongside Ducati as its technical
partner throughout the project, developing the new
Pirelli Scorpion Trail tyres specifically for the
Multistrada 1200. They represent the first dual compound
tyre for on/off road use with the central section
of the tyre a harder compound than the outer sections.
Combined with a special tread design and carcass structure,
their 190/55 section delivers racing performance on
the road in terms of grip and lean angles, while ensuring
high mileage for touring and good off-road performance.
The new generation tyres are purposely designed for
the four-bikes-in-one concept.
The front brakes use twin radially mounted Brembo
four piston, two pad callipers actuated by a master
cylinder with an adjustable lever. The front is fitted
with 320mm discs, while a single 245mm disc on the
rear is gripped by a single Brembo calliper. Typical
of all Ducatis, these components ensure high performance
braking and set the standard in this segment. The
Multistrada 1200 is also equipped with a Bosch-Brembo
ABS system, optional for the standard version and
fitted as original equipment on the ‘S’
version. It delivers outstanding braking performance
in all conditions and provides a major contribution
towards performance safety. An option to disable the
ABS is available via the instrumentation, but is automatically
reactivated at the next ignition-on.
The standard version Multistrada 1200 uses 50mm
Marzocchi front forks, featuring a special forged
fork bottom and full adjustability in spring pre-load,
rebound and compression damping. The rear is controlled
by a Sachs monoshock adjustable in spring pre-load,
and rebound and compression damping. Both front and
rear have 170mm of travel, the extra-long movement
providing excellent comfort even when fully loaded
and even if the rider decides to leave the asphalt
for an off-road route. The ‘S’ version
features the Ducati Electronic Suspension (DES) system,
developed in conjunction with Öhlins.
The Multistrada 1200 ignition is not actuated with
a normal key. Instead, an electronic key in the rider’s
pocket communicates with the Multistrada within a
distance of approximately 2 metres, recognising the
dedicated key code and automatically enabling the
ignition. Pressing the key-on switch then activates
the motorcycle’s electrics and the engine can
then be started.
The electronic key, which consists internally of
a circuit with two radio systems, externally doubles
as a mechanical flip-key, required to open the seat
and fuel tank cap. When parking the motorcycle an
electric steering lock, which is actuated by pressing
a button, is automatically disabled upon the next
The on-board computer system is made up of a large,
high visibility LCD with the main data and a dot-matrix
circular LCD which visualises various functions according
to whether the bike is stationary or moving.
The main LCD displays speed, rpm, gear, total mileage,
trip1/trip2, tyre pressures (as standard on the ‘S’
version Touring package), engine coolant temperature,
fuel level and time.
When the motorcycle is in motion, the dot-matrix
LCD displays the selected riding mode, remaining fuel/distance,
current fuel consumption, average fuel consumption,
average speed, air temperature, trip time, and ‘freezing
conditions’ alarm. When stationary, it enters
a setting menu from where adjustments to the various
functions can be made.
The Sport, Touring, Urban or Enduro Riding Mode can
be changed while either stationary or in motion, as
well as the load settings for ‘rider only’,
‘rider with luggage’, ‘rider and
passenger’ or ‘rider and passenger with
The main features of the ‘S’ version
consist of the ABS system and the innovative Ducati
Electronic Suspension (DES) system, developed specifically
for the Multistrada 1200 by Öhlins in partnership
with the Ducati engineers. The ‘S’ version
is available in the two equipment options of Sport
Edition and Touring Edition.
The Sport Edition is enhanced with special carbon
fibre components which further accentuate the distinctive
character of the Multistrada 1200. They consist of
front air intakes, cam belt covers, rear hugger and
lateral air extractors.
The Touring Edition focuses on comfort and convenience.
A centre stand not only provides parking practicality,
but is also essential in the event of tyre maintenance
during a long distance journey. Easily connected heated
grips are controlled via the instrument panel to three
settings and are a must for any tour where adverse
weather conditions threaten rider comfort.
Stylish luggage panniers, designed together with
the bike, offer a load capacity of 57 litres (or 77
litres with large lid versions) and use a fast and
secure attachment system that blends perfectly when
the panniers are removed.
With its wide range of potential uses and benchmark
performance, Ducati decided to manage the development
of some key Multistrada 1200 accessories in cooperation
with both the product development and the design departments.
This integration right from the start of the project
has optimised both style and performance.
Accessories such as the Garmin GPS system, a lower
seat, panniers with capacity-increasing lids, a matching
top case, an anti-theft alarm, electric filler cap,
carbon fibre spray guards and front mudguard and a
tyre pressure monitoring system.
The current collection of accessories is in addition
to those already included on the Sport and Touring
Edition, which are also available individually. They
include carbon fibre air intakes, cam belt covers,
rear hugger and lateral air extractors, panniers,
heated grips and centre stand.
The synergy between Ducati’s experience in
the world of motorcycling and that of Garmin, the
leading producer of satellite navigation systems,
has led to the creation of a navigation system which
offers advanced performance and perfect integration
with the Multistrada 1200. Its various customisation
options include the addresses of the entire official
Ducati dealer network in addition to the main MotoGP
and World Superbike circuits, which are pre-loaded
into the system. The Ducati navigation system has
an anti-glare touchscreen, 18 bit LCD display, a lithium
battery which remains charged for up to 8 hours, and
a microSD expandable memory. It includes a mounting
kit and dedicated plug-and-play cables.
The lowered seat reduces height by 25mm and provides
sure-footed confidence when fully loaded.
With 48 litres of capacity, the top case is able
to hold two full-face helmets. Combined with the side
panniers it provides the ideal way to pack for long
journeys, or when used on its own, ideal for the daily
commute. It comes with a soft cushion to provide passenger
comfort with a backrest and an integrated fixing system
that makes it easy to attach. When removed, its support
plate acts as a practical luggage rack.
Ducati has developed an integrated anti-theft system,
including movement, anti-tamper and lifting sensors,
as well as a sound alarm to act as a further deterrent.
Electric filler cap
Thanks to the hands-free system, the Multistrada
1200 can be started without the key leaving the rider's
pocket. With the electric filler cap there is also
no need to use the flip-key or remove gloves as it
is opened simply by raising a tab and closed by pressing
it down. At every power-down, the hands-free system
allows 60 seconds for the electric filler cap to be
Carbon fibre spray guards
From a protective part to a designer accessory –
the carbon fibre spray guards on the rear wheel not
only carry out their traditional function but also
make the bike lighter and add enduro style details.
Carbon fibre front mudguard
The carbon fibre front mudguard with its criss-cross
pattern enhances the aggressive beauty of the front
Tyre pressure monitoring system
As well as the ABS, DTC and ride-by-wire, Ducati
offers an additional safety tool. The system is made
up of two sensors inserted inside the special tyre
valves which communicate via the radio system inside
the hands-free electronic key. This real time communication
displays temperature and pressure information on the
instrument panel and signals any problems.
- Standard (with optional ABS)
- ‘S’ - with ABS and Öhlins suspension
fitted with Ducati Electronic Suspension (DES) in
Sport Edition or Touring Edition version
The new Multistrada 1200 will be available in the
two colours schemes of red or arctic white for the
standard version, while the ‘S’ version
will be available in the three colour schemes of red,
arctic white or diamond black.