Friday, February 27, 2009

Ducati GT1000 riding impression

The right Ducati for those lazy Sunday morning rides...

All right, so we do think the Ducati 1198S is the most lust-worthy motorcycle (though the 2009 Yamaha R1 is not too far behind…!) in the whole world right now. But the GT1000 also looks charming in its own retro-classic way. For the times when you aren’t in the mood for full race leathers – for lazy Sunday morning rides when you’d rather just throw on an old leather jacket and wear a stylish open-face helmet – the GT1000 might just be perfect. Even the wife/girlfriend is likely to find the GT more comfortable than the 1198, so…

The guys at InfoMotori recently had the opportunity to test ride the Ducati GT1000, and here are some excerpts from what they have to say about the bike:

The Ducati GT1000 offers the best of two different worlds – elegant styling that harks back to a different era, combined with contemporary motorcycle technology, which makes it safe and reliable. Retro styling cues are everywhere – large, generous double seat, twin rear shocks, wire-spoke wheels, steel tube chassis and even the way the headlamp and taillamp look – everything looks like it’s from a different age.

And yet, even though you may not be able to spot them immediately, there are modern bits aplenty on the GT1000. For example, the 43mm USD Marzocchi fork, twin 320mm brake discs (front) and 245mm disc (rear) and the tyres, with their modern tread pattern.

The GT1000, which weighs 185kg dry, is fitted with Ducati’s 992cc air-and-oil cooled v-twin, which produces 92bhp at 8,000rpm and 91Nm of torque at 6,000rpm. Get on to the bike and it feels light and incredibly comfortable – just right for slicing through city traffic. And even at low revs, there’s always a hint of that special Ducati character, a glimpse of the bike’s ‘fighting spirit’ that’s just waiting to surface.

The GT1000 is, of course, all about looking good...

Up in the winding roads in the hills of Bologna, the GT1000 builds speed quickly and effortlessly. The Ducati engine, which is all aggressive at lower revs, seems to calm down as the speed builds up, while the handling remains spot-on. The bike corners with confidence and stability – the rider always feels completely in control and completely safe.

Now, while the GT1000 is happy being ridden fast, you may actually enjoy the bike more if you slow down a bit. It’s the type of bike on which you’d want to look around a bit, enjoy the scenery. This definitely isn’t about performance calibrated to the last hundredth of a second – it’s about style and turning on the charm…

The GT1000 has no storage space, but that’s a problem that the touring version – with its saddlebags and high windscreen – should take care of. At €10,300 (US$13,100), the GT1000 probably isn’t for everyone. But then stylish, sophisticated Italian motorcycle like this one can never be cheap.

For the full article, visit the InfoMotori website here

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