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|09-01-2007, 04:05 PM||#1|
Join Date: May 2005
Feedback Rating: (5)
Experience: 10+ years
05 Harley Road King
Eximport Ducati test ride
Got a flyer in the mail to test ride Ducati's Sportclassic and Monsters at Eximports this week (September 1-8). Show up in gear, with MC license and insurance and you're good to go.
It's a short ride but enough to at least get a feel of whether or not you like the bike. We just went south on 59 and turned around at 90 and headed back.
I first tried the Sportclassic Sport 1000 with the aggressively low clip-ons and rearward foot controls. It had a very low seat height that made things easy. In the short ride I didn't get a chance to get completely comfortable with the ergonomics...actually I was getting somewhat tired of them. I bet if the test ride consisted of turns which allowed me to move around on the bike I'd warm up to the seating position.
The engine sounded good, but unfortunately that's all I can say about it. I'll admit I'm used to my Speed Triple's output, but I was expecting a little more. Power output was linear, but it didn't beg to be wrung out. It feels very tame and controllable, similar to an SV650.
The gearing felt like it was for a car. It wouldn't happily chug along at 60 mph in 6th gear. I spent most of the time in 4th gear while on the freeway.
The Brembo brakes are awesome. Comparible to my S3, but they feel more responsive. The rear brake was useless, though. Not that you'd want to, but it felt like you'd have to really try to lock up the rear.
The suspension is also awesome. It controlled bumps and abnormalities very nicely, but still allowed the bike to respond fairly quickly. It's not going to handle like a sportbike but it can easily hold its own.
I'm not sure if it's the very low clip ons that I'm not used to, but tighter turns (ie freeway underpass u-turns) are difficult. Felt like it was at the verge of wanting to countersteer verses the bars wanting to actually turn. It was odd, maybe a me not being used to aggressive ergos.
It's definately a pretty bike. Not for me but I'm glad Ducati makes it.
Then I tried the Monster 620(?). I much prefered this one. I can't remember what brand but it sported aftermarket pipes. Sounded beautiful. It's comfortable and very tossable. I don't know if it had aftermarket mirrors but they were basically useless. Again, the brakes and suspension seemed perfect for me and street riding.
All in all, the first time I've ridden Ducati's. They definately had character and are head turners, but not for me.
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