The new Multistrada gets a Testastretta 1262cc motor in place of the older 1198cc engine as seen in the model it replaces. The bump up in displacement comes from an increase in stroke, which is now up to 71.5mm. This engine’s party piece is the Desmodromic Variable Timing (DVT) - that’s Ducati speak for variable valve timing, a system that helps it produce 85 percent of its torque from below 3500rpm. Peak power output stands at 158hp at 9500rpm (6hp more than the 1200) and 129.5Nm at 7500rpm (1.5Nm up on the 1200).
Chopping & Changing
Changes to the 1260 aren’t just limited to the engine - various cycle parts have been tweaked and updated, too. Both the Multistradas launched in India feature a fully adjustable 48mm USD fork (courtesy Kayaba on the standard, Sachs on the S), and it is now mounted at a shallower rake angle (25 degrees instead of 24 on the outgoing model). This, coupled with a swingarm that is now 48mm longer, means that the wheelbase is up to 1585mm, 56mm longer than on its predecessor. A fully adjustable Sachs monoshock is standard across both variants.
Shun The Options
Unfortunately, India will only get 2 variants for now, as opposed to the 4 sold elsewhere. The versions sold here will be the base Multistrada 1260, along with the higher-spec 1260 S.
The S boasts a quickshifter, a colour TFT display, full LED lighting, cornering headlights and Ducati Skyhook Suspension (DSS) that the standard variant misses out on. The variants that India misses out on are the 1260 D|Air and the 1260 Pikes Peak.
The electronics suite on the Multistrada range is formidable. Even the base 1260 comes equipped with IMU controlled cornering ABS and traction control, wheelie control, cruise control, 4 riding modes, vehicle hold control and Bluetooth connectivity. As mentioned above, the S variant gets a quickshifter, a colour display and electronic suspension in addition to everything offered on the base model, making it a very feature-rich motorcycle indeed.
While it’s certainly not cheap in the absolute sense, Ducati has done well to price the Multistrada competitively. At an introductory price of Rs 15.99 lakh for the base variant and Rs 18.06 lakh for the S, the 1260 seems to have enough to justify its price tag. Its competition comes in the form of BMW’s R 1200 GS and S 1000 XR, and the Triumph Tiger 1200. The XR is the 1260’s closest competitor, with both bikes being sporty, street-oriented adventure tourers, while the Tiger is probably the farthest removed, since it is only available in the off-road focused XCX spec in India.
2018 Ducati Multistrada 1260 image gallery