You could be on a straight or you could be carv­ing corners, the Du­cati never loses its com­po­sure

Evo India - - DUCATI MULTISTRADA 1200 S -

And that isn’t the only dif­fer­ence. The Multistrada is born of a long lin­eage of mo­tor­cy­cles that have prided them­selves on their abil­ity to take on ev­ery curve that life has thrown at them. And boy, does this il­lus­tri­ous lin­eage make it­self ap­par­ent in this 1200’s man­ners. There’s no ner­vous­ness when a turn approaches. In­stead it’s like the well-bred steeple­chase horse that has just seen a jump across its path. It surges ahead with a con­fi­dence that soon enough gets trans­ferred to the rider as well. Turn af­ter turn your con­fi­dence keeps in­creas­ing un­til you find your­self danc­ing through the twisties. It feels so sta­ble that it could put more than a few bikes to shame. You could be on a straight or you could be carv­ing corners, the Du­cati never loses its com­po­sure. Not even once. I would also like to pause here and men­tion Du­cati’s cor­ner­ing ABS at this point. Thank­fully, I never needed it on my joy ride but know­ing that a rider in In­dia never knows what’s lurk­ing be­hind that invit­ing look­ing bend, that piece of safety kit will surely save lives.

Not even on dirt. Now, I’m not a great fan of rid­ing on dirt. Yes, yes, I know what bik­ers say about rid­ing on dirt but I have never re­ally warmed up to the ex­er­cise. I have al­ways pre­ferred the con­trol of rid­ing on tar­mac but rid­ing the Multi could well have started me on a path to dis­cover the art. Through the lit­tle dirt rid­ing I did on the bike I re­alised that those elec­tron­ics work bril­liantly to in­stil con­fi­dence in a novice (at dirt rid­ing) like me. Power is cut back down to 98.6bhp and vir­tu­ally all techno in­tru­sions are cut down to al­low the bike to slide around, which is nec­es­sary for rid­ing on dirt. Half an hour later I wasn’t a changed man with a sud­den fond­ness for the dirty stuff but I sure didn’t har­bour as much trep­i­da­tion for it as I had done be­fore. Back to tar­mac, the Du­cati’s Sky­hook sus­pen­sion al­lows the rider to change the com­pres­sion and damp­ing ratings by go­ing through the four rid­ing modes. So, while Ur­ban, Tour­ing and En­duro modes keep things pliant and pre­vent your back­side from cry­ing out loud, Sport firms things up so that you don’t wal­low your way around corners. Do I re­ally need to men­tion that the brakes pro­vide am­ple bite and feedback? Af­ter all the 330mm semi float­ing ro­tors up front use Brembo M50 race calipers not un­like what Du­cati Corse uses on its WSBK ma­chines.

What is in­cred­i­ble about the bike is its ver­sa­til­ity. Multistrada in Ital­ian lit­er­ally means mul­ti­ple ways and the way this mo­tor­cy­cle lives up to that name is some­thing to write home about. You want to pot­ter through the city, it’s up to the task. You want to go tour­ing, it’s right there be­side you. You want to go canyon danc­ing, it’ll keep step with you and even lead if you fal­ter and of course, it’s more than happy to ful­fil your dirt-y wishes. At `17.6 lakh, ex-show­room Delhi, could you re­ally ask for more? I can’t.

Fac­ing page: The Multi has longer legs than daddy-long-legs. Top: Few other bike en­gines fea­ture vari­able valve tim­ing.

Above: Sin­gle-sided swingarm lets you ogle at the sexy wheel de­sign. Top

right: Road man­ners of this ad­ven­ture tourer are im­pec­ca­ble

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