Ques­tion time

Du­cati Scram­bler 1100: your ques­tions an­swered, plus MT-09 SP tyre chooser

MCN - - CON­TENTS - Oli Rushby BSB Sports Re­porter All-weather year-round rider with a love of retro bikes


With nearly 6000 miles show­ing on the Scram­bler’s cute and quirky LCD dash, it felt like a good time to an­swer your ques­tions about life with this pre­mium retro road­ster.

It’s a ques­tion I often find my­self ask­ing. Don’t get me wrong, the Scram­bler 1100 is a good mo­tor­cy­cle, but is it re­ally worth the £11,495 tag? It’s cheaper than its clos­est ri­val, BMW’s R nineT by about a grand, but the Beemer also comes with an ex­tra 15bhp. And the at­ten­tion to de­tail in the de­sign, es­pe­cially on this ‘Spe­cial’ ver­sion, is im­pres­sive from the chrome head­ers, to the di­a­mond-stitched seat. It re­ally looks the part. But I can’t help but think you’d not be get­ting much less by buy­ing one of the cheaper 800cc ver­sions.

While there’s an ex­tra 300cc (ish) there’s not ac­tu­ally a whole load more to show for it. The 800 puts out just 13bhp less (73bhp v 86bhp) although there is a good deal more torque (65ftlb v 49ftlb). You also get three rider modes and fancy elec­tron­ics, in­clud­ing trac­tion con­trol and cor­ner­ing ABS. The 1100 is a good deal heav­ier, too, (194kg dry v 170kg), which in­evitably dulls some of the per­for­mance ad­van­tage although you don’t no­tice the ex­tra weight on the road. Are those ex­tras worth the added £3500? I’m not con­vinced.

I had 129mph out of it on an Au­to­bahn in Ger­many dur­ing my Aus­tria trip, but I think we might have been go­ing slightly down­hill.

It is great for pose value, with­out doubt. It looks awe­some, but there is much more to it than that. The roar of that L-twin mo­tor is in­cred­i­ble, and it’s a good laugh to ride, too. It’s quite a phys­i­cal ride, but you can just throw it about which makes it the per­fect Sun­day af­ter­noon toy.

You barely no­tice it com­pared to quite a few Du­catis I’ve rid­den pre­vi­ously. If you’re go­ing through town it’s ob­vi­ously a lit­tle dif­fer­ent, but un­less you’re stuck in traf­fic it’s not some­thing you’d even think about.

Yes, sur­pris­ingly so. I took the Scram­bler 1100 on a 2500-mile trip to Aus­tria and back and didn’t have many com­plaints at all. The plush seat is com­fort­able enough for a good few hours rid­ing and the bars are set at a great po­si­tion for your arms. How­ever, the pegs are quite high so your knees and thighs start to ache af­ter a few hours in the sad­dle.

Tim Ar­mitage The Spe­cial’s di­a­mond-stitched seat is a nice touch Chromed head­ers are an­other bonus 1100’s 300 ex­tra cubes de­liver just 15 ex­tra bhp over 800

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