Ducati sells their lifestyle as much as they sell their motorcycles, but admittedly, it’s a pretty awesome lifestyle. It’s full of cutting edge design, carbon fiber, racetracks, umbrella girls and bright colors--an image of speed and success. It’s an image they do their best to share with us commoners.
I'll take any chance I have to immerse myself in the Ducati image. So when the Ducati Experience tour came to Seattle I spent that weekend listening to bikes fly by on the racetrack, looking at gorgeous bikes and umbrella girls, and talking motorcycles.
Let's Go Ride Bikes!
The Seattle leg was held at Pacific Raceways during a multi-day motorcycle track day. Listening to motorcycles fly down the front straight is a sound that just never gets old to me. Of course, it being the Ducati Experience, I was there for one thing: to ride!
Every new Ducati was there—the Scrambler, Multistrada, Monster, Diavel, Panigale, etc.—all I had to do was show my endorsement and figure out what I wanted to ride.
I asked a few questions and got my name on the next ride slot… and the hour after that. I rode the Scrambler, and a Streetfighter 848. Led on a loop of fun backroads, I got to compare the bikes against each other.
I'm far from a seasoned moto-journalist, but I figured I'd share my thoughts from a rider with a few years of experience. The Scrambler was nothing like I expected from merely sitting on it at bike shows. I expected a more upright version of my older Monster by virtue of weight and power. Turns out, the bike is a great experience and a unique one from the rest of their line.
It has moderate power, light weight and wide bars that makes it a fun bike to toss around. To its credit, they’re not trying to make it a burly, aggressive bike. Ducati succeeded in building something fun, lighthearted and unintimidating.
The Streetfighter 848 though… it’s the first bike to make me giggle like a child within two minutes, since I first rode my Monster years ago. I’ve ridden more powerful bikes, and I’ve also ridden bikes with better spec components.
For me, in that moment, the 848 was a great match of my abilities, and I was able to handle its capabilities. I spent a half hour grinning, laughing and having fun at a moderate pace. I’ve never ridden a faired 848, and I wonder if the higher spec parts make it a better bike for a street rider like me.
I'll Take What I Can Get
I may never get to live the Ducati lifestyle, but I sure had a great time riding the motorcycles! I already loved the bikes, and after this experience I love them just a little more.
Given the opportunity, I highly recommend you take the time a Ducati--especially if it's someone else's. I’m pretty sure they’d be happy if you took one home after riding one, but pressure to buy was non-existent. Pressure goes against the lifestyle and the bikes seemingly sell themselves.
Unfortunately, the Ducati lifestyle is significantly more expensive than other lifestyles. So live it while you can when the tour comes to your town.