Ducati Multistrada 950 - World First Riding Impressions

By Marc Potter
marcpotter Tested every new bike since 1994, loves anything on two wheels, runs Potski Media, ex-BikeSocial boss. Recently discovered elbow-down riding - likely to end in tears.
BikeSocial

Ducati’s Multistrada 1200 is dead, long live the Multistrada 950.

Okay, so maybe that’s not quite true, but Ducati’s new Multistrada 950 is claimed to offer the same all-round touring ability and four bikes in one capability as the big bike, plus make a real practical choice for everyday riding. 

We rode the new Multistrada 950 on the amazing roads of Fuerteventura on its world launch just now to find out if the 937cc V-twin-powered Multistrada has got what it takes.

With an engine taken from the Ducati Hypermotard and styling that mixes Multistrada 1200 and 1200 Enduro, the new Multistrada 950 is designed as a lighter, smaller touring bike in Ducati’s brilliant Multistrada range.

We’ve already heard it called a ‘Mini Multi’ since it was launched at the Milan Show last month and may have been guilty of calling it that ourselves, but with a 937cc Testastretta motor putting out a claimed 113bhp and 71ft-lb of torque and a seat height of 840mm, pus that trademark Multistrada beaky styling, there’s nothing small about this bike.

Featuring a Multistrada 1200 front-end, adjustable screen and fuel tank from the Multistrada 1200, plus a seat, passenger seat, rear grab rail and exhaust and swingarm from the Multistrada Enduro, plus an LED tail light, the bike is every bit the full-blown Multistrada in the way it looks.

There’s also a set of allow wheels sitting at 17” front and a 19” rear, 48m upside down Kayaba front forks and Brembo Monobloc M4.32 calipers at the front. Plus, all the comfort, touring ability, eight-way traction control and four riding modes we’ve come to expect of the Multistrada family.

And let’s not forget the price. At £10,995, compared to the standard Multistrada 1200 at £13,432, this bike suddenly looks like serious value in the company of its bigger brothers.

Okay, so it hasn’t got the fancy DVT variable valve timing engine of the current 1200, or the stonking 160bhp (claimed) power. But does that really matter?

On the roads of Fuerteventura, the bike was impressive. BikeSocial’s Marc Potter said:

So we’ve just ridden the new Multsitrada 950 about 70km’s so far and the most interesting thing is that ergonomically it feels just like the Multistrada 1200. The chassis is the same, obviously the motor is different, its 937cc, but its still got loads of bark to the engine, plenty of power and it revs to about 10,000rpm.

In terms of the dash, the clocks on the 950 are not full colour like on the Multistrada 1200s, but they are still easy to read and simple enough to flick through the modes. The chassis itself feels great, except I will say the front end is set on the softer side. However, Ducati keep talking about accessibility for this bike, so I would like to get the screwdrivers out at lunch time and put this to the test.

Overall though it genuinely feels like a fantastic bike and its definitely not a poor relation to the Multistrada 1200. You could easily ride one of these all day long and be happy with it. Plus, you’d be able to pull up somewhere and no one would know you’re on the smaller bike and you wouldn’t be any slower or less comfortably for it. It seems they’ve done a brilliant job."

We’ll give you the full test and professional riding pictures later on.

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Ducati Multistrada 950 in red, one of two colour options

Engine Type

Testastretta, L-Twin cylinder, 4 valve per cylinder, Mono Spark, Desmodromic, liquid cooled

Displacement

937 cc

Bore x Stroke

94 x 67.5 mm

Compression ratio

12.6:1

Power

83.1 kW (113 hp) @ 9,000 rpm

Torque

96.2 Nm (71.0 lb-ft) @ 7,750 rpm

Fuel injection

Bosch electronic fuel injection system, cylindrical throttle bodies with Ride-by-Wire, diameter 53 mm

Exhaust

Stainless steel muffler with catalytic converter and 2 lambda probes, single stainless steel muffler

Gearbox

6 speed

Chain

Front sprocket 15; Rear sprocket 43

Clutch

 

Wet multiplate clutch mechanically operated, self-servo action on drive, slipper action on over-run

Frame

Tubular steel Trellis frame

Suspension

Front: KYB 48 mm fully adjustable USD fork

 

Rear: Fully adjustable Sachs monoshock unit. Remote spring preload adjustment. Aluminium double-sided swingarm

Wheel/Tyre

Front: Cast alloy, 3.00" x 19" / Pirelli Scorpion Trail II 120/70 R19. 170mm travel

 

Rear: Cast alloy, 4.50" x 17" / Pirelli Scorpion Trail II 170/60 R17. 170mm travel

Brakes

Front: 2 x 320 mm semi-floating discs, radially mounted Brembo Monobloc callipers, 4-piston, 2-pad, with ABS as standard equipment

 

Rear: 265 mm disc, 2-piston floating calliper, with ABS as standard equipment

Weight

205.7kg (dry), 229kg (wet)

Seat height

840 mm (Accessory seat = 820 - 860mm)

Wheelbase

1594mm

Rake

25.2°

Trail

105.7mm

Fuel tank capacity

20 l

Equipment

Riding Modes, Power Modes, Ducati Safety Pack (ABS + DTC)

Warranty

24 months unlimited mileage

Maintenance service intervals

15,000 km (9,000 mi) / 12 months

Valve clearance check

30,000 km (18,000 mi)

Emissions and Consumption

Euro 4, CO2 124 g/km - 5,3 l/100 km

 

 

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