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Ducati MONSTER 1200S Naked Motorbike Review

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MCN overall verdict rating is 4

In isolation I like the new Monster, which has character, looks good and is modern but still very much a Monster. The new liquid-cooled engine is much better than the old bike’s. There’s loads of mid-range and low-down grunt, and it sounds fantastic for a standard bike. The handling on the S model is excellent, just as happy on road or track, and light and easy to ride. Yes there are a few niggles, a lack of room for feet if you ride on your toes could become annoying, and some would argue there’s too much cooling and piping on show. But this is the best Monster Ducati has ever made.

Engine

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4

The 1198cc V-twin is very similar to the Multistrada, but with modifications to increase low-down and mid-range power. The grunt gets going early with a satisfying punch from as little as 2000rpm. Lean back and the front will go skywards with a whiff of the throttle in the first two gears, and thankfully the traction control knows the difference between a wheelie and wheel spin… The fuel modes are easy to scroll through and you do use them and they aren’t just a gimmick, and they can be personalised to your own settings.

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 5

Unlike some Ducatis, the suspension is conventional on the Monster 1200 and doesn’t alter as the rider switches between modes. There are different specifications with the Monster S getting Ohlins while the standard model doesn’t. The suspension works well; especially under load. You can dig the rear into the ground as you wind on the torque and the feedback from the tyres is excellent. My only slight criticism is it feels a little skittish over bumps on the up stroke of the rear shock when it’s not under load.

Equipment

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4

The Monster comes with three fuel modes, traction control and ABS although no gear indicator.

Ducati Monster 1200S (2014-current)

Detail Value
New price £12,995
Used price range View Ducati MONSTER 1200S bikes for sale to see current asking prices
Engine size 1198 cc
Power 145 bhp
Top speed 150 mph
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 4 rating is 4
Engine rating is 4 rating is 4
Ride & Handling rating is 4 rating is 5
Equipment rating is 4 rating is 4
Quality & Reliability rating is 4 rating is 5
Value rating is 4 rating is 4

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 5

The 1198cc engine is tried and tested so shouldn’t throw up any surprises.

Value

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4

Competitively priced in the naked market.

Insurance

Insurance group: n/a

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Model History

2014: Model introduced

Other Versions

The standard Monster 1200 costs £10,695

Specifications

Top speed 150 mph
1/4-mile acceleration secs
Max power 145 bhp
Max torque 92 ft-lb
Weight 182 kg
Seat height 785 mm
Fuel capacity 17.5 litres
Average fuel consumption 50 mpg
Tank range 170 miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group of 17
Engine size 1198 cc
Engine specification Four-stroke, liquid-cooled DOHC, 8v desmo V-twin
Frame Tubular steel
Front suspension adjustment 48mm inverted forks, fully adjustable
Rear suspension adjustment Fully adjustable rear shock
Front brakes 2x330mm discs. Brembo four-piston radial monobloc calipers. ABS
Rear brake 1x245mm disc, Brembo single-piston caliper. ABS
Front tyre size 120/70ZR17
Rear tyre size 190/55ZR17

Owners' Overall Rating rating is 4(1 review)

  • Demo

    Anonymous

    Average rating rating is 4

    Show Details

    Overall
    Ride and Handling
    Equipment
    Quality and Reliabilty
    Value
    Engine

    My review is based on just two days of usage but in the absence of any other reviews thought may be useful to others. I was lucky to be given the standard (non S) bike to loan. It is a very comfortable bike (I'm 5'7), seat is plush and comfy, bars in the right place. I didn't find the footpegs to be a problem (size 8). Seemed to offer around 50mpg at motorway speeds and windblast was not a problem at all. Battery – why did Ducati put this by the rear shock? It means you can’t plug a battery optimiser or leads to your heated gear into it. Also has no fuel gauge. It has a real presence so if you are the shy and retiring kind this bike is not for you! Noise is good but a tad loud for my tastes. Looks good, a real head turner. It never felt blisteringly fast but it did pull quickly through the gears. I’m not used to a V2 so probably wasn’t in the right rev band anyway. A smidge jerky at really low speeds. Something I could live with. 3 riding modes probably aren’t needed though. I stayed in Sport mode mostly. I found it entertaining ;-) Overall, if there was no Street Triple in the world I would really consider this bike. A great bike.

    02 May 2014

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Ricklehurst

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Ricklehurstsays

Engine

The new engine better than the old you say, but in what way?  The old also has 'loads of mid-range and low-down grunt'. Admittedly I've yet to ride the new one but when I rode a Diavel (the powerplant upon which this is based) I found there was actually a lot less 'low-down grunt' & it needed to be revved quite high to access the majority of the extra performance; resulting in speeds which are uncomfortable & impractical on a naked.

18 July 2014 12:29

Desmo

Desmosays

Pegs

The pegs are ridiculous, fine if your Italian with size 8's but if you have 12's like me forget it, the pillion pegs are in the way making it impossible to ride on the balls of your feet.

04 April 2014 17:23

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