World first tests: Two new Ducatis

Published: 15 April 2003

MCN has exclusively tested two of the most important new Ducatis to emerge in years.

The 999R is the Italian firm’s most powerful production bike yet. And, after riding it on British roads, MCN’s Marc Potter reckons it’s the firm’s best yet.

It’s a 130bhp-at-the-back-wheel twin that could give a GSX-R1000 a fright. Nothing can equal the way it lays down power as it drives out of corners.

Smothered in carbon-fibre and magnesium the £20,400 limited-run bike steers quicker than a standard 999, but is not so sharp that tank-slappers threaten.

It’s all about stability, drive and perfect poise. You can read Potter’s full report in MCN, out on Wednesday, April 16, 2003.

We’ve also got the first test verdict on the new Ducati Multistrada, a bike that is redefining what we mean by the term ‘all-rounder’.

The controversially-styled bike proves to be truly exhilarating on all kinds of roads. MCN’s Trevor Franklin has ridden it in Sardinia, and reckons it has all the comfort, all the handling and all the convenience you’ll ever need.

There’s enough power from its 1000cc Testastretta air-cooled engine to suit most. But Franklin reckons the chassis is good enough to cope with more power and that the bike would be even more fun, for it.

Read why this could be the surprise bike of the year in MCN, out on Wednesday, April 16.