DUCATI MULTISTRADA 1260 ENDURO (2019 - on) Review
At a glance
Overall ratingNext up: Ride & brakes
In 2016 Ducati created the ultimate go-anywhere, do-anything Multistrada. The 1200 Enduro was designed to destroy the dirt and put big tarmac miles in a headlock. It came with spoked wheels, a mud-friendly 19-inch front tyre, longer travel suspension, a 30-litre fuel tank and electronic rider aids, all tweaked to suit life on the loose.
It was a beast of a thing and we're not just talking about its big bhp superbike-derived V-twin motor. Its sheer physical size put it out of reach of all but the super tall and confident, but the Multistrada 1260 Enduro sets out to change all that.
An easier time of things
Granted, a 1.3-litre, 254kg off-roader is always going to be a beast, which ever way you cut it, but Ducati has softened the blow with friendlier ergonomics, polished electronics and easier to access low down grunt.
The clever, lighter new 1260 Enduro is remarkably capable off-road and will be easier to live out your globe-flattening dreams, but its big front wheel, long wheel travel suspension still makes this a machine for dedicated dirt heads only. If you’re only going to get your wheels muddy once in a blue moon, the sharper road-going 1260 Multistrada is still the one to go for.
Ride quality & brakesNext up: Engine
If you were put off by the old bike’s towering riding position and never got past trying it for size at the dealership, you'll be pleased to hear things have changed. With a lower centre of gravity the 1260 Enduro isn’t so much on stilts now - more platform shoes. Seat height is down 10mm to 860mm and a thinly padded 840mm accessory seat is also available.
Ducati has also shaved 10mm off the footrest rubbers and lowered the handlebars by 30mm. For a six-foot rider knees are actually quite squished with the standard perch, so for the long-legged the 880mm option seat is the one to go for.
Chassis tweaks are minimal, but useful. Front and rear suspension stroke is reduced by 15mm for tighter on-road handling, rake is increased by 1mm for extra stability and half a kilo is shaved from the double sided swingarm. Ducati has even lightened the sump guard to save a few grams. Forks are tweaked, electronic suspension settings refined and the spoked wheels are 2kg lighter and stronger - payload is up 20kg to 231kg.
A compromise on the tarmac
With its still-long travel suspension and big front wheel the 1260 Enduro is always going to be a compromise on the tarmac. Handling is off-road lazy and not as crisp as the standard Multistrada, but you can still get a surprising lick on.
Ducati has made no bones about the fact this is an unashamed, niche enduro bike. It’s built for the committed and makes up for just 15-20% of total Multistrada sales. It’s loved the most in Italy and Germany and for its size and it’s more capable than you’d ever imagine, especially in the hands of a pro.
But thanks to the motor’s extra grunt and manageable riding position the Enduro 1260 will flatter the less experienced, too. It’ll happily tackle the most nadgery of trails, but with all that power the Ducati is born to boss bum-clenchingly fast terrain.
EngineNext up: Reliability
Powered by the stroked, 156bhp, 1262cc DVT motor found in the 2018 Multistrada 1260 (which started life in Ducati’s XDiavel cruiser), it’s 6bhp up on the old Enduro 1200 and oozes big V-twin flexibility. At 5500rpm there's 17% more torque and 85% of those grunt globules are delivered at 3500rpm, so every time you spin the throttle tube you’re rewarded with big dollops of instant, thunderous propulsion.
Shorter overall gearing and a shorter first gear ratio gives the 1260 Enduro even more low and high speed urgency, compared to the standard, lazier-geared Multi. Service intervals are blissfully long with oil changes every 9000 miles and valve checks every 18,000.
All of this impressive grunt is now meted out and controlled by the latest incarnation of Bosch’s 6-axis inertial measurement unit (IMU).
Reliability & build qualityNext up: Value
Multistradas aren't without their electronic and mechanical issues. Regular dealer servicing is a must for Ducatis and dealer back-up is excellent if any problems occur.
In November 2019, Ducati also introduced the '4Ever Multistrada' scheme; giving all machines in the 2020 Multistrada range a four-year, unlimited mileage warranty.
Value vs rivalsNext up: Equipment
The logic of a massively complex and expensive mega-enduro bike might sound hard to justify, but you really can't fault how amazingly effective the Ducati Multistrada Enduro is.
That said, it’s a lot of money for a big dirt bike, so make sure you have the skills to ride it off road – as when it topples there’s not much you can do about it falling over and breaking something expensive.
You get lots of goodies in standard trim, including cornering traction control and ABS, cruise and wheelie control, up/down shifter, hill hold, rider and power modes, LED cornering lights and a centre stand. You can also add Touring, Sport, Urban and Enduro packs and a raft of official accessories.
Just like the Multistrada 1260 and Panigale V4 the 1260 Enduro runs Ducati’s latest high-res, Bluetooth-friendly 5” colour display and switchgear operating system. It makes life easier to navigate, via natty dash graphics, around the bewildering array of IMU-controlled rider aids, engine maps and semi-active Sachs suspension settings (there are a mind-boggling 400 preload and damping parameters alone).
It takes a while to figure everything out, but once you get the hang of it, you can make your 1260 Enduro as soft, stiff, calm or crazy as you want, all at the flick of a switch.
|Engine type||DVT liquid-cooled V-twin|
|Frame type||Tubular steel trellis|
|Fuel capacity||30 litres|
|Front suspension||Sachs 46mm upside down forks, semi-active|
|Rear suspension||Sachs single rear shock adjustable, semi-active|
|Front brake||2 x 320mm front discs with four-piston Brembo monobloc radial calipers. Cornering ABS.|
|Rear brake||265mm rear disc with twin-piston caliper. ABS|
|Front tyre size||120/70 R19|
|Rear tyre size||170/60 R17|
Mpg, costs & insurance
|Average fuel consumption||50 mpg|
|Annual road tax||£93|
|Annual service cost||-|
How much to insure?
Top speed & performance
|Max power||156 bhp|
|Max torque||94.4 ft-lb|
|Top speed||154 mph|
|1/4 mile acceleration||10.79 secs|
|Tank range||330 miles|
Model history & versions
- 2016: Enduro version of the out-going 1200 Multistrada is introduced with a 30-litre fuel tank, 19in front wheel, adventure styling, long travel suspension, off-road-inspired electronics, semi-active suspension and a high level of standard spec. MCN ran one of these original bikes as a long-term test bike and you can read how we got on here.
- Multistrada 1260: 158bhp, 232kg. Base model Multistrada 1260: new longer stroke engine, chassis and electronics.
- Multistrada 1260 S: 158bhp, 235kg. Semi-active suspension, bigger brakes, LED headlights, colour dash and more electronics. 'S D-AIR' version works with Dainese Airbag jacket, using bike data for more accurate crash prediction.
- Multistrada 1260 Pikes Peak. 158bhp, 229kg; mechanically-adjustable Ohlins suspension, 2.5kg lighter Marchesini forged ali wheels, Termignoni exhaust, carbon fibre mudguard, screen, side panels and keyless ignition cover. Overall 6kg lighter.
Owners' reviews for the DUCATI MULTISTRADA 1260 ENDURO (2019 - on)
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