Best of the Best 2011: Motorcycles: Custom: NCR Millona 16
Its irascible motor and unusually low weight render the Ducati Desmosedici RR too much motorcycle for many riders. But for the Italian boutique bike builder NCR, the MotoGP race replica is only a starting point. From the Desmosedici it creates the Millona 16, or M16. Associations with the firearm of the same name may be unintentional, but they are not unwarranted: With its implausible power-to-weight ratio, this bike can move like a bullet.
NCR calls the M16 "the most exclusive motorcycle in the world," which is either a reference to the bike’s $160,000 starting price (it does not include the cost of the engine) or an acknowledgment that very few riders are capable of handling this machine.
NCR begins with the engine from the $72,500 Desmosedici and then produces or procures the rest of the bike’s components. The building process, which begins when an order is placed and lasts six to eight months, includes fabricating a carbon-fiber frame and swingarm. The fuel tank, fairing, and wheels also are made of carbon fiber, and the exhaust system, fasteners, and bolts are made from titanium. All this lightweight material allows the M16 to tip the scales at only 319 pounds (with an empty fuel tank and only one battery), which is 15.4 pounds lighter than the minimum for MotoGP racers.
NCR tunes every aspect of the Ducati engine, from the air-intake system and pistons to the bottom end, so that it produces more than 200 hp at the rear wheel—an extraordinary amount of power for a motorcycle in any weight class.
The bike’s list of race-ready components includes ceramic matrix composite brakes, Öhlins FGR000 forks, a TTX rear monoshock that NCR tunes, and a traction-control system that responds to the rider’s gear selection and the bike’s lean angle.
Is this too much bike for the road—or even for the track? Only for those who believe you can have too much of a good thing.