Ducati’s Go (Almost) Anywhere Multistrada 1200

Ducati’s outgoing Multistrada never quite lived up to its name, which translates to many roads. But it certainly paved the way for a dramatically different alternative to its air-cooled antecedent. The all-new ’Strada ($14,995 to $19,995) counterstrikes adventure tourers like the BMW R1200GS and the Yamaha Super Ténéré with a serious sport-bike engine and enough high-tech gadgetry to give the competition a run for their money.

Plucked from the 1198 super bike, the Multistrada 1200’s power plant directs 150 pounding horsepower to the rear wheels, mitigated by an optional traction-control system. Four different modes--Sport, Touring, Urban, and Enduro?negotiate traction, suspension damping, and throttle mapping, and available ABS builds confidence in wet weather.

The Multistrada’s personality proved appropriately multifarious during on- and off-road blasts around the volcanic island of Lanzarote, part of the Canary Islands, where its torquey mill, comfy saddle, and touring-ready windscreen made us nearly forget our test bike was equipped with capacious saddlebags. But the biggest surprise of the ride came when we ventured on a pothole- and rut-ridden trail. The bike--set on Enduro mode--offered reassuring grip, and more impressively, a disarmingly smooth ride.

This hot-rodded Italian may draw eye rolls from die-hard BMW riders, but devoted Ducatisti have a bona fide reason to celebrate: Their esteemed marque has stepped up its game by offering a versatile ride that not only does justice to its name but also to the very best the brand has to offer. (www.ducati.com/od/ducatinorthamerica/)

Photo by Gerald Farber Photography
The pebble beach Concours d’Elegance and the surrounding four days of automotive auctions (...
Photo by Patrick Ernzen/RM Sotheby's
RM Sotheby’s has assembled a special sale of approximately 30 postwar sports cars dubbed the...
Photo by Basem Wasef
The new edition features a striking monochromatic color scheme and carbon fiber accents…
A half-century after its historic victory in Europe, Shelby’s iconic racer returns to celebrate…
Today’s german auto museums are much more than vaults filled with old cars: They are structural...
Battery pack improvements give the car the ability to go from zero to 60 mph in 2.8 seconds…
Classic Ferraris and Porsches will be on display in all of their glory…
In addition to the Ferraris, rare cars from DuPont and Carrozzeria Touring will also be spotlighted…
The Porsche Cayman GTS is a serious sports car with a long, low profile...
Photograph by Charlie Magee
Yacht owners can stow this jet-like joyride for one in its own climate-controlled container…