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Ducati’s New Diavel 1260 S Is a Cruiser with Sport-Bike Bravado

The latest model carries a 157 hp, Testastretta L-Twin engine and a host of race-inspired rider aids.

The Ducati Diavel 1260 S. Photo: Courtesy of Ducati.

When Ducati introduced the Diavel (Italian for devil) in 2010, it helped usher in the euphemism, “muscle cruiser.” Ducati—the Italian manufacturer revered for creating beautiful, iconic motorcycles from a strong racing heritage—had turned its engineering prowess to take on an established American market segment. The Diavel’s metallurgical muscle and sophisticated aesthetics were potent alternatives to other stalwart brands and immediately won converts. For 2019, Ducati introduces the second generation Diavel, an attractive cross between big cruiser and sport motorcycle, delivering superlative performance with the essential mandate; abundant curb appeal.

The heart and soul of the Diavel, which is cradled in an all-new steel tubular trellis frame, is the liquid-cooled 1262 cc Testastretta L-Twin. Emboldened by Desmodromic Variable Cam Timing—which independently alters the intake and exhaust cams to continuously adjust valve lift for optimum performance and throttle response—the engine produces 157 hp at 9,250 rpm, developing 95 ft lbs of torque. The engine pushes the surprisingly lithe Diavel (carrying a wet weight of 538 pounds) with aplomb, getting the Testastretta’s lusty power to the pavement via its massive 240 mm rear tire with astonishing drive.

The 538-pound cruiser carries 157 hp for the US market.

The 538-pound cruiser carries 157 hp for the US market.  Photo: Courtesy of Ducati.

The upright riding position, facilitated by a low 30.7-inch seat height, mid-mount footpegs and comfortable handlebar placement, gives the Diavel a split personality; classic cruiser ergonomics with a sport-bike alter ego. Öhlins suspension units and Brembo brake components (front and rear) represent the height of performance, while attractive, 10-spoke light alloy cast wheels are augmented with a dynamic machine finish.

Ducati’s renowned racing DNA is revealed in advanced electronic rider aides, with three selectable engine mappings (Touring/Rain/Sport), Bosch Cornering ABS, Ducati Traction Control and Launch Control—which monitors pitch angle and throttle aperture for fast (and safe) full-throttle starts. A Ducati Quick Shift allows for “clutchless” up-shifts and down-shifts, while mellow highway riding is enhanced with cruise control.

The Diavel 1260 S is powered by a liquid-cooled 1262 cc Testastretta L-Twin engine.

The Diavel 1260 S is powered by a liquid-cooled 1262 cc Testastretta L-Twin engine.  Photo: Courtesy of Ducati.

Copious use of special materials on the Testrastretta’s internals improve combustion efficiency while reducing operating temperatures, resulting in extended service intervals, with oil changes recommended at 9,000 mile and valve adjustment at 18,000 miles.

Vertical “light blade” turn signals are integrated into the radiator side covers while a full LED lighting system gives the Diavel high visibility for added safety. Backlit handlebar controls and a 3.5-inch TFT dash screen provide easy access to the Diavel’s advanced mechanical and suspension adjustability while the Multimedia system is Ducati Link APP ready, allowing riders to record their routes and the bike’s performance. For solo riding, the rear passenger grab bar cleverly retracts into the stitched “Diavel badge” seat.

The bike's backlit handlebar controls and 3.5-inch TFT dash screen.

The bike’s backlit handlebar controls and 3.5-inch TFT dash screen.  Photo: Courtesy of Ducati.

The 2019 Ducati Diavel 1260 S is a unique motorcycle that defies stereotyping—substantial performance in a refined package that offers comfort and versatility.

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