Ducati CEO Claudio Domenicali kicked-off this year’s wave of new motorcycle debuts at EICMA during a live-streamed presentation from Milan. He started the procession of new machines with two new Scrambler models for 2017, the Ducati Scrambler Café Racer and Ducati Scrambler Desert Sled.
The nostalgic Scrambler, the “yellow side” of Ducati’s heart according to Domenicali, has been a remarkable success for the Bologna brand. Figures provided during the presentation emphasized the global success of the motorcycle, with nearly 30,000 units sold since January 2015. The Scrambler was the number-one selling motorcycle for Ducati in 2015 and contributed to the company earning a 22% increase in sales over the previous year.
So expansion of the line comes as no surprise.
Scrambler Café Racer
For the Scrambler Café Racer, Ducati redressed its Scrambler Classic with elements inspired by the café riding culture of the ‘60s. That includes a new café-style seat with passenger cover, clip-on style handlebars with aluminum rear view, bar-end mirrors, a number plate along with a short front mudguard and café-styled nose fairing.
It rolls on 17-inch gold-colored wheels shod in Pirelli Diablo Rosso II rubber, has a front brake radial master cylinder and black anodized covers on its Termignoni exhaust pipes.
Other touches include a black, 803cc L-Twin engine with brushed fins (sourced from the Scrambler Icon) that’s Euro4 compliant. It puts out 75 horsepower at 8250 rpm and just over 50 lb-ft at 5750 rpm. Maintenance intervals are set at 7500 miles.
The Café Racer has a tubular steel trellis frame and fully adjustable, 41mm Kayaba fork and fully adjustable Kayaba rear shock which offer 5.9 inches travel front and rear. Brembo components pull the Café Racer to a stop via a 330mm semi-floating disc and four-piston, radial mount monobloc caliper out front. At the rear a 245mm disc and single floating caliper handle braking duties. Bosch ABS comes standard.
Ducati indicates the Café Racer is 10 pounds lighter than the Scrambler Classic, tipping the scales at 414 pounds ready-to-ride. Seat height is 31.7 inches, not quite as low as the 31.1-inch height of the Classic and Sixty2, and it carries 3.57-gallons in its steel teardrop fuel tank.
There’s a new checkerboard-style logo for the Café Racer and the 54 adoring the number plate pays homage to Ducati rider Bruno Spaggiari, who raced on a Ducati Scrambler-derived machine in 1968.
As for colorway, there’s only one option available with the Café Racer, the Black Coffee with black frame and gold wheels. Pricing starts at $11,395.
Scrambler Desert Sled
The Scrambler Desert Sled draws its inspiration from the off-road bikes that battled for racing glory in the ‘60s and ‘70s in California and Mexico. As such, it carries a number of updates to make it more amenable to riding off the beaten track.
The tubular steel trellis frame is reinforced for more strength and there’s a newly designed aluminum swingarm out back. It also rolls on spoked wheels, 19-inches at the front and 17-inches at the back with Pirelli Scorpion Rally STR Tires.
The 46mm front fork is fully adjustable as is the Kayaba rear shock and both suspension elements offer 7.9-inches travel.
There’s a new off-road style tapered handlebar with cross bar, a new mesh guard over the headlight and redesigned front and rear mudguards.
Seat height measures 33.9 inches, with a low option available at 33.0 inches and it carries 3.57 gallons of fuel. The Desert Sled weighs-in at 456-pounds with all liquids and fuel.
It’s got the same 803cc engine found in the Scrambler Icon and same six-speed transmission. Braking is borrowed from the Icon’s set-up also. It comes with a 330mm disc and Brembo caliper out front and a 245mm disc and single Brembo caliper out back. Bosch 9.1 MP ABS is standard, but can be switched off if needed for more off-road fun.
Two color options are available – Red Dusk, which carries a price tag of $11,395 and White Mirage, which prices at $11,595.
Both the Café Racer and Desert Sled come with 24-month, unlimited mileage warranties.