2022 Ducati DesertX hides modern guts under its retro skin

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Ducati has kept its promise to bring the Desert X concept unveiled in 2019 into production. Now called DesertX, it looks a lot like the legacy-steeped design study introduced two years ago, but has received several updates that should make it even more fun to ride.

Most of the key elements that defined the well-received concept are factored into the regular production model. Inspired by Ducati-powered Paris-Dakar racing motorcycles and 1980s enduro motorcycles, the DesertX wears a white fairing with red, gray and black accents. It also stands out with a futuristic interpretation of the twin round headlights seen on the Cagiva Elefant which won first place in the 1990 Paris-Dakar, and it rolls on a 21-inch front and 18-inch rear wheels. Both are wrapped in Pirelli Scorpion Rally STR tires.

The most important changes can be found on the technical sheet. While the concept was mechanically tied to the Scrambler 1100, the final version is powered by a 937 cubic centimeter two-cylinder engine tuned to develop 110 horsepower at 9250 rpm and 68 lb-ft of torque at 6500 rpm. . The twin is an evolution of the water-cooled Testastretta engine that powers the Multistrada V2, among other models, and it’s connected to a six-speed transmission whose lower five gears have been shortened for better acceleration on soft surfaces. The first and second have been significantly shortened; however, the sixth was left out for a long time to ensure the DesertX remains well suited for long highway trips.

Two Riding Modes debut on the DesertX. Enduro reduces engine power and adjusts electronic driving aids to make it easier for less experienced riders to get off the road. Rallying is the other way around: it reduces electronic interference to keep experienced pilots having fun.

Ducati is best known for road and track bikes, but it has more than enough experience to develop a suspension system ready for off-road use. Up front, the 445-pound DesertX features a Kayaba fork with about nine inches of travel; at the rear, the aluminum swingarm offers approximately 8.6 inches of travel. Factor in the almost 10-inch ground clearance and the DesertX looks extremely capable on the pavement.

He should be comfortable on the sidewalk as well. The riding positions for the rider and passenger have been set for comfort, it can be fitted with a variety of bags and suitcases that provide around four cubic feet of storage space, and adventurers who need more range as the standard 5.5-gallon fuel tank offerings can order a second tank with a two-gallon capacity for an additional charge. It’s mounted near the rear of the bike, and all you need to do is flip a switch on the dashboard to change. The riding area has not yet been published.

Ducati dealers across the United States will begin receiving the 2022 DesertX in June 2022. Pricing starts at $ 16,795.

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