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Article posted: Thursday, June 04, 2015

Multistrada 1200 Standard Review

Bill Carr's Review of a 2013 Multistrada ABS

I am currently riding my fourth and most favorite Multistrada, a 2013 standard model. I have ridden the S model also, but have used the 2010 and 2013 standards as project bikes. I won’t go into everything I have done to my last two Multistradas, but review the 2013 model which is identical to the 2014.

The standard model has the four riding modes, ABS, and traction control which are all fully adjustable. The suspension is also fully adjustable with Marzocchi 50mm forks and a Sachs rear monoshock. Couple that with the manual preload adjuster and the standard models give me all the adjustability that I need for the type of riding that I do, which includes a fair amount of off pavement riding standing on the pegs.

The 2013 and 2014 Multistradas also have LED low beams and hazard lights which I have used several times for extra visibility in fog or emergency conditions. The windscreen can be adjusted up or down on the fly with only one hand. The most notable improvement in the 2013 and 2014 is the second generation Testastretta 11 degree dual spark engine with fuel injectors aimed at the hottest part of the cylinder. A secondary air system similar to the Panigale reduces combustion variability, improves oxidation and improves fuel consumption with less emissions. The performance result is more torque and smoother operation especially at lower RPMs. The motor feels like my 2012 Multistrada did with the full system installed.

Most of my street riding is done in the Touring mode, although when I really want to kick it I switch into sport for maximum acceleration. When in the Enduro mode the traction control (DTC) goes to a level two for minimum intervention and ABS goes to an off road oriented level 1 setting for low grip and “lift up” detection deactivated. However, I actually prefer to turn off the DTC when I am off road for any length of time.

Whether I am doing a commute, a day trip, or long distance touring, this bike is literally the best bike I have ever owned for multi use capability. The wide handle bars and the 25 degree rake and 110 mm trail allows me to effortlessly negotiate the twisties. There is a good reason why the Multi has won several Pikes Peak races and holds the record for the big bikes. The comfortable updated seat and the riding position make ticking off the miles very easy. With the overall comfort and ergonomics a couple of 650 mile days on my Pikes Peak trip last year did not seem that far, compared to other bikes I have ridden. On my trip to Pikes Peak and back I averaged 46.8 MPG. On my last tank of gas returning from Colorado I had 230 miles on my odometer at fill up and had over half a gallon left in the tank. I might add we were also riding at 75-80 miles an hour.

I have also added engine guards, center header guard, center stand, auxillary LED running lights, Pelican side cases with Strada Adventurosa quick detachable racks, Givi Trekker top case, bar risers, tidytail, and a blaster LED integrated tail light and I was still well under the cost for a Touring S model. I also added a SW Motech tank bag and a Ducati ZUMO GPS to complete my touring set up.

My goal this year is to do an Iron Butt on my Multi as well as several more long trips and I will probably keep it for 2 more years before I possibly trade it on a next generation 2016 model.

-Bill

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