Article posted: Friday, April 07, 2017
Mutistrada 950 ride Review
Multistrada 950 Review
I have read every review of the new Multi 950 on line, but I wanted to see for myself. After all I have ridden every different Multistrada model from 2007 to 2017.
After spending an afternoon and over 200 miles on the bike I was pleasantly surprised by the smooth power delivery throughout the riding RPM range. My first reaction as we headed South on 465 was that it pulled strong from 2,500 through 6,500 and I was being somewhat conservative since the bike was not fully broken in. It felt like more than 113 horsepower. Of course the 1200 has more torque and HP, but do you really need it? Some would say yes, but for the rider that just wants good ergonomics and smooth everyday useable power, the 950 more than fills the bill. Never once did I long for the kick-ass power of the Multistrada 1200 once I changed into the sport mode.
As we hit the construction on 37 on the way to Bloomington I noticed that the suspension with its increased travel and 19” front wheel and 2.5” inches of longer wheelbase soaked up the bumps with ease. On 37 I was varying the RPMs by backing off and doing strong roll ons and was impressed by the way the power comes on in a totally user friendly manner. The bike felt light and flickable as we moved through Bloomington Sunday noon traffic.
I always look forward to the sweepers on 446 south of Lake Monroe and I felt that would be a good test for the new bike. As it turns out the bike felt just as comfortable in the curves as the big Multi. It seemed to fall into turns very easily partly because of the 170/60 rear tire that has a steeper profile than the 190/55 on the Multi 1200. As we came out of the sweepers and headed into the long straight before hitting the Indiana 58 crossroad I had the 950 join the 100+MPH club. All I could think of was this bike has plenty of power to get into trouble.
Since 135 and 58 have several bridges under construction we headed on down to US 50 and turned east to Brownstown to have lunch at Azteca, a decent Mexican restaurant. After we seriously damaged our power to weight ratio we headed back over to 446 and Bloomington and over to Nashville to pick up Salt Water Creek and Sweetwater trail to Trafalgar. As many of you know those roads from Nashville to Trafalgar are very bumpy so it would be a good test for the 950 suspension. Once again I was very impressed at how the bike performed. With a suspension travel similar to the big Enduro, it really eats up the irregular road surface. In fact many of the Enduro parts and accessories can be carried over to the 950.
I know I’m not the first person to think this 950 could be set up to be a great enduro bike with significantly less weight to manage than the big bike. In fact I think that was what the Ducati designing engineers Frederico Valentini and Davide Previtera had in mind. A great multipurpose bike for $13,995. You also have plenty of room to add heated grips, center stand and panniers but still be thousands under the price of a Multistrada 1200S.
I don’t mean to diminish the Multistrada Enduro. With its many features it is a great bike. I love having 7.9 gallons of fuel, Bluetooth, side lighting, cornering braking, etc.
But I think the 950 may be the best all around bike. Time will tell. Let the market speak. Come and ride the demo to see for yourself.