You are allowed to think that Ducati has mastered the dark arts and cooked up this mad looking Diavel from a parallel universe with help of another Italian madhouse Haute couture production, Diesel.
Together they have couped up a radical looking post-apocalyptic machine that will tear apart any other cruiser down to its soul.
This motorcycle was announced as part of Milan Men’s Fashion Week 2017 and is going to be showcased at the upcoming Motor Bike Expo Italy from 20 to 22 January 2017.
In the words of Ducati Motor Holding CEO Claudio Domenicali – “The collaboration with Diesel enabled us to explore original stylistic and technical aspects whilst staying within the Ducati brand and fully respecting its values. In this case we worked with Diesel on an already uniquely original bike like the Diavel and the result was surprising to put it mildly. The details characterizing the Diavel Diesel cannot fail to captivate connoisseurs of special bikes but also people from different walks of life, such as fashion. It’s always stimulating for us to move outside the world of motorcycling and widen our brand’s areas of interest”.
Only Ducati’s breed of imaginative designers could have turned a blank design canvas into this Diavel Diesel. It is the outcome of close collaboration between the Ducati Design Center and Andrea Rosso, Diesel Licensing Creative Manager.
Both of them have managed to serve a retro-futuristic silhouette merging elements of the past and the future. They say they were, and I quote “inspired by a hyperkinetic dynamism of a post-apocalyptic, retro-futuristic world”. I don’t quite know what that means, but I stopped caring the second my eyes fell on the hand-brushed stainless steel and the visible welds and rivets. All that makes it look so raw and powerful enough to scare the daylights of any other cruiser wanting to stand up against it.
Let’s start with the front first. An edgier and more rakish looking full LED headlamp is flanked by a cowl that has visible welds and rivets. Together with the tank cover, the headlight fairing and the passenger seat cover are examples of craftsmanship and style. The LCD dashboard has a reddish hue to it recalling the vintage digital displays.
The black anodised air intakes have stylish lateral covers made of red methacrylate and have the bold DIESEL logo on the inside, which by far is the only other coloured element on this Diavel apart from the Brembo front brake callipers and the chain with five red links. This Diavel, from the side, gives you spruced up looks with a curvaceous fuel tank, which isn’t exactly muscular but is bulky enough to make anything else around it puny.
The exposed trellis frame is enough to enhance its muscularity and the upswept exhaust pipes is no less a work of art. A new pyramid motif has been chiselled onto the black Zircotec ceramic coating and black silencers whose end caps are machined from solid bits. Even the rear view mirror’s stem and cup have been machined from a solid piece of metal.
At the rear, the Diavel Diesel possesses an extroverted stance with an unconventional positioning of the number plate holder on a suspended framework, which is mounted on the rear hub of the single-sided swingarm. The twin vertical LED tail light assembly is an all new unit, which is substantially different from that of the standard Ducati Diavel.
The DDD pyramid motif stands for the three Ds’ that come together here: Ducati, Diavel and Diesel. This ornament also sits on the front black matte mudguard and a handmade leather saddle. Then there is the badge of exclusivity. Punched on a steel plate is the collaboration’s ‘Never Look Back’ encrypted with both logos of the brands and the bike’s production number.
Time has come for every other cruiser on the streets to go underground because this one is here to stay and roar.
What sets the DDD apart is the monstrous 1262cc L-twin motor with Ducati Variable Timing (DVT). Known as the Testastretta 11° Dual Spark, it is a direct development of the Ducati Corse engines that have won championships on racetracks across the globe.
The longer stroke variation of Ducati’s Testastretta engine gives it 65cc more than the 2011 Diavel with improved low-end and midrange power graphs. Compression was also raised half a point. The high-performance Ride-by-Wire management system gives the engine smoother and manageable power surge.
The DVT setup gives the best of both worlds: a flatter and more linear power character without sacrificing performance. Charges at a peppy 130 Nm peak torque arriving at 8000 rpm and peaking at 162 bhp @ 9250 rpm where the redline is near the 10000 rpm marking. Mated to a slick-shifting six-speed gearbox, top speed is claimed to be above 250 kmph and is capable of a 0-100 under 2.5 seconds.
Another notable difference from the older Diavel is the use of a conventional belt final drive instead of the typical chain assembly. This reduces both maintenance and mess while keeping authentic cruiser DNA.
|Bore/ Stroke mm||106/67.9|
|Type||Testastretta 11°, L-Twin cylinder, 4 Desmodromically actuated valves per cylinder, liquid cooled|
|Valves per cylinder||4|
|Clutch type||Slipper and self-servo wet multi-plate clutch with hydraulic control|
RIDE AND HANDLING
The XDiavel is one cruiser-missile. And riding this is an intimidating experience. The riding position is slightly negotiated from the previous Diavel by having the foot pegs forward and the handlebar higher. This means under the aggressive acceleration prowess, the rider will feel the billowing wind shoving him back and away from the ideal shifting or braking situations. Of course, this is no news to usual cruisers but this bike here cuts through your sense of control and one might find the transition a bit awkward. But make no mistake, once you have trained those reflexes, the fun and thrill keeps getting a notch higher every time you urge to twist that throttle.
Engineers at Ducati have provided the brutal Ducati Power Launch (DPL) system with which one can earth the three fun/frightful launch experiences. The smoothness with which the power is delivered is unmatched and although higher power contenders exist, the lighter XDiavel makes it even for cornering and low-speed manoeuvres.
Ducati suggests that the bike can be ridden into corners with a lean angle of 40 degrees without scraping the foot pegs. The DDD benefits from ride-by-wire throttle control allowing for individual engine power maps (Urban, Touring, and Sport). Along with this, the 8-way adjustable traction control (DTC) and Ducati’s Panigale-style IMU allows total control of the bike in every possible riding situation you can think of getting onto with this bike.
All this being said about how sporty it is, it still carries the legacy of being the most desirable cruiser of the motorbike world. The suspension is sublime and the ride quality is not punishing even though it is firm. With the accessible 60 riding positions, all due to its adjustable pegs and seats, the DDD can be tamed for both parking lot and highway speeds and comfort. On rough pavement, the suspension did feel bouncy. Thankfully the Marzocchi fork and Sachs rear shock include independent mechanical damping adjustment; with the rear having the single-sided aluminium swingarm.
As for braking, back brake for most cruisers is a strong point and the XDiavel does not disappoint. With 320 mm twin semi-floating discs in the front having Brembo 4 piston callipers and the 265 mm 2 pistons at the back, the bite from them is strong, Bosch cornering ABS as standard equipment.
|Suspension / Front||Marzocchi fully adjustable 50 mm usd fork with DLC coating|
|Suspension / Rear||Fully adjustable Sachs rear shock with progressive linkage, Remote spring preload adjustment|
|Brakes / Front||2 x 320 mm semi-floating discs, Red radial Brembo monobloc 4-piston callipers with Bosch ABS as standard equipment|
|Brakes / Rear||265 mm disc, 2-piston floating calliper, Bosch ABS as standard equipment|
|Tyres / Front||Pirelli Diablo Rosso II 120/70 ZR17|
|Tyres / Rear||Pirelli Diablo Rosso II 240/45 ZR17|
Ducati is playing the suspense inspector when it comes to the price of these limited editions. The DDD is going to be produced in only 666 numbered models and will go on sale in April 2017. Expect the price above the ?30 lakh range.
The motorcycle is only available in a Matte Black edition with Red hues.
Giving a fight to the Ducati Diavel Diesel is the bike from the other side of the world, the Yamaha Vmax Carbon Special Edition. Priced at ?24-27 lakhs, it will be a premium to be paid for a bike that may look dull in front of the DDD. It has its front fender, tank covers, side panels and rear fender, all made from carbon-fibre, and an Akrapovic exhaust end-can rounds off the changes.
Yamaha Vmax Carbon Special Edition
Powered by 1679cc V4 liquid-cooled engine that produces 297bhp at 9,000rpm and maximum torque of 167Nm at 6,500rpm. The bike features a slipper clutch, wave-style brake discs, ABS, and complete suspension adjustability front and rear. Although it boasts of higher power and torque figures, it is a much heftier bike compared to Ducati’s offering.
We saw another Italian marquee, Piaggio, teaming up with the great Emporio Armani to come up with the Vespa 946 Emporio Armani. This scooter had raised the bar for designers and fashionistas across the globe to create something deserving to become an icon of this generation.
The Ducati Diesel edition does the same, but this time it is not a cute one. Rather an outrageous demeanour with a rawness filling everything the bike touches. With welds and rivets left out unfinished, it reminds one of a timeless piece of work that is ready to tear into the future without any baggage.
With this, Diesel also revealed their new capsule collection that includes one Jogg Jeans, a leather jacket and two T-shirts.
“It’s an important bike that reflects the rock side of Diesel’s DNA,” explained Andrea Rosso. “The wording ‘Never look back’ engraved with the two logos captures the essence of this collaboration: a timeless bike that catches the eye with so many unmistakable details, such as the brushed stainless steel with visible welding and rivets. Ducati, Diavel and Diesel, three words, six letters each, forming 666, the limited number of examples of this new collaboration”.