Ducati confirmed a Multistrada V4 is on the way, but not until 2021. But the extra wait may be worth it, as Ducati says it will use a “new, specific V4 engine”, and will be offered alongside the V-Twin 1260 and 950 Multistradas.
These fairly significant details come, surprisingly, came buried at the end of a press release celebrating the 100,000th Multistrada to roll off the assembly line. We’ve included the full press release below, but the most interesting part is the final sentence:
“Development is ongoing, and in 2021 the Multistrada family will expand to see the twin cylinder 1260 and 950 motorcycles joined by a version with a new, specific V4 engine.”
There’s quite a bit to unpack here, in just one sentence. Spy images and even video of a V4-engined Multistrada popped up online over the summer, but Ducati’s statement suggests the test bike was still at an early stage of the project. And, while the Panigale V4 has replaced the 1299 V-Twin Panigale, the 1260 and 950 Multistradas will remain in the lineup along with the new V4 model. The V-Twin Multistradas currently displace 1262cc and 937cc, and the 1103cc V-Four would fit snugly in between.
The words “new” and “specific” offers a bit of ambiguity. The wording likely means the engine is a simply a “tuned for torque” version of the engine powering the Panigale V4 (and the soon-to-debut Streetfighter V4). The word choice does leave open the possibility of it being a completely different engine, and perhaps even a different displacement. As cool as that would be, however, it strikes us as unlikely at this point.
Begin Press Release:
Borgo Panigale (Bologna, Italy), 17 September 2019 – Sixteen years after the first Multistrada rolled off the assembly line, the family has now reached the 100,000-bike milestone. Multistrada number 100,000, a Pikes Peak version of the 1260 with a customised laser marking on the top yoke, was handed over to Dave Hayward – a German Ducatista who had ordered his Multistrada from the Düsseldorf dealership – by none other than Ducati CEO Claudio Domenicali in person.
Ducati’s dual-purpose motorcycle has always been technologically cutting-edge. In 2010 the Multistrada was the first bike to feature riding modes, the system that changes the very character of the bike. Indeed, the tagline for the advertising campaign read: “four bikes in one”. With the D|Air version, introduced in 2014, Ducati offered the first motorcycle with a system capable of interfacing with a dedicated airbag-equipped jacket. In 2015 it became the first motorcycle to feature a variable-timing engine: the Testastretta DVT (Desmodromic Variable Timing).
And as the technology evolved, so too did the reliability. Ever-longer, stricter development tests were applied. Production processes were improved, materials enhanced, numerical simulations honed, taking the Multistrada 1260 and 950 to unprecedented levels of dependability. Today, all the engines in the family have valve play checks at 30,000 km intervals – three times that of the first version.
With no less than 7 versions, today’s Multistrada family has never been more complete: two 950 cm³ (113 hp) bikes and five 1260 cm³ (158 hp) ones.
Presented in 2019, the new Multistrada 950 – also available as an S version – is designed to put Multistrada performance within everyone’s reach while maximising versatility, thanks also to the 19″ front wheel.
The most recent interpretation of the original dual-purpose sports concept, the Multistrada 1260 combines the comfort and load capacity of a dual-purpose bike with tyre sizes, wheels and brakes that are, instead, typical of sports motorcycles. Equipped with Öhlins suspension, forged wheels and a carbon fibre end pipe, the Pikes Peak model offers maximum sports performance.
For those, instead, who love adventuring, Ducati has come up with the Multistrada 1260 Enduro, designed to take on the toughest terrain and longest journeys thanks to the 30-litre tank, long-travel suspension, 19″ front rim and, of course, the hard-wearing spoked wheels.
Development is ongoing, and in 2021 the Multistrada family will expand to see the twin cylinder 1260 and 950 motorcycles joined by a version with a new, specific V4 engine.