Sunday, June 5, 2016

The Cruiser Life

So a few weeks ago I tried out a Ducati XDiavel at the demo day in La Honda, and figured it was about time to write up my thoughts.

First, to answer the most important question: it is not the bike for me. The cruiser seating position is an exercise in pointless absurdity, and does not lend itself to relaxed, comfortable riding.

I also found myself a bit disappointed with the attention to detail. The bike felt like it was about half way there, they did a decent first pass of cleaning up and hiding all the unsightly bits of mechanicalness, but it fell far short of being the rolling sculpture I was hoping for.

In terms of riding experience, the wide rear tire makes for very curious handling. It tends to feel like the rear of the bike is the end steering you into the turns, though the rest of the bike seems to be well engineered to compensate for it.

The engine was quite well suited for the bike, though we were riding in the 100hp "urban" mode due to wet roads, down from the usual 160-something hp in full power mode. I feel like it's a much better match for this bike than it was for the Multistrada. That said, I did feel like the engine, and the bike itself, were just too big: you could easily shave 20% off the bike and engine size to make a midsize cruiser and end up with something that, for me, would be a much more appealing package.

In the end, I find myself still searching for my next-next bike.

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