At first glance, the 2006 Ducati Multistrada might have you scratching your head as you try to define which category the bike should be classified in. Its minimalistic style suggests that it""s a naked bike, but its aggressive attitude makes it seem more like an off-roader. Then again, its smooth responsiveness and precise handling, as well as its optional hardcover saddlebags, have it feeling more like a touring bike. Rather than try and fit the Multistrada into a category, it might be wiser just to allow it to stand on its own merit, as a one-of-a-kind bike from Italy""s top manufacturer.
The 2006 Ducati Multistrada is available in four sub-models, including the 620, 620 Dark, 1000 DS, and all-new 1000S DS. While all four sub-models look stylistically the same, the 1000S DS boasts a top-of-the-line Ohlins suspension, which takes its road handling capabilities to the upper echelon of street bikes.
The Ducati Multistrada 620 and 620 Dark serve as the entry-level bikes in the family. Featuring a punchy 618cc, air-cooled, L-Twin Desmodue engine, and a responsive Marelli electronic fuel injection system with 45mm throttle body, the 620 is one of the most flexible bikes in Ducati""s lineup. Capable of catering to a wide array of riders, the 620 series of bikes is designed from the ground up to be safe, easy to drive, and comfortable. It has a six-speed gearbox with a new APTC clutch that was designed exclusive for Ducati. The clutch is specifically designed to prevent rear-wheel lock up when downshifting, ensuring a more stable and reliable drive for newer riders.
While the Ducati 1000S DS is outfitted with Ohlins suspension, the other Multistrada models feature Marzocchi 43mm inverted forks on the front of the bike and progressive linkage with adjustable Sachs monoshock on the rear. Front wheel travel is a tight 5.71 inches, and rear wheel travel is 4.8 inches. On the Multistrada 620, braking is provided by dual 300mm two-piston caliper brakes on the front and a single 245mm two-piston caliper brake on the back. The Ducati Multistrada Dark has a slightly different braking design, which includes a larger 320mm disc, albeit a single one, on the front.
The chassis of the 2006 Ducati Multistrada is exceptionally light and agile, thanks to Ducati""s proprietary tubular trellis frame. The Ducati 620 series of bikes do feature smaller fuel tanks (3.9 gallons versus the 1000 series’ 5.3-gallon tanks), but stylistically, all four of the bikes are very similar. The 2006 Ducati Multistrada boasts a minimalistic design that""s lean, mean, and sexy. The under-seat dual exhaust further accentuates the bike""s narrow aesthetic and gives it a sporty posterior that""s as functionally efficient as it is visually cool.
It might not be the most conventional looking motorcycle on the road, but the 2006 Ducati Multistrada is effectively unique and uniquely effective. Quite simply, it""s a bike that works exceptionally well, while meeting the needs of practically every type of rider.