2017 Ducati Scrambler Café Racer First Look

Ducati drops a racy new Scrambler at EICMA.

2017 Ducati Scrambler Café Racer
Ducati’s new Scrambler Café Racer. Not much of a “scrambler,” really, but it’s a damn cool-looking bike. Note the legit Pirelli Diablo Rosso rubber.Photo: Ducati

When Ducati debuted the Scrambler Icon at the end of 2014, the company had set out to create a new brand. Even now, when you go to Ducati's website, the Scrambler machines stand aside from the typical offerings of Monsters, Multistradas, and Panigales. Now the Scrambler brand has begun branching out in its own directions, with the off-road oriented Desert Sled and around a half dozen other variations.

The new Café Racer from Ducati
The new Café Racer from Ducati looks sleek from the rear, too. You better believe people will be popping that swingarm-mounted plate holder off ASAP.Photo: Ducati

Arguably the least “scrambled” of the line is the new-for-2017 Café Racer. It’s powered by the same 803cc, air-cooled engine that cranks out about 75 horsepower and rides in Ducati’s classic steel-trellis frame. But this cafe bike is much racier than the other Scramblers—it uses low-slung, aluminum clip-on handlebars instead of a taller, standard bar and a stubby, cowled tail that reminds us of Ducati’s own Monster.

Ducati Scrambler Café bar-end mirror
Bar-end mirrors keep the stance of the Café Racer low and mean. Ducati clearly branched out more than usual with this model.Photo: Ducati

Bar-end mirrors and a fully adjustable KYB fork add to the racy look, and Pirelli Diablo Rosso II rubber means there’s plenty of grip when you lean over. Whether or not parts drag, that remains to be seen. Racing or not, there are number plates mounted on the side, standard.

Front view of Scrambler Café Racer
For many enthusiasts, the Café Racer from Ducati will capture exactly what a motorcycle should be: clean, simple, and purposeful.Photo: Ducati

As with the rest of the Scrambler line, Ducati offers a gaggle of accessories for owners to personalize their bikes. Replaceable side panels on the tank and an easily removable, swingarm-mounted license-plate holder are just a couple of the things Ducati clearly expects people to fiddle with.