Here's a video of Jeff Nash, ex-racer and owner of AMS Ducati, revving a Ducati Supermono. Pretty basic. The video is only two minutes long. But the Supermono is one special machine, so it's enough to ignite the daydreaming neurons. Keep an eye out for all the trick parts on the bike and ask yourself how much you'd pay to ride one for the afternoon.
The Ducati Supermono, built between 1993 and 1995, is an icon—and not just because it’s so rare. Leave it to the Italians to build one of the most ingenious, beautiful motorcycles of all time and only build, like, 67 of them.
Built to compete in the Sound of Singles racing class, the Supermono’s legacy is outsized considering it’s not a particularly significant motorcycle, at least not in the conventional sense. It was released on the brink of Ducati’s changing fortunes (the 916 and Monster were released in 1994).
The Supermono represents a sort of period alchemy. Pierre Terblanche did the styling—who says a racebike shouldn’t be pretty? The engine was designed by Claudio Domenicali, current Ducati CEO; Massimo Bordi, the man behind the desmoquattro; and Gianluigi Mengoli, longtime Ducati engineer. The Supermono could have only ever been built during this time, by these men.
The motor is architecturally an 888 Corsa twin that’s missing its upright cylinder. To achieve perfect primary balance, it uses a second con-rod (as though the vertical cylinder wasn’t absent) that attaches to a lever that pivots on a fixed pin in the crankcase. Brilliant. The motor is good for around 78 hp at 10,500 rpm. Half a desmoquattro makes for a whole lot of motorcycle.