Saturday, March 31, 2007

Perfection: The Ducati Sportclassics Line.

The Paul Smart 1000LE

In the 1970s, sport riders were modifying their street bikes with some of what they saw being used on the race track, like clip-on handlebars, rear set footpegs, and “fast” colours. This was done just as much for the “look”, as for increased performance. In the end, motorcycle haunts of the time were filled with individualism and non-conformity expressed in trend-setting styles and experimentation with performance enhancement. The Café Racer style was born.

Welcome to the Ducati SportClassic family - motorcycles that capture the essential beauty, timeless style and emotion of the Engineer Fabio Taglioni’s original Ducati sport bikes of the 1970s. While retaining the best of the past, they have been developed using the latest technology and engineering, creating a range of thoroughly modern motorcycles that live up to today’s standards of road-going performance.

To attain the timeless beauty of the bikes that were the inspiration for the SportClassics, the key design, style and technical features of the originals were studied and targeted for modern interpretation in the Paul Smart 1000 LE, Sport 1000 and GT 1000: lightweight yet powerful new motorcycles that are easy to handle and fun to ride every day."

The Sport1000

The Ducati Sport1000 captures the bold style of the early bikes. Starting with the traditional monochromatic colour themes of yellow, red and black, each bike also has a contrasting racing stripe across the fuel tank and tailpiece. All three colours are complemented with a classic black frame. With a solo seat and clip-ons, the Sport looks low, lean and ready for a ride in the twisties. The clip-ons on the Sport have, however, been raised about 20 mm compared to the Paul Smart for a slightly more relaxed position.

The Sport1000’s suspension features a 43 mm upside-down fork by Marzocchi. Suspension by Marzocchi was also the choice on the original 750 Sport Ducati of 1971, and the brushed aluminium forks of the new Sport look as great now as they did back then. Rear suspension is handled by a Sachs single shock, which can be adjusted for pre-load, compression and rebound damping, in conjunction with an elliptical 60 mm asymmetrical swingarm.

The Sport1000 has inherited yet another outstanding feature from the original Ducati sport bikes: reduced overall weight. Tipping the scales at just 179 kg (395 lbs), you can feel how light it is whether you are going at top speed or simply parking. The limited weight is a distinct advantage of the Sport1000 when accelerating, cornering or braking. It's the Café Racer style of the Taglioni Sport 750 with modern Ducati performance.

The GT1000

The GT 1000 and Sport 1000 are powered by the outstanding Desmo 1000 DS engine. The torquey air-cooled 90º L-Twin is the perfect match to power these sport bikes. The cylinders with their traditional cooling fins and classic “L” configuration are direct descendents of the original Taglioni design. Slim between the legs and exposed for all to see, the latest two-valve Desmo system, fuel-injection and computer controlled engine management ensure that the 1000 DS engine is powerful, dependable and thrilling to ride.

The SportClassic design takes advantage of the beauty of the signature Ducati tubular trellis frames. The renowned strength and rigidity of the ALS 450 tubing has been further improved through the use of complex triangulation.

For the first time in three decades, the beauty of spoke wheels will grace a Ducati road bike. Starting with an alloy hub, the new wheels use 36 chromed stainless steel dual diameter spokes laced to 17” alloy Excel rims – rims famous in racing circles for their lightweight performance and durability. Mounted to the rims are modern interpretations of classic sport tyres, replicating the original patterns, but with modern radial construction techniques and rubber compounds.

Mounted to the alloy hubs are dual 320 mm brake discs up front and a 245 mm disc in the rear, both using lightweight black Brembo floating calipers to provide extra stopping power. Performance is further enhanced with classic black, steel braided brake lines.

The rear suspension system on the bikes takes a unique approach, with a single remote reservoir shock mounted on the left side. A 60 mm elliptical tubing swingarm harmonizes nicely with the trellis frame. Exiting on the right-hand side of the bike are twin stacked exhaust silencers, inspired by the black racing systems of the first big twins.

The cockpit's rev counter and speedometer gauges feature an analogue readout with white faces, and chromed trim. The rider's view is completed with a polished aluminium top crown and accessories."

The Sport 1000S

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