Ducati pulled the wraps off of a new liquid-cooled Monster model. The Ducati Monster 1200 is powered by the 1198cc 11-degree Testastretta dual-spark engine that also powered the company’s last-generation superbike. Ducati will produce two versions, a base model and a higher-spec S model.
The first liquid-cooled Monsters since the S4R and S4RS, the 1200 claims 135 hp at 8750 rpm and 86.8 ft-lb. at 7250 rpm while the 1200S claims 145 hp at 8750 rpm and 92.0 ft-lb. at 7250 rpm. The engine features an oil-bath slipper clutch which promises a light lever feel. Equipped with a ride-by-wire throttle system, the Monster 1200 offers three selectable ride modes as well as an eight-level traction control system and three-level ABS.
Following Ducati’s trend of increasing its maintenance periods, the Monster 1200 can go for 18,000 miles before needing a valve adjustment.
Like the 696 and 796 models which are returning for 2014, the new Ducati Monster 1200 and 1200S feature the line’s signature red trellis frames. The frame attaches to the engine which is also a stress-bearing part of the chassis, similar to how the Panigale’s chassis attaches to the Superquadro engine. Ducati claims the new frame design offers about twice the torsional stiffness of previous Monsters.
At 59.48 inches, the Monster 1200 has a wheelbase about 2.4 inches longer than previous models, improving stability and two-up comfort. The handlebars are also 1.6 inches higher and closer to the rider for a more comfortable posture. The seat is also new and now adjustable, allowing for seat heights from 30.9 to 31.8 inches. The brake and clutch levers are also adjustable.
The Monster 1200 is equipped with a fully-adjustable 43mm Kayaba fork and Sachs monoshock with adjustable spring-preload and rebound damping. The Monster 1200S comes with a fully-adjustable 48mm Titanium-Nitride finished fork and rear shock from Ohlins.
Up front, the new 1200 is equipped with Brembo four-piston monobloc M4-32 calipers gripping a pair of 320mm discs while the 1200S uses Brembo’s M50 monobloc calipers gripping 330mm discs. Both versions uses a single-piston caliper at the rear with single 245mm discs. Bosch supplies its three-level 9MP ABS system as standard equipment on both versions. Level 1 offers the sportiest setting with no rear lift-up prevention. Level 2 activates the rear lift prevention while Level 3 provides maximum ABS intervention and rear lift prevention. The ABS can also be switched completely off.
The base model comes with Panigale-esque 10-spoke alloy wheels while the S model sports a new Y-shaped spoke design. Both versions come with Pirelli Diablo Rosso II tires.
New for the Monster line is the 1200’s TFT color display that changes its display to match the ride mode. In the Urban ride mode, the screen switches to its Core display. The Core screen is the most minimalist, showing only essential information such as the speed, tachometer, making it easier to read at a quick glance. In Touring mode (pictured above), the screen switches to the Touring screen offering a fuller layout. The speed display switches to a smaller font to make room for more information. In Sport mode, the screen switches to a Track setting. The tachometer switches to a longer length making it easier to check the engine speed at a glance.
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Check back later for more on the 2014 Ducati Monster 1200 and 1200S including a first impressions video with Kevin Duke.