By John Burns Editor Score: 84.0%
2020 Ducati Scrambler 1100 Sport PRO
Editor Score: 84.0%
One man’s Scrambler is another man’s cafe racer. What? I don’t really know. Scrambler maybe means something different in Italy, where that nomenclature encompasses entry-level Ducs with off-roady aspirations as well as cafe raceresque ones. What they all have in common is a two-valve per cylinder version of Ducati’s classic air-cooled V-twin, ranging in size from 399 cc all the way up to the 1079 cc of this lovely new 1100 Sport PRO Ducati loaned us for a few days. I’m down. I’ve been a big fan of air-cooled Ducatis since before there were liquid-cooled Ducatis.
This latest L-twin is now Euro 5-compliant and completely ride-by-wire, with impeccable fueling and a few ride modes – Active, Journey and City – all of them perfectly acceptable and their differences barely perceptible (City lowers engine output a bit). The six-speed gearbox is a thing of beauty so slick it doesn’t need a quickshifter, and there’s a nice, light hydraulic-activated slipper clutch to boot. With the powertrain dialled, then, the 1100 Sport PRO is kind of a rolling fiesta of Ducati style.
18- and 17-inch cast wheels with Pirelli MT60 tires do give a hint of Scramblerness.
In fact, the 1100 Sport PRO here and slightly different 1100 PRO were both the subject of a big confab at the famed Art Center College of Design in Pasadena back in February, where students were invited to design the Ducati Scrambler of the future, with the most original proposal taking one of them to the Ducati Design Centre for a training internship – an event attended by world soccer icon and passionate motorcyclist, Alessandro Del Piero.