Watch out, Africa Twin: The Ducati DesertX looks ready for Dakar

Meet the Italian brand’s latest creation
by Leandre Grecia | Dec 10, 2021
PHOTO: Ducati

It looks like Ducati is ready to both upstage MV Agusta and its new Lucky Explorer Project and challenge the Honda Africa Twin. In case you missed it, the Bologna-based motorcycle marque has just unveiled its new adventure bike: the DesertX.

The DesertX was conceptualized in 2019 and, similar to the Lucky Explorer, is a contemporary iteration of enduro motorcycles from decades past. It has hints of retro in its design, particularly with the tank and side shields and the double headlamps up front.

The bike weighs only 202kg dry and is built with a new steel trellis frame that, together with the long-stroke suspension, ensures optimum off-road performance. The DesertX gets a 46mm diameter upside-down Kayaba fork with 230mm of travel up front and a Kayaba monoshock out back that enables 220mm of rear wheel travel.

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The motorcycle sits on 21- and 18-inch front and rear wheels, respectively, both shod in Pirelli Scorpion Rally STR tires. It has 250mm of ground clearance. It also features Ducati’s brake system with ABS Cornering function. Brembo M50 monobloc radial calipers with double 320mm discs are fitted up front, while a single 265mm disc with a twin-piston floating Brembo caliper is equipped at the rear.

Powering this motorcycle is a 937cc liquid-cooled Testastretta 11° Desmodromic valvetrain engine that generates 110hp at 9,250rpm and 92Nm at 6,500rpm.

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The DesertX offers six riding modes—including Enduro and Rally—that work in combination with four different power modes to modify the output and responsiveness of the engine in accordance with the riding conditions. The bike’s amenities include a five-inch TFT color display that can be connected to a smartphone via the integrated Ducati Multimedia system.

Ducati is set to roll out the DesertX in other markets starting May 2022. Would you like it to make this way over to our shores?

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PHOTO: Ducati
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