Its 162bhp Testastretta L-twin notwithstanding, the Diavel is likely to be best suited to boulevard cruising rather than bombing along mountain twisties...
Ducati have made up a nice story about how their new muscle-cruiser came to be known as Diavel. ‘One day, early in the development process of the bike, the first prototype was assembled and wheeled out in front of a group of Ducati engineers and technicians who were viewing the complete motorcycle for the first time. One person looking from the rear of the bike saw its silhouette and exclaimed in Bolognese dialect, ‘Ignurànt comm' al Diavel,’ which meant ‘Evil, just like the devil,’ and thus the Ducati Diavel was born,’ goes the story.
With its 162-horsepower Testastretta L-twin engine, Monster-on-steroids styling, 240-section rear tyre and 210-kilo kerb weight, the Diavel is the most unusual, unlikely Ducati ever. Then again, if Yamaha can build an R1 and a VMAX, why can’t Ducati have a Diavel standing next to their 1198R? If people want an Italian VMAX, they must have the God-given right to have one, and Ducati have taken it upon themselves to fill that niche.
With its low seat height, low-slung trellis frame and raked-out stance, the Diavel is the quintessential cruiser – a squat, stubby and aggressive one. It has flourishes of style – LED taillamps and turn-indicators, large air-intake scoops and single-sided swingarm are all styling elements and they don’t look too bad at all. And yet, the Diavel is likely to be a triumph of style over substance, pose value over riding dynamics. Despite its multiple riding modes and 162bhp engine etc., the bike doesn’t look like it’ll be great fun to ride. It should certainly have great street presence and the VMAX set will probably love the Diavel, but for those who love Ducati because the company makes bikes like these, the Diavel will remain an irrelevant blip on the company’s lusty line-up of sportsbikes.
The base model 2011 Ducati Diavel is priced at €17,000 while the higher-spec Diavel Carbon is priced at €20,000.