With Ducati seemingly prepared to move far from its Sportbike heritage into the Adventure tourer segment with the Multistrada 1200 and commit cardinal sins with the Power Cruiser that looks set to debut this in Milan, what is next from Bologna. Believe it or not, a scooter could be on the cards.
Warren Lee, the official Australian Ducati importer, seems to be a great source of Ducati’s future plans. He correctly signaled as early as March 2009 that what would become the Multistrada 1200 was on its way and that a Power Cruiser that we now refer to variously as the Vyper or Mega Monster was hot on its heels. Next he turned his comments to scooters.
“Ducati is looking at a scooter, but a high-performance model, not a 50cc price-driven thing,” Lee said. “It’s on the backburner at the moment. Maybe after 2010. It’s just simmering at the moment.”
Lee doesn’t seem to be the only Ducati man speaking on this topic. Last year Ducati’s Director of Marketing, Diego Sgorbati said in an interview that Ducati is considering a scooter according to Italian language blog.
“Ducati is looking at many segments, scooters, custom, enduro, off-road… it’s a normal expansion. Before going down one road though we look at all the potential barriers, technological and distribution related. For example, how many of our dealers can sell a superbike, as well as a motocross bike? Also, does it match the “soul” of the brand, does it make sense. What worked 20 years ago might not make sense today.. “
Spanish language scooter website Soloscooter (English Translation) made similar claims in 2009 which make for interesting reading. The site believes the scooter will be a V-twin of around 850cc capacity delivering 100bhp via a sequential, clutch-less transmission with a maintenance free toothed belt final drive. Just as Mr Lee argued, the scooter would be quite sporty with plenty of aluminum and 16″ wheels. Soloscooter offers two renditions of how the new model might look, including one by the ubiquitous Oberdan Bezzi.
So could the scooter be for real? Well Ducati has done it before, producing the 125cc machine pictured above in 1952. The model ran for only 2 years before the cheaper Vespa and Lambretta scooters made it uneconomic. There are enough sources to conclude that Ducati is at least considering entering this large market segment which promises explosive growth in India and China in particular. Clearly, Ducati is committed to expanding its range beyond the core Superbikes as these models become less popular as the baby boomers age.
It could happen, after all Warren Lee is already 2 for 2 and Ducati promotes the Malaguti Phantom F12-R 50cc Ducati Corse SBK Scooter on its website!!
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Ducati has Plans for a Scooter?