We knew this one was coming, didn’t we folks? Back when Ducati first launched its plan to deliver a half dozen new motorcycles by the end of November, it gave us a few hints, and this one was pretty much the easiest to see coming. Ducati has an adventure bike that is pretty pavement-focused, but with the Pikes Peak version of that bike, it has delivered an even more pavement-focused Multistrada. It’s kind of a track-day bike that sits up high, because Porsche can’t have all the fun.
While there are many components under the skin that make a Pikes Peak, there are two main ways to determine a Pikes Peak by sight. The first is the functionally-sportier 17-inch front wheel, and the second is the track-influenced single-sided swing arm. Of course you can also identify the bike by its distinctive Pikes Peak livery, inspired by the company’s MotoGP racers, which is quite telling as to the function of this bike. It’s for climbing mountains, not on trails but rather paved ribbons of road.
Speaking of that smaller 17" front wheel, it and the rear are fitted with sport-oriented sticky road tires to ensure the grip and response of a sport bike, but a few inches higher in the air and a comfier saddle. The wheels are Marchesini forged aluminum units, which drop nearly six pounds of weight from the Pikes Peak as compared to the standard Multistrada V4 S. With all of the other lightweighting initiatives Ducati has committed to the Pikes Peak, it now weighs a full 8.8 pounds less than its more soft-roader sibling. Not a massive shift in weights, but not insignificant. The bike’s Öhlins Smart EC 2.0 suspension, similar to that found on the Panigale V4 S and Streetfighter V4 S, automatically adjusts settings according to the user’s riding style.
This is more than just a revamped Multistrada V4, too. It has a new aluminum monocoque for the purpose of tilting the angle of the steering head to 25.75 degrees versus 24.5 degrees on the standard model. That also changes the trail and wheelbase geometry of the bike to make it a sportier ride. Instead of chasing gravel trails, you’re chasing apexes. But tall. The Pikes Peak also gets its braking from the Panigale V4.
Ergonomically, the Pikes Peak is much more sporty as well. The foot pegs are higher and more rearward, the handlebars are narrrower and lower. Your riding position then is pushed forward and while still upright, certainly more aggressive.
Obviously the Pikes Peak is nothing without its powerful V4 engine. The 1160 cc Granturismo V4 is a lightweight unit at just 147 pounds. Despite its compact size, it manages to churn out an impressive 170 horsepower and 95 lb-ft of torque. Ducati claims this engine sets a new standard for the company in reliability and maintenance. Where the high-rev Ducs of old might have needed to have checks every few thousand miles, this one is rated to have its valve play checked only every 36,000.
This is also the first Multistrada model to feature a Race mode in the riding mode settings. This adds a more gradual rev limiter intervention strategy. There is also a dedicated program for the quickshifter to allow for particularly aggressive downshifts. And finally there is a more direct application of throttle response, thanks to Race mode’s high power.
The Pikes Peak also comes with all of the tech that has been introduced on the standard Multistrada V4 S. You get the radar-assist adaptive cruise control and blind spot detection packages. There’s the typical flashy and beautiful 6.5" TFT display and smartphone integration. All of this in addition to advanced rider safety advancements, like cornering ABS, wheelie control, stoppie control, and more.
You can get your Pikes Peak from your Ducati dealership starting next February. With the standard Radar package, including front and rear radar systems, the MSRP kicks off at $28,995 here in the U.S. and $32,695 up in Canada.