Ducati Diavel in the top test

Ducati Diavel in the top test

Muscle bike, dragster, streetfighter or athlete in disguise?

Ducati’s new Diavel has arrived in the shop windows. But what exactly does the motorcycle want to be? Muscle bike? Dragster? Street fighter? Or maybe an athlete in disguise? The MOTORRAD top test clarifies what it really is and what it can do.

D.a you stand there, sneaking around the bike gracefully and being amazed. Even if it looks like it at first glance, the Italians didn’t just copy the Yamaha Vmax, they created a motorcycle that can’t really be classified. With 153 measured horsepower, it is much more powerful than any cruiser. And with a full tank of just 241 kilograms, it is much lighter than known muscle bikes. Highly mounted footrests promise respectable lean angle, and the specially developed rear tire Pirelli Diabolo Rosso II is supposed to ensure superb handling. Actually crazy, because it’s a 240 mm slipper. We will see.

Ducati Diavel in the top test

Muscle bike, dragster, streetfighter or athlete in disguise?

Diavel the timing was changed and the combustion chambers and channels revised. In the Diavel, it seems, he breathes particularly freely, because the sister bikes don’t feel that strong. The technicians refer to a voluminous airbox and manifold pipes with a diameter of no less than 58 millimeters.


An accordion-shaped slat protects against soaring dirt when the handlebars are turned.

You only see such monstrous stainless steel boas on MotoGP factory bikes. That looks good. And maybe it also contributes to smooth gliding from 3000 rpm. However, a much shorter gear ratio is responsible for the majority of the perceived extra power. And don’t forget that: the sound. Subjectively measured from the ear canal, the Diavel has a whopping 250 hp. At least. But it doesn’t matter. As a 1.70-meter pilot, you sit comfortably and well integrated in the seat-shaped armchair and discover with amazement that everything fits. Not a Ducati Monster-typical and uncomfortable over-the-tank-cocking posture. However, the trough-like seat makes you feel quite squeezed in, almost as if concreted. The wide handlebars – it could also be used as a superbike or enduro bar – lies wonderfully in the hand, the upper body is upright, and the knee angle is just acceptable. The latter is problematic for larger pilots in the long run. That is why Ducati is offering two additional bench seats (€ 178 each) in addition to the series counterpart (770 millimeters): One lowers the seat height for short people to 750 millimeters and at the same time reduces comfort, the other increases it and increases the seat height to 810 millimeters.

Inner-city stop-and-go traffic takes the Diavel calmly. The steering angle is considerable for a machine of this caliber; circling a car is not an adventure. In a warm state, however, the idle search turns out to be a game of chance, because the otherwise easily shiftable six-speed gearbox would like to remain geared forever. With fresh tires, you snap out of the city and into the Bergisch region. The engine reacts with a slight delay to gas commands, which are passed on electronically to the injection nozzles and throttle valves via a ride-by-wire system rather than a cable. First long straight: the engine revs up willingly. Switch, switch. In no time at all, the clock shows well over 140 km / h. In order to fully enjoy the power of the drive, it goes on the highway. Take a deep breath, look at the two-part cockpit.

There are three driving modes available for riding the Italian devil: Urban, Touring and Sport. In urban mode, a set-up for wet roads and ice-cold days with little grip, the V2 only provides 104 hp at 8000 rpm. Between 2800 and 8000 tours it presses more than 90 Nm onto the rear wheel. The eight-stage traction control intervenes early on, which works very well. Even on splintered roads you never have the feeling of being on your nose when you accelerate out.


The handle for the pillion passenger is integrated in the rear and can be pulled out if necessary.

In sport mode, on the other hand, the traction control regulates late to enable maximum propulsion. In addition, the engine is extremely dependent on the gas. Even the slightest turns of the handle cause aggressive acceleration. This happens in a much more human way in touring and urban modes. In both the sport and touring settings, the drive produces its peak performance with 153 hp at 9300 rpm and 122 Nm at 8100 rpm. But only in sixth gear. In fifth it is 150, in fourth gear a maximum of 145 hp. From 3500 rpm, at least 100 Newton meters are available in both open modes, 122 Nm at 8100 rpm represent the maximum. But what does that mean in practice?

With all the sober-sounding values, one must not forget one thing: In terms of appearance, the Diavel with its 1590 millimeter long wheelbase, the squat appearance and the 240 mm slipper lines up as a drag-styled cruiser with a musclebike attitude, but it weighs 73 kilograms less than, for example, Yamahas 200 hp rocket Vmax and it’s 66 kilograms lighter than Harley’s V-Rod Muscle. It also has a lot more power than the Harley or even a Suzuki M 1800 R, which also serves the power cruiser segment. With this knowledge, the stored driving impressions of many fat cruisers in the back of the head, even the toughest tester is amazed at the incredible dynamics of this bike.

The Diavel snaps effortlessly from curve to curve and, despite the huge rear tire, can be moved briskly from one lean angle to the next. The effort required for this is relatively low. Tea Diavel sets new standards in the cruiser segment of the obligatory sedate. Never before has such a lump been moved so easily. Its secret: The outline of the Pirelli Diabolo Rosso II is more pointed than that of comparable thick slippers, it simply rolls off better. The catch: Even with the rear tire only half worn, driving behavior deteriorates significantly. The wide flap takes every bump as an opportunity to channel unrest into the chassis.

Ducati propagates 41 degrees of lean angle freedom. In fact, the pegs come on very late. And with very deep right inclines, the manifold scrapes his autograph on the tar. But that takes extreme speed. This is reached quickly: Even in urban mode, which provides only 68 percent of the maximum output with 104 hp, you never feel underpowered. It’s definitely enough for cruising. For speedy cruising too. However, the Diavel cannot deny its origin. It carries sports genes.

Anyone who would like to tumble slowly and slowly on long straights into blood-red sunsets has come to the wrong place in snuffle mode. Because this bike wants to be actively moved. The ex-sport drive lacks the large flywheel mass of other cruiser engines. Despite the beefy development of power, it exudes dynamism, loves revs, challenges and encourages brisk pace. Oil is really poured into the fire over 6000 rpm. That is what makes it so attractive and has charm. You can get addicted to it.


Ducati promises 41 degrees of lean angle – that’s easily enough for hearty rides on the country road.

Whatever the engine likes can also be implemented with the chassis. Tightly tuned, it digests even the fast chase on country roads of all stripes. The 50s Marzocchi fork and the Sachs shock absorber provide good feedback, are puncture-proof and are not exhausted even when riding with a pillion passenger. However, they are not comfortable. The brakes are not inferior to the comparatively sporty chassis. At the front, the Diavel decelerates with monobloc brake calipers from Brembo, taken from Ducati’s Supersport shelves. During measurements they shone with a brute deceleration of 10.3 m / s², which corresponds to a braking distance of 37.5 meters from 100 km / h. The ABS developed by Bosch works extremely well. But not only brute delays succeed without stress. Adaptive braking is just as important in order to reduce speed before a curve. The dosage is perfect, the pressure point very clear, you don’t need more than two fingers. Decelerating is just as much fun as accelerating or guzzling kilometers.

The 700-kilometer country road test is behind the wheels faster than expected. For the sake of comparability, two consumption levels were determined: In urban mode, 5.9 liters ran through the injection nozzles per 100 kilometers, in sport mode it consumed just 0.1 liters more over the same distance. The location will be changed for the measurements and driving on the top test course. When riding at a constant 130 km / h on the motorway, the Italian V2 approves around seven liters per 100 kilometers. But then it applies. The Diavel is finally at the start of the course and has to prove itself in both fast and slow slalom. From a standing start, the car accelerates onto the pylon line, test driver Georg Jelicic swings through the colorful obstacles at 106 km / h at the measuring point and is back at the finish line after 20.1 seconds. Great values. For comparison: one of the best-selling and popular motorcycles, the BMW R 1200 GS, takes 21.1 seconds for the fast slalom and reaches a maximum of 102 km / h at the measuring point. Any questions? The Diavel is always stable in all driving tests. However, footpegs that touch down limit the Italian’s verve in the circular path and in the slow slalom.

There is no wind on the airfield near Tuttlingen, where not only the MOTORRAD pylon forest is being planted, but also the all-important measurement from zero to 100 km / h, because Ducati itself had advertised that the Diavel would be in just 2, Torpedo 6 seconds from zero to 100 km / h. That would be a new record for MOTORRAD. The Yamaha Vmax sets the best value to date with 2.7 seconds … Georg Jelicic starts. Sport mode switched on. And gives everything. Cancellation. Because the Diavel constantly climbs onto the rear wheel. Despite only nine degrees outside temperature, the Pirelli builds up enormous grip. Countless attempts follow and fail. Jelicic works with all tricks. Engage the clutch later, set the DTC higher, switch it off completely – he tries everything out. No chance, the old record cannot be broken. This is due to the short translation of the Diavel. Since first gear only goes up to 90 km / h, one gear change is necessary to accelerate to one hundred. And that costs valuable fractions of a second. Despite this handicap, the Italian devil fires himself from a standing start to 100 km / h in just three seconds. An almost unbelievable value for a cruiser. An acceptable one for a muscle bike. A moderate one for a dragster. Which brings us back to the topic. Actually, the Diavel is more of a street fighter that stands out like a custom bike and rides as dynamically as many a naked bike.

Click here for the presentation videos of the Ducati Diavel:

Other power bikes in the test: BMW S 1000 RR, Kawasaki ZZR 1400 and Yamaha Vmax



The Ducati Diavel.

The Diavel is difficult to classify in well-known motorcycle types. It can be moved much more dynamically than all known muscle bikes or dragsters, is much more potent than all cruisers and has a unique selling point thanks to its daring design. Ducati’s attempt to come up with something completely new was successful. And it’s a lot of fun.


Category engine:
Pressure in all situations – the Diavel, however, is not a cruiser. Because completely jerk-free driving at speeds below 3000 rpm is only possible to a limited extent. The engine also doesn’t run as smoothly as the competition from the USA or Japan, and the gearshift could be more precise: When the V2 is warm, searching for idle turns into a gamble. When cold, it responds to engaging first gear with a powerful shift.

Category chassis:
Tough but warm: the suspension elements are tightly matched for sporty reasons and offer good feedback. However, very little comfort. With a fresh rear tire, the steering behavior is comparatively great. However, that changes if the profile is lost: The 240 then direct strong unrest into the chassis, the steering behavior deteriorates. Great, on the other hand: you barely feel the passenger when driving. However, it is not housed very comfortably.

Category everyday life:
That will be tight: a meager 159 kilograms payload is just enough for two hunger pegs with luggage. But where do you put it? In addition, the passenger does not sit particularly comfortably, his right foot cannot be supported because of the bulging silencer. Big drivers, on the other hand, complain about a very narrow knee angle. A 40 millimeter higher bench seat (178 euros, Ducati accessories) should eliminate this shortcoming. And by the way: no hazard lights.

Category Security:
Hardly any fading, good pressure point, very good effect – the Brembo monobloc saddles known from supersport also prove themselves here in connection with the ABS. Despite the immense power and the risk of the front wheel rising, the Diavel only has a slight tendency to kickback.

Category costs:
A diva wants to be entertained, of course. With almost six liters of gasoline / 100 km, high tire wear and high costs, diavellen is not cheap. In return, one is happy about the long 12000 inspection intervals.

 Max points  Ducati Diavel Overall rating  1000  663
Price-performance note  Top grade 1.0  3.2

Certainly not a bargain from a financial point of view. The driving fun makes up for it, however, and the spectators are always on your side – actually priceless.

Technical specifications


Newly designed, great workmanship, impeccable effect: expansion tank for hydraulic and brake fluid.

Water-cooled two-cylinder four-stroke 90-degree V-engine, two overhead, toothed belt-driven camshafts, four valves per cylinder, rocker arm and rocker arm, operated desmodromically, wet sump lubrication, injection Ø 56 mm, alternator 430 W, battery 12 V / 10 Ah, hydraulically operated multi-disc oil bath clutch, (anti-hopping), six-speed gearbox, chain, secondary ratio 43:15.
Bore x stroke 106.0 x 67.9 mm
Displacement 1198 cc
rated capacity 112.7 kW (153 hp) at 9500 rpm
Max. Torque 128 Nm at 8000 rpm

landing gear:
Steel tubular frame, upside-down fork, Ø 50 mm, adjustable spring base, rebound and compression damping, single-sided swing arm made of aluminum, central spring strut with lever system, adjustable spring base, rebound and compression damping, double disc brake at the front, Ø 320 mm, four-piston fixed calipers, disc brake rear, Ø 265 mm, two-piston fixed caliper, ABS.
Spoked wheels with aluminum rims 3.50 x 17; 8.00 x 17
Tires 120/70 ZR 17; 240/45 ZR 17
Tires tested by Pirelli Diablo Rosso II

Mass and weight:
Wheelbase 1590 mm, steering head angle 62.0 degrees, caster 130 mm, spring travel f / h 120/120 mm, permissible total weight 400 kg, tank capacity / reserve 17.0 / 4.0 liters.

Data service:
Service intervals 12,000 km
Oil and filter change every 12,000 km 4.0 l
Engine oil SAE 10 W40 or SAE 15 W 50
Telescopic fork oil SAE 7.5
Spark plugs NGK MAR9A-J
Idle speed 1200 ± 100 / min
Tire pressure solo (with pillion passenger)
front / rear 2.5 / 2.6 (2.5 / 2.6) bar

guarantee two years
Colors Black, black / red
price 16,990 euros
Additional costs around 305 euros

MOTORCYCLE measurements


The Diavel beats its competitors in full line.

Top speed
251 (255 *) km / h

0-100 km / h 3.0 sec
0-140 km / h 4.9 sec
0-200 km / h 9.5 sec

60 100 km / h 3.3 sec
100 140 km / h 3.6 sec
140 180 km / h 3.9 sec

Speedometer deviation
Effective (display 50/100) 48/97 km / h

Tachometer deviation
Display of red area / effect. 10,000 rpm

Country road 5.9 l / 100 km
At 130 km / h 7.0 l / 100 km
Theor. Range road 288 km
Fuel type super

Mass and weight:
L / W / H 2230/940/1270 mm
Seat height 770 mm
Handlebar height 1080 mm
Turning circle 6000 mm
Weight with a full tank 241 kg
Load 159 kg
Wheel load distribution v / h 50/50%

* Manufacturer information


The performance diagram of the Ducati.

It couldn’t be clearer: While the V2 only comes to life in sport mode from 5000 rpm, it goes to sleep in urban mode – the ideal mapping for driving in the rain. Noticeable for a cruiser: The Diavel only provides its maximum torque very late, at 8100 rpm. The gearbox has a very sporty gear ratio, the spread of the last two gears is narrow.


The Ducati braking diagram.

The Ducati is stable and neutral when braking. The ABS control processes are excellent. Absolute reference: no motorcycle with ABS has ever experienced such delays.

Driving dynamics **:

Handling course I (fast slalom):

Lap time  20.1 sec.
Reference Harley-Davidson V-Rod  22.3 sec
Vmax at the measuring point  106.3 km / h
Reference Harley-Davidson V-Rod  90.0 km / h

For this type of vehicle, the Diavel can be circled through the fast course very quickly. It is even braked here by footrests touching down. Very impressive: The speed and time are on a super athlete level.

Handling course II (slow slalom):

Lap time  30.6 sec.
Reference Harley-Davidson V-Rod  34.2 sec
Vmax at the measuring point  47.2 km / h
Reference Harley-Davidson V-Rod  43.8 km / h

Handy and stable, the times are limited by the vehicle-specific concept with deep footrests. Shifting levers touching down on the left and exhaust manifold on the right do not allow any faster time and speed.

Circular path (Ø 46 meters):

Lap time  11.7 sec.
Reference Harley-Davidson V-Rod  13.3 sec
Vmax at the measuring point  46.0 km / h
Reference Harley-Davidson V-Rod  41.9 km / h

Attachment parts that are attached reduce the speed and time. The Diavel travels through the circular path in a stable and good damping manner with good feedback.

Brake measurement from 100 km / h:

Braking distance  37.5 m (-5.4 m)
Reference Harley-Davidson V-Rod  42.9 m

** MOTORRAD test course, values ​​from handling course and brake test averaged from the three best driving tests; Reference: motorcycle from the respective category with the previous best values.

Technology news


The unique electronic fittings of the Ducati Diavel.

If you like, you can link the strength of traction control (DTC) in the three driving modes Urban, Touring and Sport to personal preferences. In general, almost all electronic helpers or displays can be adapted to the wishes of the driver: for example, switch off ABS and DTC completely, or choose either km or miles, or km / l or m / gallon as the unit of measurement. Good: If you get lost electronically, you can use the reset functions to return to the basic setting. In the event of malfunctions between the transmitter of the radio ignition key and the electronic steering and ignition lock, it is possible to start the vehicle without a key using a code that you determine yourself beforehand. However, nothing works with a defective battery. Not even pulling out of a parking space with the steering lock locked. The wealth of information in the two cockpits is especially fun. However, be careful when reading the tank display: you have to take your eyes off the road completely.

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