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Are you excited for the V4 Multistrada to be announced on Oct 15?

  • Yes

    Votes: 23 48.9%
  • No

    Votes: 19 40.4%
  • I coulda had a V8...

    Votes: 5 10.6%
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2017 Ducati Multistrada 950, 2018 Desert Sled
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I am at almost 500 miles now and the honeymoon phase is over. I am starting to be more critical of the bike and my almost $30k purchase.

Not surprisingly, the biggest issue I have with the bike is Ducati Connect. If you are on a group ride with a bunch of people and want to get your music and GPS going before heading out, you better go out and get your bike going five minutes before everybody else or they will be long gone by the time you are up and running. It takes a while for the bluetooth connection to establish and then the WIFI connection has to establish. I have had a few instances where I needed to restart everything because the WiFi connection would not connect. You also have to make sure your phone has the Ducati Link app open and is unlocked before you put it in the little storage compartment. If you happen to hit anything (the screen or one of the side buttons) that changes the phone from the Ducati Connect app as you slide the phone into the storage compartment then Ducati connect will stop working on the dash and you have to pull the phone back out to get it going again. I may give up on Ducati Connect this week and mount my phone to the bars. Having the navigation on the dash and being able to play music from there was one of the many reasons I decided to upgrade. If having navigation on the dash and a reliable music player is important to you, then make sure to try it for yourself during a test ride or in the shop to understand its limitations.

I am only able to get the music player to play a song at a time either via Ducati Connect or the app on the main speedo screen. After a song completes it stops and you have to hit play again to start the next song. If you watch it on the phone you can see it trying to go from Ducati Connect to the music app to start the next song and something must be failing. I hope Ducati sorts this out as I like to have a playlist of music going on long freeway rides.

I rode 200ish miles yesterday and my right foot kept going numb. I assumed it was from the vibration I was getting on the foot pegs, which feels more significant than the peg vibration I got on any past Multistrada's. I had assumed the V4 would vibrate less than the 1260, but I was either wrong or my bike has an issue. I may have sorted out why my right foot was going numb. I moved the seat from the high position to the low position and my right foot seems less bothered by the vibration now and does not appear to be going numb. I only rode it for ~40 miles after moving the seat so I need to get a longer ride in to be certain. I hope I can sort this one out as it made riding the MTS V4S very uncomfortable. Of course I am not sure what other comfort issues moving the seat to the low position might cause. I am 6 foot 2 inches tall with a 32 inch inseam, so I assumed the high position was going to be best for me. If you think you are going to be using the high seat setting, make sure to try it out on the test ride. I am wishing that I did.

When you are removing the rear seat be careful with the connector for the heated seat. The connector on the bike sits in a little slot to keep it in place and that slot looks like it could break pretty easily. Every time I disconnect the rear heated seat the connector slides out of the slot on the bike so it seems like a matter of time before it breaks. My dealer installed a battery tender lead, but they claimed they had to leave it under the riders seat because there was no way to route it out from under the seat. So I have to remove the rider and passenger seats to get to the battery tender lead. I need to look at this a bit more and see if I can rig something up.

The powerlet outlet under the passenger seat is useless if you have the toolkit that comes with the bike in there. The space has just enough room for the toolkit and when the toolkit is in there it blocks the powerlet outlet completely. You are going to have to store the toolkit in the panniers or top case if you want to use the powerlet outlet and keep the toolkit with you.

Sygic is awful for navigation. It always takes a slower route than either Google Maps or Apple maps shows that I should to take. Last night I was five miles from home and there was a direct route, with no traffic according to Apple Maps and Google Maps, but Sygic wanted to route me through a neighborhoods instead of taking the direct route. The volume of Sygic is always lower than the music volume too, so it comes in almost inaudible, compared to any music that is playing, and I have not found a way to adjust it yet.

I filled up this morning, rode 131 miles, and then filled up again. The bike took in 3.9 gallons, and I tried to fill it to the same level that I had filled it to first thing in the morning, so I got around 33.5 MPG. I took my MTS 1260 on that same ride a few weeks ago and got 38 MPG. Granted my MTS V4 is not quite broken in but I can live with a 5 MPG difference. Later this week, after I have the 600 mile service done, I am going to try a long freeway ride. I think I will get on I-5 and head south until I reach the end of the tank or as close as I can get to it. That will give me some idea of freeway MPG. Especially since I will need to come back the same way after I refuel.
Great write up and thank you for taking the time to share this with us. On my 950, I have pretty much given up on the Ducati nav and music set up. Just link my helmet to my Cardo and go. Garmin is still mounted on the bars.

On the plus side, I'm happy that Ducati has spent the time and resources on the getting the other electronics right. Fueling, DTC, DWC, ABS, SkyHook, and the amount of variability for personal settings is on point.

Now, take that team and have them address the silly nav/audio UI.
 

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I agree that bike manufacturers (and probably especially Ducati) should just give up on trying to give us any kind of multimedia connectivity of their own. Either go with Apple or Google, or nothing. Otherwise the price is going up for garbage no ever really uses since they end up mounting their phone on the handlebars and using Apple/Google anyway.

I average around 47 mpg on my 1260, so the gas mileage of the V4 is concerning to me, so I'm keeping an eye on any long term reviews where people actually fill up their tanks and do the calculations.
 

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I agree that bike manufacturers (and probably especially Ducati) should just give up on trying to give us any kind of multimedia connectivity of their own. Either go with Apple or Google, or nothing. Otherwise the price is going up for garbage no ever really uses since they end up mounting their phone on the handlebars and using Apple/Google anyway.

I average around 47 mpg on my 1260, so the gas mileage of the V4 is concerning to me, so I'm keeping an eye on any long term reviews where people actually fill up their tanks and do the calculations.
100% agree. Why reinvent the wheel if the major-specialists on it have already created a great product that you can use (and apparently for free)?!?

47mpg is indeed a great mileage.... and can't get there with my 950S. Normally average around 41-42, cruising at around 85-90mph.
 

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Discussion Starter #2,086
Thanks for the review.
This is the sort of real world review I'm looking for.
Ducati and other bike manufacturers need to give up on phone software, stick to bikes and install CarPlay and Android.
Indeed. That is the biggest mistake Ducati (and other moto manufacturers) have made in thinking they can design software UI better than the most successful trillion dollar tech companies in the world, in Apple & Google. As I’ve said before, Ducati doesn’t need to “manufacture” its UI just like it has left the brakes and tires to Brembo & Pirelli. Leave the UI to CarPlay & Android Auto and call it good. We’d all be happier for it.
My prediction is they will ultimately get there in 3-5 years from now. Seems largely inevitable.
 

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I think Ducati is making a real mistake releasing a bike with a half-baked infotainment system. This worked back when the DVT 1200 came out; back then motorcycle infotainment was a market novelty, the fact that it didn't work well was easy to overlook.

Time marches on. The competition has gotten better, but more critically buyers have gotten savvier. This thread is a perfect example. You didn't see people talking about issues w/ the infotainment as soon years ago. Buyers now know this is something they need to pay attention to, because they're certainly paying for the features.

I wonder if they even fixed the volume control issue from the old bike.
 

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Well that was kind of a waste of time.... Title was very misleading and he didn't say anything new.
Agreed. Just watched it. Nothing really new covered in this one, and he didn’t even address the “how fast” question posed in the click bait title.
 

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Details on the new HD Pan America are out. Not gonna link cause the idea of posting an HD link kinda feels dirty, but I have to say it looks the part. They were clearly going at the GS, too. Still need to dump some of the HD overbranding BS, though. Who names their damned headlight? I'm surprised they didn't name the center stand, too.

"And with the included Harley-Davidson Third Leg center stand, you can easily change your oil on the side of the road for, you know, reasons."
 

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Details on the new HD Pan America are out. Not gonna link cause the idea of posting an HD link kinda feels dirty, but I have to say it looks the part. They were clearly going at the GS, too. Still need to dump some of the HD overbranding BS, though. Who names their damned headlight? I'm surprised they didn't name the center stand, too.

"And with the included Harley-Davidson Third Leg center stand, you can easily change your oil on the side of the road for, you know, reasons."
I’m an HD guy and I hate that crap. I didn’t care for some of the reveal video but I like the fact that the specs are in line with the competition. Not the fastest and not the slowest. They priced it competitively and the published weight is not the heaviest. Supposed to hit the dealerships May/June timeframe so it will be interesting to see how it stacks up to the new V4. If it’s a great bike then I could see it hurting Ducati sales a bit because of the price. At least with new ADV bike buyers. Duc guys won’t dare touch a Harley!


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Indeed. That is the biggest mistake Ducati (and other moto manufacturers) have made in thinking they can design software UI better than the most successful trillion dollar tech companies in the world, in Apple & Google. As I’ve said before, Ducati doesn’t need to “manufacture” its UI just like it has left the brakes and tires to Brembo & Pirelli. Leave the UI to CarPlay & Android Auto and call it good. We’d all be happier for it.
My prediction is they will ultimately get there in 3-5 years from now. Seems largely inevitable.
I am probably an outlier, but even as a general user and fan of Apple products, I do not care for CarPlay. I actually prefer the recent version of Ford's interface in my wife's car to CarPlay. I changed the settings to use the Ford software. Granted we got the car over two years ago and I haven't tried CarPlay since, but unless CarPlay has significantly changed, I'm not a fan. If anything, it's more frustrating because it is almost like using my iPhone, but not as good. I'd rather it just be a dummy screen and mirror my phone. If I can't have that, the Ford interface works better for than the almost-Apple interface.

That being said, I only see this as an issue with motorcycles because it is adding cost without benefit. If it just went away, I wouldn't miss it. I'm fine putting my phone in my pocket and synching it to my Sena. I really don't want to be tempted to look down for more than a second at a time anyways. Having the phone in my pocket forces me to pull over if I need to stare at my screen to make sense of directions or whatever.
 

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Details on the new HD Pan America are out. Not gonna link cause the idea of posting an HD link kinda feels dirty, but I have to say it looks the part. They were clearly going at the GS, too. Still need to dump some of the HD overbranding BS, though. Who names their damned headlight? I'm surprised they didn't name the center stand, too.

"And with the included Harley-Davidson Third Leg center stand, you can easily change your oil on the side of the road for, you know, reasons."
At least Aqua Man got paid, I guess?
 

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Since I purchased my V4S on Friday, I did not formally update my insurance until today. I had contacted State Farm prior to making the trade, so I knew about what I was getting into. State Farm is charging me $240 more per year for the 2021 V4S versus my 2018 1260S. That equates to a 25% increase for me from the 2018 MTS. The V4S was not in their system so they gave me a quote based upon the vin and engine size. When I went from the 2011 to 2013 MTS my insurance barley went up (around $50 per year). When I upgraded from the 2013 MTS to the 2018 MTS it did not go up at all. I paid cash for the bike but I still have full coverage on it. So if you are upgrading make sure you check with your insurance provider to understand the difference in cost. I am old so my rates are pretty low, but a 25% increase seems pretty crazy.
 

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@bjweber State Farm isn't great about motorcycle rates. I paid State Farm more for insurance on a 2016 Scrambler than a loaded Gold Wing. I switched to Progressive. They seem to have a better handle on non cruiser motorcycles.
 

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I’m an HD guy and I hate that crap. I didn’t care for some of the reveal video but I like the fact that the specs are in line with the competition. Not the fastest and not the slowest. They priced it competitively and the published weight is not the heaviest. Supposed to hit the dealerships May/June timeframe so it will be interesting to see how it stacks up to the new V4. If it’s a great bike then I could see it hurting Ducati sales a bit because of the price. At least with new ADV bike buyers. Duc guys won’t dare touch a Harley!


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Most of my riding buddies are HD guys, so I probably spend more time at the HD dealers than Ducati. I know exactly how motivated HD is to get Ducati conquest sales, and with this bike I'm sure they'll be foaming at the mouth every time I pull in to the lot. I'll give them a shot, like I always have. I've always wanted to like Harley, they've just never made a bike that spoke to me. I doubt this one will either. I noticed the seat height is way lower than your typical ADV, but still has mid controls. That's not a good recipe for comfort.
 

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Most of my riding buddies are HD guys, so I probably spend more time at the HD dealers than Ducati. I know exactly how motivated HD is to get Ducati conquest sales, and with this bike I'm sure they'll be foaming at the mouth every time I pull in to the lot. I'll give them a shot, like I always have. I've always wanted to like Harley, they've just never made a bike that spoke to me. I doubt this one will either. I noticed the seat height is way lower than your typical ADV, but still has mid controls. That's not a good recipe for comfort.
The Special has an adaptive suspension that you can lower or raise depending on what the rider wants. I wonder if they gave the lowered height in the specs maybe? I like what I see so far but like any new bike, time will tell. Cudos to HD for seamingly putting out a good new bike. We will see though
 

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2017 Ducati Multistrada 950, 2018 Desert Sled
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Most of my riding buddies are HD guys, so I probably spend more time at the HD dealers than Ducati. I know exactly how motivated HD is to get Ducati conquest sales, and with this bike I'm sure they'll be foaming at the mouth every time I pull in to the lot. I'll give them a shot, like I always have. I've always wanted to like Harley, they've just never made a bike that spoke to me. I doubt this one will either. I noticed the seat height is way lower than your typical ADV, but still has mid controls. That's not a good recipe for comfort.
Service intervals are reportedly 5,000 mi.? Not sure what the service is though. Pretty far cry from 9 and 36K.
 

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@bjweber State Farm isn't great about motorcycle rates. I paid State Farm more for insurance on a 2016 Scrambler than a loaded Gold Wing. I switched to Progressive. They seem to have a better handle on non cruiser motorcycles.
It's important to note that insurance rates with the same company can vary wildly based upon geography. State Farm is very competitive in some parts of the country. I have GEICO and they are very competitive here in the mid-Atlantic. They were not competitive in Michigan when I lived there. Progressive was the opposite, competitive in MI, but much higher near DC. State Farm was competitive in both places.
 

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Service intervals are reportedly 5,000 mi.? Not sure what the service is though. Pretty far cry from 9 and 36K.
To be making 145+HP out of 1250cc, this has to be a fairly high RPM motor, on top of being water cooled. HD probably had to ditch hydraulic lifters, which for them is about as significant as Ducati moving away from desmo. I'm not surprised they're keeping it conservative with such new (to them) tech. All those poor HD mechanics are going to have to dig around in the bottom of their Snap On drawers for a set of feeler gauges they bought during the Buell days. The horror of it.

Personally, I'm less concerned with the frequency of services as I am with the cost of them.
 
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