Ducati has revealed a more hardcore version of its DesertX, with a new Rally version looking like it’s ready to tackle more than the occasional gravel road.
The first thing that stands out is the high front mudguard, something that’s often overlooked on bigger adventure machines, with low guards favoured for better aerodynamics. But a close proximity to the front tyre can cause problems when the knobs pick up mud, something Ducati obviously expect owners of the Rally to be doing.
The DesertX Rally prototype was first seen competing in the Iron Road Prolog at the Erzbergrodeo 2023, with Antoine Meo (multiple Enduro World Champion and European Supercross Champion) taking it to the top step of the podium in the twin-cylinder category, with the addition of off-road specific components on the new model making it more suited to tackling the tough stuff than others in the category.
Featuring dedicated Rally styling, the new model features new Kayaba suspension with increased travel compared to the standard DesertX, with a closed cartridge fork and shock absorber with a large piston there to handle bigger impacts. The forks see the oil pressurised inside the cartridges to avoid cavitation, thus guaranteeing a homogeneous and consistent behaviour of the front suspension and off the necessary support during the most extreme uses. Furthermore, to improve smoothness and resistance to wear, the fork tubes are equipped with Kashima Coating and the sliders with DLC surface treatment. Wheel travel increases by 20 mm, for a total of 250 mm.
The rear features an aluminium swingarm with a different attachment point compared to the standard DesertX, with a fully adjustable shock absorber with a larger piston to improve the bike’s behaviour in the most demanding off-road use. Rear wheel travel increases by 20 mm, for a total of 240 mm. Finally, to improve handling on the most demanding off-road terrain, the DesertX Rally gets an adjustable Öhlins steering damper. Ground clearance is now up 30mm to 280 mm.
The new central-spoked wheels with a 21-inch front and 18-inch rear will also make the Rally more suitable for any type of terrain, while a light and resistant forged carbon sump guard, gear pedals and rear brake lever machined from solid, unequivocally identify the Rally as a motorcycle designed to tackle the most extreme adventures.
Engine and Electronics
The DesertX Rally is equipped with the 937 cc Ducati Testastretta 11° twin-cylinder with desmodromic distribution. Maximum power is 110 hp at 9,250 rpm and maximum torque of 92 Nm at 6,500 rpm. This engine, characterized by regular and manageable power delivery to tackle any route, has been optimized for off-road thanks to a dedicated ratio and specific strategies and calibrations of the electronic systems.
The six Riding Modes of the DesertX Rally (Sport, Touring, Urban, Wet, Enduro, Rally) have Cornering ABS, Ducati Traction Control (DTC) and Ducati Wheelie Control (DWC) recalibrated according to the new chassis and for more challenging off-road use.
The electronic functions of the DesertX Rally are managed through the vertically oriented, high-resolution 5″ colour TFT display positioned to offer optimal visibility even when riding standing. This display is designed for integration with the Ducati Multimedia System which allows you to connect your smartphone, thus activating new functions such as music control, call management and Turn by Turn navigation* (optional) with road directions directly on the dashboard. Furthermore, the DesertX Rally offers the Utility Bar as standard for mounting the satnav.
Service intervals for the DesertX Rally are every 15,000 km or 24 months, with valve clearance checks every 30,000 km.
AT A GLANCE
Main standard equipment
Testastretta 11° 937 cc engine with 110 hp at 9,250 rpm and 92 Nm at 6,500 rpm
Tubular steel trellis frame with cast aluminium double-sided swingarm
Tank capacity 21 litres
High front mudguard with split brake line *
Spoked rims with billet hubs 21” x 2.15” and 18” x 4”, carbon steel spokes and high-strength Takasago Excel rims with inner tube *
Pirelli Scorpion Rally STR tyres in sizes 90/90-21 at the front and 150/70 R18 at the rear (alternatively: Pirelli Scorpion Rally, Pirelli Scorpion Trail II)
KYB Ø 48 mm closed cartridge fork, 250 mm travel, adjustable compression and rebound, Kashima Coating treatments on the fork tubes and DLC on the sliders *
Fork clamps machined from solid *
KYB shock absorber with 46 mm piston, 240 mm travel, adjustable in compression at high and low speeds, in rebound and preload *
Ground clearance of 280 mm *
Adjustable Öhlins steering damper fixed to the handlebar *
6 customizable Riding Modes (Sport, Touring, Urban, Wet, Enduro, Rally)
4 Power Modes on 3 power levels
ABS Cornering Bosch adjustable on 3 levels
Ducati Traction Control adjustable on 8 levels
Ducati Wheelie Control
Engine Brake Control
Ducati Cruise Control
5″ colour TFT instrumentation with Ducati Link App support and turn-by-turn navigation
Ducati Brake Light
Ducati Quick Shift Up & Down (DQS)
Full LED lighting system
Dedicated Iron Giant livery *
Adjustable brake and gear pedals machined from solid *