All Trials – A Monster of Ease – A bit of a daredevil ***


A Monster of Ease

All Trials - A Monster of Ease - A bit of a daredevil ***

Ducati, Italian manufacturer, MotoGP world champion in 2007 and Superbike in 2008, is renowned for its sports cars and big-hearted roadsters. However, its best seller remains the little Monster completely revised in 2008: the 696! Test.

A little daredevil ***

All is not rosy on the new little Monster, however, and there is even a specific point where the 696 shows red. A "point" that we will subtly name … the crotch !

As we have seen, the little Ducat ‘is very easy to handle and the rider quickly thinks of himself as a pilot. But who says "piloting" necessarily says big accelerations, swaying and … late braking !

And this is where the shoe pinches: although we have emphasized the timely progressiveness of the front brake, the latter is powerful enough to slide the rider on the saddle – comfortable but treacherous since it naturally pulls the rider down reservoir – and can lead to a sudden "jamming of roubignole (s)", to use a more technical term…

Once (only!) This painful experience has been lived, the bikers will quickly take "the fold" and will constantly take care to carefully order their offspring, so that it no longer comes up against the central ridge of the tank !

However, what passes for an immutable and respectable ritual for Valentino Rossi each time he exits the paddock, becomes heavy in the long run for users of 696s, even vulgar in the eyes of other road users….

If the "short on legs" will appreciate the low saddle height and the featherweight of the 696 for maneuvers at a standstill, bikers "with long rods" may complain about the shape of the tank which comes to embarrass them at the level knees and upper thighs, especially on long runs.

Other points may also disappoint some users: the distance between the levers is not adjustable, the protection of the pilot is non-existent despite the windscreen and the fixing of the cover is not sufficiently secure … Indeed, two simple screws fix this pretty part to the back of the motorcycle: enough to arouse envy and facilitate the passage to the act…

Question theft always, owners of 696 will have to manage to transport their lock since no model can slip under the saddle, not even a disc block. At best, the small housing will accommodate a tubeless tire repair kit.

Finally, although the commodos are fitted into the air intake grilles placed on the tank, the steering angle of the 696 remains a bit insufficient to fully satisfy fans of daily gymkhana..

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