The Ducati MIG-RR is an eMTB aimed primarily at fans of the exclusive Italian motorcycle brand, Ducati. Based on the THOK MIG-R, the Ducati MIG-RR has been optimised for trail performance with more travel, different wheel sizes and modified design elements, as well as higher quality spec. Visually, the brushed aluminium frame with its Ducati red finish is a real eye-catcher.
Based on the THOK MIG-R released 2 years ago, the designer Aldo Drudi collaborated with the Ducati Design Centre to create the Ducati MIG-RR. So it’s for good reason that the official press launch was held in the Ducati Museum in Bologna, where some of the press representatives outed themselves as die-hard Ducati fans. But which qualities and genes have really gone into the Ducati MIG-RR?
Ducati – more than just a motorcycle brand
Few brands have managed to create a worldwide community of fans with a strong appeal beyond their own customer base. Ducati is a strong example of one of those brands, achieving this status through a combination of pure (engine) performance, Italian design, and success on the race circuits of the world. Ducati’s racing division, Ducati Corse, has been actively involved in motorcycle racing for decades. The company was founded after the Second World War with the production of its first “motorcycle,” the Cucciolo, in 1946, establishing itself as a motorcycle manufacturer more than 90 years ago.
In 2012, the VW Group, or more precisely Audi, bought the Italian motorcycle brand. The former chief of the supervisory board, Ferdinand Piech, was a dedicated Ducati fan and on the patriarch’s 75th birthday, the company was handed over for € 860 million.
And today? At € 6250, your ticket into the exclusive domain of Ducati riders has never been more affordable. However, at that price, you won’t get an extravagant motorcycle, but an eMTB called the Ducati MIG-RR, equipped with Shimano’s 250 W STEPS E8000 electric motor to assist your legs. The prices of Ducati’s motorcycles range from € 7790 for the Ducati Sixty2, a 399 cc and 41 hp Scrambler, to the € 39,990 Ducati 1299 Paginale R Finale Edition.
How did Ducati get into eMTBs?
Ducati is not the first motorbike manufacturer to follow this path, perhaps remembering their roots by entering the eMTB market. FANTIC and KTM have already led the way.
In the case of the Ducati MIG-RR, the brains behind the move are Livio Suppo and Stefano Migliorini. Together, these two friends founded the eMTB brand THOK a few years ago, although both of them actually come from very different backgrounds. Stefano was the first Italian to ride for an American downhill team – riding alongside downhill legends like Tomac, Vouilloz, Furtado and Lopes, and claiming several World Cup titles, most memorable of which was the third place overall in the 1993 World Cup. He was introduced to the world eMTBs through his friend Livio, who has a background in enduro motorcycle sports and still has connections to Ducati from earlier in his career. In 2007 he led the Ducati racing team to its first and only world championship title yet. As the boss of the Japanese Honda racing team, Livio has celebrated five MotoGP titles in the riders’ standings and six constructors’ titles. At the end of 2017, Livio stepped down from his contract with Honda to focus more on his family – which is when he teamed up with his friend Stefano. With THOK and Ducati collaborating, Livio’s past and present collide to create something completely new.
Together with Stefano and Livio, the Ducati Design Center and the Italian designer Aldo Drudi (D-Perf), known for his striking helmet designs for Valentino Rossi, the Ducati MIG RR was born. The final assembly of the Ducati MIG-RR taking place at the THOK factory in Alba, southeast of Turin.
Motorcycles and eMTBs were brought closer together by the success story of the ebike, both combining a fascination with technology and riding performance, Livio told us. This is a great opportunity for Ducati dealers to expand their portfolio and also attract more customers. Of course, our Ducati dealers will have to explain to motorcyclists why they should pay € 6250 for a “bicycle with an auxiliary motor,” Livio continued.
Ducati MIG-RR in detail
The paint job of the Ducati MIG-RR immediately catches your eye. At second glance, you’ll notice the unconventional position of the battery attached to the bottom of the down tube, ensuring a low centre of gravity. The design is reflective of Ducati’s V engines, which lie tilted forward in the motorcycle frame.
The frame of the Ducati MIG-RR is identical to the THOK MIG-R, except for a few small changes, such as a modified U-Link for the rocker to accommodate a longer shock and offer more travel. Compared to the THOK MIG-R, the front of the Ducati MIG-RR has 20 mm more travel and a 29″ wheel, which slackens the head angle from 66° to 65.7°. The bottom bracket height is also increased by 8 mm to 358 mm and the wheelbase has become longer. While Stefano opted for 27.5″ tires on the THOK MIG-R, he tested both 27.5″ and 29″ wheels on the Ducati MIG-RR. Ultimately, he settled on a 29″ up front combined with a 27.5″ rear wheel. For the rims, he specced Mavic E-XA Drifters, which are designed to meet eMTB specific requirements and demands.
Fork FOX 36 FLOAT 29 Factory Series Kashima 170 mm
Rear shock FOX DPX2 Factory Serie 160 mm
Motor/Battery Shimano STEPS E8000 504 Wh
Drivetrain Shimano XT 11–46
Brakes Shimano Saint M820 203/203 mm
Handlebar Renthal 35 Fatbar Lite Carbon 780 mm
Stem Ducati Design, machined 35 mm
Dropper post Race Face Turbine
Wheels Mavic E-XA Drifter 29″ x 30 mm/27.5“ x 35 mm
Tires MAXXIS Minion DHF 29 x 2.6 EXO+/Minion DHR II 27.5 x 2.8 EXO+
Permitted total weight 120 kg
Weight 22.5 kg (Manufacture specs in size M)
Price € 6,250
The exclusive paint job of the bike was designed by Aldo Drudi in collaboration with the Ducati Design Centre. The brushed aluminium frame is painted Ducati red and finished with a clear coat. According to Stefano, a carbon-fibre frame would shave off about 700 grams, but with an eMTB weighing around 22 kilograms, it wouldn’t make a significant difference. As a former downhill pro in a team with Nicola Vouilloz, he prefers aluminium as a frame material over carbon in the event of a crash. Compared to its THOK counterpart, the higher-end spec of the Ducati will set you back by exactly € 1000 more.
Geometry of the Ducati MIG-RR
Geometry of the THOK MIG
|Top tube||560 mm||585 mm||615 mm||650 mm|
|Seat tube||400 mm||435 mm||470 mm||520 mm|
|Head tube||100 mm||100 mm||130 mm||150 mm|
|Chainstays||450 mm||450 mm||450 mm||450 mm|
|BB height||358 mm||358 mm||358 mm||358 mm|
|Wheelbase||1,172 mm||1,197 mm||1,228 mm||1,265 mm|
|Reach||405 mm||426 mm||450 mm||479 mm|
|Stack||596 mm||606 mm||624 mm||642 mm|
Just a quick ride…
We had a chance to ride the Ducati MIG-RR in size M at the official press launch. With a rider height of 177 cm, size L would also have been a very good option, especially since the reach of 426 mm in M and 450 mm in L is rather compact. Accordingly, the sitting position is very upright. Unfortunately, our test ride was too short for a more in-depth review – the high-quality spec and the first impression has definitely left us wanting more. We look forward to seeing what the new Ducati is really capable of!
For more information head to ducati.com/gb/en/bikes/mig-rr
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Words: Manne Schmitt Photos: Marco Campelli, Manne Schmitt