2011 Ducati Hypermotard 796 | Preview

2011 Hypermotard 796

Introduced at the 2005 Milan show, the Ducati Hypermotard quickly gained recognition from the moto-press and motorcycle enthusiasts.

When it went into production two years later, the Italian motorcycle soon became one of the most versatile bikes on the market, and this hasn’t changed for the 2011 Hypermotard 796.

This lightweight model released next to its other brothers – the Hypermotard 1100EVO and the track-ready Hypermotard 1100EVO SP – features a stroked 696, the motor known for powering the Ducati 696.

Ducati also redesigned the crankcases, saving 2.64 lbs over the 696, and the new 796 crankshaft with 848-style flywheel further reduced the overall engine weight to an impressive 4.2 lbs. savings over the original 696 power unit. It’s L-Twin also features more power – 81 hp.

Hypermotard 796: More than a Stroked 696

The 796 engine isn’t just a stroked 696 – it’s a new Desmodue power unit that promises to deliver an exhilarating ride without compromising the smooth tractability found in Ducati’s other L-Twin engines.

The crankshaft uses a lightweight 848-type flywheel, and spins with a 66mm stroke instead of the 696’s 57.2mm, helping to maximise power to an impressive 81 hp (59.6kW) @ 8000 rpm and torque to 55.7 lb-ft (75.5Nm) @ 6250 rpm while maintaining the smooth and enjoyable character, famous of all Desmo engines. To protect power delivery and maintain optimum efficiency, an oil cooler similar to the 1100 is used, adding even more family resemblance to its bigger brother.

Helping to increase the Hypermotard 796’s agility even further, the fully redesigned crankcases save an incredible 1.2kg (2.64lb) over the 696 castings, and are responsible for the major part of the impressive 1.9kg (4.2lb) total saving over the 696 power unit. The clutch and alternator outer casings of the new engine are finished in an 1100-style carbon grey.

Breathing through a revised airbox intake duct and fed through 45mm throttle bodies, the 803cc swept volume is compressed to a ratio of 11:1 – compared to the 696’s 10.7:1 – before being injected and ignited with Siemens controlled electronics.

The 2-1-2 catalytic exhaust system uses an efficient pre-silencer configuration with twin lambda probes providing finer fuel mapping and Euro3 conformity. The system’s lightweight and compact design is achieved by using 1mm thick tubing and terminates in Ducati’s trademark twin under-seat, black exhaust mufflers, stylishly contrasted with great looking aluminum end caps.

An APTC ‘wet’ clutch gives a ‘slipper’ type action that prevents destabilizing of the rear-end under aggressive down-shifting and also gives the extra benefit of a super-light feel at the lever, a great benefit in stop-start city traffic or during longer journeys.

The 21-plate oil-bath clutch (11 friction and 10 steel) represents a power-enhancing weight reduction over the ‘dry’ system as well as having a quieter operation and requiring less maintenance.

The Hypermotard 796 engine combines all recent advances in Ducati’s ongoing design, manufacture and production quality campaigns to offer competitive service intervals of 7,500 miles (12,000 kilometers).

Hypermotard 796: Stylized Chassis

The Hypermotard’s rigidly triangulated and lighter-than-ever Trellis frame and track-tested chassis geometry is still stylized by a distinct high fender at the front and dual under-seat silencers at the rear, but the 796’s overall profile says it all: Go Hyper!

At 825mm (32.5in), the seat height of the 796 is a sure-footed 20mm (0.8in) lower than the 1100 and, when combined with the engine’s smooth power delivery, this Hypermotard inspires confidence however and wherever its ridden. The upright seating position offers a commanding view of the road ahead, while the wide handlebars make the bike effortlessly flickable through the urban maze.

The 796 has a dry weight of just 167kg (368lb), partly achieved by a lightweight engine, but also by continued chassis development that includes fork clamps, and radial fork bottoms. An improved frame layout eliminates almost all of the forged elements used on the original Hypermotard.

The lightened frame retains its torsional strength to become even more agile and easier to handle, while 17″ wheels by Enkei are produced in lightweight aluminum to keep the unsprung weight low and handling, braking and acceleration performances high. The 796 uses exactly the same 3.50 front and 5.50 rear rim sizes and Pirelli Diablo Rosso tires as its 1100cc big brother.

Suspension duties up front are taken care of by a pair of very capable 43mm Marzocchi forks, while the rear is managed by a Sachs suspension unit featuring adjustable spring pre-load and return damping, allowing adjustments for riding style or load. The rear operates through a similar progressive link to the 1100 and uses the signature Hypermotard single-sided swingarm.

Twin 305mm semi-floating discs gripped by radially mounted 4-piston Brembo calipers provide powerful and progressive front-end braking with that all-important rider-friendly ‘feeling’, while the rear is equipped with a 245mm disc and 2-piston caliper, also by Brembo.

Hypermotard 796: Real-World Controls

While its motard feeling is enhanced by wide, tubular handlebars and handguards, the 796’s minimalist image is further characterized with integral construction Brembo master cylinders for both the clutch and brake systems.

They maintain a clean handlebar arrangement for the rider and are fitted with user-friendly 4-point adjustable levers that provide easy-to-reach control for all hand sizes. Furthermore, the APTC clutch provides a super-light lever action ideal for use in the city.

Hypermotard: Advanced Controls and Instrumentation

The entire Hypermotard family uses the electronic advances made in the compact and user-friendly switchgear and instrumentation first created for the Streetfighter.

The slim-line switch bodies house easy-to-use switches and buttons, and feature a unique weapons-like ‘trigger catch’ that slides down to cover the starter button when the kill-switch is activated. Their minimalist design fits perfectly in the clean and essential lines of the Hypermotard’s sporting image.

Looking clean and purposeful, the display provides an extensive amount of data including speed, revs, time, oil temperature, battery voltage, A & B trips, fuel reserve trip and scheduled maintenance, while the warning lights illuminate for neutral, turn signals, high-beam, rev-limit, oil pressure and fuel reserve. In addition, it can list recorded lap times by using the high-beam flash button as a stopwatch.

The 796 uses an orange back-lighting. The instrument display also doubles as a control panel for the activation of the Ducati Data Analyser (DDA) system, which is available as an accessory from Ducati Performance for the ‘system-ready’ Hypermotard 796.

The DDA-intended USB connection port under all of the Hypermotard seats doubles as a charging point for a handy battery charger, which is available as an accessory from Ducati Performance.

Hyermotard 796: Hyper Mirrors

Ducati pushed motorcycle design limits to find an innovative solution for the original Hypermotard mirrors and these are now used throughout the family. The challenge of maintaining a clean, racing look around the handlebar area motivated the design of the folding mirror concept which is based on the handguards typically found on off-road bikes.

Flipped out for high visibility street mode and easily folded in for a quick change to ‘Hypermode’, the mirror handguard assemblies also integrate the LED directional indicators for an even cleaner front-end.

Hypermotard 796: Stylized Lighting

The headlamp uses a highly compact lighting shape which blends with the single piece nose fairing and front fender molding, while the rear light employs a specially designed strip of LEDs enhanced by a high diffusion lens shaped into the sleek lines of the tailpiece. The same LEDs are intensified under braking.

The front directional indicators also employ the latest in LED technology for illumination, and are ingeniously integrated into the handguards, which support the foldable rear view mirrors.

The high intensity LED rear light assembly is molded into a unique tailpiece positioned high behind the seat. The supporting structure has been designed so that the under tray of the tailpiece is formed perfectly to offer a sturdy pair of pillion grab-handles.

This ingenious solution not only helps to merge the rear light into the Hypermotard styling but also provides a safe grip for the passenger.

2011 Ducati Hypermotard 796 Colors:

  • Urban-style Dark finish with matte black tank and beak section, black frame and black wheels
  • Matte white tank with contrasting matte black beak, black frame and black wheels
  • A red tank with matching beak section, red frame and black wheels

2011 Ducati Hypermotard 796 Price:

  • US MSRP: $9,995
  • Canadian MSRP: $11,495CDN
  • Mexican MSRP: $11,995 (EVA Included)