Ducati Sport Touring ST3 — 2004 ST 3 manual, review

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Ducati ST3


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7 DUCATI ST3 89%


touring to the power of three

debuts its three-valve motor in a new model for the ST range. More without more cost is the and it succeeds

stepless drive all the way the revs. Select top gear and gas the ST3 at 70mph and again theres a response from the motor. It that Ducati has succeeded in a cheaper, less complicated work very, very But the engine is only the foundation of the make-up. The main elements of the brief were to produce an ST with favourable engine but which would also be and easy to live with.

impressions are a big thumbs-up for the performance. consumption looks good for 40-45mpg, although a steady will improve that at the bike is as good as ticking at 3100rpm and theres another to play with. Rider also figures highly on the thanks in part to a new fairing. It is the best looking frontal of any bike from the current of sports tourers (VFR800, 1000, Sprint ST).

from looking modern, and aggressive with faired-in its pretty effective too. Ten taller and wider than the old fairing, with a pronounced


shape and an aggressively-styled thats so bright no driver ever claim they see you, mate, it deflects air so shoulders of taller riders cop the of 100mph-plus windblast. And this is really noticeable with one-piece waterproofs on. Feet and dont fare quite so The instruments are identical to the Multistrada

An analogue tacho sits to an LCD display which shows oil pressure, coolant temperature, a meter, average and current tank range remaining and warns you when youve hit a interval. All useful stuff. The bars are now heightadjustable, but sadly not for As standard the bars are set at the same as the old ST4S, but by loosening their bolts they can be moved up by

Guide marks at 5mm intervals on the ensure the bars can never be out of Put this together with a padded seat, shaped to with bigger … than even mine, and you get a riding with no aches or Like the STs of old the ST3 has a tendency to understeer on settings and run wide of the chosen Its made worse by the softly-sprung rear shock. With on board the shock squats low to the horizontal plane of the bike.

the throttle on and the forks extend, the tail-down stance. The shock is adjustable and dialling in more and a dash of compression and rebound has two effects. One, the bike the same job of soaking up the bumps but the floaty, wobbly sensation. theres a lot more feedback the tyre, which boosts ten-fold.

The forks are set on the soft but cant be tweaked because is no damping adjustment, only Ducati claims its all part of the programme adjustment means new internals. To be fair, though, the are only a problem when the is banked at high speed and you a good-sized bump or section of Tarmac. The front end lurches, but the bike as a whole wallows the rear shock hits the bump.

Over 70mph in a straight the front end tends to move Not drastically just an unnatural movement. The tyre doesnt traction but the forks become possibly due to wind lifting the end.

However, taking account the fact that has set about the making ST3 a bike of blowing the miles away and from your head in the Italian company has succeeded.

HE of the ST3 is far more than just the of a new Italian sports tourer it the introduction of a new generation of multi-valve from Ducati. The bike is a for the ST2 and comes with a host of including a three-valve-per-cylinder 992cc to replace the ageing two-valve of its predecessor.

And our first ride the motor is a worthy successor, the kind of solid low and midrange youd associate with legendary four-valve engines. The to a three-valve unit has been on Ducati by tightening emissions the new motor, with two inlet and one exhaust valve, runs But its also a lot more fun.

the bike from a standing and it responds with a searing of acceleration rather more you might expect from a twin. A little lumpy it smoothes out as the needle swings 3000rpm. Slot through the and theres a surprising amount of top end And like all Ducatis, the ST3 has perfect for clean,

Ducati has made a less complex engine very, very effectively

the lower half of the fairing is Consequently, surface spray and air hits shins and booted The new fairing is a response to criticisms ST owners, as are the new adjustable brake and levers.

Ducatis answer has to dump the old master cylinders and remote fluid reservoirs for that have integral and four-way span-adjustable levers.

SACHS rear shock is

BUT the cost-saving forks are not

ITS Desmo, but not as we know it

LIGHT looks and burns retinas

INSTRUMENTS to Multistrada


THE ST3s new Desmodromic motor offers of low and midrange drive, and a surprising of top-end punch

7 DUCATI 90%


offers more official than any manufacturer. Not only is matching hard luggage, but a whole books worth of listings dedicated to customizing the ST This is just a selection of of the best stuff that is 12 30-litre panniers and fitting kit top box and fitting kit Carbon or stainless Aluminium sprocket cover clutch cover Carbon hanger Ducati GPS system fairing inserts Slipper Carbon rear hugger front mudguard Race-style set 121 106

UCATIS four-valve ST4S has been a popular choice for who want a touring bike sports capability. And for 2004 the has changed little in the way of performance and components. Instead Ducati has on the bikes looks by treating it to the styling exercise as the new ST3.

are significant chassis and engine between the two bikes, which for the ST4Ss higher price. Its a bike for A-road charging it has the same suspension ingredients as a sports bike. The Showa forks are fully adjustable as is the rear shock. Soft to with, the Ohlins unit well to tweaks (and pre-load and compression adjusters are to get at). This encourages faster riding.

Its exactly the for the forks. With the whole stiffened up it can be stopped later and and fired quicker out of corners an ST3 on a backroad blast. The quality of the is compounded by the ST4Ss lighter swingarm (steel on the ST3) and nitrided forks. The forks are

Higher-spec brother has the edge

responsive to surface undulations, and the arm reduces unsprung weight. Its four-valve Desmoquattro engine 15bhp more at the top end of the rev range the ST3. But run the two together from a start and the ST3 has the early edge mostly to significantly lower The additional top end poke of the ST4S begins to tell over the mark, when it starts to in the ST3.

By 120mph the ST4S is in front and pulling away. For speed autobahn blasts the is the daddy. Given the fact the two are styled exactly the same, the same level of comfort and are by twins, itd be a tough choice to part with your for. Both are easily of dusting big distances without the rider or themselves come to

But when it comes to carrying in the form of pillion and big luggage or even hacking across that goats have pooing on, then it has to be the ST4S. The top makes it the better practical

v 5 9: Slipper clutch and billet

v 7: Ducatis own GPS system

FOR more you get better suspension and that all the difference

v 12: Race-style adjustable set

Available: December 2003, 2 years manufacturers warranty and recovery Colours: Red, or grey Insurance group: 15 Ducati UK, 0845-122-2996 Power 1 17bhp Fuel capacity: 21 Seat height: 820mm 467lb (212kg) Note: ABS available for 9495

DUCATI 8695 otr

SPECIFICATION Engine: 996cc (98 x 66mm) 8v Desmodromic Fuel injection. Six gears Tubular steel trellis suspension: Showa 43mm forks, fully adjustable suspension: Ohlins single fully adjustable Tyres: x 17 front, 180/55 x 17 rear.

Brakes: 2 x 320mm front with 4-piston calipers, rear disc with caliper.

ONE glance at the parts can cover your entire

PROS q Better handling new ST3 q Most practical tourer in ST CONS q Performance comes at a q Suspension set up soft as standard

v 10: rear hugger


THE key technical highlight of the new ST3 is the new Desmotre Desmo-tray) engine, designed to tightening emissions regulations. is short for Desmodromic, the name to Ducatis method of both and closing the exhaust and inlet by camshaft-actuated


Inside the new Desmotreengine

rocker arms, no springs required. Tre is Italian for the number of valves in each head. The three-valve head is intended to blend the high at low rpm of Ducatis two-valve (Desmodue) with the high rpm power of its (Desmoquattro) engines.

It is also cleanest burning engine. And its based around previous it slots straight in to an existing in this case the steel frame of its ST4S stablemate running gear is identical for cheaper three-spoke wheels, forks and a steel rather alloy swingarm). The Desmotres and … (94mm x 71.5mm) is the as the 2v air-cooled 1000DS engine, and peak output figures are and 68.6ftlb.

Equivalent figures for the ST4S are 117bhp and 72.3ftlb.

v and inlet valves are opened and by individual rockers. These are moved by a single camshaft below)

v EACH actuating has to have its own shim one on top of the valve, the is the lifting point for the closing

v EMISSIONS regulations have the use of the same twin-plug heads as in the engines to ensure clean


THERE are two inlet valves and a single exhaust valve set at 40. The steep valve angle a compact combustion chamber but a squish band to ensure a flame path and better burning. Two spark plugs as per the (Dual Spark) and a compression of 11.3:1 also ensure the fuel mix is burnt efficiently, the engine clean-running.

Catalytic in the exhaust system oxidise any unburned nasties such as To deal with the extra that comes with the motors extra power to the two-valve units), the barrels and are liquid-cooled. The water pump is in the left-hand alternator case.

also reduces engine keeping it within the latest and European noise limits. The design uses one camshaft to open and close the valves. cam has six miniscule lobes which act three pairs of opening and rockers.

With only one cam per as opposed to the twincam design of the engine the Desmotres head is compact. The ST3s camshaft directly in the head (plain rather than on roller like the old twovalve motors.

has become a necessity with the higher power output

A for Ducati a six-lobe desmo

Available: December. Two years mileage warranty, and roadside Colours: Red, silver or New for 2004: New model Insurance TBC Info: Ducati UK: 0845-1222996

Ducati ST3
Ducati ST3


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