2021 Ducati Scrambler Icon road test review: No frills, pure fun
Ducati announced the reintroduction of Scrambler back in 2014 and along with it, the Italian premium bikemaker breathed life back into a segment that was seemingly fading away. Since then, the Scrambler has managed to receive several timely updates, and not just that, Ducati has also introduced a bigger Scrambler 1100 family line for the people with bigger wallets and nerves of steel.
For 2021, the new Scrambler Icon has received some minor updates here and there, including a new BS 6-compliant engine. So what is the new Scrambler Icon all about? Read on to know.
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Scrambler comes out as one of the most accessible motorcycles in the company’s lineup. It appeals to a wide variety of riders not just because of its comparatively humble price tag, but everything it offers. Its wide handlebars, flat seat, and easy riding position make it a very likely product.
For those wanting to explore the unexplored, Scrambler makes sense, but it also manages to lure the new breed of riders who want a premium bike that does most things right and comes in a budget.
Despite the nature of its budget, the Scrambler Icon still gets some nice riding aids, including a cornering ABS. In addition, there is LCD instrumentation, LED lights and a new Ducati Multimedia System. But sadly, even after a couple of last updates, there’s still no Traction Control System to take care of the rider when things go west. But I reckon, it is still something that most of the Scrambler riders are not going to miss as it allows to squeeze the maximum amount of fun, especially in the dirt.
Now what completely sets the Scrambler Icon apart from the rest of the lineup is its unique Icon-specific handlebar, matching mudguards, and an aluminum muffler cover. And of course its ‘62 Yellow’ colour that’s symbolic to the Icon. Well, it might be a little underwhelming in the accessories department when compared to other variants, but that’s exactly why riders simply love it. I mean it’s a no-frills Scrambler.
What's new on the Icon is its updated instrument console that's now Ducati Multimedia System ready. Save for this detail, the rest of the console remains the same. It still remains in an offset position that looks rowdy. Also, though it might not be the biggest unit you've seen on a bike, the display is fairly crisp and bright, irrespective of the lighting conditions.
On the mechanicals front, there is a new BS 6-compliant 803 cc, L-Twin, engine with an output almost equivalent to the previous unit. To put down the figures, there is 73 hp and 66.2 Nm of peak torque. And the power is delivered to the rear wheel with a 6-speed gearbox. It continues along with its hydraulically controlled clutch unit that makes things easy for the rider trundling around slow speeds.
The series of updates the bike has received over years are fairly visible. It's clearly more refined and fun, especially when you keep the throttle pinned for more than a second or two. Revs keep building up and the way it shoots for speed is impressive for the output it delivers on paper. Mid-range is where all the fun lies, and the engine keeps churning tons on torque that never lets down, especially when you are in a mood to lift the front wheel up.
Handling is light and nimble thanks to its lightweight and wide handlebar that allows maximum control on the motorcycle, but the real fun is when you take the Scambler on roads less traveled. The suspension remains soft, but there's enough stability and control even when the rear wheel is spinning relentlessly with overexcited throttle inputs.
The last 2019 Icon received updates that made it a more comfortable and rider-friendly motorcycle, now the latest iteration builds upon previous updates to make it even better. It gets a brand new seat, which is flatter and comfortable for the rider and the passenger. In addition, there is also an improved suspension set-up which contributes to a very supple, light, and fun ride. The Scrambler completely flattens all the undulations on the regular roads and there is a cushion effect from the suspension that keeps the ride comfortable. But at the same time, don't expect it to handle like a roadster around the corners which is quite understandable given its off-road friendly geometry.
The final words:
The new Ducati Scrambler Icon continues to remain a no-nonsense motorcycle that is going to reward you with a smile every time you swing your leg over it. It definitely ticks all the right boxes if you are looking for a comfortable and easy-going bike that you can take on your adventures without a second thought.