Ducati designed the Monster line of motorcycles in the 1990s era. This is the single model that revived the Ducati brand. It became a leader in the naked bike segment of the motorcycle industry. The Monster is also one of the most iconic Ducatis and the largest selling Ducati bike in the history of the brand. The Ducati Monster S4R was introduced in the early 2000s and it also became a hit with naked bike enthusiasts. The S4R was the larger of 2 models in the Monster SR designation that also included the smaller, more compact sized S2R. The bigger brother was created for intermediate through more confident and experienced riders who craved more power. Here are the 5 best Ducati Monster S4R models of all-time for your enjoyment and consideration.
5. 2003 Ducati Monster S4R
The 2003 model year was the original bike in the new SR segment of the Monster family. This bike was Ducati's first single-sided swingarm. Motorcycle News describes the first Monster S4R as one of the top performers. The bike came equipped with a retuned 996 cc liquid-cooled Desmo V-Twin 8V DOHC engine. It generated 113 bhp at 8750 RPM with 72 ft-lb of torque at 1000 RPM. The total weight of the bike was a fairly light 183 kg.
4. 2007 Ducati Monster S4RS
Motorcycle News also named the 2007 Ducati Monster S4RS as an important bike in the history of the brand. It stepped up to the plate as the first Testastretta Monster. The S4RS is a special designation of the RS complete with lightweight wheels and Ohlins suspension. The Monster S4RS quickly became a popular sports bike in the Monster lineup. For the first time in the history of the Monster line, the S4RS was powered with a 998 cc Testastretta motor to provide riders with the ultimate in power and exceptional handling. The 998 Testretta is a liquid-cooled Desmo V-twin 8V DOHC engine that generates 129 bhp at 9500 RPM with 77 ft-lb of torque at 10,600 RPM. The Ducati design and engineer teams achieved a weight reduction in the naked bike to a mere 177 kg.
3. 2006 Ducati Monster S4RS Testastretta
The 2006 Monster S4RS Testastretta was valued for its clean looks and its race-quality Ohlins suspension package. Ducati hit the nail on the head with a dual-purpose bike that was just as comfortable off-road as it was when moving down the highway. Auto Evolution points out that this was a powerful bike for intermediate through seasoned riders. The liquid-cooled, four-stroke, Testastretta was a 90-degree V-Twin desmodromic, fuel-injected 998cc that was well-matched with a six speed manual transmission. Together they produced a max power output of 130 horsepower. The 2006 S4RS Testastretta outmuscled the 2007 Monster S4RS slightly and it claimed 105 Nm of torque for exceptional acceleration. Getting back to the suspension, it featured a fully-adjustable 43 mm TiN-coated telescopic upside-down front fork. The rear suspension included a fully adjustable monoshock and progressive linkage. Other features include a digital and analog instrumentation panel, a Brembo braking system, and Marchessini cast-aluminum wheels.
2. 2008 Ducati Monster S4RS Tricolore Special Edition
The Monster S4RS Tricolore was a special edition bike that was destined to become a collectible from the moment of its release to the general public. This naked road bike stole the show with its vibrant Italian color scheme. It was further enhanced with accents of gold finish on the front fork, the exhaust, the frame, and on the wheels. This made it one of the most beautiful Monsters from an aesthetics standpoint. This exceptionally exciting Monster featured all of the racing capabilities and features of the S4RS Testastretta. It was equipped with a four-stroke, liquid-cooled, DOHC, desmodromic 4 valves per cylinder, 90-degree V-Twin Testastretta 998 cc engine. The horsepower and torque remained the same with no changes. The motor was paired with a 6-speed manual gearbox with a dry multiplate hydraulic control clutch. The fuel capacity of the tank was a mere 4 gallons, which could have been improved upon, but it would have added to the size and weight.
1. 2008 Ducati Monster S4RS Testastretta
The more prolific 2008 Ducati Monster S4RS Testastretta was the less flamboyant edition that didn't offer the special graphics and colors of the Tricolore, but it was the same bike less the fanfare. This was a popular model within the Monster lineup with agile handling and dual capabilities for racing on the track or dirt trail biking or taking down the highway for touring. The naked road bike remained pared down to a slender weight in its final year of production before being replaced by its successor. As with the Tricolore, the S4RS Testastretta is equipped with the racing-grade Ohlins suspension package, a Brembo braking system, a micro-fairing with a small windscreen for rider and passenger comfort.
The Ducati Monster S4R became an important model within the Monster family. It provided riders with the option of a larger bike within the dual-purpose racing and street-legal category. Riders thoroughly enjoyed the comforts of a touring motorcycle featuring agility around corners, stability, and a smooth ride. There weren't many variants of the Monster S4R produced. The production run, for some, was too short in duration. The decision to cease production left enthusiasts wondering why the Monster SR line came to an end. As with all good things, the Ducati Monster S4R had served its purpose. The powers that be knew it was time to move the S4R aside and make room for the new generation of naked road bikes. Ducati likes to change things up and keep it interesting with innovations and automotive technology. The Monster line infused new life into Ducati. It's the line that sparked a renewed interest in the brand that endures to this day. It's wise to maintain a progressive line with continual improvements. Ducati understands this necessity as the brand continues to move forward. Each new model leaves an impression of what works and what needs improvement. The S4R wasn't a perfect motorcycle, but it filled an important place in the naked road bike segment.
Written by Benjamin Smith
Read more posts by Benjamin Smith