For a car or motorcycle maker to name its product after the supernatural entity that is the pure personification of evil, the thing must truly be wicked.
Take for instance the Diablo, Lamborghini’s great V12 brute that awed everyone with its presence, power and rawness. Sure, while keeping with Lambo’s tradition, it was named after a ferocious fighting bull, but its meaty, heavy and crude ride was a handful for the uninitiated – a malicious, demonic car, patiently waiting for you to make the mistake. Not “a mistake”, “the mistake”.
Still, you didn’t have to sell you soul in order to control it, especially as the vehicle only demanded some respect from the driver in order to behave properly. Moreover, it was phased out by its successor – the Murcielago – which truly was a beast, especially if taken near its limits. That’s when the Devil had to reincarnate into something more relevant, and it seems that Ducati – Volkswagen’s newly acquired bike maker – is currently sheltering it.
Named the Diavel, this amazing bike disguises itself as a cruiser, but the brute 162 horses and 130.5 Nm (96.2 lb-ft) of torque developed by its 1,198.4 cc (73.13 cu in) Testastretta V-twin makes it something much more demonic, especially in this carbon 2016 guise. But what else do you expect from a motorcycle company that uses the local Bolognese dialect word for “devil” in naming their mode?
The idea for its villainous name – pronounced “Dee-ah-vel” – came in the early development process of the bike. Apparently, after the prototype was assembled and wheeled out in front of a group of Ducati engineers and technicians for the first time, one person looking from the rear of the bike saw its silhouette and exclaimed in Bolognese: “Ignurànt comm’ al diavel!”; which means: “Evil, like the devil!”
In fact, the power of the Testastretta, combined with the normal rig’s low 239kg (527lb) weight, makes it sport a – get ready for this – 692 HP/ton figure, and that isn’t devilish, I don’t know what is.
Like I mentioned, this isn’t the normal version, but the carbon variant which comes with light-weight components, cladded with carbon-fiber bits and pieces and forged wheels, which brings the total weight down to…234kg (516lb). That’s enough to push it from 0 to 100 km/h (62 mph) in 2.6 seconds and all the way to a top speed of 270km/h (168mph).
Of course, it comes bearing ABS, traction control and Ducati Riding Modes in order to make it a comfortable and sporty lifestyle bike – or so Ducati says. The carbon edition differentiates itself from the standard models with the new Asphalt Grey Color, raw, visible carbon fiber bits, red stripes and Dark Chrome Paintwork. It also sports Zircotec coated exhaust manifolds – which come in handy at the 9250 rpm redline. But to make the whole thing more sinister, Ducati also offers a total “Dark Stealth” variant, with matte black tank and black frame wheels.