Supersports erased from collective memory?

RichardSpag

New member
I was just mulling over why the carbie (& ie) supersports don't seem to figure in some peoples list of desirable motorcycles? Was it that they were manufactured over a period of great advances in Japanese sport bikes and could not compete on a technical or cosmetic level to keep up with more demanding market requirements? I tend to think of the Supersports as being refined Pantahs (obviously different engine basis for the 900) and therefore important in the lineage. Even looking at the graphic at the top of this page there is an absence of Pantah & Supersports?

This is not a "my bike is better" question - just genuinely curious?

Cheers

Richard
 

West Cork Paul

Elite Member
Subscriber
I was just mulling over why the carbie (& ie) supersports don't seem to figure in some peoples list of desirable motorcycles? Was it that they were manufactured over a period of great advances in Japanese sport bikes and could not compete on a technical or cosmetic level to keep up with more demanding market requirements? I tend to think of the Supersports as being refined Pantahs (obviously different engine basis for the 900) and therefore important in the lineage. Even looking at the graphic at the top of this page there is an absence of Pantah & Supersports?

This is not a "my bike is better" question - just genuinely curious?

Cheers

Richard
Good question. There’s a good few on here have them and I’d say they’re getting desirable now. Perhaps it’s the fact they were eclipsed by the game changing 916 which diverts everyone’s attention.
 

Darkness

Elite Member
Subscriber
Good question. There’s a good few on here have them and I’d say they’re getting desirable now. Perhaps it’s the fact they were eclipsed by the game changing 916 which diverts everyone’s attention.

Surely the 916 replaced the 888. The Supersport was targeted at different riders from the Superbike, as were the Monster and Sport Tourers.
 

West Cork Paul

Elite Member
Subscriber
Surely the 916 replaced the 888. The Supersport was targeted at different riders from the Superbike, as were the Monster and Sport Tourers.
Very true, as a direct replacement in their WSBK entries it did indeed replace the 888. I just always think of it as such a knockout, game changing bike that it eclipses all others (bar the Monster - see my thoughts below), plus it was arguably made in larger production numbers than the superpsorts or the 851/888 that preceded it, making it more readily available due to Texas Pacific investing in the company so as a buyer in the 90s what would people prefer to buy a Supersport or the 916?

The Monster was a game changer as well, redefining the naked bike genre and selling in such massive numbers it truly saved Ducati.

I think the ST range languishes in the same generally unloved corner of the Ducati world as the Supersports.
 

Barry Hell

Elite Member
Subscriber
Very true, as a direct replacement in their WSBK entries it did indeed replace the 888. I just always think of it as such a knockout, game changing bike that it eclipses all others (bar the Monster - see my thoughts below), plus it was arguably made in larger production numbers than the superpsorts or the 851/888 that preceded it, making it more readily available due to Texas Pacific investing in the company so as a buyer in the 90s what would people prefer to buy a Supersport or the 916?

The Monster was a game changer as well, redefining the naked bike genre and selling in such massive numbers it truly saved Ducati.

I think the ST range languishes in the same generally unloved corner of the Ducati world as the Supersports.
The supersport was bought by ducati enthusiasts who couldn't afford the 748/916 but wanted the V twin grunt and handling, I think many still liked the look of the carbie bikes but, as you say, the 916 caught everyone's eye.
Sport tourers generally have fallen out of favour with adventure bikes being more fashionable - they are the thinking man's adventure bike 🤔😁
 

RichardSpag

New member
The supersport was bought by ducati enthusiasts who couldn't afford the 748/916 but wanted the V twin grunt and handling, I think many still liked the look of the carbie bikes but, as you say, the 916 caught everyone's eye.
Sport tourers generally have fallen out of favour with adventure bikes being more fashionable - they are the thinking man's adventure bike 🤔😁
I find it interesting to see the excited posts when people find or sell the 350ss! I can see that the 900ss could be pitched at the market for CB900s / GS1000Es -but I have always wondered if Ducati thought the 600ss/750ss could steal customers from CBR600 type bikes or any of the Jap 750s. Was Ducati really relying solely on fans of the model to generate the sales? Seems like a dangerous strategy.
 

West Cork Paul

Elite Member
Subscriber
I find it interesting to see the excited posts when people find or sell the 350ss! I can see that the 900ss could be pitched at the market for CB900s / GS1000Es -but I have always wondered if Ducati thought the 600ss/750ss could steal customers from CBR600 type bikes or any of the Jap 750s. Was Ducati really relying solely on fans of the model to generate the sales? Seems like a dangerous strategy.
I think Ducati were in dark and dangerous waters around that time, facing another of their bankruptcies so I'm not sure what strategy they may have had other than survival with the minimum cash outlay.
 

sev

Well-known member
Subscriber
During that era Ducati were on the bones of their arse. They had very little money and without cagiva group probably would be consigned to history.
The supersport was entering a new era where it was going up against japanese 600s that were faster, cheaper and just all round better.
It didn’t help that there were three ducati importers at the time in the uk, and each one would set a bike up differently.

Ducatis weren’t like japanese bikes where you open the crate fill it with oil pop the battery in and start her up. Ducati’s needed to some extent to be built up, and that final bit would make or break how good that bike was- something that many parallel importers found to their cost.

also the bike was practically unchanged since 1991, and after a decade, well, you were in guzzi territory- other than just wanting one, why would you pay a grand or 1500 more vs. any 600 out of japan.

If anything, the thing that made the lineup back then was clear definition in that you had the monster- clearly not a sportsbike, the ss, clearly not a superbike and the sbk. Then the ST came out and everyone laughed that ducati was daring to tread on vfr territory.

now you’ve got so much range overlap that one does question whether the new suoersport shouldnt really be called the ST, as in reality that’s what its the true spiritual successor of in my opinion.

but in answer to your question, back in its day the SS and SL weren’t really anything and certainly not enough to make them noteworthy other than something easier on the spine and wrists than an sbk.

like the highly underrated ST they were easily forgotten by the 2 wheeled public at large.

now ironically people are starting to ‘get’ them, in respect of being what they are and once you accept their limitations I suppose its similar to a bloke on an enfield, where you’re riding it for the fun of riding rather than any expectation of it was the best at this or that.

to say they’ve been forgotten is to say they were highly regarded back in their day, and they weren’t. I tend to look at them as Ducati’s best kept forgotten secret.

i think prices on them will never go silly, and I don’t see them ever having an epiphany like the 999 where people wake up and wonder why they overlooked them for all those years- which in part was driven by 916 family prices going into the daftosphere.

I can’t see my superlight ever being worth more than five to seven grand, but it doesn’t stop it being an amazing ride. 30-70 in 3rd gear on a b road and just enjoy the soundtrack (y)
 

Carr01

Well-known member
Subscriber
During that era Ducati were on the bones of their arse. They had very little money and without cagiva group probably would be consigned to history.
The supersport was entering a new era where it was going up against japanese 600s that were faster, cheaper and just all round better.
It didn’t help that there were three ducati importers at the time in the uk, and each one would set a bike up differently.

Ducatis weren’t like japanese bikes where you open the crate fill it with oil pop the battery in and start her up. Ducati’s needed to some extent to be built up, and that final bit would make or break how good that bike was- something that many parallel importers found to their cost.

also the bike was practically unchanged since 1991, and after a decade, well, you were in guzzi territory- other than just wanting one, why would you pay a grand or 1500 more vs. any 600 out of japan.

If anything, the thing that made the lineup back then was clear definition in that you had the monster- clearly not a sportsbike, the ss, clearly not a superbike and the sbk. Then the ST came out and everyone laughed that ducati was daring to tread on vfr territory.

now you’ve got so much range overlap that one does question whether the new suoersport shouldnt really be called the ST, as in reality that’s what its the true spiritual successor of in my opinion.

but in answer to your question, back in its day the SS and SL weren’t really anything and certainly not enough to make them noteworthy other than something easier on the spine and wrists than an sbk.

like the highly underrated ST they were easily forgotten by the 2 wheeled public at large.

now ironically people are starting to ‘get’ them, in respect of being what they are and once you accept their limitations I suppose its similar to a bloke on an enfield, where you’re riding it for the fun of riding rather than any expectation of it was the best at this or that.

to say they’ve been forgotten is to say they were highly regarded back in their day, and they weren’t. I tend to look at them as Ducati’s best kept forgotten secret.

i think prices on them will never go silly, and I don’t see them ever having an epiphany like the 999 where people wake up and wonder why they overlooked them for all those years- which in part was driven by 916 family prices going into the daftosphere.

I can’t see my superlight ever being worth more than five to seven grand, but it doesn’t stop it being an amazing ride. 30-70 in 3rd gear on a b road and just enjoy the soundtrack (y)
Nice one Sev
👍
 
  • Thanks
Reactions: sev

sev

Well-known member
Subscriber
So, my original SS,

It was bought by Richard at MotoR.
He’s sold off a lot of his collection and on the back of that I expressed interest in buting my old bike back.

now bearing in mind that he’d had an 1198r and other exotica he said that my SS was the last one he’d sell because he loves riding it so much.
 
Last edited:

Noobie

Elite Member
Subscriber
You'll need a big van to collect it all won't you? You got your own place yet or are you staying with your brother?
 

Noobie

Elite Member
Subscriber
If you look at most of the bike manufacturers, most seem to be moving away from the traditional sports tourers and seem to be making their adventure range thier offering for that purpose.

I think given ducati are removing their soul (valve springs), then the bikes that overlap functions will see a thinning of the herd and the supersports will be one of the models to go
 

Roadrebel

New member
My first Ducati was a 750SS with carbs. I kept it for a little while then bought a 749S Mono. I was really sad to see the SS go. In fact, when the guy turned up in his van to collect it there was a small problem with the paperwork and I offered him £100 for his trouble if he didn't want it! He did.
 

WAYNE

Elite Member
Subscriber
I love my 900ie, it was my first Ducati, before i bought it i did research on belt change valve clearance and general servicing, so i thought fuck it i can do all that myself so with confidence i started looking, i eventually found one that jumped out at me on Gumtree that was in London, rang him, went up to view with my son who drove me up there, he also had no idea when the belts where changed last but it did have part service history, anyway he had it stored outside undercover, he pulled it back and my first thoughts where very nice(in red) and then he fired it up, fuck me that was it done deal, it sounded fucking amazing(Termis) so gave him a deposit went back to Southampton and four days later went up there and rode it back home to Southampton(gingerly, belts) in -3, good job it had heated grips.
Well nearly 6 years on i still love it, it clocked 50K miles last year it's taken me down to Italy and back and a trip to were she was born(Bologna) and for what i paid for her at the time IMO it has been the best value for money/fun motorcycle i have ever owned and when it comes to maintenance on yearly cost is fuck all, they are the most over looked range of Ducati i think, mainly because of the looks and being overshadowed by 748/916 etc and saying that they have been rising in value over the past 2/3 years, i remember going up to see Craig at MotoRapido to pick some bits up a while back and he told me that one of the mechanics had two 900ie, there is something about them on fire up, letting it warm up it's almost a living thing with the dry clutch rattle and various other noises(What was that?) and of course that Italian, there's something going on but you can't put your finger on it thing but if you could bottle it let the money roll in, great bike great motor and a lot of fun!!


1610187028236.png


I know rim tape, i was going to take it off but fuck it i don't mind it.(y)
 
Last edited:

Barry Hell

Elite Member
Subscriber
I love my 900ie, it was my first Ducati, before i bought it i did research on belt change valve clearance and general servicing, so i thought fuck it i can do all that myself so with confidence i started looking, i eventually found one that jumped out at me on Gumtree that was in London, rang him, went up to view with my son who drove me up there, he also had no idea when the belts where changed last but it did have part service history, anyway he had it stored outside undercover, he pulled it back and my first thoughts where very nice(in red) and then he fired it up, fuck me that was it done deal, it sounded fucking amazing(Termis) so gave him a deposit went back to Southampton and four days later went up there and rode it back home to Southampton(gingerly, belts) in -3, good job it had heated grips.
Well nearly 6 years on i still love it, it clocked 50K miles last year it's taken me down to Italy and back and a trip to were she was born(Bologna) and for what i paid for her at the time IMO it has been the best value for money/fun motorcycle i have ever owned and when it comes to maintenance on yearly cost is fuck all, they are the most over looked range of Ducati i think, mainly because of the looks and being overshadowed by 748/916 etc and saying that they have been rising in value over the past 2/3 years, i remember going up to see Craig at MotoRapido to pick some bits up a while back and he told me that one of the mechanics had two 900ie, there is something about them on fire up, letting it warm up it's almost a living thing with the dry clutch rattle and various other noises(What was that?) and of course that Italian, there's something going on but can't put your finger on it thing but if you could bottle it let the money roll in, great bike great motor and a lot of fun!!


View attachment 8448

I know rim tape, i was going to take it off but fuck it i don't mind it.(y)
Rimmer 🤔😁
 
Top