In 2019 at Ducati’s annual World Premier event, the Bologna firm first showed off renders of two Scrambler-based concept bikes; the Motard; and the DesertX. The incredibly warm reception that the DesertX received would ultimately prompt Ducati to green-light the vintage Dakar-inspired adventure bike for production. And after initially unleashing the bike last year, Ducati has now pulled the cover off of a lightly tweaked DesertX for the 2023 model year.
The latest model year DesertX retains almost all of its specs and running gear from the prior year — 9.84” of clearance, around 9” of suspension travel fore and aft, six ride modes including dedicated enduro and rally profiles, a 110-hp 937cc Testastretta L-Twin, retro rally raider-style bodywork, and a spoked, off-road-friendly 21” front, 18” rear wheel-set. The biggest change comes in the form of the Ducati motorcycle’s 5” TFT display gaining a turn-by-turn navigation system, which is based on the Ducati Multimedia System and pairs with the rider’s smartphone.
The most noticeable change to the 2023 DesertX is undoubtedly its livery. Unlike the existing DesertX’s “Matte Star White Silk“ (white and red) paint scheme — which itself is an homage to the Lucky Explorer livery worn by Edi Orioli’s 1990 Dakar-winning (Ducati-powered) Cagiva Elefant — the latest model year DesertX now comes adorned in the RR22 livery that was worn by Audi’s fully-electric RS Q e-tron Dakar competitor. Using a black base, the RR22 scheme boasts a futuristic aesthetic with gray and red accents throughout. (With Ducati and Audi both owned by the Volkswagen Group, they can share everything from technologies to liveries). The DesertX will remain available in its original Matte Star White Silk livery, as well.
The 2023 Ducati Desertx 937 is available for order now, with pricing starting at $17,695.