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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I was at the local Ducati dealer, and, I was offered a test ride on the Hypermotard 1100. As I'm not a man to let a good opportunity go, I agreed...and fell in love. I've always been more of a sportsbike/dirtbike fan, but after riding the Hyper, I really understand the allure of Supermotards.

The engine of any motorcycle is it's heart. In this case, the motor was immensely enjoyable, with lots of torque(combined with low gearing). Let the clutch out, and with even 3/4 throttle in first, it immediately launches at the sky, ahem, the horizon. However, unlike the 600RR, the gears are quite short - I hit the limiter a few times, but that was just caused by my unfamiliarity with the bike. At highway speeds(120km/h), the windblast and gearing were fine. It feels quite lively, even in traffic.
On that note, the wide mirrors made lane splitting tough, as did the dry clutch. The dry clutch and I didn't get used to each other, but I suppose I need more seat time, as I've never used a dry clutch before.

The seating position was great; comfortable, yet ready for attack too.

Now, to the tasty part: handling. This is what has me giggling in my helmet like I'm not right upstairs. For some strange reason, the bike felt supremely light. Perhaps it's the greater leverage offered by the wide bars(I haven't ridden a dirtbike for a few years, so maybe I've just become accustomed to sportbikes), but the steering was very responsive off centre, and on fast changes of direction. More impressive, however, was how beautifully composed the suspension action was when subjected to mid-corner bumps. I wasn't pushing its limits at all(it is a demo bike!), but even at the sedate pace to which I prescribed myself, the stability and plushness was impressive.

If I had the money, I'd buy one tomorrow. Or, probably, today.
 
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