The current Ducati Hypermotard 950

The 659 cm3 single-cylinder engine is showcased on a supermoto-styled prototype

A lighter base for an entirely new platform.

A year ago, the US National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, responsible for vehicle approval in the United States, hinted at the return of a single-cylinder engine to Ducati’s lineup for 2023. The engine is now confirmed as photos of a single-cylinder Hypermotard have been released.

While Ducati is known for its V-Twins and V4 engines, the Bologna-based manufacturer has also ventured into more unique solutions, such as the legendary but rare Supermono. This single-cylinder engine, derived from the Superbike 888’s twin, boasted 549 cm3 and 75 horsepower.

This time, the positioning seems quite different as it’s no longer a sports bike, but a Hypermotard that has been spotted with this single-cylinder engine, which, according to NHTSA data, has a displacement of 659 cm3. This change should primarily lead to a significant reduction in weight compared to the current Hypermotard 950 and its Testastretta twin.

It would also make it a competitor to the KTM 690 SMC R, whose single-cylinder engine delivers 74.8 hp. One can expect a fairly similar power output from the Ducati engine, ranging between 70 and 75 hp.

The development model that has been spotted on several occasions also reveals a completely new chassis with a tubular steel frame that uses the engine as a structural component for the swingarm. It’s evident that lightweight construction has been a central focus. Other notable features include a single rear shock absorber, a substantial inverted fork, a single Brembo radial caliper at the front, a floating caliper at the rear, and 17-inch wheels fitted with Pirelli Diablo Rosso IV tires.

Now, we’ll have to await the official unveiling of this new model to learn more. After the Monster 30th Anniversary and the Multistrada V4 S Grand Tour, Ducati’s next reveal is scheduled for October 3, but it’s likely to be related to the DesertX. We may have to wait until early November to get another glimpse of this single-cylinder motorcycle.

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