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If there’s one engine layout machine you have to own at least once in your life, it’s a V-twin – but which one?

Few engine layouts are as evocative as the V-twin and few twins stir the soul like a Ducati V-twin. Ok, so we should probably say ‘L-twin’ here, but you know what we mean.

The Ducati 999/749 shape isn’t the drop-dead gorgeous machine its predecessor 916/748 was, but the bike itself was a big improvement all the way across the board. Firstly, the build quality betwen an early 916 Strada and a 999 is almost like night and day – although we’ve heard that the old Ducati issue of flaking paint can rear its head in a number of areas, including the engine (a bit of a Ducati trait), the bracket/surround for the two headlights and certain areas of the frame.

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Like any Ducatis, the secret when buying is three things: history, history and history. A wodge of paperwork showing what’s been done, when and (most importantly) where it’s been done is invaluable.

You can read the rest of this report in the August issue of Classic Motorcycle Mechanics, in the shops NOW!


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