I went in this last weekend to get my 6k service done on my 12' Striple and while I was waiting I asked if I could ride one of the Ducati Monster 796's that were on the floor. The sales guy said sure and a few photocopies later off I went. I returned a bit later woefully disappointed. I figured that the highly praised exotic streetfighter would blow me away but as it turned out I couldnt wait to get back on my Striple. The ergos while comfortable, felt like I was sitting ON the front forks and the power was virtually dead until about 6k RPM with a dead spot at 3k. Turn in felt awkward and forced, not smooth and natural. Braking with the Brembos up front was one of two high points of the ride, with them being great on feedback and quick to stop when needed. The exhaust note being the second good thing especially on deceleration, but overall I was not impressed. I dont know if Im missing something here but why in the hell would someone dump the coin on this buzzy twin when you can get more bike for less? Just my 2 cents, not intending to piss on the Duc faithful.
You also check the air filter. Personally I typically replace spark plugs and air filter at the 6k both are typically beyond the point where I would think they could make it another 6k without affecting performance or rideability.
Most Ducs are way way over rated. People go for them the same reason someone would buy a Ferrari instead of a Corvette or a Nissan GTR.
I test rode the 796 and Streetfighter 848 as competition for the ST3R. The 796 didn't do much for me at all, too unrefined and not enough substance to go with the style. Looks good though.
The SF848 I liked in some ways - great sound, again liked the looks - but hated it below 6000rpms or 40mph. Stiff clutch pull and tweaky fueling made me think it wouldn't be a good city bike...Well those things can of course be fixed with mods, but still...In the end, nothing could beat the ST3R for versatility, performance, and fun factor. Oh, and it left about 3000 extra $$$ in my pocket too.
I would choose the Streety again every day of the week and twice on Sunday!
“A good traveler has no fixed plans, and is not intent on arriving.”