Ducati Hypermotard Loudon TN

If you’re dealing with a fairly long drive each morning, a few more miles per gallon can go a long way to a smaller total cost come week’s end. And while we’ve got plenty of hybrids running around and are starting to see some high-mpg diesels as well, the undisputed king of the frugal commute remains the motorcycle.

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Ducati Hypermotard

One Week on a Ducati Hypermotard By Brian Alexander, Content Editor
The old saying that you’ve got to spend money to make money is a highly unfortunate truth. Ask most people about their daily commute and you’ll get a look that says something between, “I don’t want to talk about it” and “I once nearly killed a man on the side of the road.” Bottom line, no one wants to commute, and an expensive commute as a result of high gas prices and parking expense is just that much more of a slap in the face.





If you’re dealing with a fairly long drive each morning, a few more miles per gallon can go a long way to a smaller total cost come week’s end. And while we’ve got plenty of hybrids running around and are starting to see some high-mpg diesels as well, the undisputed king of the frugal commute remains the motorcycle. So, for the sake of science, I decided to trade in my driving shoes for a helmet and take on my daily slog – 22 miles each way including crossing over the Oakland/San Francisco Bay Bridge – for an entire week atop a Ducati Hypermotard.

The Hypermotard is hardly your average motorcycle. Picture a dirtbike with an air-cooled 1100cc engine crammed inside the frame and you’re halfway there, making it somewhat like the Porsche Cayenne of the motorcycle world. If you're intersted in Ducatis, make sure to check out our recent factory tour . Aboard the Hypermotard, rampant acceleration and full-on wheelies are no farther than an eager twist of the right hand away. With such muscular athleticism, it’s nowhere close to being the most fuel-efficient bike out there, but nevertheless remains a good representation of how economical and convenient a motorcycle can be.

First and foremost, the savings began at the pump. The 3.3 gallon fuel tank creates somewhat of a psychological barrier because you’ll be fueling up frequently, though only for a few dollars each time. Over the course of the week I was able to achieve an astonishing average fuel economy of 47.9 mpg, completely annihilating my expectations of the bike’s mileage potential. Total gasoline expenditure for the week came out to be $22.87 (average gas prices at the time were around $4.25) – less than half of what a car would have cost. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Here in California, the typically devoid carpool lane is open to motorcyclists. That deal gets a whole lot sweeter when crossing the Bay Bridge, as the carpool lane bypasses the tollbooths, saving you an agonizing wait at the metering lights, not to mention the $4.00 toll itself. And the traffic lining up to exit the freeway on the other side of the bridge? It’s not nearly as bad when you can split lanes on a motorcycle – at low speeds of 10-15 mph, it’s a relatively safe way to make progress, and here in the Golden State, it’s perfectly legal.

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