I did the tour last Sept and it was GREAT! You really should call ahead to make sure the tour isn't full on the day you want to go.They do a morning and an afternoon tour. And if you are taking the A1 from the south( Firenze, etc. ) take the Bolognia exit Get a good map and follow it!). we got bum directions when we called and had to go all the way up to Modena to turn around . We made it back just in time. But the tour was late starting so we got to hang out in the workers bar and have a drink while we waited. Yes they have a full bar where workers can have a couple at break and lunch. Also espresso. (I kick myself regularly for not pocketing one of the Ducati espresso cups). A bar in the factory may explain a few things ;D. The tour itself was really cool. We were taken right onto the factory floor and told ther were 3 rules:
1 Dont touch anything.
2 Dont steal anything .
3 No photos.
4 Watch out for the forklifts.( They drive them like they are Italian)
I know that was four rules but this is Italia!
We walked thru all the production areas( stepping over puddles of CNC fluid and dodging forklifts) except the Corsa shop and were within inches of the machinery, heat treating furnaces, bins of parts, etc.
The tour guide spoke English very well and was eager to answer questions. we ended the factory tour at the dyno room where every bike is fuction tested. It was kind of cool to know that my bike was tested right where I was standing.
As we left the factory we passed about 100 999s awaiting crating.
We then proceeded to the museum and spent about an hour with bikes that Hailwood, Foggy, Maiggo and Bayless had ridden.
we could walk around them and touch them. It was inspiring!
A different guide gave us a bunch of history, anecdotes , cheesy jokes and and an overall good time. He was a real Ducatisti and loved his work.
So all in all I would highly recommend the tour(as you can probably tell by the tone of the "book" I just wrote).
Thanks for the info Mark. I am going there with a friend from Italy. He said I couldn't go there without visiting the factory. He's been there before so I don't have to worry about getting lost. Sounds cool..I'm excited! Now I just have to wait 6 months before I can go.
If you have time after the tour go to the Ducati store on the other side of Bolognia. I forget the # of the road but they will give you a map at the factory gift shop if you ask. I thought it was pretty cool to get some stuff in Bolognia. The is also a great seafood plce across the street from the Store. I think its called the Galileo or something like that. Livio ,the Asst Curator of the Meseum tipped us to it . Really good food!!
Enjoy your trip.
Staying with friends in Italy. If that weren't the case, it would be too d*mn expensive to go. My wife has had to put up with a lot of sh*t from me for a decade. I got a Ducati and she is getting a trip to Italy now because of it. She is very happy! We have to do it now or never. Kids are around the corner so it's do or die!
Last month, my girlfriend and I were participating in the Shell Historic Challenge races in Mugello, but we did manage to slip away for a visit.
We arrived about two hours ahead of a delegation that had come from Poland. Apparently they had both the museum and the factory tour booked. We were told that we would have to come back another time...It had been quite a drive, so I played my trump card and told the guard that my company provides the pumping elements that are used in the Desmosedici's dry sump oiling system. I gave him my card as well as the name of the engineer that I work with and within a few minutes, we were ushered into the empty museum and told that we would have the place to ourselves for an hour.
Just a heads-up: We were told that Ducati would be gutting and redoing the museum. We weren't told exactly when that would happen, but you might want to check ahead.