I went on Saturday, and the line was so long, I thought It was gonna end in a refugee camp....they have to do something about this next year....The Ducati booth was split into two, one part that had their current bikes (several customized monsters and the sport bikes) and the other part was set aside to showcase their new sport classic bikes. These three bikes are retro styled bikes, all using the liter size air cooled engine. The Paul Smart 1000 is a cafe racer and has a headlight/half fairing and large round headlight, the fairing reminding me of a Guzzi Lemans fairing. The GT1000 is a naked bike, very 1970s looking (as all three are) with wide motoX tipe bars. The last is the Sport 1000 with low bars and un unfaired cafe racer look. Ducati is being coy about these bikes seeing production, and all the dealers I spoke with said they cannot be a straight answer also. I cannot see that the 1000 engine being the engine of choice should they go into production, since noise/emission regs are dictating against air cooled engines in the future. These bike can be seen at www.Ducati.com/index.jhtm.
I have a Moto Guzzi Centauro, but if I didn't, the Moto Guzzi Cafe Sport would be high on my list for a new bike. I also loved the lines and look of the new 120hp, 1200 cc MGSO1, Guzzi's new sportbike. Great looking 1 piece aluminum swingarm... Triumph had their new monster 2300cc Rocket III cruiser on display, and several examples of their Speed triple, which has always been an intriguing bike to me...The new Norton 952 was on display, not at a Norton booth, but rather as drawing prize. I was really lusting for this bike, until I saw it in the flesh...the seat looks like a some sort of torture rack, and the back wheel did not even line up right with the tail. The bike has great lines, but if this is the level of finish and they expect to get $20,000+ for the bike, I'll wait for the Ducati GT1000. The finish level on the Ducati was 1000% better, in fact it looked ready to be placed on a showroom floor.
MV August had their Brutale Oro and S versions on display, along with an F4. The Brutale is a gorgeous bike, but no dealer seems to have one for sale....kinda small, both in dimensions and engine displacement, but drop dead gorgeous (yes, even more so than the monster, I'm afraid).
Did not look much at the Japanese stuff, though I sat on a Kawasaki Z1000 which appears to be a nice enough bike....
Went on Saturday too and was quite dismayed by how long the line was!! Last year went at the same time and just walked right in!
The MGS01 is HOT, HOT, HOT!! Of course being a Guzzi Fan had nothing to do with it Heard that Doug Polen (sp?) pulled 1.24 laps with it on Big Willow! Very fast bike!
Loved the Ducati concept bikes! If Ducati stops being so coy and puts that sweet Sport 1000 on the market......well, a hard choice to make, would have to trade in the Monster - don't think that is going to happen.....guess it's ok to dream though! New chant....LOTTO, LOTTO, LOTTO!
Totally agree with Spub, the MV Augusta Brutale is a beauty!! Yes, hate to say it, but it is prettier than my Monster.
Vendor section was weak......Laguna vendor's are better, guess I'll need to save my pennies a bit longer!
All in all the show was ok, not quite as good as previous ones, but worth it to drool over the Italian beauty!
I really liked the duc leather there! in the showcase and on the dummy on the gold metal flaked monster gas tank monster(looked like a drum kit inspried paint job. I liked it I don't think anyone else did)......it was one of the most beautiful jackets I have seen.the classic bikes looked really good in person...really good.....I would pick one up in a heartbeat......The Aprilia
bikes looked really good also...new Mille was beautiful.....Also the new GSX-R's especially the 600 and 750 were really looking good...less pork, Showa suspenders ti valves....didn't really have time to look at more...as soon as I walked in they were closing but parking and the show was free....
I went on Sunday, and walked right in. Drove the cage, so the rain wasn't a factor. Highlights for me were, in order of viewing:
1. The new Yamaha R6. The best looking 600 I have seen of the Japenese variety. Cool Projector lamps, great seating position.
2. The Brutale is a continuing marvel. Only a few hundred more than an S4R!
3. The Ducati retro bikes. They are even better looking in person!
4. the moto guzzi display was great.
Things that I wanted more of: The vendors were less than optimal. I went there ready to spend money on good stuff, an d bought nothing. There was nothing unique or especially cool in leather, Italian billet, gloves, or helmets. Just the same old stuff. I agree with crestgal, Laguna is much better.This is probably a function of charging the vendors too much. The Del Mar show was killed because of promotor greed.
I thought the Ducati display was not interactive enough, you couldn't get on the bikes. I would like it laid out like the yamaha display where you could wander around and swing a leg over. It's probably a cost issue as well.
Overall, I really liked the show, and will go there next year. The energy was very good, bikers in general are the most mellow people in the world! (non milwalkee variety)
I took some pics. This gallery (the big pics) are 25% of the size of the originals. The whole gallery is 2.2M, while the originals average pic size is 1.4M. If someone is really wanting, I can burn a CD with the pics. Sorry, I didn't really notice any other brands at the show...