Rare Ducatis at WM Snell
If you go down to Alton, Hants the ride along the A31, along the Hogs Back, is sure to put you in a good frame of mind. Turn off, and head for the town centre, take the left down to the station and there you will find W.M. Snell Ducati. Brothers Tom and Nick Barnley are the third generation to run this family business, and as we have written elsewhere, the place has the vibe of a racing stable and to a man, the team are knowledgeable and enthusiastic Ducatisti.
W.M. Snell supply and maintain the motorcycles that we hire at RoadTrip Motorcycle Rental, so in search of advice I headed in just last week and discovered a treasure trove of great bikes. Here are three that caught my eye:
Still the most decorated Ducati in WSB, the R first appeared in 2004 with a production run limited to 800 machines. Full carbon bodywork, magnesium wheels, the distinctive tailpipe, race pack, and legendary performance. I am told that for the £19k asking price then, there was more ‘R’ offered on this motorcycle than on today’s Panigale ‘R’s. 145hp. 181kg dry.
Ducati Desmosedici RR
With a V4 motor and other racing materials and technologies based on the ferocious MotoGP prototype, the RR (Race Replica) production was limited to 1500 machines, which were offered first to 999R owners. The first customers took delivery of these remarkable bikes in Spring 2008. A good one today will set you back north of £35k. Ducati claimed 197 hp. 177hp is documented at the back wheel. 171kg dry, excluding battery.
Ducati 1199 Superleggera
Only 500 of these extraordinary motorcycles were built. Offered and taken up exclusively by Ducati R customers in 2014. The Superleggera is based on the 1199 Panigale R, however, the similarity ends there. The 1199 Superleggera is an exercise in superlative engineering and materials technology and application. The machine is constructed more or less entirely of carbon fibre, magnesium and Titanium alloys – hence the ‘Superlight’ moniker. If you have the time to visit Snells and speak with the guys about the bike they will tell you even more. One thing you will also notice is that no photograph will ever reproduce the fluorescent orange colour of the bike accurately – this is quite intentional. If you are lucky enough to find one for sale, and Snells are selling this bike for a client, expect to pay in the region of £50k. Over 200hp. 155kg including lithium ion battery. (Less 2.5kg when the full track race kit is installed.
The Race kit, including paddock stands, is supplied with the motorcycle)
So there you have it – all in a day’s work for this writer, and for W.M. Snell Ducati.