Ducati Hypermotard 698 Project Bike by SRmoto
Ducati Hypermotard 698 Project Bike by SRmoto
Ducati Hypermotard 698 Project Bike by SRmoto
Ducati Hypermotard 698 Project Bike by SRmoto
Ducati Hypermotard 698 Project Bike by SRmoto
Ducati Hypermotard 698 Project Bike by SRmoto
Ducati Hypermotard 698 Project Bike by SRmoto
SRmoto Ducati Hypermotard 698 Walk-Around


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March 2024 Update: It's finally getting towards the end of winter here in Ohio, and we've not been riding much lately, but we did take delivery of our 2024 Ducati Hyermotard 698 in early February 2024. Thanks to typical Ohio winter weather, we've only managed to put about 225 miles on the bike so far. We did get a chance to ride it back-to-back with our 2021 KTM 690 SMCR Project Bike, so stay tuned for some comparisons. As weather permits, we are trying to get some rides in to see what we like and don't like, but listed below are some of our current thoughts on the bike. The photos shown above are the bike in it's current form, and you'll notice we've already installed a few aftermarket parts for testing (see list below). Stay tuned!

There are not a lot of aftermarket parts available for these bikes yet, but so far we've installed the following...

  • NRC Fender Eliminator Kit

  • Hypermotard 698 Supermoto Mirror Package

  • Hypermotard 698 Handguard Package

  • Evotech Short Clutch/Brake Lever Set

  • Evotech Axle Slider Kit

  • Bolt Swingarm Spools

  • Domino XM2 Grips

  • Giant Loop ZigZag Handlebar Bag




  • INITIAL THOUGHTS AND IMPRESSIONS:

    Keep in mind, we only have about 150 miles on this bike and are still trying to break it in like we do all of our bikes (not babying it, but not redlining it constantly either, somehwere in the middle, and varying the speed/rpm as much as possible). That being said, it's somewhat hard to get a feel for a bike until you can really start riding it normally. I do have some initial impressions that I'll discuss below, and you will likely see some comparisons to our KTM 690 SMCR Project Bike a few times since these bikes are so similar and will likely be cross-shopped.

    LIKES:
    After about 150 miles of riding, here are some of my initial likes for the bike...
  • Bike feels very light and nimble, inspires confidence right away.
  • Excellent cockpit and ergos for somebody my size (5'10", 32 inseam, 170 lbs).
  • Wide, flat, and relatively comfortable seat.
  • Engine has good power and a playful character to it
  • Transmission is excellent, not one single false neutral, and finding neutral when you want to is a breeze.
  • Display is LCD, but overall pretty good. Has gear indicator and tachometer.
  • Air filter and battery are easy to get to, right up under seat.
  • LED Lighting.
  • Dual under-seat exhaust!
  • Like most Ducati's, it's a very sexy looking bike, even completely stock!

    DIS-LIKES:
    As for my dis-likes, keep in mind, it's still early, and the bike is still completely bone stock for the most part...
  • Fueling at lower throttle positions, in mainly 1st and 2nd gear, is not the best. The bike has a bit of surging and is not real smooth. (my guess is there will be updates to the mapping by Ducati at some point)
  • Kinda tall seat height for a supermoto
  • At startup/warmup, a few odd rattles and vibrations
  • LCD dash does not have a fuel gauge
  • No oil sight glass (has a dipstick instead)

    WISH LIST:
    The following features would have been nice to see on the bike, but I think Ducati left them out of the current spec, just to keep the price down... and also keep the more expensive Hyper 950 on peoples shopping list...
  • TFT display with fuel gauge
  • Skid plate to keep road crud off the engine (have the Ducati skid plate on order)
  • Better handguards than the stockers, which are just cheap plastic
  • Quick shifter... will be adding this at the first service


  • FIRST RIDE IMPRESSIONS:
    Overall I'm pretty pleased with the bike after a couple rides. Right away I noticed how easy the bike was to ride, very light-weight feeling, nimble and confidence-inspiring. The ergo's are great for somebody my size (5'10", 32 inseam, 170 lbs) and it just felt very comfortable overall. It's a first year bike, and ours is probably one of the first in the country, so I expected there to be a few hiccups, and figured the low RPM fueling might not be the best. This seems to be common with the increasingly strict emissions restrictions we're seeing on motorcycles. I didn't have any issues with the bike stalling, but especially in 1st and 2nd gear, I noticed a bit of surging at lower throttle positions, and the bike just didn't seem smooth. Once in 3rd gear and up, that seemed to go away. On/off throttle is pretty good, and the bike didn't have a snatchy throttle like some EFI bikes have. It sounds pretty good for a bike with the stock exhaust, and is a bit louder than I expected it to be.

    The transmission was excellent, it shifted very smoothly, and I didn't experience any false neutrals. Finding neutral on the bike, which is sometimes an issue on Ducati's, was a breeze. The bike has 4 ride modes and lots of electronics to play with, so I'll be getting into that a little later as I ride the bike more.

    Brakes seem really really good. Suspension is fully adjustable, and I have not played with the settings so far. With the factory settings, it had a nice plush ride on our rough roads, but did not feel too soft. I look forward to playing around with suspension settings to optimize the ride even more.

    For a stock bike, it looks fantastic. Fit and finish is also really good. You're immediately drawn to things like the engine and swingarm, which have a very high end look.


    COMPARING THE HYPER 698 TO OUR KTM 690 SMCR:
    Since the Hyper 698 and KTM 690 SMCR are such similar bikes, and very likely to be cross-shopped, I really wanted to do some comparisons between the two bikes. I did manage to ride the Hyper back-to-back with our 2021 KTM 690 SMCR Project Bike, and I'll say right up front, this really isn't a fair fight. Our Hyper is still bone stock, while our KTM is very well sorted, and has quite an extensive list of performance modifications. I took the Hyper on a quick 25 mile loop, then got off, and right onto the KTM to do that same loop. The KTM was better, frankly, but that was to be expected because, as with most motorcycles, the difference between stock and modified can be very substantial. Our modified KTM 690 has more low end grunt, better low RPM fueling, and sounds alot better (thanks to the Leo Vince full exhaust and Rottweiler intake). Once we do a few things to the Hyper though, especially performance mods like exhaust, ECU flash, etc, I expect it to be pretty damn close to the KTM, as their spec sheets sort of indicate.

    From a handling perspective, both bikes felt similar. I think I like the cockpit and ergos slightly better on the Hyper... it just seems to fit me a little better. I was surprised how tall the Ducati is though, for a supermoto, the seat height is up there. Our KTM was a little tall too, but we've added a Kouba 1" lowering link and now it's the perfect seat height for me. Both bikes are VERY confidence-inspiring to ride, and feel very nimble out on the road. I have our KTM suspension set to their recommended "Sport" settings and it can be a little harsh on rougher roads. I have not played with the fully adjustable suspension on the Ducati yet, so it's still set the way it came from the factory, and it felt much more plush on our rough roads, without feeling too soft.

    Looks are subjective, but the Ducati looks great even in stock form. My only minor gripe is that they covered up much of the trellis frame, which was more exposed on some of the older Hypers like our 1100 S. And the swingarm of all things, looks really high end on the Duc. Our KTM looks great now that we've done the graphics kit, tail tidy and so on, but when it was stock, it wasn't nearly as attractive as the Ducati. The standout feature for me on the KTM is that orange trellis frame!

    I cannot wait to get a few upgrades done on the Ducati, and see how it compares to the KTM... I have a feeling they will be very very similar, with the KTM maybe having a bit more low end torque than the Ducati, which probably prefers to be ridden at higher RPM. I don't think you can go wrong with either bike though, IMHO these are the BEST types of bikes on the market for back road riding... there is no substitute for a supermoto!

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