When you tell most people that you ride a motorcycle, their usual question is “so, what do you ride, a Ducati?” The only other brand name so synonymous with motorcycling would be Harley-Davidson.

The famed Italian brand’s distinctive Euro-styling and cultural cachet seemed to resonate with nearly 45,000 people in 2013, as the brand from Bologna sold a record 44,287 motorbikes worldwide last year.

Sales in South Asia rose by 26% with 5,200 motorcycles sold, while the United States, Ducati’s top market, accounted for 24% in sales, followed by Italy at 11.3% and Germany at 10.7%.

By comparison, Harley-Davidson sold 167, 016 units in the United States alone in 2013, which nearly quadruples Ducati’s worldwide sales number. Fun fact, the number of Sportsters that H-D sold globally in 2013 is 5000 more than Ducati’s global total of bike sales.

Additionally, Triumph Motorcycle’s worldwide sales reached the 50,000 mark by mid-December. With Harley-Davidson and Triumph both pursuing manufacturing and sales networks in Asia and Latin America, it will be interesting to see if Ducati follows suit by expanding production facilities into those markets.

While Ducati is touting the Superleggera and the recently released Monster 1200 as products to usher in another year of record sales and excitement for the brand, more interesting is the rumored Scrambler model.

It will be very interesting to see where that bike will fit in on Ducati’s lineup, and if it will steal sales away from the Sportster juggernaut and the Triumph Bonneville phenomenon.

Source: Ducati

  • Gutterslob

    Re: their usual question is “so, what do you ride, a Ducati?”

    Nope, not me. No one has ever asked me that, motorcyclist or not. First question is usually “How many CC’s?”. After that, motorcyclists will attempt to guess the model, while non motorcyclists will ask “so what kind of bike is it?”. Only when I answe “sportbike” do one or two in ten people ever mention Ducati, still outnumbered by the people who mention “Fireblade” though.

    I have been asked “is it a Harley?” before, though. My answer to that is usually “piss off!!”

  • HuhOreally

    Huh O Really?

    As a motorcycle instructor, owning 5 motorcycles (touring, sport, dirt, enduro, & trials), with 33 years teaching street survival techniques to new and experienced riders, I have never heard that exact phrase “so what do you ride, Ducati?” asked of anyone!! – must be a phrase in Italy, I assume!

  • L2C

    Does anybody have a sense of humor around here? Jeez.

  • Marshall

    Ride a Ducati? What? I’ve never heard that, and I own one.

  • Gutterslob

    Maybe Aakash lives somewhere around Hollywood.

  • upgrayedd

    Ducati already has production facilities in SE Asia and Latin America, Thailand and Brazil.

  • upgrayedd,

    You are indeed correct.

  • BBQdog

    As soon as they make something nimble like a nice Supermono I would consider a Ducati again.

  • paulus

    It would be cool to see how the sales breakdown.
    in Asia the mini-monster is the big seller. I wonder how many flagship models float the business, vs the bread and butter range.

  • People buy Harley’s to be part of “the club”. It’s the same reason people buy Ducati’s! Frankly I would hate to see Ducati’s become as popular as Harley. One of the special things about owning a Ducati and any Ducati I might add, is that you have something unique. When you go down the road you know you probably won’t see yourself coming at yourself. And as far as the people’s perception of maintanence and cost of ownership goes its not nearly as expensive as it once was. Most Harley’s cost a lot more then your typical Ducati. You don’t have to love the brand but there is really no reason to deapise then either. You either get it or you don’t.

  • Repidodave

    Wow and to think my 2013 1100evo Monster with Termi’s, Shorai battery and BST carbon wheels is not nimble?

  • Westward

    Funny, Most people I seem to have that conversation with, usually have that stunned look of, “What is a Ducati?”
    Only gear heads ever ask what are the CC’s. Most people assume I ride a Harley as it seems to be the first bike that comes to mind. When I get to the it’s not a cruiser, than Honda or Yamaha seems to be the next logical progression. At least that’s been my experience.

    @ Josh

    Supposedly, Ducati’s newer bikes since 2008 are suppose to require fewer maintenance’s as the intervals have increased. Supposedly, it’s also easier and quicker for the mechanics labour too. But you would not know it if you talk to anyone that makes their living maintaining Ducati bikes. It still seems to cost more than it does to have work done on a Mercedes or BMW car.

    Ducati needs to address this issue with their dealers if they really want to sale more bikes, cause dealerships that sale other bikes, or don’t sale Ducati’s use the maintenance costs to deter people from buying one, and it is very effective. People who buy Ducati definitely buy into the brand.

    I think Triumph sold more bikes because they don’t have the high cost maintenance stigma that Ducati has. If Ducati could turn that perception around, they would sell over 100k in a year easily…

  • Chaz Michael Michaels

    The get this one all the time in the elevator–“riding a motorcyle is dangerous.” and then all the permutations on how you could die doing it. Like they’re trying to jinx you.

    They don’t care what you ride. It’s all the same to them. Dangerous.

  • crshnbrn

    @ Gutterslob

    re: “I have been asked ‘is it a Harley?’ before, though. My answer to that is usually ‘piss off!!’

    What fun is that? Tell them you ride some brand they probably haven’t heard of (varies on what part of the world this discussion is taking place in), or make up a model like a Yamaha Rebel, or Suzuki Ninja. Then tell them you haven’t filled out an organ donor card, so even if they wish you an early demise, it won’t benefit them or any of their loved ones. Of course, you could also do this after telling them to ‘piss off!!’