Tagged: 900GTS

Affordable Bevel: 1978 Ducati 900GTS for Sale

1978 Ducati 900 GTS R Front

After the unpopular, Giugiaro-designed 860GT, Ducati’s more practical sibling to the Super Sport got a makeover into the more conservative 900GTS. The engine was largely the same, but looks were changed from the radical, forward-thinking lines to something less threatening to hidebound Ducati enthusiasts. It was still considered a bit of a let-down in terms of looks but, like all Ducatis of the era, prices are steadily rising. It’s a shame the striking 860 never caught on, but the 900 is still a very classic, handsome motorcycle, and the beating heart of the bike is still Ducati’s classic, bevel-drive L-twin.

1978 Ducati 900 GTS L Side

Although Ducati’s entire range of modern motorcycles feature their signature “desmodromic” actuation system that uses cams to both open and close the valves, only top-of-the-line Super Sport models used it prior to the Pantah engine. So although the GTS does have a set of tower-shafts and bevel-gears to drive the overhead cams, it makes do with a set of ordinary valve springs to close the valves. Impact on performance is negligible and the bike still put out 65hp and plenty of midrange torque.

1978 Ducati 900 GTS Clocks

From the original eBay listing: 1978 Ducati 900GTS for Sale

Today we are proud to offer this beautiful vehicle for your consideration. This is a terrific addition to any enthusiast’s collection. This Ducati is completely original and has been locally owned for the past 38 years in heated garages. Every electrical component such as headlights brake light, Turn signals and horn perform.  New tires along with new rims and wire wheels. Fenders and tank are original and without any dents. Electric start is immediate. This bike with the Conti exhausts sounds identical to the SS. It has amazing torque. Included are the following 2 bar end mirrors (new), 2 new chrome valve guides (current ones on bike are rusty), manual, tool kit with under seat compartment. A few service records are included. This vehicle is running properly. It performs wonderfully, whether you’re in-town or on the open highway, and exhibits excellent road manners at all speeds. This is a great previously owned vehicle. Overall the vehicle is very straight. The condition of the paint and body, is in overall good shape, see photos. This is a rare opportunity to own a legendary 900cc Ducati!

1978 Ducati 900 GTS Engine

Originality is very important to many collectors. As they say, “It’s only new once!” And although this Ducati is a little rough around the edges, it has tons of character and appears to have been well-maintained, even though the cosmetic aspects have suffered a bit from the ravages of time. The missing side-panels might be difficult to replace, although pattern parts should be available if you spend some time browsing the interwebs. The fact that all the basics work is key, considering that bidding is only up to $8,350.00 with the reserve met. Bidding is active, but if the price stays reasonable, this could prove to be an excellent candidate for a “rolling restoration,” a bike that you can either ride as-is or work on a bit at a time to make it look brand new.


1978 Ducati 900 GTS R Side

Black and Gold Part III: 1975 Ducati 860GT

1975 Ducati 860GT Mod R Side

We feature a great many beautiful classics and original Ducatis on this site. This one’s maybe more of a mongrel than the other two thoroughbreds from earlier this week, but who doesn’t love a mutt? As long as modifications are made in the spirit of the bike, and can be reversed, what does it really matter?

Resto-mod style improvements and updates may damage collectability and originality, but they just improve ridability. With the Ducati 860GT, collectability isn’t so much an issue yet and, if you want membership in Club Bevel, this is basically your ONLY relatively affordable option.

While the angular lines are distinctive and fresh now, they were considered a bit scandalous at the time, a shocking affront to Ducati’s traditional clientele. Which is a bit odd, considering how innovation and cutting-edge design is how a small concern like Ducati can successfully compete with the Big Boys from Japan. You’d think they’d be more forward-thinking than that…

1975 860GT Details

Produced in 1974 and 1975 as Ducati’s entry-level v-twin, they sold well at the time, and their relative availability, combined with their somewhat less-desirable status, makes them relatively affordable today. Although, like all the bevel-drive twins, they’re headed north in terms of value.

From the original eBay listing: 1975 Ducati Other (Bevel) for Sale

Kick only – correct high dollar cover

Silver powder coat as is swing arm
New pivot tube
Chain case saver
Has all fork stops
Frame modified for Ducati seat – kick up rear remove
Has frame lock but must be installed
Side stand and center stand

Ducati black with gold stripe

GTS model all seams have been filled and smoothed
Color is true black – most black paints have brown in the formula
Correct gas cap

New tires
Excel Sun rims – Buchananan spokes

SS front brake line
Correct master cylinder with correct filler cap

New gaskets seals
Std bore
Sludge trap cleaned

This particular bike looks to be a bit of a “bitsa”, but is clean and sharp. Clearly, whoever put this together wasn’t a fan of the 860’s Giugiaro-designed angularity, since it chucks the original tank for the later GTS model, lost the matching side panels for earlier Sport-style pieces, and is generally going for a more classic look.

1975 Ducati 860GT Engine

It needs a bit of work still, from the original listing: the fuel line is not yet installed and the dash lights still need to be wired up. It looks like all the important work has gone into the bike, so this could be a perfect chance to pick up someone’s 95% finished project for much less than it would cost to replicate. It’s not perfectly original, but that wouldn’t bother me in the least, if the price makes it attractive.

The lack of originality may hurt resale value in the long run, although a bike like this shouldn’t necessarily be seen as a chance to make an investment, but instead as the perfect opportunity to get your hands on a classic for a relatively low cost. Of course “low price” is relative: bidding is active and the reserve has not been met yet, so we’ll see just how “affordable” this bike ends up being…

Interestingly, of the three black-and-gold Ducatis I’ve posted this week, this is the one I’d most like to own. I’d probably just get it running, then have someone fab up a dash to house a nice, white-faced MotoGadget gauge, wire that up, and call it a day.


1975 Ducati 860GT Mod L Front

1979 Ducati 900 GTS For Sale

If you’re looking to get into classic Ducati ownership, you can’t do much better than the 900 GTS.  The bike was basically an update of the 860GT: it used the same 864cc engine, but had a redesigned fuel tank with softened, more conventional lines.  The new styling was intended to recover some ground lost upon the introduction of that model: when new, the the 860GT was considered very controversial and the bike did not sell as well as hoped.

It was originally penned by the very talented Giorgetto Giugiaro, famous designer of some of the most beautiful and iconic cars of all time, including the original Lotus Esprit, Maserati Ghibli, and DeTomaso Mangusta.  Giugiaro’s designs were revolutionary, but the 860GT was not well-received so, after a couple years, Ducati decided to update the looks.

The 860GT/900GTS bikes were intended to be a bread-and-butter models for Ducati and these are not nearly the costly investment the SS bikes generally are.  They may not have the racer-looks of the faired SS, but you still get the classic Ducati V-twin, thumping out 65hp.

From the original eBay listing: 1979 Ducati 900 GTS For Sale

This bike has been completely restored over a 3-year period with all original Ducati parts. It is in mint condition with only 15,000 original miles. It has brand new Avon tires, and it growls mean because it came originally with “Bubba” custom pipes from the 1970’s. This was the last bevel drive 900GTS manufactured. The throttle cable recently frayed, and I haven’t had a chance to fix it. According to my mechanic, it’s a simple repair with a minimal cost.

A few other details to note. The bike is roughly 65% original, unrestored. I left the paint original even though there is a small, vertical indentation on the clutch (left) side of the tank, far forward, well in front of the Ducati logo within the thick silver stripe area. It should be viewable in the pictures provided.

The reference to “Bubba custom pipes” may mean that the bike has vintage BUB exhausts, although it’s hard to see in the photos.  Today, BUB focuses on the cruiser crowd, but the company made exhausts for many sporting European brands back in the 1970’s and these pipes have a typical Conti conical style.

I’m also not sure just how much of the bike has been refreshed: the first section of the text mentions it’s been “completely restored” and the second paragraph mentions it’s “65% original, unrestored.”  From the photos, it looks like the second description is more accurate.

All-in-all, a very cool ride that could be ridden as-is or used as the basis for a custom machine.