The Corpus Christi Old Car Museum Auction

Lot 107
1978 Ducati 900 SD Darmah

Selling on Saturday

1978 Ducati 900 SD Darmah

CHASSIS NO: 900365

• One of the most important “Superbikes” ever
• Engineering and stylistic tour de force
• Outstanding performance and fuel economy
• One of Ducati’s most influential road models

864 cc air-cooled, four-stroke V-twin engine, desmodromic valve control, twin Dell’Orto carburetors, 70 HP at 7,000 RPM, five-speed gearbox, tubular steel frame, front telescopic forks, adjustable rear coil-over shock absorbers, hydraulic twin-disc front, single-disc rear brakes; wheelbase: 1,550 mm (61”)

During the 1970s, most of the world’s top motorcycle manufacturers released an unending succession of faster, larger-displacement Superbikes capable of ever-increasing speeds with aggressive styling to match their performance. These two-wheeled monsters were often designed and built for racing homologation, or vice versa, with competition-inspired technologies trickling down to improve the performance and usability of each manufacturer’s road models.

While aerodynamic improvements and larger front fairings improved top-speed potential, many riders still craved the “naked” bike, intended to be unencumbered, less complicated and lighter, these Superbikes of the 1970s are exemplified by the Ducati 900 SD Darmah. Derived from the legendary Italian marque’s all-out racing machines, the 900 SD Darmah continues to be sought-after as a good all-around performer with a unique presence, thanks to its Brembo disc brakes, Ceriani front forks, Campagnolo gold-finished wheels and Conti mufflers.

Powering the 900 SD Darmah was Ducati’s latest 90-degree V-twin engine, developing some 70 horsepower. A much-improved development of the prior 860 GT, the 900 SD engine was a commercial success and later formed the basis for the even sportier 900 SSD. Renowned for its response and ability to reach high engine rpm, the 900 SD followed in Ducati tradtion with its desmodromic valvetrain system, designed by Dr. Fabio Taglioni, who spent most of his engineering career at Ducati. In fact, the 900 SD designation stood for “900 cc, Sport Desmo.” The 900 SD Darmah was so successful in fact, that Ducati commemorated it with the Sport 1000 Special Edition of 2007, produced in a limited run of 100 examples solely for the U.S. market. Featuring a discreet Café Racer-style front fairing and red paint finish, this 1978 Ducati 900 SD Darmah is a fine and very desirable example of this special Italian motorcycle, with fewer than 26,000 indicated miles of use at the time of cataloguing. Attractive throughout and clearly benefiting from good care and storage over its lifetime, this Ducati stands as one of the most-attractive and best-performing Superbikes ever sold to the public.

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