No other motorcycle brand generates the passion like the bikes from Bologna! Having only concluded days ago, World Ducati Week attracted more than 80,000 visitors over three days, hailing from 84 countries and 235 official Ducati clubs were present to fly the flag. The action was hot on and off the track, and the CEO and MotoGP stars rubbed shoulders with fans from around the world. You only have to listen to Andre Frizzarini and Justin Andrew proprietors of Unico Moto from the city of Orlando, to hear the raw enthusiasm they too have for the brand. So, with that passion burning deep they set out to build a dark and moody Ducati, with an almost ominous presence, it’s a 2007 Ducati S4R known as Unico Stealth.
Having previously wowed the crowds with their 1GP machine based on a Ducati Monster, the boys have rightly been the subject of growing attention and admiration. Not only are their designs unique but there is a deep respect for the fact they finance the builds 100% themselves, refusing to cut a single corner before the bike or a variation on the theme is then offered to the public. This no-compromise approach allows them to see their vision absolutely fulfilled without constraints applied from outside sources and it was with this combined passion and unwavering attitude that they attacked the S4R build.
“Our initial build idea for the Unico Stealth was to maintain the retro/modern approach while incorporating a more raw and industrial look by using materials, colours, and choices which would represent that. We knew from the beginning we would be using a Satin Black as our main colour for the bike, from that initial choice we designed and chose the elements that would best contrast and showcase around that stealth satin finish paint job.” The ultimate Monster that is the S4R was then stripped down to just the engine and frame and work could commence.
The frame was cut at the centre, allowing for the Unico style subframe to be built onto the back of it, using quality stainless steel to meet or exceed the OEM specifications. The design is tailored to perfectly support the tail section they had in mind, and the last of the rails neatly run up into the lower seat section which is used to house some of the electrics. The tailpiece itself is minimalist in design, with its angular lines and edges helping to convey the stealth look. Over the top is a custom seat base that is generously foam padded and then black suede is finished with a red stitch.
Faithful Ducatisti will instantly recognise that the factory S4R tank has been removed and in its place slots the far sportier unit from an earlier 749. Clearly, it’s no bolt-on swap, with all new brackets and mounts required for the front and a new bridge section added to the rear, to get the union of seat and tank spot on. “We then added custom tabs on the frame which holds our UNICO custom stainless steel speed grills.” Before a custom Unico Moto blade style fender and mounts were added to the front, and the totally refurbished and repainted swingarm was treated to a carbon fibre fender of its own.
Time to get the beast rolling and “wheels are OEM Marchesini with a new gloss black paint job in order to contrast the flat black tail and tank of the bike.” The suspension has come in for a serious overhaul, with the front end the focus and the upper triple clamp is from the team at Speedy Moto. Through this drops the 43mm Showa fork legs which have been rebuilt internally with new springs and lowered to improve steering. The radial-mounted Brembo calipers are fed by a new CNC master and the clutch side gets the same.
Now the attention could turn to the thunderous Testastretta engine, and the outside has been repainted, and open belt covers fitted for a clean look. Feeding the angry L-Twin is a very evident custom twin filter setup that sends air to the huge 50mm dual throttle bodies. With all of that gas then exiting via the in-house built box muffler, with slash cut tips for added emphasis. But that only makes up part of the sound, as the clutch has been completely rebuilt with upgraded components and is allowed to let out its mechanical soundtrack via an open Ducabike cover. The electrics have been neatly hidden, and the guys added an ECU tuning module to get the most from the package.
To put the rider in full control only the very best would do, and a set of high-quality adjustable clip-ons from Woodcraft get the job done. These wear a host of tasty components, with Domino racing grips, shorty levers, and bar end turn signals and mirrors. Those bars and the more aggressive seating position meant the rearsets had to be overhauled to suit, and new paint, CNC components, and carbon fibre heel guards ensure steady footing. The standard clocks are some of the best and remain in place, with a host of LED lighting and a traditional headlight used to complete the build.
The Unico Stealth has a style all of its own and beware of the unique beast, ready to drop a bomb on unsuspecting racers of the road.