Ducati hit a home run with the GT 1000 as far as we’re concerned. Essentially a factory café racer, it had a classic vibe that belied just how quick it was.
Mysteriously, the sales numbers didn’t add up, and it was eventually dropped from Ducati’s line-up. Finding one today is tricky—and improving on its out-the-box good looks is even tougher. Luckily the Portuguese outfit Maria Motorcycles has an eye for good lines, and a penchant for eye-catching liveries.
Maria’s client had managed to get his hands on a barely-ridden GT 1000, and wanted it transformed into something more at home on the track. The idea was to give the bike an aggressive look to match its performance—and to add a few, carefully selected tech upgrades.
The guys sourced a fairing and tail combo from the US. Then they got lucky: a friend was selling some GT 1000 Paul Smart parts, including a tank and fairing bracket. With some tweaking, everything was eventually pieced together and capped off with a hand-made seat.
Maria kept the GT’s original side covers and front fender, modifying the latter for a neater look. The only changes behind the fairing were a set of clip-ons and grips from LSL, and the stock foot controls were tidied up a little.
At the client’s request, the GT 1000 was intentionally stripped of its mirrors and lighting. “To minimize problems with the authorities,” says Maria’s Luis Correia, “we installed a small fog light in the fairing. It didn’t compromise the look of the bike, and it even gave it a more aggressive look.”
On the performance front, Maria added a complete two-into-one Termignoni system, and had the ECU remapped by Pietro Gianesin of Supertwins Trophy-winning team, GMP Racing. According to Luis, “we didn’t do anything else to the engine, and the bike runs like hell!”
To match the performance, and the more focused riding position, the guys also tuned the suspension. The front’s been setup to match the riders weight and preferences, and there’s a new Bitubo setup at the rear.
All that was left to do, was give the GT 1000 a suitable livery. “Our major objective was to create a racing design, but with glamour and style. Kind of a new take on the concept of sponsor stickers and racing stripes.”
After mulling over more than twenty designs, the crew settled on the black, white, red and blue scheme you see before you, and christened the bike “Bloody Fang.”
We reckon it’ll turn heads—and break hearts—at the next track day.