Let me start out by making it clear: Ducati built this bike to celebrate Nicky's competitive streak and championship-winning skills while he continued racing for the Bologna squad - current tense. Today, we look at this very differently, and make quiet, respectful references in the past tense. This was not intended to be a remembrance model; tragic events turned it into that. Although Nicky raced for Ducati for 5 seasons in MotoGP, he was never able to duplicate his 2006 championship Honda form on the Italian machines. Yet in 2010 Ducati honored Hayden with a bespoke 848 Superbike showcasing the Kentucky Kid's signature and USA-themed styling elements. Only 150 were made world wide.
The Ducati 848 is the little brother to the 1098/1198, in the same manner as the 749/999 and 748/916 model pairings. In fact, the 848 benefits from many of the same components as the 1198, including oil cooler and radiator. With 134 HP pushing only 370 pounds of bike, the 848 is good for 160+ on the top end. But that is not the whole story. With 70 foot pounds of torque ready to assist you, the Ducati twin is very forgiving should you select a slightly higher gear than the situation calls for. That is one of the Ducati's (not so) secret weapons in the wet; tractable, usable power. The rest of the bike is pure Ducati. That is to say, finished to a high level of specification, including trademark trellis frame, aluminum single-sided swingarm, Showa suspension components front and rear, Brembo monobloc calipers, Termi pipes and Marchesini lightweight wheels.
From the seller:
2010 Ducati 848 NH (Nicky Hayden Edition). Great condition, no mechanical issues at all. Has been well taken care of and runs perfectly. Nothing to fix, ready to ride. Includes Bilt helmet, Sedici lambskin gloves, and full cover. Nicky Hayden autograph on gas tank.
Mechanically speaking, the real differentiation between the Nicky Hayden Edition of the 848 and the standard offering is graphical. There are no extra-sporty bits included with the NHE, unless the signature on the tank inspires you to greatness every time you ride in a manner that a plain red tank just doesn't manage. Otherwise, you are looking at more of a marketing exercise than a technical one; but as usual, Ducati pulled off another great looking bike (at a slight premium over the base model). This particular example looks reasonably well cared for (despite the 38,709 miles on the clocks - something of a record for most Ducati Superbikes), although I would like to know a LOT more about the maintenance history of this bike. There appears to be a license plate eliminator out back, and Nicky's signature is badly faded. Still, it presents decently well.
This 2010 Ducati 848 Nicky Hayden Edition is available on eBay as a Buy It Now classified. The asking price: $6,200. All in all, that is not too bad considering. This particular bike has a few too many miles on it to be a collector, but then again the NHE bikes haven't really appreciated in the same manner as other Ducati limited edition models (the 2000 MHe, for example). And it is too early to tell how the passing of the legend that was Nicky Hayden will play into the future value of these machines. But with only 150 created by Ducati, you can be sure there won't be another one on every corner you pass. Check it out here, and then share your thoughts in the Comments section. Good luck (and Godspeed, Nicky).