Once upon a time, Cagiva was Ducati and Ducati was Cagiva (depends on how one looks at it) and in those times, the world got some of the most sumptuous motorcycles that could ever be. That said, those who land here more often (and those who don’t, really should start) would know yours truly has a particular affinity towards custom Ducati builds. And, when it is about customs Ducati motorcycles, for years, Pepo Rosell has been the man to be talked about. We have already talked about his Radical Ducati days and how XTR Pepo came into being, extensively in our previous posts. One thing is for certain, Pepo Rosell, no matter how hard he tries, he can never stay away from making the world a better place with his impeccable builds. This stunning Street Tracker build, the Chico Malo by XTR Pepo exactly proves my point.
Based on the humble 1986 Cagiva Elefant 350, the Chico Malo by XTR Pepo is an old classic trail bike that has transformed itself into a stunning street tracker. The Cagiva Elefant 350 was powered by a Ducati Desmo-Twin engine and offered Marzocchi front forks and an Öhlins mono shock absorber while the braking prowess was derived from the bigger Elefant 650 and 750 models. Clearly, the bike has much potential going for it back in the days, however, to make it suitable for present times, the Chico Malo by XTR Pepo had to be special.
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And the Chico Malo by XTR Pepo is special with its front end complete with forks, brakes and wheels being from a donor BMW R100R. Rosell gave the build a Honda CBR900 front brake pump with foldable and adjustable lever for much improved braking performance. The braking improvements continued with the use of Rizoma Next brake fluid containers both at the front and the rear. The street tracker special Vicma Conical handlebars were added to the build for better handling. The clutch for the Chico Malo by XTR Pepo was sourced from the Suzuki GSX-R 600 clutch fittings with a foldable and adjustable lever as well. The switch gear arrived from Triumph and Leonelli. For better response from the engine, Rosell added a Domino quick-gas throttle to the build that also wears Domino Race grips.
Going further into the Chico Malo by XTR Pepo, Rosell added Frentubo brake lines to the Brembo calipers and discs both at the front and the rear. For the fuel tank, XTR Pepo used a modified fuel tank unit from the Mash 125 with a Yamaha SR 250 fuel filler cap. Now for the “Pepo-specials” on the build, the Chico Malo gets a bespoke XTR tracker seat, upholstery, front mud guard, rear sub frame, license plate support, LED rear light, LED indicators and an headlight all made in house by XTR Pepo. The Chico Malo saw the base Elefant 350 chassis get a through modification to suit the street tracker form. The Öhlins rear shock was further shortened while a polished aluminium swing arm along with engine mounts was added to the mix.
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What started out as a base Cagiva Elefant 350, got a Ducati Pantah 350 engine that was bored out to 750cc while a kickstarter and an electrical starter was further added. This meant that the cylinder heads also went through a detailed reworking and capable Keihin FCR 38 flat carburettors were then fitted to provide optimum air-fuel mixture. The air filters were provided by DNA whereas a silent Hektik electronic ignition kit that offers 16 different mappings now takes care of the fuel combustion.
All this meant that the Chico Malo by XTR Pepo needed a complete rewiring of the electrical circuitry. Finally, along with a LIPO battery and quick release gas caps, XTR added a crisp looking Motogadget instrument cluster and a SUPERMARIO 2-into-1 exhaust system combined with a SPARK Megaphone muffler custom built by XTR. The stunning metal flake paint work was carried out by XTR Pepo usual, Pintumoto.