The most powerful series superbike on the market
The key player in the superbike segment Ducati just unveiled its latest creation, the Panigale V4. The Panigale story will take a whole new turn from this moment on as the new V4 engine is able to deliver a tremendous amount of power, 226hp on the V4 Speciale version.
The engine is inspired by Ducati’s MotoGP engine, Desmosedici GP, and is called Desmosedici Stradale. The bore is the same as the one used by the GP bikes 81mm making it the maximum dimension allowed by MotoGP. So the Italian manufacturer says goodbye to its old 1299 twin cylinder engine and replaces it with a 1,103cc V4 power plant that remains a stressed part of the chassis.
The numbers for the V4 are a bit overwhelming, imagine a bike that produces more than 210hp at 13.000 revolutions in stock EURO 4 configuration. That’s around 17hp more than previous 1299 two-cylinder engine.
To make the Panigale V4 agiler and to eliminate the gyroscopic effect generated by the wheels the crankshaft is rotating backward. The coolest part of a counter-rotating crankshaft is that it helps reduce the wheelie effect. Ducati claims the Desmo Service which is the standard maintenance interval for Ducati needs to be done at around 24.000km.
The looks follow the same Panigale lines, but the bike is shorter and seems a bit wider. The Air Intake is reshaped, and the redesigned headlight keeps the iconic Panigale appearance. Ducati says the V4 is more sophisticated in every way. For example, the rear shock position is inspired by the MotoGP bike, and the aluminum gas tank goes underneath the rider's seat to keep the masses as low as possible.
The Panigale V4 comes with a new tire Supercorsa SP developed by Pirelli that’s inspired from World Superbike Championship. The rear tire features a revolutionary size 200/60 ZR17 and an innovative profile that maximises the contact path at extreme lean angles. Also, the braking system is a new is fitted with a new set of calipers Stylema developed by Brembo.
The electronics systems are based on a six-axis inertial platform (6D-IMU). The mandatory ABS system features a cornering functionality that engages the ABS even when the bike is leaning into a curve. The DTC (Ducati Traction Control) EVO is more refined and makes interventions quicker and more precise. There’s a Slide Control (DSC) that comes with the DTC EVO, and it lets the rider slide trough the corner corner entry or exit without any emotions. The Panigale V4 also comes with the Ducati Quick Shifter (DQS) EVO that’s now tuned to soften shifting while leaned.
The bike weights 174kg dry and if you combine that with the powerful 214hp V4 engine, you will get 1.23hp for each kilogram. And if this is not convincing enough Ducati comes with a Speciale version that features lighter parts and a full Akrapovic exhaust. This way the V4 Speciale is 10kg lighter and produces 226hp. Unfortunately, the Speciale version will be made in limited series.