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Ducati Introduces New SuperSport in Cologne

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The Intermot show saw Ducati introduce earlier today the new SuperSport. The SuperSport has attractive sportbike styling with much more comfortable ergonomics … even including a height-adjustable windscreen. Featuring a 937 cc v-twin, the SuperSport is rated by Ducati at 113 horsepower. A SuperSport S version gets Öhlins suspension and a Quick Shift system.  Here is the full press release from Ducati:

Ducati presents the SuperSport, the bike for those eager to ride sports-style on everyday roads. Fun and versatile with true Ducati sports styling and zest, the SuperSport makes riders feel like racers: every day, on any road.

The Ducati Design Center has come up with a dynamic, polished, visually compact, light machine with strong Panigale superbike overtones: a Ducati to the core. A lean and mean road machine, the SuperSport has an approachable feel thanks to easy handling, the confidence-inspiring Ducati Safety Pack (ABS Bosch + Ducati Traction Control), the awesome price-quality ratio of the equipment and the long maintenance intervals.

Agile on city streets, comfortable on the motorway and superlative on out-of-town twisties, the SuperSport is super-versatile. Relaxed rider and passenger positions, good airflow deflection from the height-adjustable Plexiglas screen and the mileage provided by the 16-litre fuel tank also make the new Ducati SuperSport a cool companion on medium-distance rides.

The SuperSport range includes a SuperSport S version with fully adjustable Öhlins suspension, the Ducati Quick Shift up/down system and a rear seat cover: the latter are also available as accessories for the SuperSport.

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Riding Modes (Sport, Touring and Urban), the SuperSport’s temperament can be adapted to ensure maximum enjoyment whatever the riding conditions. Each Riding Mode can, of course, be customised, allowing the bike to be set up quickly to suit personal preferences and riding skills.

The SuperSport frame is the latest development of the famous Trellis design that exploits the engine as a load-bearing element. Compact, light and rigid, it plays a pivotal role in making the SuperSport swift at the drop-in, yet also an instinctual machine that can be ridden by everyone. Intelligent frame configuration has played a key role in keeping wet weight down to around 210 kg. Superb chassis geometry, above all the 1,478 mm wheelbase and 180/55 rear tyre, makes the SuperSport easy to handle on both city streets and mountain hairpins, maximising stability  on bends and at speed.

As one would expect from Ducati, the SuperSport can be fitted with a full range of Ducati Performance accessories (some are included in the Sport and Touring packages) that let owners configure the bike to suit personal wants and needs.

Expert riders will appreciate the true sports personality of the SuperSport, its excellent road performance and an evident penchant for journeying and everyday use. Riders approaching the Ducati sports world for the first time will discover dazzling versatility, easy handling and, above all, the very essence of sports riding as Ducati sees it.

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Ducati SuperSport

·         Colours

  • Two-tone fairing, Ducati Red and Saturn Grey, with Ducati Red frame and Matt Black wheels

·         Main equipment

  • 937 cm³ Testastretta 11° engine with 113 hp and 96.7 Nm at 6,500 rpm
  • Euro 4 emissions
  • 2-1-2 exhaust system with lower pre-silencer and lateral silencer with stacked pipes
  • Trellis frame with load-bearing engine
  • Height-adjustable 2-position Plexiglas screen with 50 mm of travel
  • 3-spoke wheels with Y-shaped spokes
  • Pirelli Diablo Rosso III tyres, 120/70 ZR17 front and 180/55 ZR17 rear
  • Fully adjustable 41 mm Marzocchi forks
  • Sachs shock with adjustable spring pre-load and rebound damping
  • Brembo front braking system with two 320 mm discs and M4.32 calipers
  • Brembo PR18/19 front radial brake pump
  • 3 Riding Modes (Sport, Touring, Urban)
  • Ducati Safety Pack (ABS Bosch + Ducati Traction Control)
  • Ready for Ducati Quick Shift (up/down)
  • Headlight with LED Daytime Running Lights (DRL)
  • Full-LCD instrumentation
  • Under-seat waterproof USB port
  • Ready to incorporate Ducati Multimedia System (DMS)

Ducati SuperSport S

·         Colours

  • Ducati Red fairing with Ducati Red frame and Matt Black wheels
  • Star White Silk fairing with Ducati Red frame and Glossy Red wheels

·         Main equipment

  • 937 cm³ Testastretta 11° engine with 113 hp and 96.7 Nm at 6,500 rpm
  • Euro 4 emissions
  • 2-1-2 exhaust system with lower pre-silencer and lateral silencer with stacked pipes
  • Trellis frame with load-bearing engine
  • Height-adjustable 2-position Plexiglas screen with 50 mm of travel
  • 3-spoke wheels with Y-shaped spokes
  • Pirelli Diablo Rosso III tyres, 120/70 ZR17 front and 180/55 ZR17 rear
  • Fully adjustable 48 mm Öhlins TiN-treated fork (specific “S” version content)
  • Fully adjustable Öhlins shock absorber (specific “S” version content)
  • Brembo front braking system with two 320 mm discs and M4.32 calipers
  • Brembo PR18/19 front radial brake pump
  • 3 Riding Modes (Sport, Touring, Urban)
  • Ducati Safety Pack (ABS Bosch + Ducati Traction Control)
  • Ducati Quick Shift up/down (specific “S” version content)
  • Headlight with LED Daytime Running Lights (DRL)
  • Full-LCD instrumentation
  • Under-seat waterproof USB port
  • Colour-coordinated rear seat cover (specific “S” version content)
  • Ready for Ducati Multimedia System (DMS)

For the SuperSport, Ducati Performance has come up with a series of individually available packages and accessories to bring out the bike’s full versatility and customise it to suit individual taste. Both SuperSport versions can be enhanced with the Sport and Touring packages, which can also be mounted together.

The Sport pack includes:

  • Carbon front mudguard
  • Carbon fuel tank cover
  • Articulated racing lever kit
  • Billet aluminium covers for front and rear brake fluid reservoirs

The Touring pack includes:

  • Pair of semi-rigid side panniers
  • Larger touring screen
  • Heated grips

Individually available accessories not in the packages include:

  • Ducati Performance type-approved exhaust by Akrapovicâ
  • Titanium racing exhaust with twin under-seat pipes, Ducati Performance by Akrapovicâ
  • Öhlins adjustable steering damper
  • Brake lever hand guard
  • Billet aluminium rear view mirror plugs
  • Seat range: high (+ 20 mm), low (-20 mm) and sport
  • Smoke-tinted Plexiglas
  • Ducati Quick Shift up/down (for SuperSport version only)
  • Rear seat cover (for SuperSport version only)
  • Rear LED indicators
  • Bluetooth module for Ducati Multimedia System (DMS)
  • Tank and passenger seat bag
  • Range of carbon and billet aluminium

Design

The Ducati Design Center has come up with a dynamic, polished, visually compact, light machine that is Ducati to the core.

A front-on look shows it has a distinct ‘family feel’ with the Panigale superbike. In addition to the highly distinctive LED Daytime Running Lights (DRL), the headlight’s low and high beam parabolas are positioned in the shadows of the assembly, almost hiding them from direct frontal view: just like those mounted on the top Ducati sports models.

Low-set, streamlined and assertive, the SuperSport nose fairing flows naturally into the steel fuel tank structure, carrying the colour scheme all the way into the well-designed cockpit that houses  the LCD instrument panel. A sports-style Plexiglas screen with two different height settings ensures aerodynamically efficient airflow protection.

Seen side-on, the lines, proportions and volumes are typical of Ducati sports bikes, with the streamlined tail and sculpted tank playing a pivotal role. The latter is coupled to both the main and nose fairings by beefy buttresses that enclose the Trellis frame. Cut to reveal exhaust manifold and engine, the lower fairing is designed to be easy on the eye, a must on a Ducati SuperSport.

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Ducati’s scrupulous attention to technical components is also seen in the compact, sports-style stacked dual-pipe side muffler. Shaping and low-slung design bring out the dynamism of the tail, leaving the rear wheel Y-spokes in clear view and providing plenty of room for side panniers (available as accessories).

The single seat, the rider and passenger areas of which are outlined by contrasting stitching and just a hint of a rider “backrest”, is comfortable for daily use yet also highly suited to sports riding. Seen from above, the tank and nose fairing form, together with seat shaping, that unmistakeable silhouette shared by the sportiest Ducati motorcycles.

Ergonomics

Utmost attention to the ergonomic triangle, aerodynamic protection and the rider’s freedom of movement has resulted in comfort, versatility and jaw-dropping sports handling. The rider zone of the one-piece seat is just 810 mm off the ground, allowing feet to be placed firmly on the ground. Handlebar height does not place undue strain on the wrists and foot  peg positioning prevents knees becoming tired while maximising control. The height-adjustable Plexiglas screen can be set to two different positions over 50 mm of travel, ensuring adequate airflow protection even at motorway speeds; enhanced protection can be had by fitting the larger Plexiglas touring screen, available as an accessory. Comfortably separated rider and passenger footpegs and a snugly compact lateral silencer ensure maximum freedom of movement.

The benefits of the riding position are evident during both everyday and medium-length journeys and also ensure fun-packed sports riding.

The passenger section of the seat is well separated from the footpegs and features comfy padding. Long-distance comfort levels can be given a further boost by choosing a seat with extra padding from the broad accessory range; the latter also offers external passenger grab rails that give a  more ergonomic grip compared to the standard under-seat ones.

Engine

The SuperSport is powered by a specially adapted version of the already renowned and appreciated 937 cm3 twin-cylinder Ducati Testastretta 11°. Euro 4-rated, it has four valves per cylinder, a secondary air system, liquid cooling, a 12.6:1 compression ratio and bore and stroke measurements of 94 and 67.5 mm respectively. Engine output amounts to a huge 113 hp at 9,250 rpm and a maximum torque of 96.7 Nm at 6,500 rpm.

On the SuperSport, the Testastretta 11° engine features crankcase and cylinder heads that have been redesigned to make the power unit a fully stressed part of the frame; further modifications include re-routing of the water through the heads and a specifically designed alternator cover to allow installation of the new gear sensor. Large 53 mm throttle bodies – smoothly controlled by the full Ride-by-Wire system – allow the engine to gulp in the air-fuel mix. Moreover, this engine also features unprecedented control and injection systems.

Featuring ducts with an external diameter of 54 mm, the exhaust system has a 2-1-2 layout in  which a lower pre-silencer is connected to a lateral silencer with two extremely compact stacked pipes.

Maintenance is as worry-free as it gets: the twin-cylinder engine has a service interval of 15,000 km (9,000 miles) or 12 months, with valve play inspection every 30,000 km (18,000 miles).

Engine power is transmitted via a 6-speed gearbox with a new gear sensor. This means bikes in the SuperSport range can be equipped with the cutting-edge Ducati Quick Shift (DQS) up/down unit, offered as standard on the SuperSport S series and available as an accessory for the SuperSport.

Featuring low-effort wire control, the clutch is of the oil-bath slipper type. The slipper function cuts  in when the rear wheel exerts back-torque, reducing pressure on the discs to ensure vehicle stability during the aggressive downshifting that is typical of competitive riding.

Power and torque curves

With a torque curve that creates pulling power right across the rev range, the twin-cylinder Ducati Testastretta 11° engine offers a secure response to every twist of the throttle: a must on a bike mainly intended for road use.

At 3,000 rpm, some 80% of maximum torque is already at the rider’s fingertips: higher revs are met with a decisive, linear increase in torque, peaking at 96.7 Nm at 6,500 rpm. Beyond that threshold the torque curve slopes down gradually yet still remains above 90% with the revs at 9,000 rpm; the maximum power of 113 hp is delivered at around the same point, at 9,250 rpm.

On the road, the Testastretta 11° guarantees plenty of power throughout the rev range, meaning whip-like acceleration out of the corners, fewer gear changes and unparalleled riding enjoyment. Even on the road, riders can make full use of the bike’s 113 hp as the engine gives the reassuring sensation of total vehicle control.

Engine control and injection systems have been tweaked to make the most of the twin-cylinder’s innate characteristics, taking into account the likely usage of the SuperSport. Electronic throttle control ensures precise transmission of the rider’s wrist action to the engine; there follows a smooth, always-certain response that perfectly matches the SuperSport’s immense versatility.

Frame

The SuperSport makes excellent use of new Trellis frame design developments that exploit the engine as a fully stressed element. Both cylinder heads are connected to the main steel frame: the seat sub-frame – again made of steel – is, instead, connected to only the vertical cylinder head. This configuration gives a highly compact, light frame of high torsional rigidity, just perfect for bringing out the SuperSport’s superb dynamic performance. Moreover, this frame-plus-engine load-bearing configuration helps keep wet weight down to around 210 kg.

Combined with a steering geometry that features a 24° rake and 91 mm trail, the 1,478 mm wheelbase gives the SuperSport lightness, excellent handling and superlative drop-in performance, maximising stability on corners and at speed. Those characteristics are also made evident – right from the first ride on the SuperSport – by the choice of rear tyre: the 180/55, in fact, does an impressive job of combining great handling with an optimised contact patch. Frame performance is also brought out by the 48° lean angle, ensuring limitless on-road fun.

Another source of SuperSport flair comes from the smartly designed forged aluminium handlebars, mounted on the top yoke, that leave the fork adjusters in view.

Featuring die cast aluminium supports, the footpegs are patterned to maximise grip. They can, however, be replaced with rubber-lined pegs more suitable for urban riding. Rider footpegs come complete with aluminium heel guards. Passenger pegs are directly connected to the rear sub-frame and can easily be removed to give the bike a racier look.

Underneath the seat there is, in addition to the tool kit, a convenient waterproof USB phone  charger port.

Suspension

Like all true Ducati sports bikes, the SuperSport features adjustable suspension and a single-sided die cast swingarm that is light yet extremely rigid, giving the bike a decidedly technical, professional look.

Up front we have 43 mm Marzocchi forks with fully adjustable damping and pre-load. The rear features a Sachs monoshock – attached to the vertical cylinder at one end and the swingarm at the other – which allows for adjustment of spring pre-load and rebound damping.

The SuperSport S mounts a refined multi-adjustable Öhlins suspension set; up front the 48 mm TiN coated forks maximise smoothness while the rear has a fully adjustable Öhlins monoshock with integrated gas cartridge.

Tyres and wheels

The SuperSport features alloy wheels, with three aggressive-looking Y-shaped spokes,  measuring

3.50 x 17 at the front and 5.50 x 17 at the rear. The wheels mount the new Pirelli Diablo Rossoâ III tyres, 120/70 ZR 17 at the front and 180/55 ZR 17 at the rear. The Pirelli Diablo Rossoâ III – the direct successor of the Diablo Rossoâ II – gives even better sports handling and grip, raising road tyre performance to unprecedented levels. The Diablo Rossoâ III offers new profiles, latest- generation materials, innovative construction, new compounds and a tread pattern that stems directly from the Diabloâ Supercorsa, ensuring maximum yet long-lasting performance in terms of safety, consistent response and grip (also in the wet).

Braking system

The SuperSport braking system is, in terms of technical content and visual impact, very similar to those seen on the highest-performing sports models. At the front, radial monobloc Brembo M4-32 calipers – powered by a Brembo PR18/1 radial pump with separate reservoir and adjustable lever – squeeze two 320 mm discs. At the rear the SuperSport has a 245 mm disc gripped by a 2-piston Brembo caliper. The Brembo system offers powerful braking with excellent linearity between the applied force and actual braking. This translates into ready responsiveness, giving first-rate ‘fingertip feel’. The braking system is controlled by the Bosch 9MP ABS system with 3 mappings.

Ducati Quick Shifter (DQS) up/down

Ducati Quick Shift (DQS) up/down is a race-derived electronic system that lets riders up-change and down-change without using the clutch and without having to close the throttle to move up a gear. It consists of a two-way microswitch built into the linkage of the gear change lever; when actuated, it sends a signal to the ECU. The system works differently for upshifts and downshifts, integrating adjustment of spark advance and injection during upshifts with an auto-blipper function during downshifts. Extent and duration of system operation are designed to ensure seamless gear meshing under all riding conditions; during downshifts the system works in concert with the slipper clutch. Because upshifts can be made under full acceleration without using the clutch, precious fractions of a second that would otherwise be wasted in closing the throttle are gained: moreover, stability is improved as power delivery is absent for less time. Clutchless downshifting allows smooth gear engagement, letting riders focus their attention on braking and corner entry. This system not only enhances the thrill of sports riding: it also lends a welcome hand in city traffic or on winding roads requiring frequent gear changes. Ducati Quick Shift (DQS) up/down is fitted as standard on the SuperSport S and is available as an accessory for the SuperSport.

Ducati Safety Pack (DSP)

The SuperSport features a Ducati Safety Pack (DSP) that includes Bosch 9MP ABS and Ducati Traction Control (DTC). Together, they intensify dynamic performance, optimise control and ensure safety levels that are among the highest on the market.

Bosch ABS System
The SuperSport mounts a Brembo braking system controlled by the 9MP Bosch ABS multi- calibration system with internal pressure sensor. Bosch 9MP ABS prevents wheel lock and rear wheel lift-up, shortening braking distances and enhancing stability. Three-level adjustment allows users to switch from one level to another by selecting the desired Riding Mode: this ensures settings are optimal whatever the riding conditions. Level 1 is recommended for high-grip surfaces. In this configuration the Bosch ABS provides track-type performance, acting on the front wheel only and disengaging the rear wheel anti-lift function; level 1 is not the default setting in any Riding Mode but riders can associate it with the Riding Mode of their choice by entering the specific menu. At level 2 the Bosch ABS also acts on the rear wheel and the anti-lift function  is engaged. Maximum braking and rear wheel lift control is obtained by setting the system to level 3. The Bosch ABS system can be switched off in any Riding Mode and will stay off until the next Key-On. Factory settings can be restored with ease via the “default” option.

Ducati Traction Control (DTC)

The DTC detects and subsequently controls any wheelspin, enhancing both bike performance and active safety. DTC has eight profiles or “levels of sensitivity”. Each is programmed with a different wheelspin tolerance that corresponds to progressive levels of riding skill and/or grip conditions (classified from one to eight). Level 1 reduces system intervention to a minimum, while level 8 maximises sensitivity. The SuperSport has an optimised DTC software version. This ensures a fluid response by intervening on spark advance only, reducing torque until full rear end grip is re- established. While Ducati sets DTC levels for each of the three Riding Modes, they can be individually personalised and saved to satisfy riders’ specific needs. The DTC function can be switched off in any Riding Mode and will then stay off until the next Key-On. Factory settings can  be restored with ease via the “default” option.

Ducati Riding Modes

Ducati Riding Modes let riders choose between different engine parameter and electronic control settings to adapt the bike to individual riding styles and different road conditions. The SuperSport has three Riding Modes – Sport, Touring and Urban – each of which acts on the electronic Ride-by- Wire system (to modify power and delivery), on Bosch ABS and DTC levels and on DQS up/down activation. Riding Mode can be changed on the move simply by pressing the relative key. Personalisation of factory-set Riding Mode parameters, however, can only be done with the bike at standstill for safety reasons. Factory settings can easily be restored at any time via the “default” option.

Sport
Sport Riding Mode lets riders unleash the SuperSport’s full potential. The engine delivers 113 hp with direct Ride-by-Wire throttle twist response, DTC has a low setting (level 3), Bosch ABS is at level 2 and rear wheel lift-up prevention is set to medium. DQS is on.

Touring
Touring Riding Mode ensures an exceptional balance between performance and comfort. The engine delivers full power (113 hp), the Ride-by-Wire system responds progressively to throttle twist, DTC is set to medium (level 4) and Bosch ABS to level 3 to ensure maximum braking control and stability. DQS is on.

Urban
Urban Riding Mode has been designed for surfaces which afford little grip. Power is limited to 75 hp, the Ride-by-Wire system responds progressively to throttle twist, DTC intervenes more assertively (level 6) while Bosch ABS is kept at its level 3 setting. DQS is off.

LCD Instrumentation

Lights on the upper section of the compact SuperSport instrument panel show neutral, high beam and DRL info; further warning lights highlight ABS status, DTC status, DTC intervention, engine error (MIL), rev limit, oil pressure and fuel reserve situations. The lower section, which shows all  the other data, includes an LCD display dominated by a semicircular rpm graphic that frames the speedometer.

Further on-display information includes: total distance ridden, trip1 and trip2, engine coolant temperature, ambient temperature, clock and DQS on/off status (where applicable). And the info just keeps on coming: fuel level, distance remaining, real-time fuel consumption, average fuel consumption, average speed and trip duration. Selected Riding Mode and corresponding ABS and DTC levels are shown at all times.

The LCD instrument panel is also ready to display info related to the Ducati Multimedia System (DMS); the latter lets riders connect their smartphones via the Bluetooth module (available as an accessory) and control some of its functions via the switchgears. The panel displays music player controls and earphone connection, incoming call and received message icons.

Headlights and indicators

The SuperSport headlight is the result of in-depth design work aimed at reinforcing the styling ties with the Panigale superbike and making the motorcycle immediately recognisable on the road. The front headlight features LED Day Time Running Lights (DRL), to ensure riders stay seen during the day, and eye-catching design to reinforce the ‘family feel’ with the Panigale. High and low beam headlight parabolas are artfully concealed in the shadows of the DRL assembly. Tail lights, plate lights and the front indicators embedded in the rear-view mirrors are all of the LED type, while the bulb-lit rear indicators can be replaced with LED versions available as accessories.


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49 Comments

  1. Andrew Douglas says:

    I’m not a big Duc fan (cost, maintenance, reliability…) but this bike has my attention. It fills a real need — a sport-tourer with the emphasis on “sport.” The original VFR was like that. The new one is a step in the right direction but not quite there. This has all the stuff I love about sportbikes, in a package designed for real-world use. I ride a GSX-R750 on the street and an R6 on the track. The GSX-R is just silly on the street. I need a bike exactly like this Duc.

  2. Fivespeed302 says:

    To put things into perspective, this bike makes similar power to the second generation CBR900RR. I would add an aftermarket cruise control, but otherwise it’s perfect. I’ll take the White S model, thanks.

  3. Jack Hammer says:

    Ducati pulled the rug beneath Honda’s feet. Their SuperSport is everything the VFR800 should have evolved into. I just wished it showed up earlier as I switched to the KTM 1290 Suer Duke GT and lovin’ life.

    Go Ducati!

  4. JPJ says:

    Good Job by Ducati !! I’m an owner of a Monster 1100EVO,last of the 2V air cooled.A wonderful machine with a little tuning. Noted earlier, you don’t need 160+HP to have a great motorcycle. This new supersport will bring potential buyers into the dealerships.

  5. D3 says:

    Soooo, it’s a Monster with some added fairing?

  6. Norm G. says:

    kinda like a Multi-12 with 6 inches of travel cut from the suspension.

  7. Neal says:

    Hmmmm, historically Ducati’s sportbikes have been gorgeous. This looks very vanilla aesthetically. Just because something is inexpensive or entry doesn’t mean it can’t be gorgeous (IMO of course).

    • Dave says:

      I think this is every bit a Ducati. Of course the proportions will be different from a Pannigale, they have to be for the bike to meet it’s mission. I expect they’ve toned it down a little bit on purpose in order to attract a less aggressively minded rider.

      I doubt this will be inexpensive. Another article I read priced it in British Pound @ 10,999 and cited it was 1k higher than it’s next nearest competition. We’re in a favorable exchange rate period now so maybe USD pricing will be competitive, though we’re enjoying that same exchange rate with the Japanese Yen (look at what Yamaha’s done..).

  8. Vrooom says:

    I used to love those old 900 air cooled supersports you could get for a song back in the 90s. I seem to recall you could find them for around $8K, and they were great fun to ride. More about handling than power. Hope this is more of the same, albeit liquid cooled. 462 lbs sounds good.

  9. Trent says:

    I really like this bike. Doesn’t look like I’d need to customize anything once I got it, either.

  10. Tim C says:

    Looks like someone left a Ducati and a Kawasaki in the garage together when they went on vacation.

  11. Grover says:

    Poor man’s Panigale…that’s not a bad thing at all. Depending on how it’s priced it should be a raving success. Sure, it doesn’t make 180 hp but most riders are scared of that kind of power anyways. I like it.

    • Fivespeed302 says:

      I agree and stated in another post that this motor is comparable to the second generation CBR900RR. Nobody was calling it underpowered in it’s day. This bike should be a blast.

  12. RD350 says:

    I’m sure this is a fine bike mechanically but styling-wise, Ducati has lost its way (much like the Japanese). Take a look back at the beautiful 1990-2002 SuperSport line to see just how far they have fallen. Massimo Tamburini must be doing back-flips in his grave.

    • Selecter says:

      Just a note on that : the ’99+ Supersport wasn’t designed by Tamburini. 😉

    • Scott says:

      Funny how they sell about 10 times as many motorcycles now as they did in the 90’s…

    • Chip Hoopong says:

      Funny, I was just at a track day on Monday, marveling at how bizarrely ugly the early 2000’s SuperSport is.

      On the track I only got to see them from behind, though, and they look good enough from that angle. Only fast guys seem to ride ugly Ducatis, based on my informal study of the subject. Pretty Ducatis are all over the map though.

      • Scott says:

        I rode my wife’s ’04 800 Supersport on the track once, for a few laps. I hated it. Something about the tank/seat shape, combined with the bar/peg arrangement made it very hard for me to find a comfortable cornering position. I’ve ridden many different kinds of bikes on race tracks. Aside from sport bikes, I’ve ridden anything from a WR450 Supermoto to a VFR800, to my ’08 Hypermotard, and nothing has ever felt so awkward to me as that Supersport. Bizarre…

  13. Bruce19 says:

    It’s an alternative to the Panigale and it has some interesting tech features (not all of which I want) but it’s not a Supersport. The design of the pillion precludes it’s use for anything more than 1/2 hr. I’ll be keeping my SS1000DS. I’ve used three different Supersports for a multitude of purposes. This bike doesn’t look like it will do what I need. I hope to be proven wrong. Although the Japanese design might keep me off one anyway.

    • Supersport says:

      C’mon Bruce, I owned a 1999 900 SS and its passenger seat was no great shakes – good for maybe 50 miles at best. This is, indeed, a Supersport, just updated for the times. Just what is it you need that this bike won’t do? OBTW, the S model has a totally red fairing, unlike the base version, so it looks more like the Ducati you had hoped for.

    • Selecter says:

      The design of the entire ’99-’06 Supersport series precluded anything more than 1/2 hour for anything at all! I, personally, loved the design… but what a torture rack!

      • Dave says:

        It seems some want this bike to be more like the ST 3/4, which are great bikes, but not what this is supposed to be. But yeah, I wouldn’t ask anyone I liked to ride that pillion for more than a handful of miles.

    • JVB says:

      The Carb 92-98 SS were far more ergonomically friendly than the FI 99-96 versions. I’ve put many 300Mi days on my ’98 FE. Ducati seats have always been firm with sharp edges. KTM must have hired the guy!

      I think Ducati needs a “sporty” bike that isn’t priced in the stratosphere, has power that isn’t top loaded like the panigale’s I4-type powerband, and roominess/ergos for an all day ride. An honest rear wheel 100Hp/80ftlb with a good 3-6K torque retention. The 2V engines are hard to beat as a great all round street engine (I have 3 different 900 engine bikes), yet always seemed to need just a bit of tuning to wake them up. I always loved the “solid” side panels that the carb version had. Todays bikes have a haphazard/hatchet job look that is way to busy. I question the tank side panel juncture on the new version. Would a tip over lead to replacing both?

  14. VEGA says:

    Okay, A single sided swingarm…

    Panigale inspired looks…

    CBR600F4i like ergos…

    A thumping and roaring V-Twin…

    Available in Marblo Red…

    And…

    It says Ducati on the tank…!

    ME WANT…!

  15. Jeremy in TX says:

    I personally think it looks great, and the ergos seem pretty kind for a sporty bike.

    • VLJ says:

      I see it the exact opposite way. I think the looks are entirely uninspired and borderline cheap/unattractive, and the seating position doesn’t look very comfortable at all. Sure, it’s more comfortable than a Panigale, but it appears to suffer from the same issue as all the recent VFRs: not a racebike, and not comfortable enough to be an all-day bike, particularly for those who are old enough to afford such a bike.

      • Dave says:

        Maybe look closer. Pegs directly under the seat, seat scooped so it’s low making the bar position higher than it looks relative to the fairing & tank. A classic “sheep in wolf’s clothing”.

      • Jeremy in TX says:

        I can’t argue with you on the VFRishness. I don’t think the ST2/3/4 was ever a bike seller for Ducati, and I’d be a little surprised if this bike bucks that trend.

  16. Provologna says:

    IIRC, virtually exactly the same wet curb weight as Suzuki’s GXS1000SF sport/touring full fairing pavement ripper w/about 25 more hp. The GX is said to be smoother than the Ninja 1000 BTW. Tough sell outside the brand lust item mentioned above.

    It is increasingly difficult to recall the time when the Japanese had trouble making well balanced motorcycles.

  17. Buzz says:

    I figure all the message board posters who want a sport tourer that’s more sport than tour will stepping right up, right?

    I put many miles on a 2000 Ducati ST4 back in the day. This is a beauty.

    • Max says:

      Former long time ST4/s owner too. I also think this bike looks great. Wish they still made bikes in that old ST4 yellow though. It’s the bike I’ve been campaigning for them to make since they came out with the Pannigales. And wouldn’t ya know it, I just went out and bought a Thruxton!

      • mickey says:

        what is it about bikes that most everyone says “former owner of” but not “current owner of”? (wasn’t good enough to keep? Issues? dealer issues?)

        • Buzz says:

          I don’t keep any motorcycle longer than 5 years.

          And my ST4 was gorgeous Ducati Yellow.

          I test ride a used bat barf gray ST4s at a local dealer a few months back. They were asking $2500. I forgot how freaking loud they were!

          I was tempted but didn’t want to buy a 13 year old Italian motorcycle.

  18. jim says:

    Definitely not up to Ducati’s usual hotness.

  19. Mr.Negative says:

    I hate to be positive but, I think this looks good.

  20. bmbktmracer says:

    I think they missed the mark. It’s just not “pretty” and older folks that buy practical sportbikes — I think — want style and the ability to personalize the bike a bit. If they made something more in line with the Paul Smart redo of a few years back, but with an emphasis on rideability and modern technology, I think it’d be a hit.

  21. WillieB says:

    The Touring pack includes:

    Pair of semi-rigid side panniers
    Larger touring screen
    Heated grips

    • VForce says:

      Nice, but still not what most would want…Hard bags. You can mount “semi ridid” soft bags on just about anything with a lower mount exhaust. The ST bags were not bad, and the ‘Strada’s bags are nice also.

      After you have had a bike with actual Panniers/ luggage, using soft luggage leaves you flaccid. (Sorry, couldn’t resist)

      • Scott says:

        They already have the Hyperstrada and the Multistrada. Why would they need to build yet another sport-touring bike?

        You know what they don’t have? A nice, affordable SPORT bike that isn’t a naked standard, or a cruiser, or a scrambler, and that looks like a superbike, but doesn’t fold you into a racing crouch to ride it…

        Well, they have that now. Well done, Ducati!

        • VForce says:

          ‘Cuz Ducati can’t give Hyperstatas away Scott. That has come directly from several Ducati dealers. Who the hell can tour on that thing.

          Not everyone wants an ADV bike to tour on. I prefer a more sport touring layout and judging by the amount of FJR /Concours/ BMW RT / Sprint on the road, so do a great many as well.

          So many Ducati fanboys here. Relax. It’s a great bike. So great it probably still won’t sell worth a damn.

  22. VForce says:

    Hmm. Mixed on this one, but I am not really a buyer anyway full disclosure.

    The LED headlight looks odd to me. Seems to be trying to hard to keep the cost down and tie in the family resemblance to the Panigale. But in the end just doesn’t seem quite right.

    The black trim on the red lower fairing looks very Japanese / cheap. If I were in the market for one, it would have to be the white/ red just because of that.

    Nice job on making the exhaust look like an exhaust and fit with the style of the bike.

    I am surprised that Ducati did not even attempt to make luggage available for this bike. Seems like they missed an opportunity here to resurrect the ST series from the 90’s/ early 2000s. Not everyone wants an ADV bike / Multistrata. Givi and soft luggage may find a way but Ducati should have thought of this from the factory.

  23. TF says:

    I’ll take a white one please.

  24. mickey says:

    Looks very Japanese-ish to me.From the side almost looks like a 650 Ninja. But then again I am not a sport bike guy and they all look similar to me.

    • xLaYN says:

      “From the side almost looks like a 650 Ninja”
      I agree with you.

      So… single side swingarm… enough power, 500 pounds wet (as probably the weight is probably in dry) and “Relaxed rider and passenger positions”… if married to a reasonable price we could see a best seller.

      Tough market with the GSX S1000F and ninja 1000, will be interesting to see how it fares.

      • Dave says:

        I’ve read elsewhere that they’re claiming 462lb wet. This seems like the bike many VFR fans wish Honda would’ve made. I can’t see many of this customer cross-shopping those other bikes. “This is a Ducati”. That’s brand lust that none of the Japanese brands have.

        • xLaYN says:

          You are correct, I misread, the weight is stated as wet.

          “This is a Ducati”. That’s brand lust that none of the Japanese brands have.

          You may also be right on that, the best counterpoint I can come with is that sometimes you buy something for a very particular reason, both Japanese examples I think have more hp or you may prefer the sound of an I4.