A tribute to the Ducati 996 SBK
The new Panigale V4 25° Anniversario 916 is characterised by livery inspired by the Ducati 996 SBK, winner of the 1999 World Superbike Championship with Carl Fogarty. The graphics, based on Ducati Red, are distinguished by the number holders of the front and the fairings, where the World Champion’s number “1” is proudly placed.
The lower part of the tank is crossed by a black stripe that extends to the frame and to the side extractors; it accentuates the side view’s dynamism and evokes the side panels of the 996 SBK’s carbon air-box side body panels.
The black colour is also found on the lower fairings and headlight housing, making the two front air inlets visually wider and more threatening. The rider seat exhibits the same colour combination as the bike, with a clear separation between black and red that extends to the rear buffer.
Stickers that reproduce the “Shell” and “Foggy” logos are available to apply on the side fairings and at the base of the Plexiglas respectively; these two details were designed to further strengthen the visual connection with Carl Fogarty’s 996 SBK.
This version’s racing look is completed by the magnesium-forged Marchesini Racing wheels, the Akrapovič titanium silencer and the several carbon and billet aluminium components.
The “Front Frame”, left visible, becomes an integral part of the bike, giving it a tight fairing, practically custom tailored. It relies on the Desmosedici Stradale engine, a load-bearing component. This solution represents the evolution of the Monocoque structure and was born by making use of the experience gained in MotoGP. Compared to the Monocoque, the “Front Frame” makes it possible to decouple the torsional and lateral stiffness so as to achieve the proper amount of pliability with respect to the stresses on the frame, better absorbing uneven road conditions in the curves and ensuring the necessary stability.
All this translates into a superior agility and precision that provides the rider of the Panigale V4 with an easier and less tiring control. The main difference in the layout compared to traditional solutions is the use of the engine as a structural element for the entire frame. The “Front Frame” features a compact frontal structure weighing only 4 kg, secured directly to the upper semi-casing of the front bank and to the cylinder head of the V4’s rear bank, the engine block also serving as a connection point for the rear suspension and pivot point for the single swinging arm.
The most important advantage of the “Front Frame” is the use of the Desmosedici Stradale engine to achieve the desired rigidity, making it possible to significantly reduce the extension of the main frame – and therefore its weight – achieving a superior rigidity/weight ratio. To this advantage is added the fact that the reduced length of the uprights running alongside the engine has made it possible to design a compact motorcycle, especially where the rider sits. The chassis is completed by the lightweight front subframe made of magnesium and the chill-cast aluminium seat support, secured on the top to the “Front Frame” and at the bottom screwed onto the cylinder head of the rear bank. The rear suspension exploits levers attached to the Desmosedici Stradale engine by forged aluminium. The levers react to the movements of an aluminium cast single-sided swinging arm.