Ducati Streetfighter 848: The Street for all?

20 Feb 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Ducati Streetfighter 848: The Street for all?
Ducati 848

Ducati Streetfighter 848: The Street for all?

Doubling the Streetfighter 1098 version of 848, Ducati’s roadster revival extreme without the emasculating; incidentally, this “downsizing” allows lower prices. 848 cm3 and if, finally, it was good enough?

Ducati Streetfighter 848: First attempt

The first sight of the new Ducati Streetfighter 848 is nothing exotic: we like it or not its look bestial aggression caricature of the Streetfighter is digested for a long time. Anything that might offend in 2011 on the new 848, this is a little yellow honey which goes well with champagne parts of the bike. Nothing does with the traditional yellow Ducati, one of the 748 of yesteryear, the Super Sport or Sport Classic.

But no matter, because red is there to attract us, or matte black for those who love. Matter of taste…

The 848 is a twin to the 1098, a few details. Let’s say the most remarkable is not seen its price. For € 12 500, you have 132 hp. (free version) and everything you need to exploit, since the traction control is standard.

What makes the Streetfighter motorcycle finally accessible…?

Is this the same as its big sister, the Streetfighter 848? Yes and no. Ducati does not simply throw the engine in the 848 Evo Street. The frame is new, the swing arm too, the suspensions are different, as the handlebars, riding position, brakes, foot rests a little wider … The angle of the steering column goes from 25.6 ° to 24.5 ° to give agility.

So hunting is reduced to 103 mm (114 mm to 1098), which would have caused problems of contact between wheel and radiators if Ducati had redesigned the front of the frame. The wheelbase remains the same (1,475 mm), although the swing arm tapers while maintaining the same length.

Above 20 mm, the handlebar grips to adopt a design drooping, somewhat surprising at first. The suspects are a little less sophisticated than the couple of Showa-Sachs 1098 STD. The 848 uses a binomial Marzocchi 43 mm and an element Sachs, both equipped with a tare less firm than that of 1098 – logic: to spend less power, less weight transfer to control. At the rear, the spring is rated at 75 N / mm for comfort, instead of 85 N / mm on the powerful 1098.

The clips are not inherited piece of the competition, but classic clips again to lower the price of the bike.

The engine benefits from the latest improvements in the 848 Evo, but the valve timing differs. The valve overlap is only 11 degrees (instead of 37 °), increasing the availability and flexibility at low engine speeds while minimizing waste, or an engine less greedy. One might mistakenly believe that these are the 11 ° valve angle: it is only the valve overlap … wrapped in a veneer marketing to differentiate this “new” Test astretta its predecessors.

Of 140 hp. Evo’s 848 there are still 132 for the Streetfighter. Among roadsters under 1000 cm3, today is the best power to weight ratio of the market.

… Confusing road

As appetizers to test the “small” Streetfighter, we borrowed a small mountain road west of Modena, which took us aloft and knit more and more when we came down into the plain. The bitumen offers little grip but no problem since the DTC shall, at position 5. On the latter, some will find traction control too interventionist exiting corners tight, but on these roads a bit tricky, it was almost perfect. We tested the 3 position.

Alerts (red lights) on the dashboard are becoming scarce, and this should be the ideal of a tar-catching.

These sequences of violas were welcome to test the agility of the 848. It is clear that there is no comparison with the 1098! The Piccolo is much easier on the rapid changes of angles and blind corners that close. In extreme cases you press the rear brake and the vehicle remains in the string without difficulty.

The 1098 would have been less in the fun on winding roads.

The twin is the good surprise this bike. At both high performance and relatively conciliatory, he agreed to resume from 2000 rev / min without knocking, but not without grumbling or tremble. It’s better for sure, but it is not yet the sweetness and especially the accuracy of some rivals. I must say that the throttle is very sensitive on the Ducati at low speeds.

The 848 is goodwill but in the end, the bike does not conduct as smoothly as hoped. The Ducati is progressing in the right direction but still manly, a little tricky, a bit demanding to fly properly. This is not the bike that, by his natural and instinctive behavior, makes you drive fast while enjoying the scenery – the Apennines deserve.

In short, he must “get into it.

Easier, less accurate

Especially since the front – and especially the fork – we were not convinced on the road. In its original settings (everything is settled happily), the Marzocchi lack of progressiveness and rebound settles abruptly taking the brakes. It can destabilize the motorcycle entrance turns sometimes.

So we must redouble our attention, watch where you put the front wheel, avoid bumps or slight slope, always aim the front where it will react the least … These are not the best conditions to test a certain serenity to the handlebars.

The brakes do not help elsewhere. They operate in two stages: mild when platelets lick disks, then a little brutal when they bite. Between the power brakes and dip the fork, this gives a pilot a little rough on corner entry.

Ducati 848

The feeling was not quite the appointment but do not jump to conclusions: perhaps those other fork settings can improve the behavior? To be confirmed when we have the bike in France…

Something else has impeded the majority of testers present: the handlebars. With handles and open drooping forward, it is perfect if you look, arms folded. Ideal on tour – as we shall see – but not the desired compromise: on road, upright torso, it is supported on a half-palm, and after half an hour, a little discomfort is felt.

There should always drive to enjoy sporting the new hanger. In town, I doubt he can convince prospective buyers … If the saddle is Spartan, the comfort of the shock is pretty good: a good compromise between sportiness and respect for your sitting.

As for the engine, it’s a real pleasure to take him in the towers, because it grows really strong. While on this road that day, we did not have exceeded 120 km / h. fortunately she was leading us to the circuit….

The recently Modena circuit is certainly a turnstile that has only fast curve, but it allowed us to better understand the personality of the Ducati Streetfighter 848. The beautiful regained his element and we, we found THE Ducati as we know it: front and honest course, precise trajectories, rigidity rarely caught out (at my own pace), exciting engine that reveals a renewed power well friendly around 9000 r / min … even if we should not let it fall too steady output of slow corners, the twin 848 with no gouache of 1098 – but on the track just to adapt its reports.

On the track, the Ducati Streetfighter 848 found it’s superb and gum easily noticed small imperfections on the road. Forget the driving position resting on the palms, the imprecision of the front, and the lack of escalation brakes … Especially since our bikes were pavement Pirelli Pro, SC2 gum, which can get very far as their grip is bluffing.

It’s simple: in the slow corners I crossed the skis as they say (the wheel comes in and gets in the way) for lack of speed of movement, and even with that kind of foul play, the bike remained on its wheels! And if the definition softer suspensions suggest some movement of the chassis, they are never distracting.

Between two closely spaced curves, the DTC can open wide a few seconds without asking any questions. If there is a trick that works great on the bike, it’s traction control. One last word on the engine: even if the straight line of Modena circuit is short, it appears very demonstrative.

Anyway one thing is acquired for the common man: better to use 90% of 132. That 60 of 160 hp!

Appraisal: A roadster connoisseur

More convincing on the racetrack and on the road, the Ducati Streetfighter 848 is a true delight to those who love motorcycles of character. If the Ducati Streetfighter 848 is a motorcycle “easy” in the Ducati range, despite efforts to make it more accessible, it may still be difficult even in its class. This is a motorcycle connoisseur, who pilot.

No one will complain when not to take his foot is probably a little tired in other times.

Softer than 1098, less demanding and less intimidating in full version, the version 848 of the Streetfighter gets a little, just a little, within reach of more in terms of steering. But it is above its price (€ 12,490) that distinguishes it from its predecessor and makes it more democratic today. In 2012, indeed, the standard Ducati Streetfighter 1098 Ducati disappears from the catalog. It will only leave the S version for € 6,400 more than the 848.

So it becomes very reasonable.

Ducati 848
Ducati 848
Ducati 848
Ducati 848
Ducati 848

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