The New Ultimate Ducati – The Ducati 1199 Panigale R – Road & Track

25 Apr 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on The New Ultimate Ducati – The Ducati 1199 Panigale R – Road & Track

By Wes Siler April 22, 2013 / Photos by Ducati

Built to homologate Ducati-s World Superbike race machine, the Ducati 1199 Panigale R is the ultimate version of the flagship Ducati 1199. It gains new titanium con rods and a lighter flywheel. Those changes drop the weight of moving parts inside the engine by 1,330 grams and combine with other minor internal modifications to raise the rev limit by 500 RPM for a 12,000 RPM redline.

Thanks to those extra revs, gearing can be made a hair lower without impacting top speed. That means bigger drive out of corners: 10 percent more thrust in 3 rd gear and 18 percent more in 6 th .

The R ships with a track-only Termignoni exhaust system that ups power from 195 hp to 202 hp and torque from 98 lb-ft to an even 100. All that raises the top speed from 186 to 202 mph.

An adjustable swingarm pivot adds to the 1199-s already electronically adjustable suspension, adjustable traction control, adjustable ABS and user-configurable ride-by-wire throttle. As such, individual riders can dial in minute levels of tailoring to suit their needs as they transition between varied weather conditions, tires and different tracks.

Based on what was already the fastest bike Ducati-s ever made, the modifications add up to extra urgency when you open the throttle. Revs pick up faster, making the R simply brutal. Riding it is as much about survival as it is lap times.

Temperatures in Austin barely topped 65 degrees during our test, but the end of each 20-minute session at the Circuit of the Americas was greeted by sweat-soaked leathers, helmet and gloves.

There-s been some concern that, in chasing top-end horsepower, Ducati has lost the torque-laden character that-s defined its previous twins. Not so. While the top-end rush now exceeds that of rival inline-fours, the powerband remains proportionately full through the low- and mid-range, too.

The torque-s not gone, there-s just way more horsepower now.

Ducati 65 S

In addition, with the 1199, Ducati has, for the first time, adopted humane ergonomics. Riding it becomes less about contortion and more about intuitive athleticism. But make no mistake: While the 1199 R is road legal in its stock form, this is a dedicated track weapon for amateur racers and wealthy track day enthusiasts.

The brand new Brembo M50 calipers, while incredibly powerful, are also extremely sensitive. We wouldn-t want to have to use them on a damp, chilly morning.

Without exception, this is the fastest production bike ever to lap a racetrack. During its development, Ducati-s test rider averaged lap times only one second a lap slower than MotoGP-s CRT class. That, on street-legal tires. Despite electronic rider aids like traction control and ABS, it remains both intimidating and difficult to master for any but the most expert of riders.

For them though, the reward is the sharpest, most powerful, most user-configurable motorcycle you-ve ever been able to buy from a dealer.

This Is A Developing Story

Ducati 65 S
Ducati 65 S
Ducati 65 S
Ducati 65 S

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