Wednesday, November 09, 2016

2017 Ducati 1299 Superleggera unveiled at the EICMA, is a wild, wanton Italian temptress we love

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The 2017 Ducati 1299 Superleggera, in all its red-and-white carbonfibre glory. What a machine!

Ducati have finally unveiled the much-anticipated 1299 Superleggera at the EICMA, in Milan. The bike features a carbonfibre frame, swingarm, subframe and wheels, and weighs a mere 156 kilos (dry weight). That, along with 215 horsepower from itrs desmodromic V-twin means that the 1299 Superleggera is the roadrocket we want, but will never, ever, be able to buy.

Apart from the power and weight headline figures, the bike has electronics. It has so many electronic bells and whistles that Ducati's PR team had to issue a 3,500-word press note to explain all of it. We'll try and distill it down to the essentials - there's a 6-axis Inertial Measurement Unit (6D IMU) that manages all the electronics, advanced traction control (DTC EVO), slide control (DSC), engine brake control (EBC) and launch control (DPL). There's also a newly calibrated Bosch Cornering ABS system and a track kit (included with each of the 500 units of this bike that Ducati will build) that includes an Akrapovič titanium racing exhaust, a racing screen, plate holder removal kit, kickstand removal kit, machined-from-solid mirror replacement plugs, front and rear paddock stands and a bike cover. Sounds good, right?

You want more details? Okay, here we go. The 1299 Superleggera has a carbonfibre monocoque chassis, carbonfibre single-sided swingarm, carbonfibre wheels with aluminium hubs, carbonfibre rear subframe, aluminium fuel tank, carbonfibre fairing, fully-adjustable Öhlins FL936 upside down 43mm fork, multi-adjustable Öhlins TTX36 rear shock with titanium spring and racing-spec Brembo brakes. The 1285cc 'superquadro' Desmo engine puts out 215bhp at 11,000rpm and 146Nm of torque at 9,000 revs. The bike's 17-inch carbon wheels are shod with Pirelli Diablo Supercorsa SP tyres that provide the highest levels of grip possible. And the Mitsubishi electronic fuel injection system, with twin injectors per cylinder and full ride-by-wire throttle management provides strong, seamless power delivery.

The Ducati 1299 Superleggera leaves us speechless really. It's just stunning. And, yes, we're deeply envious of the lucky people who'll actually be able to walk into a Ducati showroom sometime next year, and buy one of these things!

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