2017 Ducati 1299 Superleggera

Ducati takes the world of Supersport road bikes to a completely new level by presenting the 1299 Superleggera, the first standard street bike with carbon fibre frame, swinging arm, subframe and wheels. The 1299 Superleggera is the greatest expression of engineering, technology and performance ever put into mass production by a motorcycle manufacturer. 

The quintessence of Ducati is exclusive in everything, even in the limited number of these motorcycles produced: only 500, for a lucky few Ducatistas. 

The fairing, also made of carbon fibre, is just the tip of the iceberg of a unique project that only a brand like Ducati with racing in its DNA could accomplish. 

In fact, under the fairing hides the most powerful version of the Superquadro. With its 215 horsepower*, the Desmodromic EURO 4 engine on the 1299 Superleggera is the most powerful twin-cylinder ever produced, representing the best of Ducati technology. 

The exclusivity of the 1299 Superleggera is underlined by the new electronic package that uses an inertial platform system with six axes (6D IMU - Inertial Measurement Unit) to manage the electronic controls that on this bike rise to a level of primacy. This system has made it possible to further develop the Ducati Traction Control EVO (DTC EVO) presented on the 1299 Panigale S Anniversario thanks to the introduction of the Ducati Slide Control (DSC) which ensures even better performance when exiting corners. 

The 1299 Superleggera is also the first Ducati Superbike to be equipped with Ducati Power Launch (DPL), as well as the Engine Brake Control (EBC) already present on previous versions, reaching the incredible dry weight of 156 kg. 

*The power values indicated above are measured using a chassis dynamometer. Homologated power data, as quoted in the Bike Registration Document, are measured using an engine dynamometer according to the homologation regulation. The two power values may differ because of the different measurement equipments.

Lightness defines the performance of a motorcycle. Cutting-edge materials define its legacy.

Never before has a production motorcycle been endowed with exotic materials to such an extent. Precision crafted components are produced with the highest grade of precisely woven carbon fibre, carefully tuned for optimal rigidity, with a single-minded obsession for astonishing speed and ethereal handling.

Lightweight carbon fibre wheels debut on a production motorcycle and greatly reduce unsprung rotating mass, ensuring breath-taking agility while maintaining maximum resilience. The monocoque frame has been a hallmark of Ducati Superbikes for several years, and has now been expertly engineered in lightweight carbon fibre, as has the subframe which houses the electronics, tail and seat. 

By selecting the very best parts, rendered even more valuable by the use of prestige materials and advanced production processes, the resulting riding experience exceeds even the highest expectations. 

The characteristics of a frame designed with the utmost precision ensure that the race-inspired suspension offers superior balance in terms of stability and handling. At the same time incredible braking performance on entering corners ensures meticulous precision, lap after lap. 

The Superbike world championships are the inspiration behind the design and materials used for the fuel tank – a perfect partnership between man and motorcycle. 

In order to keep the weight to a minimum, even the screws and minor parts are made exclusively from titanium and aluminium. 

This incredible marvel of engineering is most likely never to be repeated in a street-legal twin-cylinder motorcycle. With a bore of 116 mm and stroke of and 60.8 mm, the displacement is now 1285 cc and, thanks to specifically developed components and materials, an unprecedented maximum power output of 215 hp at 11,000 rpm* is obtained while being fully Euro IV compliant. A non-street-legal racing exhaust kit is delivered together with the motorcycle, and guarantees an increase in peak power of 5 hp and a reduction in weight of 4 kg compared to the Euro IV exhaust.

The trademark Desmodromic distribution now features new camshafts that allow for increased valve lift. The new titanium valves now have a larger diameter and are optimised for increased lift, maximising performance. The cylinder head has also been redesigned and now features larger ducts.

New, 116 mm, 2-segment pistons reduce friction, while new titanium conrods ensure weight is kept to a minimum. The high power is channelled through an ultra-compact and lightweight crankshaft, perfectly balanced with tungsten counterweights.

A new forged clutch basket ensures maximum resilience while a new anti-hopping clutch guarantees stability under the hardest braking. The sand-cast crankcase employs production methods normally reserved for the highest level of competition engines.

The extensive use of exotic lightweight materials and production processes guarantee a weight saving over the standard 1299 engine of 2.1 kg. As a testament of the extremely high standards in terms of quality and precision, the long service intervals of the standard engine of 12,000 km for oil service and 24,000 km for Desmo service are maintained.

1299 Superleggera “Base Meccanica” is a showcase of cutting-edge technology, exotic materials, skilled craftsmanship, exacting production methods, design and creativity. The “Base meccanica” epitomises 1299 Superleggera's direct ties with competition motorcycles, and proudly displays the lightweight structure and powerful heart of the most advanced street-legal production motorcycle ever to exit Borgo Panigale.

Much in the same was as a grand complication watch is a timepiece that exceeds the simple display of hours and minutes, so “Base meccanica” is beyond a simple rolling chassis. The most powerful street-legal twin-cylinder engine ever is encased within a masterpiece of engineering that is the full-carbon fibre chassis.

The single-minded obsession of Ducati engineers when setting-out to create the most advanced high-performance motorcycle was to have an astonishing power-to-weight ratio. The extreme lightness is evident in every detail of “Base meccanica”, while the Superquadro engine reaches unprecedented levels of performance. Extreme performance and razor-sharp handling exude from every angle.

The creation of 1299 Superleggera is the extreme test of Ducati expertise and skill. Production methods, testing procedures and quality control techniques used in Aerospace and in applications that require the utmost precision and quality are extensively employed. “Base meccanica” exemplifies this state-of-the-art know-how in an object that is a marvel of technology.