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Ducati Panigale V4 S and Ducati 1299 Panigale S.

V2 vs. V4

Ducati and the V2 rhythm – an unshakable alliance. Until now. The new Panigale V4 is the changing of the guard for the two-cylinder in-house sports bikes. Time for generations to come together and the question of whether the V4 can become the new icon of the Italians. on Sunday, sell on Monday: Hardly any manufacturer fulfills this motto as much as Ducati. Racing transports pure emotions, excites, shifts sober assessments into emotionally laden moments of happiness. That’s what they were and are really good at in Bologna. The superbikes branded adorned the teenagers’ rooms of gasoline-addicted teenagers as posters like only star cuts of pimply soap stars. Two-wheeled dreams with four staples on the corners. This has been the case at least since the official introduction of the Superbike World Championship in 1988. In 1990, Raymond Roche won the first title for Ducati on the 851. The list of champs on red racers includes illustrious names such as Doug Poland, Carl Fogarty and Troy Bayliss, to name just a few. Carlos Checa won the last title in 2011 on the 1098 R. Even if Bologna has been empty since then, Marco Melandri and Chaz Davies are currently still proving the potential of V2.

Ducati Panigale V4 S and Ducati 1299 Panigale S.

V2 vs. V4

Basis for numerous racing victories

Of course, the road-legal vehicles from Bologna do not quite come close to pure racing horses. But they form the powerful basis, form the basis for the numerous victories. What they have also mastered inside out in Italy is design. At Ducati you will immediately hit the hearts of racing fans with the design language. From the epochal 916 to the 1299 Panigale. Thanks to the V2, they all have a narrow waist, with the exception of the 999 – which was also a bit out of place in terms of form – all had perfectly shaped single-sided swingarms, and the sports bikes also often played a pioneering role in the exhaust system. They just knew how to bewitch – always.

Video of the comparison test of the two Ducatis

V4 runs noticeably quieter than the twin

The new Ducati Panigale V4 S wants to follow suit. Gone are the days of the V2 in sports bikes, now it’s going to be four-cylinder. Although you don’t see the V4 S at first glance. The engine and manifold are mostly hidden behind the immensely large water cooler or the plastic casing. Looking at it briefly, only the lettering on the deep red cover reveals the most important change to the Ducati sport bike flagship. Even the pressure on the starter does not reveal the new cylinder layout at first glance. With the engine, Ducati resorted to a constructive trick. Like the MotoGP machines, the V4 does not ignite at intervals specified by the cylinder angle of 90 degrees, but has a crank pin offset of 70 degrees. The first two explosions in the engine follow at a brisk 90-degree interval – and after another 200 degrees of crankshaft rotation, cylinders three and four ignite at the same 90-degree interval. Especially at low engine speeds the V4 sounds close to the V2. Probably one of the reasons why Ducati christened this set-up “Twin pulse firing order”.

The rear of the Ducati Panigale V4 S rises more steeply than on the 1299 Panigale S..

Nevertheless: the V4 runs noticeably quieter than the twin. Its significantly narrower speed range – it turns up to just over 11,000 rpm – at the same top speed requires a longer gear ratio than the V4. In sixth gear it only stretches the sails at an incredible 15,000 revolutions, in the gears below it is 500 tours less. In addition, the V2 has a very even spread of the gears, simply because you cannot translate it as long as you want due to the limited running smoothness in the lower gears. In plain language: The V2 runs in the city at 50 km / h in second rather than third gear. If his first gear were designed to be long in terms of racing, the best would be the second. The V4 masters this challenge in a more civilized manner, allowing gear position three in town without grumbling. The great suppleness is still alien to him. At least at low speeds.

How much power is slumbering in the V4?

The character changes from 6,000 to 7,000 revolutions. Then the V4 works much more civilly. And with almost irrepressible power, while the Ducati 1299 Panigale S never completely shuts down its rough engine running. How much power is slumbering in the V4? Just take a look at the performance. And be surprised for a brief moment because the Ducati Panigale V4 S lands behind the 1299 Panigale when accelerating up to 140 km / h. The cause: A jerky clutch that can be moderately dosed at the start of the race without electronic driving aids meets power en masse. Despite a wheelbase that has grown by more than 30 to 1469 millimeters compared to the 1299 and a weight distribution that collects 53.5 percent of the 201 kilograms with a full tank on the front wheel: The front tire slams in the face faster with the V4 than one would like. Therefore, the sprint up to 100 km / h with 3.4 seconds is cautious for a super athlete. The 1299 does this faster in 3.2 seconds. There is also a lot of weight up front with her. It weighs 194 kilograms with a full tank, 53.1 percent press on the front wheel – the extra weight of the V4 is largely due to the engine. What helps the V2 more when sprinting is the clutch that is easier to dose. Thanks to the automatic gearshifts with blipper function on both bikes, the left hand has a break when changing gears. And the higher the speed, the quieter the front wheel of the V4 dives over the asphalt, the more it pushes itself into the foreground.

A matter of setting: how far the front wheel shoots up when accelerating can be adjusted in eight stages with the V4.

Despite a failed sprint to 100, the Ducati Panigale V4 S storms the 200 mark in just 7.1 seconds, and needs a measly 3.7 seconds from 100 to 200 km / h! The Ducati 1299 Panigale S only masters this after 4.3 seconds. With a decent difference. This turns out to be even more impressive with the drafts. No other production bike can handle these measurements faster. With this, the V4 sets a big exclamation mark, which manifests itself more and more with every meter while driving. Out of the curve in third gear, and the V4 sweeps your head of hair backwards with force under your helmet, knows only one direction from mid-rev: forward, with brilliant power and revving. To be fair, it must be stated that the V4 breaks the usual liter limit in this class with 1.103 cm³. Calculated down to the full liter displacement, it would mobilize 194 hp. But that’s irrelevant at this moment because the country road is the home of the Panigale V4 S. For the competition and the Superbike World Championship, there is also a 1000cc Panigale with a four-cylinder V engine.

Back to the country road

So that all the power of the V4 does not lead to inglorious losses, Ducati’s spearhead has a whole arsenal of electronic driving aids, just like the Ducati 1299 Panigale S. Both include multi-level cornering ABS from Bosch, adjustable traction control, various driving modes and that semi-active Ohlins chassis for equipment. The fork and damper on the Ducati Panigale V4 S can also be adapted to various scenarios such as braking, accelerating and cornering. The 1299 Panigale lacks this feature. An advantage that only comes into play on the racetrack.

The V2 stomps through curves with a full blow, demands concentration, wants to be conquered a bit.

On the other hand, what is appreciated on the country road and the racetrack is the braking performance of the two. Ducati has sharpened them again on the V4 with Brembo’s Stylema brake calipers. In the Ducati 1299 Panigale S, the 330 mm discs still rotate between the high-quality M50 pliers from the same company, in the Ducati Panigale V4 S it is even higher. However, this does not change anything in terms of the effect and dosage, because optimally simply cannot be topped. And this adjective already described the braking system of the 1299 Panigale. On this side of the racetrack, it would be wise to use the most defensive ABS mode, because the sharper settings do not require rear wheel lift detection. As before, the Ducatista has the free choice of changing the values ​​for TC, ABS and Co. stored behind the three driving modes Race, Sport and Street as required. There are no limits to the instinct to play.

Weird fun galore

It is now being lived out on the country road. Weird fun beyond town signs both offer in abundance. The fact that they turn in similarly, stably round curves, and that nothing separates them in terms of handiness is only surprising at first. Because in view of more conservative basic chassis data such as longer wheelbase and caster, as well as a half-degree flatter steering head angle, one should assume a somewhat calmer handling. Thanks to a lot of fine-tuning, which results in excellent balance and weight distribution, the opposite is the case. The backward rotating crankshaft, which primarily counteracts the tendency to wheelie, should also play a small part in this. In addition, Pirelli tailor-made the V4 rear a Supercorsa SP in the 200/60 format, while the 1299 runs on a 200/55 tire. All in all, this raises the Ducati Panigale V4 S to the level of the Ducati 1299 Panigale S in terms of handling and agility.

The 1299 Panigale S took the V2 engine configuration to the extreme. It is clear that the Panigale V4 S is no easy legacy.

This also applies when looking at the price tag. The Ducati 1299 Panigale S, which is no longer available, was last in the showroom for 26,190 euros, while the new Ducati Panigale V4 S costs 27,990 euros. With a consumption of 5.6 liters on the 100 km lap, it also runs here at 1299 level Target. The V2 was satisfied with one deciliter less. Nice: Although the V4 is the first Ducati engine with this configuration and goes to work with a jubilant speed like no other – nothing changes in the inspection specifications. As before, it says: every 12,000 kilometers for inspection, every 24,000 kilometers for valve clearance control.

And what remains in the end?

With the Ducati Panigale V4 S, Ducati has raised its own sports figurehead to a new level. Inoculated him even more sportiness, at the same time noticeably improved everyday life. And all of this without neglecting the emotion of giving up the full blow of the cylinders. Will that be enough to survive the encounter with the competitors of the 1000 athlete squad? The resolution will follow shortly when things go smoothly on the country road and the racetrack.

The ignition sequences in comparison

Two more cylinders and yet the V4 is acoustically close to the V2. A conscious decision by Ducati. First the air-gasoline mixture explodes in the first cylinder, only 90 degrees later it ignites in the second. Then there is rest for 200 degrees of crankshaft rotation before cylinder three is ignited at 290 and cylinder four at 380 degrees. And then: pause.


Firing order of V4 (above) and V2 (below).

If you compare the firing order with the distances on the V2, you will see similarities. The 90-degree ignition interval of the V4 almost feels like a single blow when driving in the lower engine speed range, and the same applies to the ignition of cylinders three and four. It is not without reason that Ducati calls this firing order of the V4 “twin pulse firing order”. As a big bang design, it should protect the tires and remind of the V2. In Bologna they can’t quite let go of its sound.

MOTORCYCLE test result

Ducati 1299 Panigale S.
It took the V2 engine configuration to the extreme, pairing a short stroke with an incredible bore. This also had an effect on the driving experience: demanding, sometimes exhausting. She wasn’t an easy playmate, but she was a fascinating one. Left those happy who hit curves perfectly with her.

Ducati Panigale V4 S.
It is not an easy inheritance. After all, the Sport V2 shaped Ducati like no other drive. And yet: The signs for a successful changing of the guard are good because the V4 makes the Panigale even better. It injects you with more power, offers a more balanced driving experience and can also do everyday life.

Technical data and measured values

Ducati Panigale V4 S. Ducati 1299 Panigale S.
engine type design Four cylinder four stroke 90 degree V engine Two cylinder four stroke 90 degree V engine
injection 4 x Ø 52 mm 2 x Ø 68 mm
coupling Multi-disc oil bath clutch (anti-hopping) Multi-disc oil bath clutch (anti-hopping)
Boron x stroke 81.0 x 53.5 mm 116.0 x 60.8 mm
Displacement 1,103 cc 1,285 cc
compression 14.0: 1 12.6: 1
power 157.5 kW (214 hp) at 13,000 rpm 145.0 kW (197 hp) at 10,500 rpm
Torque 124 Nm at 10,000 rpm 137 Nm at 8,750 rpm
landing gear frame Front frame made of aluminum, engine supporting Cast aluminum monocoque
fork Upside-down fork, Ø 43 mm Upside-down fork, Ø 43 mm
Steering damper electro-hydraulic electro-hydraulic
Brakes front / rear Ø 330/245 mm Ø 330/245 mm
Systems assistance ABS, traction control ABS, traction control
bikes 3.50 x 17; 6.00 x 17 3.50 x 17; 6.00 x 17
tires 120/70 ZR 17; 200/60 ZR 17 120/70 ZR 17; 200/55 ZR 17
Tires Pirelli Supercorsa SP Pirelli Supercorsa SP
Dimensions + weights wheelbase 1,469 mm 1,437 mm
Steering head angle 65.5 degrees 66.0 degrees
trailing 100 mm 96 mm
Front / rear suspension travel 120/130 mm 120/130 mm
Seat height * 825 mm 830 mm
Weight with full tank * 201 kg 194 kg
Payload * 169 kg 176 kg
Tank capacity / reserve 16.0 liters 17.0 liters
Service intervals 12,000 km 12,000 km
price 27,990 euros 26,190 euros
Additional costs 305 euros 305 euros
Readings Top speed * 299 km / h 299 km / h
Acceleration 0-100 km / h 3.4 sec 3.2 sec
Acceleration 0-140 km / h 4.9 sec 4.6 sec
Acceleration 0-200 km / h 7.1 sec 7.5 sec
Pulling 60-100 km / h 2.7 sec 3.1 sec
Passage 100-140 km / h 2.7 sec 2.9 sec
Pulling 140-180 km / h 2.8 sec 3.8 sec
Consumption country road / 100 km 5.6 liters 5.5 liters / super
Reach country road 286 km 309 km

MOTORCYCLE measurements, * manufacturer information

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