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Ducati presents the 1199 Panigale

Posted on November 07, 2011 by acruhl

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Well, here it is, finally: The Ducati 1199 Panigale (pan-ee-gahl-eh) in Strada, S, and Tricolore versions.

Here is the official site:


There isn’t a lot about them that hasn’t already been leaked on the internet that you don’t already know about, other than maybe the electronically adjustable suspension on the S and Tricolore. It’s similar to what the Multistrada 1200 has.

The spring preload will still be adjusted manually, but the compression and rebound damping are adjusted electronically. These also will have presets to correspond to engine performance. On other bikes, you get sort of a “rain”, “sport”, and “race” mode for engine mapping. On this bike, you get that as well but Ducati takes it a step further and also adjusts suspension compression and rebound damping for each mode.

I might be showing my age here, but this gives me the heebie jeebies a little bit. Anyone that has owned a 2 door car where both power windows broke at the same time might know what I’m talking about. And I’m not really sure that someone else can make a better decision about suspension setup than I can. I’m guessing it will be adjustable by the rider so we don’t have to stick with whatever Ducati decides is best for us. Maybe it’s the best thing since sliced bread though.

(Edit: The suspension setting presets are adjustable by the rider.)

The engine is totally new. It’s a short stroke 1200 which has a shorter stroke than my Multistrada 620 and a bigger bore than any other motorcycle that I’m aware of. There are no longer belts driving the cams, which is probably a good thing. You can get more consistent cam timing with chains and they should be lower maintenance. It also has a wet clutch, so no more clutch noise. This might be nice though, you won’t get bothered from people telling you that your bike is about to blow up.

The dash is now a TFT display which a lot of cars are using these days. Hopefully it will be bright enough to see in the sunlight. The automotive press is kind of split on this idea so far, we’ll have to see how it translates to bikes.

The new wheel designs are, ahh, different aren’t they? The Strada model has sort of a 5/10 spoke thing that looks like a split spoke version of the Marchesini wheels on my 998. The S and Tricolore have a very unique looking 3/9 spoke forged aluminum wheel that looks pretty light. The rear tire is a 200/55 which is big and should have quite a large contact patch with the 6″ wheel.

There are some other details which are notable:

o The fork spacing is “World Superbike” spec which might mean it’s wider? I don’t know, I’ll have to look into it. The fork spacing on most bikes has been 8″ for a long time now.

o ABS will be available, but I don’t know if it will be standard on all bikes. It seems like it won’t be. This isn’t a huge surprise since some of the more socially backward countries are requiring it these days.

o The S and Tricolore have all LED lights, apparently including the headlights. The Strada has regular bulbs for the headlights from what I can tell.

o It’s a very light motorcycle. Dry weight is 361.5 pounds, and wet weight is 414.5 pounds. I believe this is lighter than any other 1000 class sportbike. Dry weights these days are meaningless, because some companies measure it without any fluids at all (no fork oil for example), and sometimes even without tires. Seems silly to me.

Anyway, I like it. I’m still not 100% sure that I’ll be getting one, but it’s quickly growing on me. Problem is I have other growths I would need to get rid of first 🙂

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