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2018 Ducati Panigale V4 S - 2

The 2018 Ducati Panigale V4 Unveiled – And The Panigale V4 “Speciale” Too!

Ducati Unveil The 2018 Panigale V4 and Panigale V4 Speciale Models!

It’s out with the old and with the new: the 2018 Ducati Panigale V4 has arrived. While we were always a fan of the classic v-twin superbike arrangement, the introduction of a new V4 will help launch Ducati into new territory. The new Desmosedici Stradale engine is a landmark achievement for Ducati, and the Panigale V4 looks to be one hell of a motorcycle.

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Recently unveiled at a press conference at Milan’s EICMA show, we can finally see what the Ducati Panigale V4 officially looks like. We’ve seen the engine already. We’ve seen blurry spy shots of the Panigale V4 in the garage, but now for the first time we can see it properly in all of its glory: this is the 2018 Ducati Panigale V4, and you’re looking at history in the making.

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The 2018 Ducati Panigale V4 Has Arrived!

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So what makes the V4 different from the V-twin aside from the obvious addition of two cyclinders? Combined, the new 1,103cc V4 arrangement has a rather impressive 214 hp at the crank, 88.5 lb-ft of peak torque. The Desmosedici Stradale engine also boasts a “Twin Pulse” 0-90-290-380 firing order, which Ducati hope will make the new four-cylinder arrangement feel more like a regular Ducati for fans of the Italian marque that fear too much change. So rather than call it a V4, it’s really more like two v-twins stuck to each other instead.

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There’s more to the new breed of Panigale than an engine change. To really set the Panigale V4 apart from the crowd, Ducati have treated it with cornering ABS, dynamic slide control from Bosch, and an up and down quickshifter that cleverly adjusts itself to adapt to individual riding styles, and allows for seamless shifting when the bike is getting ridden to the limit. The chassis uses the engine as a stressed member like in previous Panigale models, with aluminum features and a single sided swing arm. If you’ve got your eye on the base model, then your suspension duties are handled by Showa Big Piston forks at the front, and an adjustable shock from Sachs at the rear. There’s also a Sachs steering damper too.

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And The 2018 Ducati Panigale V4 Speciale?

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But if you’re feeling saucy and opt for the Ducati Panigale V4 “S” then you get a few more boons. And yes, of course there’s an S version.  This model will be known as the 2018 Ducati Panigale V4 Speciale, and it’s the rich man’s version of the new V4. There are a few things that separate it from the base model, and all of them are good.

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For a start, the Speciale has upgraded suspension. Up front, the S-model boasts Öhlins NIX-30 electronic suspension at the front, an Öhlins TTX36 shock at the rear, and an Öhlins steering damper for good measure. The braking duties are handled by Brembo Stylema four-piston calipers, with 330mm rotors. Next, Ducati also treated it with a lithium-ion battery, impressive forged aluminum wheels from Marchesini, and a rather unexpected cast magnesium sub frame. Thanks to these changes, the Panigale V4 Speciale weighs in at 383 lbs dry, making it only a little heavier than the twin-cylinder 1299 Panigale of yesteryear.

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A full titanium Akrapovic exhaust system also features on the 2018 Ducati Panigale V4 Speciale, and wit that exhaust bolted on, and with a reflashed ECU, Ducati promise that the S-model can push out a rather sensational 226 hp. And that is some impressive power-to-weight magic.

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We haven’t got any news on the pricing for either model but we know this: if you’re tempted by the 2018 Ducati Panigale V4 Speciale, you’d better get on the phone to your nearest dealer right now and express your interest. Only 1,500 models are coming this way, and long established Ducati customers get priority treatment…so act fast.

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And here’s a video of the new Desmosedici Stradale powered sportsbike tearing up the track:


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Joe Appleton
About Joe Appleton

I’ve done a bit of work here and there in the industry – I’ve even ridden a few bikes for actual money but what it comes down to is this: I ride bikes, build bikes and occasionally crash ‘em too. I like what I like but that certainly doesn’t make my opinion any more valid than yours…

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