Motorcycles

Ducati unloads the specialness cannon on new Panigale V4 SP2

Ducati unloads the specialness...
The Panigale V4 SP2 might as well be a unicycle if these press photos are to be trusted
The Panigale V4 SP2 might as well be a unicycle if these press photos are to be trusted
View 16 Images
The Panigale V4 SP2 might as well be a unicycle if these press photos are to be trusted
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The Panigale V4 SP2 might as well be a unicycle if these press photos are to be trusted
Carbon rims, bare metal tank, extravagant carbon aero wings
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Carbon rims, bare metal tank, extravagant carbon aero wings
The bike can do it, why can't you?
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The bike can do it, why can't you?
Gratuitous wheelie shots: they get me every time
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Gratuitous wheelie shots: they get me every time
This gentleman can get around corners a bit
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This gentleman can get around corners a bit
All the cool kids are dangling leg these days
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All the cool kids are dangling leg these days
Saucy matte carbon fairings
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Saucy matte carbon fairings
Ducati's "ultimate racetrack machine," at least for now
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Ducati's "ultimate racetrack machine," at least for now
Advanced technique for getting the V4 SP2 onto a paddock stand
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Advanced technique for getting the V4 SP2 onto a paddock stand
If those wings are there to keep the front wheel on the ground, they don't seem to be doing a very good job
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If those wings are there to keep the front wheel on the ground, they don't seem to be doing a very good job
The Panigale V4 SP2 squeaks out a mighty 1.5 horsepower more than the 2021-model Panigale V4. Use it wisely
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The Panigale V4 SP2 squeaks out a mighty 1.5 horsepower more than the 2021-model Panigale V4. Use it wisely
A dry weight of 168 kg meets a peak power of 228 horses with the dedicated Akrapovic full system exhaust fitted
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A dry weight of 168 kg meets a peak power of 228 horses with the dedicated Akrapovic full system exhaust fitted
Brembo Stylema brakes, carbon rims and electronic Ohlins suspension
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Brembo Stylema brakes, carbon rims and electronic Ohlins suspension
A view from the cockpit
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A view from the cockpit
A ridiculously compact machine
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A ridiculously compact machine
Mirrors and indicators do come in the box, but so do blanking plates to help you rip them off and go racetrack riding
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Mirrors and indicators do come in the box, but so do blanking plates to help you rip them off and go racetrack riding
View gallery - 16 images

It doesn't matter how special an Italian motorcycle is, there is always an even specialer edition in the pipeline. Something with such great, treacly dollops of specialness ladled over it that you feel like common filth for ever having fantasized over the standard version.

Such a bike is Ducati's latest, the Panigale V4 SP2 (the SP stands for Sport Production). It's billed as "the ultimate racetrack machine," and while that title is a well-flogged donkey in the motorcycle world, it's fair to say this bike won't be the limiting factor when most people take it out on track.

What you're looking at is now the fruitiest version available of the already-impressive Panigale V4 superbike. That means carbon fiber rims, matte carbon fairings, Brembo Stylema R brake calipers, a master cylinder from MCS, a Ducati-tastic dry clutch optimized to reduce "hopping" under deceleration, a lightweight 520 chain conversion, and fancy billet footpegs.

Advanced technique for getting the V4 SP2 onto a paddock stand
Advanced technique for getting the V4 SP2 onto a paddock stand

Those five split spoke carbon rims alone shave 1.4 kg (3 lb) of unsprung weight off the bike, also significantly reducing inertia in changes of direction. Not that the suspension sounds like it needs a lot of help to get the job done – it's an electronic Ohlins system with NPX25/30 forks and a TTX26 shock. These and the Ohlins electronic steering damper are controlled by Ducati's Smart EC 2.0 system, allowing "objective-based tuning" as opposed to letting you simply adjust the clickers.

The Euro V-compliant engine is revised to offer a touch more poke than the standard bike, peaking at 215.5 horsepower rather than 214. Good luck finding that drop in a bucket with your backside dyno! Switch out the standard exhaust for the specially-developed Akrapovic full system, and the bike drops 5 kg (11 lb) to 168 kg (370 lb), and gains 12.5 horses to peak at 228 horsepower. Again, though, that's a mere two ponies more than you get doing the same thing to the stock bike.

Most of the standard Panigale's terrific electronics package remains unmolested, although the SP2 comes standard with a GPS module for racetrack datalogging and automatic lap timing, as well as a data analysis tool you can use to tweak your technique if you're clever enough.

This gentleman can get around corners a bit
This gentleman can get around corners a bit

While clearly focused on track riders, it does ship with mirrors and blinkers, although you also get a little "race kit" to blank off the holes when you remove these and the license plate holder. There's an open clutch cover in there too, so you can rattle a tambourine and play the song of your people in neutral.

The pricing is of course hideous. Where the standard Panigale V4 goes for US$23,295, and the S model starts getting out of control at $29,995, the V4 SP2 will set you back a whopping $39,500. Feeling special comes with a hefty price tag, but at least you're not shelling out $100,000 for a Superleggera V4, I suppose.

Enjoy a video below, as well as a sumptuous set of photos in the gallery.

Ducati World Première 2022 Episode 9 | Panigale V4 SP2 | The Ultimate Racetrack Machine

Source: Ducati

View gallery - 16 images
2 comments
2 comments
vince
Once agai new atlas deports on old technology. ICE anything is history soon and advertising any ICE machine is as crazy as Putin.
Longtermthinker
Vince, get a clue, no electric bike has this kind of performance or refinement. Ducati is in development of electric bikes so you will get your dream electric sport bike soon enough.