Nerd’s Eye View: Ducati 1199 Superleggera

Nerd’s Eye View: Ducati Superleggera

by Khiem Dinh

Khiem Dinh is an engineer for Honeywell Turbo Technologies at the time of this writing.  All statements and opinions expressed by Khiem Dinh are solely those of Khiem Dinh and not reflective of Honeywell Turbo Technologies.

The Superleggera follows in the in the steps of the Ducati Desmosedici which was a limited edition motorcycle labeled as a street legal version of the MotoGP race bike. MotoGP being the equivalent of Formula 1 means no costs are spared. Anything aluminum gets replaced with magnesium, steel replaced by titanium, and carbon fiber for anything that can be made of the stuff. Just like the Desmosedici, the Superleggera has a sticker price of over $70k.


Pretty much every modern sport bike utilizes ram air effect to gain power.
The air intake locations under the headlights feature these three guide vanes to more effectively direct the airflow. It’s possible they might also have a secondary function of adding stiffness to the component.
The air intakes are connected to this magnesium frame which the air flows through to reach the air box. That’s some multi-functional use of the frame!
The sand cast magnesium frame forms part of the air box. The air filter is at the front of the air box. How do you get to it to change it? Good question… Anyway, the engine features two injectors per cylinder. Here, you can see the secondary injector in a showerhead arrangement which sprays full bore when maximum power is requested. Attention to detail is evident here in the air trumpet design with the curved edges to more smoothly introduce air into the throttle body and also the tapered edges of the three support ribs for the fuel injector.

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