Nerd’s Eye View: Ducati Panigale 959


The exhaust is pretty much the same as was on the 1199 in design. It retains the valve in the exhaust as you can see by the round boss just above the V-band clamp which serves as the axis of rotation.
The rear chain guard has this interesting hole in it. Is it for drag reduction? Does it help minimize chain lube getting flung up? Cooling air for the chain? I’m not sure but it’s there for some reason.
I wish my bike had these 90 degree valve stems as it would make adding air to the tire easier. A number of spokes in the pattern of the cast wheel have a hollow section for weight reduction.

Is the Panigale 959 the most ideal sized bike? The engine pumps out about 160hp to the crank which falls nicely between the typical middleweights (around 110-120hp crank) and the big bikes (190-200hp). The middleweights have to be wrung out past 10k rpms to move anywhere and the big bikes will do roll-on wheelies in third gear which can be a bit of a handful. Of course, the big bikes are slower in transitions flicking side-to-side compared to the little engine 600cc bikes. This middle ground area has historically only been filled by the GSX-R 750 which has a loyal following. Within the Ducati line-up, the 959 makes a very interesting performance proposition considering the big brother is now a 1299. I’d venture to say the 959 is enough bike for the majority of riders out there and only on a race track with big straights will the 1299 out-run it.


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