‘A V4 IS POS­SI­BLE’ re­veals firm’s fu­ture di­rec­tion

Du­cati CEO Clau­dio Domeni­cali

Motorcycle News (UK) - - This Week - By Jon Urry MCN CON­TRIB­U­TOR

“We have made a V4 in the past so it is a pos­si­bil­ity for the fu­ture. We will see some­thing in the fu­ture that is dif­fer­ent than just two cylin­ders…” says Du­cati CEO Clau­dio Domeni­cali, of­fer­ing a tan­ta­lis­ing win­dow into the firm’s fu­ture di­rec­tion.

“We are not tar­get­ing vol­ume, that’s not how we de­velop the com­pany. In the fol­low­ing years we will have even more plat­forms of mo­tor­cy­cle and the com­pany will grow nat­u­rally. This is a more solid growth and we will re­main a pre­mium com­pany. We want to pro­tect the value of the mo­tor­cy­cles we sell and en­sure that re­sales val­ues are high for our cus­tomers.”

MCN: Will Du­cati ever make small ca­pac­ity ma­chines like BMW and KTM? CD: “That is not in our plans, how­ever that isn’t to say we will never con­sider it. At the moment we see ways to fur­ther grow the com­pany in the larger bike sec­tor, ma­chines of the Sixty2 ca­pac­ity and up­wards.”

MCN: Will the Su­per­leg­gera’s tech­nol­ogy fil­ter down to other mod­els? CD: “Def­i­nitely. That is how we de­velop prod­ucts. Rac­ing is the hard test­ing where we de­velop our own tech­nol­ogy. This then comes down to the most ex­clu­sive mod­els, such as the Su­per­leg­gera, and then, in time, to the rest of the model range. We are cur­rently de­vel­op­ing a new gen­er­a­tion of sports­bikes and a lot of the con­tent in the Su­per­leg­gera will soon be avail­able in a less ex­treme way.”

MCN: Does that mean mass-pro­duced car­bon fibre chas­sis com­po­nents? CD: “Car­bon is very dif­fi­cult tech­nol­ogy so will never be mass-pro­duced due to the amount of man­ual con­tent needed mak­ing it, but we are in­ves­ti­gat­ing some kind of tech­nol­ogy that in­volves car­bon that is half way be­tween su­per pre­mium and mass-pro­duc­tion. We

will have some­thing in the range of our typ­i­cal S mod­els, which will be much more rea­son­ably priced.”

MCN: The 1299 Pani­gale is not Euro4 ho­molo­gated and so is due an up­date. Will it have this new tech­nol­ogy? CD: “We are de­vel­op­ing new ver­sions. Stay tuned and you will see.”

MCN: Will we see an­other Mo­togp replica from Du­cati? CD: “Du­cati is not about a very spe­cific type of mo­tor­cy­cle – we made a V4 in the past so it is a pos­si­bil­ity for the fu­ture. We will see some­thing in the fu­ture that is dif­fer­ent than just two cylin­ders.” MCN: What does GP rac­ing bring to Du­cati? CD: “Rac­ing, for Du­cati, is part of the brand, we are not only sell­ing mo­tor­cy­cles, we are sell­ing a ticket of en­ter­ing the Du­cati club. But that is just one side, the other side is the tech­no­log­i­cal de­vel­op­ment. If you quit rac­ing you don’t no­tice the im­pact in­stantly, but in the long-term you will drift fur­ther away from the top of tech­no­log­i­cal per­for­mance. Du­cati has per­for­mance at its core and we need to be in­volved in some kind of rac­ing at the high­est level.”

MCN: Has Mo­togp al­lowed you to de­velop en­hanced safety sys­tems? CD: “Get­ting the level of trac­tion con- trol we have on the Su­per­leg­gera would never have been pos­si­ble with­out our Mo­togp ex­pe­ri­ence and that will feed down into a broader range of mo­tor­cy­cles and that is a ma­jor step in safety.”

MCN: Du­cati al­ready have trac­tion con­trol, slide con­trol, cor­ner­ing ABS and even airbag tech­nol­ogy, what else can be added? CD: “If the mo­tor­cy­cle can see an­other ve­hi­cle ap­proach­ing and send a mes­sage to the rider to alert them that would make rid­ers safer. We are work­ing on a dif­fer­ent way of com­mu­ni­ca­tion from the ve­hi­cle to the rider that is not just vis­ual, some­thing we call ac­tive feed­back.”

‘A lot of the con­tent in the Su­per­leg­gera will be avail­able in a less ex­treme way’

Du­cati boss Domeni­cali tells our man about the firm’s fu­ture plans

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