The MotoGP riders are just two weeks into their shiny new contracts, but already, there is talk of what happens next.
In Italy, there is a discussion of who gets the factory Ducati seat alongside Andrea Dovizioso in 2020. In Spain, they are looking ahead to 2021, and the option of KTM offering Marc Márquez a contract.
It is curious that the past couple of weeks have been rife with internet chatter about Ducati working on a 450cc motocross bike. It is a strange rumor, and if true it would be big news for Ducati.
Of course, for the very same reason that it would be big news, this rumor is also hard to believe, if for no other reason than Ducati getting into the MX scene would be a huge jump for the Italian brand.
What is more curious though is the timing of the story, as it comes only two weeks after we published some thoughts about how Ducati can expand its lineup, through the acquisition of a brand like TM Racing.
This is it, the final countdown. The new year is already starting its first hours in other parts of the world, and we won’t have long to wait until 2019 is upon us here in the United States of America.
So, allow us to squeak in just one more “2018 in review” type of story, as I wanted to share with our readers the most important motorcycles that we saw this year – and also got to ride.
The list is an interesting one, as not only is it comprised of a number of machines that lead their segments, but also we picked motorcycles whose debuts carried gravitas for the industry.
As such, these are the motorcycles that defined 2018 model year, and now we only have a matter of hours to begin seeing the bikes that will shape 2019 for motorcyclists.
The Ducati Panigale V4 might be the pinnacle of superbike design, but today mark’s the machine’s fifth recall in its inaugural year of production.
This particular recall affects the Panigale V4’s cam chain tensioner, which may loosen over time, and possibly cause oil to leak from the bottom of the tensioner adjustment bolt.
Obviously, an oil leak could lead to a loss of traction for the motorcycle, and may cause the bike to crash, hence the need for a recall.
Episode 2 of the Brap Talk podcast is out, and in this show our big topic of conversation centers around the dealership experience.
As such, we rely heavily on Shahin’s decade-long career of working in motorcycle dealerships, and discuss what can be done better – by both the dealers, and the customers. We also wander into speculation about our future with robot overlords.
Before we get to that in-depth conversation in the podcast though, we cover a few newsie items.
The future of Ducati seems to be always up in the air, especially with Volkswagen AG’s constant back-and-forth when it comes to selling the motorcycle brand.
The German’s latest attempt to sell Ducati may have faltered in the boardroom, but there is new reason to believe that acquisition talks could be started for Ducati, as KTM CEO Stefan Pierer has expressed interest in owning the Italian motorcycle company.
Talking to German-language publication Speedweek, Pierer expressed his interest in adding Ducati to his stable of motorcycle marques, and floated some ideas on how Ducati could fit into KTM’s overall two-wheeled strategy.
His thoughts are…interesting, to say the least.
We are very excited today to introduce to you our newest audio production, the Brap Talk Podcast.
Hosted by yours truly Jensen Beeler and Shahin Alvandi, the Brap Talk Podcast picks up where the Two Enthusiasts Podcast leaves off, as that show will not be continuing.
As such, the concept is simple and straight-forward: two friends sitting on a couch, talking about motorcycles.
In addition to the Ducati Panigale V4 recall that we saw earlier this week, we have another safety issue from the Bologna brand.
This time it concerns the Monster 821, Monster 1200, and Supersport models from Ducati, which may suffer from the shift lever having been incorrectly assembled, which could possibly result in the shift knob detaching from the lever.
If the knob falls off the shifter, a bike could get stuck in gear, which poses a safety issue to the rider, so a recall has been created with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
In total, 2,705 units from the 2017, 2018, and 2018 model years are affected by this recall.
Arguably the biggest superbike announcement for the 2019 model year, the Ducati Panigale V4 R is getting no shortage of press, and it is easy to see why.
With 217hp (162 kW) on tap, removable winglets, a WorldSBK title to win, dry clutch, and a $40,000 price tag, there are no shortage of things to talk about when it comes to the Panigale V4 R.
The Ducati looks great in race trim, and it doesn’t take much to boost the machine’s peak horsepower figure to 231 hp (172 kW).
In its racing trim, the Ducati Panigale V4 RS19 will climb to over 17,000 rpm – that is, at least until the WorldSBK performance-balancing rules get ahold of it.
Another recall for the day, Ducati North America is recalling certain 2018-2019 Ducati Panigale V4, V4 S, and V4 S Speciale motorcycles. The recall stems from the Panigale V4’s oil cooler, which may leak oil from the output port.
According to the recall documents, the oil cooler output port may crack during extreme usage, like when the 1,103cc superbike is being used on a race track. The recall affects 1,663 units of the Panigale V4 lineup,