Ducati Streetfighter V4 S 2020: A darling of excess

29 November 2019

One of the stars of the most recent Milan Motorcycle Show was the new Ducati Streetfighter V4. Of all the crowds at EICMA, the largest was undoubtedly gathered around the grand reveal of Ducati’s most technologically advanced and raw power sports bike yet.

True to tradition, the Streetfighter V4 2020 echoes past sports bikes such as the 1098 Streetfighter—a bike that modeled itself after the 1098 Superbike in 2009. The new Streetfighter employs what’s currently Ducati’s most powerful and impressive base: the Panigale V4. On the style end, you’ll spot the similarities with its V-shaped LED lighting and oil cooler scoops, which reveal the Desmosedici Stradale mechanics. Stripped of its fairings, the bike swaps its clip-ons for tall handlebars and a wide spindle. The machine was showcased at Pike Peaks 2019 in the expert hands of the late Carlin Dunne.

Relaxed ergonomics

Ducati’s new sports bike is engineered primarily for road use with a front-loaded design, high footrests, generous ground clearance, 845 mm seat height, and a rear that points skyward. It features a style more attuned to a superbike and ergonomics somewhere between a Panigale and a Monster.

You’ve probably noticed the wings and radiator shrouds on each side of the vehicle. Like those on the Panigale V4 R, these features add 25 kg to the front end, which helps keep the nose to the ground at speeds of 270 km/h.

And like the Ducati Panigale V4, this bike uses its engine to reduce weight and achieve desired stiffness. The braking is entrusted to Brembo (which services the caterpillar M50), while the steering damper comes courtesy of Sachs.

Ducati Streetfighter V4 2020: Embrace excess

This bare-bodied version of the 1103 cc V4 serves up no less than 208 hp at 12,750 rpm (220 hp with the Akrapovic exhaust), only 6 fewer horsepower than its racing sister. The other key takeaway of this newcomer is its dry weight of 178 kg. While technically 3 kg heavier than the Panigale V4 S, it nevertheless offers the best weight/power ratio of its kind, surpassing the new Kawasaki Z H2 with its turbocharged engine. The takeoffs are wild.

Thankfully, the electronics keep everything in check. They’re borrowed from the Ducati Panigale and driven by a 6 axes IMU, which has 8 driving aids. It features engine mapping and steering modes, traction control (DTC EVO), wheelie control, drift control (DSC EVO), electronic engine brake adjustment (EBC EVO), up-down quick-shift, an ABS system that endures cornering action, and launch control.

The famous “S”

Contrasting the standard Ducati Streetfighter V4 model, the “S” version adds fully electronically controlled semi-active suspension and Öhlins steering damper via its 5-inch color TFT display and Marchesini forged wheels. The new Ducati Streetfighter V4 S gives experienced drivers the hair-raising excess they crave. Expect nothing less from a design that emulates the menacing grin of the Joker.

By Pascal Bastien