DUCATI 1199 PANIGALE S (2012 - 2014) Review

At a glance

Owners' reliability rating: 4.5 out of 5 (4.5/5)
Annual servicing cost: £130
Power: 195 bhp
Seat height: Medium (32.5 in / 825 mm)
Weight: Medium (415 lbs / 188 kg)


New N/A
Used £12,500

Overall rating

Next up: Ride & brakes
5 out of 5 (5/5)

A mould-breaking motorcycle. Apart from the colour and the noise it makes, the Panigale S has nothing in common with Ducati superbikes of old. The chassis is ‘frameless’, there’s a new-generation ‘superquadro’ engine and it comes with the latest electronic rider aids, which work. Producing a claimed 195bhp and weighing 188kg, wet, it has a fearsome power-to-weight ratio, but is remarkably easy to ride. Gone is the out-going 1198’s excess of almost uncontrollable torque and in is a smooth power curve and a searing top end. Like Ducatis of old its super-stable in fast corners, but now it steers as fast as a Japanese superbike. It’s a very clever motorcycle and very, very good.

Ride quality & brakes

Next up: Engine
5 out of 5 (5/5)

The riding position is completely different to Ducati superbikes of old and there’s a far shorter stretch to the bars than before, which keeps you more in control. It’s incredibly light and has the kind of Fireblade-like stability the 1198 could only dream of. With the S model’s electronic riding modes, you can alter the electronic suspension’s settings, power, throttle response, engine braking and traction control on the move. This lets you have the Panigale smooth, docile and comfortable on motorways, or sharp, responsive and fiery on your favourite road, or track. New Brembo monobloc brakes (with discs spaced out 15mm to catch the cooling airflow) are incredible and can be used to the max, thanks to the stability of the new chassis design.


Next up: Reliability
5 out of 5 (5/5)

The new ‘superquadro’ (or super-square) 90° V-twin engine has an extreme 106mm x 67.9mm bore and stroke measurement and revs to high-heaven, thanks to its desmodromic valve system, which is now operated via chains, instead of belts. It has new vacuum die-cast crankcases, new pistons and the sump, clutch and cylinder head covers are made from magnesium alloy. The engine has a decompression device, which allows a smaller, lighter starter motor and battery. It has a new gearbox, a wet slipper clutch and a ride-by-wire throttle system for the first time. The Panigale is obscenely fast, but controllable, the throttle response is smooth and the power delivery linear. The 1198’s excess of lowdown torque has been tempered, which makes the 1199 more controllable under hard acceleration.

Reliability & build quality

Next up: Value
5 out of 5 (5/5)

Forget the old myth that Ducatis are unreliable, because they just aren’t anymore. Modern-day Ducatis are as dependable as Japanese bikes and don’t cost a fortune to service. With the Panigale now using chains instead of belts, major services has doubled from 7500-miles to 15,000. Build-quality is superb.

Value vs rivals

Next up: Equipment
4 out of 5 (4/5)

For a shade under twenty grand when new, the Panigale S is expensive in anyone’s books, but if you can afford it, you’ll be getting a lot for your money. The base model, which has everything except electronically-adjustable suspension is more affordable.


5 out of 5 (5/5)

This S model comes with a bewildering array of equipment as standard. It has Ohlins electronic suspension (the standard model has 50mm Marzocchi forks and a Sachs rear shock), an adjustable rear suspension link, Brembo monobloc brakes, traction control, riding modes, electronic engine braking control, a slipper clutch, a quickshifter, magnesium and titanium engine parts, a Thin Film Transistor mult-function dash, optional racing ABS and new Pirelli Diablo Super Corsa tyres with a 200/55 section rear.


Engine size 1198cc
Engine type 8v, ‘Superquadro’ L-twin
Frame type Cast ali airbox frame – engine stressed member. Single-sided aluminium swingarm
Fuel capacity 17 litres
Seat height 825mm
Bike weight 188kg
Front suspension Electronically-adjustable Ohlins 43mm upside down forks
Rear suspension Electronically-adjustable Ohlins TTX shock
Front brake 2 x 330mm discs with four-piston Brembo monobloc radial calipers
Rear brake 245mm single disc with twin-piston Brembo caliper
Front tyre size 120/70 x 17
Rear tyre size 200/55 x 17

Mpg, costs & insurance

Average fuel consumption 32 mpg
Annual road tax £93
Annual service cost £130
New price -
Used price £12,500
Insurance group 17 of 17
How much to insure?
Warranty term Two year unlimited mileage

Top speed & performance

Max power 195 bhp
Max torque 98.1 ft-lb
Top speed 186 mph
1/4 mile acceleration -
Tank range 121 miles

Model history & versions

Model history

2012 – model introduced

Other versions

Base model - with 50mm Marzocchi forks and Sachs rear shock.
Tricolore – Red/white/green paintjob, ABS, race exhaust can and GPS datalogger.

Owners' reviews for the DUCATI 1199 PANIGALE S (2012 - 2014)

4 owners have reviewed their DUCATI 1199 PANIGALE S (2012 - 2014) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.

Review your DUCATI 1199 PANIGALE S (2012 - 2014)

Summary of owners' reviews

Overall rating: 4.8 out of 5 (4.8/5)
Ride quality & brakes: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Engine: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Reliability & build quality: 4.5 out of 5 (4.5/5)
Value vs rivals: 4.2 out of 5 (4.2/5)
Equipment: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Annual servicing cost: £130
5 out of 5 Bologna's ballistic missle is probably the best used bike in the market.
08 July 2020 by Biscuit

Year: 2014

Annual servicing cost: £130

Stunning bike, with a mega top end. With the correct upgrades it's easily rideable around town and comfortable. Inside thighs get a bit warm. With the Termi exhausts it's extremely loud.

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5

Light, flick able, brakes will hurt your hands and forearms as you pile into corners. Honestly the front brake is ridiculously good. Ohlins electronically adjustable suspension is awesome. Plenty of rebound options for British roads. I came from an RSV 1000 (2001) which was over 200kgs wet. I think the 1199s (with the carbon fibre mods on mine) is about 185kgs and there is a massive difference. Plenty of confidence in corners. Pottering around town will mean the exhaust shielding under the seat gets warm. It's not uncomfortable like the new V2 and V4 but it's noticeable.

Engine 5 out of 5

With a throttle spacer, easy and managable around town and motorways or duel carriageways, but who buys a Panigale to ride on those? Stick it in sport or race mode wind it up to over 8000 reves and just make sure you're holding on tight. The power delivery is initially smooth, but once you get to the top end the bike goes mental and the world becomes a blur. It's very very fast, and takes your breath away.

Reliability & build quality 4 out of 5

Have only done 500 miles in the month I've had it. Bike feels rock solid and smooth as melted butter despite its 16k miles. Slightly loose left mirror joint, means the already useless mirrors are worse. Absolutely no other issues.

Value vs rivals 4 out of 5

Thirsty. Expect about 100 miles per tank giving it the occasional beans. Big service at every 15k miles is nearly 1000 pounds so save up! I've been riding 7 years with 7 years NCD, I'm 37 and insurance was just over 300 quid for fully comp 250 excess.

Equipment 5 out of 5

Too long to list. ABS, Traction Control, wheelie control, brilliant TFT screen, riding modes which are almost infinity adjustable. Ohlins, Marchesini wheels, Termignoni exhaust system. Throttle spacer and ducati performance seat are an absolute must.

Buying experience: Purcashed from Ducati Aylesbury. Bike has always been serviced there and they've looked after it. Was kept in the dark for about 10 days as to when they bike would be ready for pick up, but they did the Desmo 15k service for no extra cost so can't complain.

4 out of 5
29 October 2015 by Craig

Year: 2012

Best bike I have owned with all the cool electronics that most GP bikes have!

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Reliability & build quality 4 out of 5
Value vs rivals 4 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5
5 out of 5 Made an old man very happy !
01 November 2014 by stevensonkaatsch

I had a modest inheritance and bought myself the dream. I bought the Tricolore mostly due to it's looks and then added pretty much everything on the accessory list.... all the carbon, the luggage, race down-pipes and the Up-Map, but not the dust cover which was just TOO expensive. I was lucky, a little foolish and haven't regretted a moment of it. To all the detractors I say there's room for all and each to their own. I am by no means a wealthy man (especially after buying the Tricolore) but have been fortunate enough to buy my personal dream.... and who wouldn't do that, given the opportunity ? It is sooo much better than I am as a rider, but it is gifted with wonderful electronic aids that make up for any kack-handedness from the operator. I have owned a 675R Daytona previously, which I loved (though I couldn't either afford or justify both it and the Ducati at the same time) and various old mid-range Hondas before that. As a 'never born before biker', I got my full licence in early 2012 and cut my teeth on the old Hondas (I'm 57) and made all my dangerous mistakes on them before getting anything with any go in it, then went from Triumph to Ducati pretty quickly thereafter. So.... I'm no great biking Guru or expert in any way worth considering, though a career in the motor trade, hands-on, has given me plenty of experience in performance driving. Although not directly comparable, there are plenty of cross-over skill-sets to draw from. My bike has done well over 7000 miles in all weathers, is on it's second set of tyres and has had a hissy-fit just the once when some damp found it's way into a chocolate-block electrical connector under my seat. Everything went nuts on the speedo screen and the motor went into 'limp-home' mode (restricting me to somewhere around the national speed limit), then was perfect again after my dealers at Ducati Coventry fixed it over a cup of tea (and showed me how to fix it if it ever did it again... just blow into the plug, bit of WD and Bobs yer wotsit. I every other way, the bike is astonishing. It will lift it's wheel just under normal acceleration even in 3rd, floats it in 4th and is beyond words at full throttle in 6th where it seems to start pulling even harder beyond 180 ! Get a road test on an 'S' model... pretty much the same as mine except for the top-end. There are probably faster bikes, definately cheaper bikes and many others that are more user-friendly/easy to ride, but nothing gives the same thrills that Ducati have built into the Panigale (subject to my basic ignorance, of course).

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5
Value vs rivals 5 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5
5 out of 5 1199s Tricolore
07 May 2012 by bananabiker

1100 miles covered so far!!..Very Precise, great brakes,a seating position of a sports tourer (almost), quality suspension and many many electronic safety devices for the average rider using poor quality roads. I had the rear lift in sport mode before the ABS kicked in. Minor niggles: Rock hard seat which can get a bit hot from the pipe below..... A bike that dreams are made of.....

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5
Value vs rivals 4 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5
Back to top