Milan Show: Ducati 848 hits the road

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Ducati has revealed the new entry-level superbike – the Ducati 848 – at the Milan show.

The Ducati 848 gets the same series of performance and style upgrades over the outgoing 749 the 1098 received over its predecessor, the 999.

The engine is the key change in the new bike over the old 749 – a 100cc larger Testastretta Evoluzione unit. The result is a claimed 134bhp – just 5bhp short of the 999 and more than 30bhp more than the 749!

Chassis-wise, the brake calipers are the one of the few noticeable differences between the 848 and the 1098. The 848’s monobloc Brembo calipers are cheaper and lower spec than the 1098’s GP-spec calipers, a necessary change to make the 848 sufficiently cheaper than the 1098. The 848 has the same Marchesini wheels as the 1098, but the rear is fitted with a 180/50-ZR17 tyre instead of a wider 190/70.
The 1098’s stunning shape is carried over entirely to the 848 – every panel and bodywork fitting is identical, and although the exhausts are engineered to suit the smaller engine their appearance is identical.

Red with a red frame or white with a grey frame will be the initial colour choices. Ducati has yet to officially reveal an 848S with higher spec chassis parts, but earlier this year MCN revealed that the underside of the 1098’s tank bore a list of every model the tank fits – including an 848S, which is likely to appear as a 2009 model. Price is yet to be announced, but don’t expect to pay much less than £9000.

Read more details in MCN, on sale November 7. 


Chris Newbigging

By Chris Newbigging