Electronics and Innovation
This pure racing digital instrumentation originating from Ducati’s MotoGP project, has no switches or buttons to compromise its clean, minimalist lines. Instead, information additional to the default read-outs is managed from the left-hand handlebar-mounted switch gear, allowing the rider to scroll through and select from various menus. The new display, which now has a bright white LED back lighting, presents rpm and speed, with the former displayed across the screen in a progressive bar graph. Additionally, it displays lap times, DTC level selected (if activated on 1198 S) time, air temperature, coolant temperature, battery voltage, two trips and a trip that automatically starts as the fuel system goes onto reserve. Warning lights illuminate to signify neutral, turn signals, high-beam, rev-limit, low oil pressure, fuel reserve, DTC intervention (if activated on 1198 S) and scheduled maintenance. The instrument display is also used as the control panels for the DDA and DTC systems as well as listing lap times recorded by using the high-beam flash button as a stopwatch.
For the first time ever on a Ducati production motorcycle, a true competition-level traction control system for the road comes integrated into the 1198 S electronics as standard equipment. The Ducati Traction Control (DTC) system further underlines Ducati’s technology flow from racing to production and demonstrates how solutions developed for the track can be applied to enhance safety on the road.
DTC uses the same software logic developed and used by Ducati Corse for their world championship winning MotoGP and World Superbike motorcycles and offers a choice of eight settings developed by their professional test riders and racers.
Accessible from the left-hand switchgear and displayed on the digital instrumentation, the system offers a choice of eight profiles. Each one has been programmed with a wheel-spin tolerance matched to progressive riding levels of skill graded from one to eight. While level eight administers a confidence-building, high level of interaction from the system by activating upon the slightest amount of wheel-spin, level one offers a much higher tolerance and so much less intervention for highly competent riders. When the level is selected and DTC activated, the level is displayed on the instrumentation.
When the profile that best suits the combination of road or track conditions and riding style has been selected and the DTC system activated, front and rear wheel sensors compare speed differential to sense when rear traction is being broken (wheel-spin). High speed software then makes instant electronic adjustment to the fuel injection, taking immediate control over power output so as to restore traction at the rear wheel. A warning light is displayed during DTC interaction. As soon as the system recognises the return of equal wheel speeds, it re-establishes normal power delivery. In this way, DTC provides a considerable increase in safety during mid-corner acceleration.
The DTC system is supplied as standard equipment on the 1198 S and 1098 R models.
The Ducati Data Analyser (DDA) - complete with PC software, a USB-ready data retrieval card and instructions - evaluates the performances of the bike and its rider, and make comparisons between various channels of information. The DDA is available for the 1198 from Ducati Accessories, and is supplied as standard equipment on the 1198 S model.
Normally only available on race bikes, DDA records numerous channels of data including throttle opening, vehicle speed, engine rpm, engine temperature, distance travelled, lap times. The system also automatically calculates engine rpm and vehicle speed data so as to display gear selection as an extra channel of information. An additional channel of information is now dedicated to recording the DTC index which can then be viewed as a graphic trace and indicates the amount of DTC interaction during wheel-spin. At the end of a ride or track session, an upgraded 4mb of data can be downloaded to a PC ready to compare, analyse and get an inside view of the performance of the rider and motorcycle.
Data can be analysed in graphic form with options to zoom into detail of specific sections. Dragging a trace along a timeline to reveal individual values of the above listed channels enables the user to analyse performance in the same way that data technicians can in factory teams. The latest version software is now compatible with Windows Vista™ and allows data to be compared with that from a completely separate session and for pages of data to be printed off easily.
Lights and indicators
The horizontal twin headlamps, a signature Ducati style from the iconic 916, have been modernised with the latest lighting technology. Two polyellipsoidal units light the way with a powerful beam while maintaining an aggressive look to the front of the machine in pure Ducati Superbike tradition. The unit used on the 1198 now save over 0.4kg (1lb) over previous versions, reducing weight from a crucial high frontal area which enhances the overall vehicle handling and all-important ‘feel’ of the front-end.
The rear light employs a specially designed strip of LEDs enhanced by a high diffusion lens shaped into the sleek lines of the tailpiece. The same LEDs are intensified for brake lights.
The directional indicators also use the latest in LED technology for illumination. The frontal indicators are beautifully integrated into the rear view mirrors and, for the 1198/1198 S now come with an optional spacer kit enabling an extension of 30mm over the standard mirror stem length.