The new 1198 Testastretta Evoluzione engine
The Testastretta Evoluzione engine is the crowning glory of Ducati’s development and perfection of the L-Twin engine. World Superbike dominance for almost two decades is the result of continual commitment to their twin-cylinder configuration. Ducati now share the reward for that commitment as World Championship-winning technologies flow from the factory race team into production engines.
The incredible 1198 and 1198 S are powered by a liquid cooled, L-Twin, Desmodromic engine that produces 170hp (125kW) @ 9,750rpm and a class-beating 97lb-ft (13.4kgm) of torque @ 8,000rpm.
The 1198 achieves its new capacity by using exactly the same 106x67.9 bore and stroke as the factory race bike. Volumetric efficiency through the four valves per cylinder has been enhanced by increasing the valve diameters approximately 4% to 43.5mm for the inlet and 35.5mm for the exhaust. They are actuated by racing-type rocker arms, ‘super-finished’ for reduced friction and fatigue, and double overhead camshafts with radical profiles that achieve approximately 10% more lift than their predecessors.
These incredible valve performances are only possible because of Ducati’s unique Desmodromic system, where valve closure is activated mechanically. At high rpm it would be almost impossible for the valve to follow the steep closure profile of the cam lobe if it were relying upon a normal valve spring. With the Desmo system, the valve is closed mechanically with the same accuracy as it is opened, enabling steep cam profiles and radical cam timings. This system is used on every single Ducati motorcycle including their world-beating Superbike and Desmosedici MotoGP bikes.
With increased capacity and improved volumetric efficiency, the elliptical throttle bodies have also increased in cross-sectional area by 13.3% compared to the 1098. Now boasting a size equivalent to 63.9mm diameter, the inlet body is exactly the same as the ‘R’ model.
The race-designed 1198 pistons have a distinctive double-ribbed undercrown to achieve high strength and reduced friction by using minimal piston wall surface area. Using technology developed for the Desmosedici MotoGP project, the design enables reliable operation of the 106mm diameter pistons when performing at high rpm.
The 1198 Testastretta Evoluzione engines are the lightest ever used in Ducati Superbikes, thanks to a new crankcase manufacturing technology which reduces weight by almost 3kg (6.5lbs). The vacuum die-cast process ensures consistent and precise wall thickness and increased strength from absolute material purity. The weight-saving cam covers in magnesium-alloy are evident by their gold colour, while the alloy outer clutch and generator covers now sport a black finish.
In line with the increased power and torque output, the 1198 gearbox introduces ‘R’ model internal ratios. The new gears are machined from the same high-strength steel used in Ducati Corse race applications and are subjected to a shot-peening treatment that further ensures their strength and reduced fatigue.
The 1198 and 1198 S feature a beautiful and efficient exhaust system. Incredibly lightweight, it has been engineered with a power-increasing symmetrical 2-1-2 layout that uses 52mm-57mm diameter tubing with a wall thickness of 0.8mm (.030in). It is equipped with a catalytic converter and two lambda probes for smooth engine mapping and Euro3 conformity. The system terminates with Ducati’s trademark twin under-seat silencers, delivering that unmistakable signature sound of the big bore Desmo 90° L-Twin.