25 years ago, Ducati introduced one of the most important models in its history. In fact, in 1994, the manufacturer unveiled an all-new 916 to the world. The model rapidly became the epitome of 90s-era sportbikes with its timeless silhouette that remains a staple to this day. From the moment it was introduced, it set a new milestone in the evolution of the motorbike. The model remained on the market until 1999 before evolving into the 996 and eventually, a quarter of a century later, into the Panigale V4. Ducati decided to pay tribute to its icon with a special edition Panigale unveiled tonight in Laguna Seca, California.
During its short-lived career in WSBK, the 916 took no less than five titles, proving its racing and performance chops to the world. At the heart of the Massimo Tamburini design, a beating 916cc desmodromic L-twin that produced 109 horsepower and boasted an estimated top speed of 160 miles per hour.
To commemorate the iconic model’s history and legacy, Ducati launched the Panigale V4 25o Anniversario 916, a special edition limited to only 500 units. As the successor of the Panigale 1299, the V4 is a direct descendant of the 916, making it the ideal base for the special edition. In fact, the special edition builds on the Panigale V4 S and adds a flight of racing components, borrowed notably from the Panigale V4 R.
Gallery: Ducati Panigale V4 25o Anniversario 916
The bike’s front frame has been designed to fit the Ducati Corse specifications. The integration of carbon fiber components including front and mudguards and swingarm cover have helped reduce the weight by 2 lb. The footpegs, fuel tank cap, and levers are made of aluminum. The vehicle is mounted on a set of Marchesini Racing forged magnesium wheels and the exhaust tips have been swapped for titanium Akrapovič units. Braking power is provided by Brembo discs and calipers
Other features include a dry clutch, racing handgrips, Ducati Data Analyser+ kit with GPS, and of course, appropriate “25° Anniversario 916” badging. The livery is that of the 996 SBK rather than the 916, with the red and white color scheme, decorated with the number 1—a likely reference to Ducati’s championship wins. “Foggy” and Shell stickers will come with the bike.
The special edition also receives a flight of electronic assists including Bosc Evo ABS Coernering, traction control, wheelie control, quick shifter (up and down), electronic suspension and more. The star of the show, the 1,103cc Desmosedici Stradale V4 engine remains unchanged.
Present at the unveiling was Ducati’s former champion, Carl Fogarty. Foggy is considered one of the best and most successful WSBK racers in the series’ history and contributed to making the Ducati 916 the racing legend celebrated today.
The quarter-century anniversary celebrations will continue throughout the racing weekend at the only North American stop on the 2019 WSBK calendar. Among other things, racers Alvaro Bautista and Chaz Davies of the ARUBA.IT Racing team will compete on V4s wrapped in 916-inspired liveries.