Business people pride themselves on being the best at what they do, often to the detriment of the shareholders, employees and the company which they run. See, many people seem to think that a recession is the time for ultimate austerity, so they make drastic cuts to expenditures everywhere they can, including research and development.
Some attribute this to “common wisdom” and they are not wrong for many individuals, but companies not overly burdened with debt would be unwise to do the same. Slowing your work improving the products you sell when there is a pull-back will cost you far more in the long run than you will save. If you want an example of a company which made the correct choice and invested instead of withdrawing, look no further than Italian motorcycle manufacturer Ducati.
The 1098/1198 model line, the Multistrada 1200, and the ubercruiser Diavel are all stunning new motorcycles coming from the Bologna factory at present. Every one of them are actually based on the same engine, but each is tuned differently and obviously configured for different purposes, but all have sold exceptionally well. Right behind these brilliant bikes come the new Monster 696 and 796, the Hypermotard 796 and 1100, the Streetfighter line and the 848 EVO, each of which have also garnered their own popularity and enviable sales success – Ducati is winning market share every day.
The news that the rumor concerning the patent of an all new superbike for the street may in fact be on its way into production is simply another addition to this list of spectacular new designs from Ducati. The story is that the ‘Superquadrata’ has been said by insiders to be entering its final stages of development, and some say select importers have already laid eyes on it. Ducati officials, though, have neither confirmed nor denied any of this.
The new Ducati machine is said to have a monocoque chassis, possibly made primarily of carbon fiber, in a design which will mimic drawings present in the previously mentioned patent filing. The engine is where it gets very interesting, especially for the Ducati faithful, as the Superquadrata may feature an all-new engine. To give the engine a rather stratospheric rev ceiling for its design, a massively over-square bore and stroke are expected to be part of the circa 1200cc V-twin which will power the new beast, and gear-driven Desmodromic valve gear will surely be used as is Ducati’s tradition.
The expected suite of electronic goodness will certainly be updated from the factory’s recent high-end offerings. These include the Ducati Traction Control (DTC), Ducati Electronic Suspension (DES), Ducati Data Analysis (DDA), and there is sure to be a new anti-lock braking system (ABS) configured specifically for a hypersport motorcycle (Ducati won’t want to be outdone by Honda).
With much of the concept of this model being descendant from Ducati’s MotoGP experience, there will be fly-by-wire throttle control connected to an advanced ECU for a holistically managed engine – really, more of a system now.
It could be possible to see Ducati include a launch control system as this is also gaining widespread use. At this point it is all supposition and assumption, though. The Superquadrata will certainly represent the best of Ducati’s knowledge thus far, but that is if it is to become a reality. This new and revolutionary machine could be nothing but a specter, after all, but the source is a trusted one…
What is known now is that Ducati is writing the future of the motorcycle industry and the constant advance of the technology within it. The last decade saw the arrival of the Italian marque as part of the larger market – no longer is a Ducati a ‘boutique’ motorcycle, it rides in the same category as the Japanese Big Four and is certainly approaching brand recognition equal to that of Harley-Davidson, who they mimic in excessive licensing deals. What the future holds for them is looking very positive at this point, and for good reason.
Ducati has loosed upon the world some of the most sought-after motorcycles and there is no end in sight; they just keep surprising us and gaining market share. They do this because they are smart enough to know that investing in your strengths, instead of going on a strict diet, is the way to ride through rough times. Ducati will be leading their sector of the industry for a long time to come.
Courtesy of AllAboutBikes.com