Ducati BEV Racer on Course for Road Bike

That doyen of the sports motorcycle world, Ducati, has finally committed to its first all-electric motorcycle in the shape of a racer to compete in the FIM Enel MotoE World Cup, the electric class of the MotoGP World Championship.

In keeping with the Bologna factory’s long history of bringing its successful racing models to the road, many pundits expect to see a Ducati electric sports machine on the public roads in the next couple of years. Its agreement signed with Dorna Sports, organizer and promoter of the MotoGP series, lasts until 2026 and covering all four editions of the MotoE World Cup.

Ducati says its goal is to develop expertise and technologies in electric powertrains through an experience familiar to the company like that of racing competition. This has been a consolidated tradition for the Borgo Panigale company starting from the Ducati 851, which inaugurated the trend of Ducati road sports bikes by revolutionizing the concept with its two-cylinder water-cooled engine, electronic fuel injection and the new twin-shaft, four-valve heads, deriving from the Ducati 748 IE bike that made its debut in endurance races at Le Castellet in 1986.

The factory’s relationship between race success and road-going products continues with the V4 engine of the Panigale, derived in its entire construction philosophy from the bore and stroke measurements to the counter-rotating crankshaft, from the engine that debuted on the Desmosedici GP in 2015. The V4 Granturismo that equips the new Multistrada V4 was then derived from the Panigale engine. All the vehicle control software is also directly derived from those developed in the racing world.

It says the FIM Enel MotoE Championship will also be no exception in this regard and will allow the company to develop the best technologies and test methodologies applied to sporty, light and powerful electric motorcycles.

Claudio Domenicali, CEO of Ducati Motor Holding, said: “Ducati is always projected towards the future and every time it enters a new world, it does so to create the best performing product possible. This agreement comes at the right time for Ducati, which has been studying the situation of electric powertrains for years, because it will allow us to experiment in a well-known and controlled field like that of racing competition. We will work to make available to all participants of the FIM Enel MotoE World Cup electric bikes that are high-performance and characterized by lightness. It is precisely on weight, a fundamental element of sports bikes, that the greatest challenge will be played out. Lightness has always been in Ducati’s DNA and thanks to the technology and chemistry of the batteries that are evolving rapidly we are convinced that we can obtain an excellent result. We test our innovations and our futuristic technological solutions on circuits all over the world and then make exciting and desirable products available to Ducatisti. I am convinced that once again we will build on the experiences we have had in the world of racing competition to transfer them and apply them also on production bikes.”

— Paul Myles is a seasoned automotive journalist based in Europe. Follow him on Twitter @Paulmyles_


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