With 14 World Superbikes Championship titles under its belt, it’s safe to say Ducati knows more than a thing or two about how to develop and build an extremely competitive racing bike. And while the Italian firm’s full-on factory works machines are reserved exclusively for its professional riders, the company does offer the general public extremely similar machines in the form of its homologation specials — the latest of which to join the Ducati motorcycle lineup is the new and improved 2023 Panigale V4 R.
A street-legal motorcycle that’s remarkably close to being a full-on replica of the Bologna brand’s WSBK racer, the R variant of Ducati’s flagship superbike is powered by a slightly smaller, regulation, liter-sized 998cc Desmosedici Stradale R V4 engine that revs up to 16,500rpm and cranks out 207hp and 82ft-lbs of torque — or an even more impressive 240.5hp and 87ft-lbs of torque when equipped with the bike’s included full race exhaust system and when running a specially-developed performance oil formulated by Shell in conjunction with Ducati Corse. Alongside a multi-directional quick-shifter and a pit (lane) limiter, the engine has also been equipped with revised intake cams, longitudinally “gun drilled” titanium con-rods, DLC-treated aluminum pistons with new geometry, a full-race-spec WSBK-style Akrapovič exhaust system with dual under-tail cans, and a new WSBK-derived dry clutch paired with a six-speed gearbox with WSBK ratios.
Adorned in a MotoGP-derived racing livery, the R-spec Panigale V4 features a slew of ultra-high-end, track-ready componentry such as monobloc calipers, a single-sided swing-arm with an adjustable pivot, an Öhlins NPX25/30 pressurized fork, and the Swedish suspension specialist’s TTX36 mono-shock. As per usual, Ducati has also outfitted its latest R-spec superbike with a brushed aluminum tank. Loaded with a bevy of tech, rider aids, ride modes, and other adjustable parameters, the Panigale V4 R also gets new carbon fiber winglets, Magnesium rims, a new “Track Evo” display mode developed by MotoGP riders, a serialized and numbered billet aluminum top triple, and adjustable aluminum rear-sets that were developed by Ducati Corse in collaboration with Rizoma. Ducati also offers a slew of optional carbon fiber elements including a rear fender, swing-arm and frame covers, crankcase and sprocket protectors, and front brake ducts, just to name a few.
Slated to roll into dealerships in the Spring of next year, the 2023 Ducati Panigale V4 R will start at $44,995.