Ducati Project 1408 is a-coming. Maddest twin-cylinder bike ever?

They'll pull the covers off in Milan in a fortnight - and we'll be there.
They'll pull the covers off in Milan in a fortnight - and we'll be there. Picture: Ducati

Fair play to Ducati. They had a few new bits and pieces at the Cologne show - a nod no doubt to its Ingolstadt-based owner. But it will, of course, be keeping the best stuff for the home show at Milan next month. We’re expecting new Multistradas, new Monsters, new Scramblers. And a totally bonkers new hyperbike - dubbed Project 1408.

The Bologna massive is dribbling out bits and bobs of info, actually posting out letters to selected Ducatisti, sending them to a website with password access to see hints about the new bike. And it looks like something properly amazing.

How amazing? Well, how about a full carbon fibre chassis setup - including a world-first swingarm, BST wheels and monocoque frame - that saves up to 5kg over the already slim units on the 1299? A next-level electronics package, based on the setup in the Anniversario Panigale shown off earlier this year? And the biggest-bore V-twin Ducati’s ever made, pumping out an utterly mental 220bhp?

Some folk are saying that 1408 would be the capacity - but we’ll be surprised if it goes that large. Making pistons to run in a 700cc barrel, with the bore size needed to keep mean piston speeds acceptable would be a massive job. And they’d be too heavy to allow the high revs you’d want in a superbike motor.

So, 1408 is probably just a code number. The Superleggera Panigale had 155kg and 210bhp, so expect one or both of those to be beaten: 220bhp and 150kg? That’s knocking on the door of MotoGP bike figures…

We’ve had the feelers out, and the factory is keeping schtum for the moment. But expect more info to trickle out - and we’ll get it up here as soon as we hear it…

Carbon swingarm is a first for a series-production bike
Carbon swingarm is a first for a series-production bike Picture: Ducati
Call that a frame? Monocoque design is properly minimalist
Call that a frame? Monocoque design is properly minimalist Picture: Ducati
Share this story: