But the Panigale V4 is different: the first of a new breed of four-cylinder flagships.
The engine layout follows that of the Desmosedici raced in MotoGP (Andrea Dovizioso came second in last year’s championship), and the street-legal Desmosedici RR that was produced in small numbers from 2007.
The V4’s MotoGP-honed combination of weight distribution, frame stiffness and suspension quality gives it an edge over the 1299 Panigale in steering accuracy and cornering poise, despite being slightly heavier and more powerful.
The Panigale’s blend of blistering pace and sublime control confirms that it was the right one.
The Panigale V4 doesn’t merely start a new era for Ducati, it goes straight to the front of the superbike pack.