Ducati Motor Holding

Ducati Motor Holding

Infobox Company
company_name = Ducati Motor Holding S.p.A
vector_logo =
company_type = Public (Borsa Italiana: [http://www.borsaitaliana.it/bitApp/scheda.bit?target=StrumentoMTA&isin=IT0001278081&lang=en DMH] )
genre =
foundation = 1926
founder = Bruno Cavalieri Ducati
Adriano Ducati
Marcello Ducati
location =
location_city = flagicon|Italy Bologna
location_country = Italy
origins =
key_people = Giampiero Paoli (Chairman)
Gabriele Del Torchio (CEO)

area_served =
industry = motorcycle manufacturer
products = motorcycles
revenue = profit 304.7 million (2007)Ducati Motor Holding financial statement FY2007 (PDF) http://www.ducati.com/company/fd_eng_1042_0_relazionetrimestrale_31_12_07_en__2_.pdf]
net_income = profit 13.2 million (2007)
num_employees = 1,142 (2007)
parent =
divisions =
subsid = Ducati Corse (MotoGP and SBK Superbike racing)
owner =
company_slogan =
homepage = [http://www.ducati.com www.ducati.com]
dissolved =
footnotes =

Ducati Motor Holding S.p.A (Borsa Italiana: [http://www.borsaitaliana.it/bitApp/scheda.bit?target=StrumentoMTA&isin=IT0001278081&lang=en DMH] ) is an Italian motorcycle manufacturer located in Bologna, Italy. Ducati has achieved prominence in the motorcycle industry and in motorcycle racing.

Company history


* (1950 - 1967) Government IRI management years (In 1953 split into Ducati Meccanica, and Ducati Elettronica, now called Ducati Energia SpA)
* (1967 - 78) Government EFIM management (control over day-to-day factory operations)::"(1967 - 73) Headed By Montano"::"(1973 - 78) Headed by De Eccher"
* (1978 - 85) Subsidiary of state-subsidized VM Group
* (1985 - 1996) Cagiva Group ownership
* (1996 - 2005) Texas-Pacific Group ownership and going public::"Headed by CEO Federico Minoli, 1996-2001; returning for 2003-2007"
* (2005 - present) Investindustrial Holdings: Back in Italian Hands


In 1926 three brothers, Adriano, Marcello and Bruno Ducati, founded "Societa Scientifica Radio Brevetti Ducati" in Bologna to produce tubes, condensers and other radio components, becoming successful enough by 1935 to construct a new factory in the Borgo Panigale area of the city. During the war, although the Ducati factory was a repeated target for Allied bombing, production was maintained.

Meanwhile, at the small Turinese firm SIATA ("Societa Italiana per Applicazioni Tecniche Auto-Aviatorie"), Aldo Farinelli began developing a small pushrod engine for mounting on bicycles. Barely a month after the official liberation of Italy in 1944, SIATA announced its intention to sell this engine, nicknamed 'Cucciolo' (Italian for "little puppy", in reference to the distinctive exhaust sound) to the public. The first Cucciolos were available alone, to be mounted on standard bicycles, by the buyer; however, businessmen, soon bought the little engines in quantity, and offered complete motorized-bicycle units for sale.

In 1950 (after more than 200,000 Cucciolos had been sold), in collaboration with SIATA, the Ducati firm finally offered its own Cucciolo-based motorcycle. This first Ducati motorcycle was a 60 cc bike weighing 98 pounds with a top speed of 40 mph (64 km/h) had a 15 mm carburetor giving just under 200 mpg (85 km/L). Ducati soon dropped the "Cucciolo" name in favor of "55M" and "65TL".

When the market moved toward larger motorcycles, Ducati management decided to respond, making an impression at an early-1952 Milan show, introducing their 65TS cycle and Cruiser (a four-stroke motor scooter). Despite being described as the most interesting new machine at the 1952 show, the Cruiser was not a great success, and only a few thousand were made over a two-year period before the model ceased production.

In 1953, management split the company into two separate entities, Ducati Meccanica SpA and Ducati Elettronica, in acknowledgment of its diverging motorcycle and electronics product lines. (Ducati Elettronica became Ducati Energia SpA in the eighties.) Dr. Giuseppe Montano took over as head of Ducati Meccanica SpA and the Borgo Panigale factory was modernized with government assistance. By 1954, Ducati Meccanica SpA had increased production to 120 bikes a day.

The company's offerings have improved and diversified since then.In the 1960s, Ducati earned its place in motorcycling history by producing the then fastest 250 cc road bike available, the Mach 1. [cite web|url=http://www.ducati.com/heritage/anni60/mach1/mach1.jhtml|title=Mach 1|publisher=ducati.com|accessdate=2007-01-25] [cite web|url=http://sec.edgar-online.com/2004/06/30/0001156973-04-000783/section5.asp|title=DUCATI MOTOR HOLDING SPA Annual and Transition Report (foreign private issuer) (20-F) Item 4. Information on the Company|publisher=edgar-online.com|date=2004-06-30|accessdate=2008-01-25] [cite web|url=http://www.mecossemi.com/H4FrameSet_L.html|title=History of the Motorcycle|publisher=mecossemi.com|accessdate=2007-01-25] In the 1970s Ducati began producing large-displacement L-twin (i.e. a 90° V-twin) motorcycles and in 1973 released an L-twin with the trademarked desmodromic valve design. In 1985, Cagiva bought Ducati and planned to rebadge Ducati motorcycles with the lesser-known Cagiva name (at least outside of Italy). By the time the purchase was completed, Cagiva kept the "Ducati" name on its motorcycles. In 1996, Texas Pacific Group bought a 51% stake in the company for US$325 million then in 1998, bought most of the remaining 49% to become the sole owner of Ducati. In 1999, TPG issued an IPO of Ducati stock and renamed the company Ducati Motor Holding SpA. TPG sold over 65% of its shares in Ducati, leaving TPG the majority shareholder. In December 2005 Ducati returned to Italian ownership with the sale of Texas Pacific's stake (minus one share) to Investindustrial Holdings, the investment fund of Carlo and Andrea Bonomi.

From the 1960s to the 1990s, the Spanish MotoTrans company licensed Ducati engines and produced motorcycles that, although they incorporated subtle differences, were clearly Ducati-derived. MotoTrans's most notable machine was the 250 cc "24 Horas" (Spanish for "24 hours"). A 285 cc version of this bike won the Barcelona twenty-four-hour race at the Montjuic circuit for three consecutive years, 1956 to 1958.

Motorcycle designs

Ducati is best known for high performance motorcycles characterized by large capacity four-stroke, 90-degree V-twin [cite web|url=http://www.ducati.com/bikes/techcafe.jhtml?detail=article&value=technical&part=technical&artID=1|title=History of the Two-Valve Twin|puplisher=Ducati.com|accessdate=2008-01-25] engines featuring a desmodromic valve design. [cite web|url=http://www.ducati.com/bikes/techcafe.jhtml?detail=article&value=technical&part=technical&artID=2|title=Desmo for Dummies|puplisher=Ducati.com|accessdate=2008-01-25] Modern Ducatis remain among the dominant performance motorcycles available today partly because of the Desmodromic valve design, which is nearing its 50th year of use. Desmodromic valves are closed with a separate, dedicated cam lobe and lifter instead of the conventional valve springs used in most internal combustion engines. This allows the cams to have a more radical profile, thus opening and closing the valves more quickly without the risk of valve-float which is likely when using a "passive" closing mechanisms under the same conditions.

While most other manufacturers utilize wet-clutches (with the spinning parts bathed in oil)cite web|url=http://www.yamaha-motor.ca/our_company/news_item.php?news_id=45|title=What is in an oil|publisher=yamaha-motor.ca|accessdate=2008-01-25] Ducati uses multiplate dry clutches in many of their current motorcycles. The dry clutch eliminates the power loss from oil viscosity drag on the engine even though the engagement may not be as smooth as the oil bath versions, and the clutch plates can wear more rapidly.

Product history

The chief designer of most Ducati motorcycles in the 1950s was the late Fabio Taglioni (1920-2001). His designs ranged from the small single-cylinder machines that were successful in the Italian 'street races' to the large-capacity twins of the '80s. Ducati introduced the Pantah in 1979; its engine was updated in the 1990s in the Ducati SuperSport (SS) series. All modern Ducati engines are derivatives of the Pantah, which uses a toothed belt to actuate the engine's valves. Taglioni used the Cavallino Rampante (identified with the Ferrari brand) on his Ducati motorbikes, Taglioni chose this emblem of courage and daring as a sign of respect and admiration for Francesco Baracca, a heroic World War I fighter pilot that died during an air raid in 1918 [cite web|url=http://www.ducati.com/heritage/protagonisti/fabiotaglioni6.jhtml|title=Fabio Taglioni: a Legend|publisher=ducati.com|accessdate=2008-01-25]




In 1973, Ducati commemorated its 1972 win at the Imola 200 with the production model green frame Ducati 750 SuperSport.

(In 2006 the retro-styled Ducati PaulSmart1000LE was released, which shares styling cues with the 1973 750 SuperSport (itself a production replica of Paul Smart's 1972 race winning 750 Imola Desmo), as one of a SportClassic series representing the 750 GT, 750 Sport, and 750 SuperSport Ducati motorcycles.)


Ducati's liquid-cooled multi-valve V twins made from 1985 on are known as "Quattrovalvole" ("four-valve"). These include the 916 and 996, 999 and a few predecessors and derivatives.


In 1993, Miguel Angel Galuzzi introduced the Ducati Monster,cite web|url=http://www.monsta.at/site_article_368.html|title=Desmo 2 Valve History|publisher=monsta.at|accessdate=2008-01-25] a naked bike with exposed trellis and engine. Today the Monster accounts for almost half of the company's worldwide sales. The Monster, which has been out since 1994, has undergone the most changes of any motorcycle that Ducati has ever produced. After more than a decade of manufacturing, Ducati continues to create innovative changes to this classic motorcycle.

In 1993 , Pierre Terblanche , Massimo Bordi and Claudio Domenicali designed the Ducati Supermono . A 550cc single cylinder light weight “Catalog Racer”. Only 67 were built between 1993-1997.

In 1995, the company introduced the Ducati 916cite web|url=http://www.ducati.com/heritage/anni90/916sbk95/916sbk95.jhtml|title=Ducati Official History (The 916)|publisher=Ducati Motor Holdings|accessdate=2008-06-22 ] model designed by Massimo Tamburini, a water-cooled version that allowed for higher output levels and a striking new bodywork that featured aggressive lines, a underseat exhaust, and a single-sided swingarm. Ducati has since ceased production of what many called the bike of the 1990s, supplanting it (and its progeny, the 748, 996 and 998) with the 749 and 999.

Current lineup

For the 2009 model year, Ducati lineup is as follows:

; Monster
* 696
* 1100 / 1100S
* S4R Testastretta
* S4R S Testastretta
* S4R S Testastretta Tri-Colore; Multistrada
* 1100 / 1100S; SportClassic
* GT 1000 / GT 1000 Touring
* Sport 1000 S; Superbike
* 848
* 1098

; Other
* Hypermotard
* Desmosedici RR

* Desmodue: Desmo two valve air cooled, 40° included valve angle, (800SS, Multistrada 620, Monster 620 695 696 803 992)
* Desmodue Double Spark: Desmo two valve , air cooled, 40° included valve angle, (1000DS, Multistrada 1000, 1000S, Monster S2R 1000, SportClassic GT 1000, Sport 1000, 1000S, Hypermotard 1100, 1100S)
* Desmotre Double Spark: Desmo three valve, liquid cooled, 40° included valve angle, (ST3)
* Desmoquattro Testastretta: Desmo four valve, liquid cooled, 25° included valve angle, (999, 749, Monster S4R, S4RS); Motors introduced for 2007+
* Testastretta Evoluzione: Desmo four valve, liquid cooled, 25° included valve angle, (848, 1098)

Motorcycle design history

Ducati (in its various incarnations) has produced several styles of motorcycle engines, including varying the number of cylinders, type of valve actuation and fuel delivery. Ducati is best known for its "V-Twin" motor which is the powerplant in the majority of Ducati-marqued motorcycles.Ducati has also manufactured engines with one, two, three or four cylinders; operated by pull rod valves and push rod valves; single, double and triple overhead camshafts; two stroke and even at one stage manufactured a stationary diesel engine, many of which were used as emergency pumps (eg for fire fighting). They have also produced outboard motors for marine use. Currently, Ducati makes no other engines except for its motorcycles.

On current Ducati motors except for the Desmosedici, the valves are actuated by a standard valve cam shaft which is rotated by a timing belt driven by the motor directly. The teeth on the belt keep the camshaft drive pulleys indexed. On older Ducati motors, prior to 1986, drive was by solid shaft that transferred to the camshaft through bevel-cut gears. This method of valve actuation was used on many of Ducati's older single cylinder motorcycles - the shaft tube is visible on the outside of the cylinder.

Ducati is also famous for using the desmodromic valve system championed by engineer and designer Fabio Taglioni though they have also used engines that use valve springs to close their valves. In the early days, Ducati reserved the desmodromic valve heads for its higher performance bikes and its race bikes. These valves do not suffer from valve float at high engine speeds, thus a desmodromic engine is capable of far higher revolutions than a similarly configured engine with traditional spring-valve heads.

In the 1960s and -70s Ducati produced a wide range of small two-stroke bikes, mainly sub-100 cc capacities. Large quantities of some models were exported to the U.S.

Ducati has produced the following motorcycle engine types:
* Single cylinder,
**pullrod actuated, 48 cc and 65 cc (Cucciolo)
**pushrod actuated, 98 and 125 cc
**two stroke, 50, 80, 90, 100, 125cc
**bevel actuated, spring valved: 98 cc, 100 cc, 125 cc, 160 cc, 175 cc, 200 cc, 239 cc, 250 cc, 350 cc, 450 cc
**bevel actuated, desmodromic valved : 239 cc, 250 cc, 350 cc and 450 cc
**belt actuated, desmodromic valved : 549/572 cc Supermono, only 65 made.
* Two cylinder,
**bevel actuated, spring valved (L-Twin): 750 cc, 860 cc
**bevel actuated, desmo valved (L-Twin): 750 cc, 860 cc, 973 cc (Mille)
**chain actuated, spring valved (parallel twin): 350 cc, 500 cc (GTL)
**chain actuated, desmo valved (parallel twin): 500 cc (500SD)
**belt actuated, desmo valved (L-Twin): Almost all motors since 1986.
* Four cylinder,
**gear actuated, desmo valved (L-quattro): (Desmosedici)
**pushrod actuated, spring valved (L-4): Prototype Apollo, only two made.

Ducati products other than motorcycles

Ducati Meccanica (as the company was previously known) has its marque on non-motorcycle products as well. In the 1930s and 40s, Ducati manufactured radios, cameras, and electrical products such as a razor. The Ducati Sogno was a half-frame Leica-like camera which is now a collector's item. Ducati and Bianchi (bicycle manufacturer) have developed and launched a new line of racing bicycles. [ [http://www.bianchiducati.com/ Bianchi::Ducati Corse ] ]

Currently, there are four Ducati companies: Ducati Motor Holding (the subject of this article), Ducati Corse (which runs the Ducati racing program and is wholly owned by Ducati Motor Holding), Ducati Energia, a designer and manufacturer of electrical and electronic components and systems and Ducati Sistemi, a subsidiary of Ducati Energia. All are located in Borgo Panigale in Bologna, Italy.

Ducati Motor Holding often uses electrical components and subsystems from Ducati Energia.


Ducati has a wide range of accessories, lifestyle products and co-branded merchandise bearing their logos and designs.

Racing History

MotoGP World Championship

Ducati rejoined Grand Prix motorcycle racing in MGP|2003, after a 30 year absence. [cite web|url=http://www.ducati.com/racing/index_motogp.jhtml|title=2003 Ducati MotoGP Team|publisher=ducati.com|accessdate=2008-01-25] On September 23, 2007 Casey Stoner clinched his and Ducati's first Grand Prix World Championship.

When Ducati re-joined MotoGP in MGP|2003, MotoGP had changed its rules to allow four-stroke 990 cc engines to race. At the time Ducati was the fastest bike. In MGP|2007, MotoGP reduced the engine size to 800 cc, and Ducati continued to be the fastest bike with a bike that was markedly faster than its rivals as was displayed by Casey Stoner on tracks with long straights.

For the MGP|2008, Ducati Marlboro Team will campaign their Desmosedici GP8 with Casey Stoner and Marco Melandri. [cite web|last=Williams|first=Evan|url=http://www.superbikeplanet.com/2007/Jul/e/n070722k.htm|title=Melandri To Marlboro Ducati|publisher=superbikeplanet.com|date=2007-07-22|accessdate=0228-01-25] Ducati also supplies bikes to Pramac d'Antin which for MGP|2008 has been renamed the Alice Team, who are running the Desmosedici GP8. [cite web|url=http://uk.eurosport.yahoo.com/01112007/23/pramac-d-antin-becomes-alice-team.html|title=Pramac d'Antin MotoGP becomes Alice Team |publisher=eurosport.yahoo.com|accessdate=2008-01-25]

AMA Superbike Championship

In the AMA Superbike Championship, Ducati has had its share of success, with Doug Polen winning the title in 1993 and Troy Corser the following year in 1994. Ducati has entered a bike in every AMA Superbike season since 1986, but withdrew from the series after the 2006 season. [cite web|last=Minoli|first=Federico|url=http://blog.ducati.com/post/65/ama-next-year|title=AMA Next Year|publisher=ducati.com|date=2006-08-22|accessdate=2008-01-25] [cite web|last=Williams|first=Evan|url=http://www.superbikeplanet.com/2007/Mar/e/n070308b.htm|title=Ducati AMA Superbike Streak Ends|publisher=superbikeplanet.com|date=2007-03-08|accessdate=2008-01-25] [cite web|url=http://www.superbikeplanet.com/2006/Aug/060822a.htm|last=Adams|first=Dean|title=Bombshell: Ducati Pulls Out Of AMA Superbike|publisher=Superbikeplanet.net|date=2006-08-22|accessdate=2008-01-25]


ee also

*List of Italian companies
*List of motorcycle manufacturers

External links

* [http://www.ducati.com ducati.com] Official website

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