A Closer Look at The 2000 Ducati 996 SBK

The 2000 Ducati 996 SBK

Ducati is the name that dwarfs most other motorbikes in the market. For decades, Ducati bikes have remained among the best; showcasing their spectacular designs and powerful performance. One of the best Ducati bikes of all times came to light in 2000. By the year 1999, there were three major Ducati 966 bikes. Each model had specific features that made it different from the other. The Biposto, also known as the base was used widely, the 996S enjoyed Ohlins suspensions and the 996SPS was similar to the Biposto but was used in Europe only. This European version of the 996 was the fastest thanks to its powerful engine and light body. The body was made of carbon fiber and titanium.

It is these three powerful 1999 models of Ducati that were upgraded to give us 2000, 20001 and 20002 versions of the 996. From the year 2001, Ducati 996 SPS was remodeled and replaced with the 996 R. The new bike featured a 998cc testastretta engine. However, the bike had a less powerful version that offered less power horse. The 966 enjoyed larger 98 mm pistons, larger valves, and a stronger crankshaft. The bike also had crankcases imported from the 916 SPS. However, the bike had a much easier to control power intake. The power intake provided a soft power delivery of just 83.5kW as compared to the previous SPS 92.4kW. The new version was also built with a unique air intake system and a brand new fuel injection mechanism. It enjoyed two fuel injectors per cylinder which made refilling much faster. The bike also enjoyed a new airbox and an exhaust strategically placed under the seat. Modifications to the chassis saw the bike enjoy lighter wheels, efficient clippers, advanced discs, and pads. However, the suspension system remained the same through the 2001 model. The front and back-end were fully adjustable to enable damping and preloading.

2000 996 Biposto

Bisposto was the bike that got the upgrades to give us the much-coveted 2000 Ducati 996 SBK. There are many features that made this bike special. First, there were major improvements to the outward look of the bike. The bike also saw major improvements in performance. The wheels were changed by introducing the new Marchesini, which were much lighter. The introduction of lighter wheels meant that the bike had an advantage of speed over the other. The bike also saw the introduction of titanium nitrite front forks which helped reduce restriction. The 2000 Ducati 996 SBK had a totally different feel after the spokes were changed from the traditional 3 to the more advanced five-spoke rim style. Although the bike was later improved and other features changed in the following years.

You cannot talk about the 2000 Ducati 996 SBK without mentioning the 966SPS. According to Motorcycle Specs,  The SPS was the mother of all 966 bikes and still stands as one of the best. The suffix SPS stands for Sports Production Special. It shared the same engine with the 916 SPS but it enjoyed a much lighter body as compared to the 916. The 966 SPS was the most powerful of all the 1999 models with 124 bhp. Its engine was much stronger than any other Ducati models produced at that time.

The major difference between the standard 966 versions and the SPS was in the chassis. Ducati wanted this bike to stand out as a sports bike and they did that by investing the body. The five-spoke wheels introduced to the SPS were much lighter than those used on the 916. by the year 2000, the SPS enjoyed rear shocks that were made by a renowned Swedish suspension manufacturer – Ohlins. The Ohlins suspensions and Showa front shocks eventually took over all the three Ducatis in the following years. This bike also enjoyed an adjustable steering head, allowing changes to the trellis frame and made it suitable for different riding styles on the racing tracks.

2001 was the year that Ducati sought to produce more 966 units. The company introduced 500 units only of the 996 R. The Ducati 996 R was specifically designed for racing. This bike featured Ohlins suspensions with rear and front carbon body works that introduced carbon fiber to reduce the speeds. The bike also enjoyed streamlined fairing and a much-improved engine. To ensure that the bike enjoyed higher speed, the Testastretta engine was improved. The engine that displaced 998cc got its name from its narrower angle between the intake valve and the exhaust. It was designed by Marchetti from Ferrari was among the most powerful engines in motorbike racing at the time. The powerful bike featured aggressive camshafts, much shorter strokes than the preceding versions and a wider bore. These features ensured that the bike could run much faster while maintaining safety. The 98.5bkW engine enjoyed a maximum torque of 105 Nm. Although the engine was much powerful than the other 996 versions, it enjoyed a similar chassis to the 996 SPS. It was similar to the other SPS in design, but also enjoyed a Brembo Braking System with thinner discs. Thanks to the 4-pad and 4- pot calipers, the bike was much easier to control. This became the trademark 2000 Ducati 996 SBK for racing in the early 2000s. It went on to achieve success on the track and has since then been a favorite among bike racing fans. Unfortunately, limited units of the bike were produced making it a rare view for the fans.

Conclusion

The 2000 Ducati 996 SBK is one of the most coveted bikes of all times. The bikes which were produced in the 90’s were later upgraded to give the much loved 996 versions of the early 2000’s. The three models of the 996 included the SPS, the Biposto and the 996 S. They were later upgraded to give the 2000, 2001 and 2002 models of 996 SBK . These bikes enjoyed powerful engines and introduced the Ohlin suspensions to the motorbike world. They are among the best motorbikes for racing in history. The Ducati 996 R became the most successful racing bike of the 2000’s.


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