SuperSport 950 polished for 2021
Ducati has updated its SuperSport 950, the changes relatively minor on the outside, a rejigged fairing and new instruments, but then when we last rode it the S model was pretty much right just as it was.
Now the folk from Borgo Panigale have added an updated electronics package, with a six-axis inertial measurement unit and a 4.3-inch TFT dash. The S is still the one to go for because it comes with Öhlins suspension, meaning it rides as well as it handles, whereas the base model uses Marzocchi forks and a Sachs shock. Pick the S variant by its solo seat cowl and red highlights on its cast aluminium wheels.
At the heart of both models is an L-twin that serves up 81kW of power, sufficient for sports touring. And the thing we liked most about it was how it handled, naturally falling into decent lean angles, with plenty of grip from its excellent standard rubber. The IMU will make it even safer to explore those outer limits.
For those who find the Panigale riding position and suspension set up too extreme, this is what you should be checking out instead, or maybe the latest line-up of Multistradas.
You can add bags to the SS 950 and it would make one of the most comfy and competent lightweight sports tourers out there.
And on the company at large, sales for 2020 fell from 53,000 to 48,000, on account of Covid issues and a seven-week production stoppage,for a drop of just under 10 per cent. However, the company reported turnover per bike increasing, reflecting a product range edging its way further into the premium end of the market. Moreover, fixed costs and inventories were reduced, limiting the drop in operating margin.
Ducati is now starting deliveries of the new Monster range, and is again participating in MotoGP - it won the Constructors' World Title last year - and in the Superbike World Championship, kicking off in May.