It Has The Best Power-to-Weight Ratio Of Any Naked Bike Out There

Ducati stripped down its Panigale V4 superbike and made a handful of aesthetic and functional changes ahead of the 2020 model year to bring us the Streetfighter V4. The resulting machine is truly something to behold. The redesigned rider’s triangle and stripped-down visage of the Streetfighter V4 and V4 S are joined by a 200-plus horsepower Desmosedici Stradale engine and a robust electronics suite to round out the package and deliver the performance and control we expect from the Italian giant.

  • 2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 / V4 S
  • Year:
    2020
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    V-Twin
  • Displacement:
    1103 cc
  • Top Speed:
    168 mph
  • Price:
    19999
  • Price:

2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 Design

2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 / V4 S
- image 870980
2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 / V4 S
- image 870977
Biplane-style winglets provide 62 pounds of downforce at 168 mph to keep the front end planted for max traction without affecting its agile flickability.

The modern Streetfighters are somewhat new territory for Ducati. They rock pared-down engine cowlings to form a sportbike-like scoop that quickly disappears to leave much of the beast of an engine visible for a naked look that isn’t quite as naked as the Monster line.

A minimal front fender contains the spray and protects the inner tubes of the inverted front forks from road grit that could lead to premature fork-seal failure. Uphill from that is a rather naked-typical headlight housing just big enough to house the dual LED headlights and LED daytime running lights that together help you see and be seen in all lighting conditions. Fork-mount standoff turn signals complete the forward lighting, and while I’d have preferred to see them integrated with the mirrors, that detail alone is far from a dealbreaker for me.

The instrumentation is bundled in its entirety by a five-inch color TFT display. I think one of the most striking features of the new look have nothing to do with actual aesthetics, but instead, is part of the race-tastic nature of this line. I’m talking about the biplane-style winglets that project from the sides of the cowling and provide 62 pounds of downforce at 168 mph to keep the front end planted and the front contact patch spread out for max traction. Of course, you can lift the front end at will, but the winglets’ spoiler effect increases traction without affecting the agile flickability the Streetfighters bring to the table. Ducati calls it the “Ego Booster Design,” and I certainly have to agree with the marketing folks on that point; a rare instance of truth in advertising.

Rather than running with the usual clip-on handlebars, the factory opted for a wide, short-rise bar that pushes your hands both upwards and back so as not to force you into that racer’s crouch. True, they don’t exactly fall out in relaxed-commuter territory, but at least your wrists, shoulders, and neck catch a bit of a break.

Wide flanges atop the 4.23-gallon fuel tank serve to improve penetration and reduce drag while also forming the knee pockets that let you pull your legs in out of the worst of the slipstream. Jockey-mount footpegs pull your heels up high and tight to enable that lateral body English to help you toss it around in the turns. It’s unclear if the shifter can be flipped around for the GP-shift action, but the footpegs are mounted so high I doubt that’s an issue.

The pilot’s saddle meets a narrow waist to leave plenty of room for comfort, and while the fold-up footpegs on the subframe and pillion pad make it capable of hauling a passenger, it’s really an “I’d rather not” kind of situation, and the passenger footrests are built to be easily removed ahead of track days. Same with the mudguard, plateholder, and blinker assembly that projects from the rear frame under the recessed taillight.

2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 Chassis

2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 / V4 S
- image 870989
2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 / V4 S
- image 870978
2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 / V4 S
- image 871012
At the suspension we see the first divergence between the V4 and the V4 S, both with top-shelf components, and both with agile handling you expect in a streetfighter.

An aluminum alloy front frame on the Streetfighter V4 uses the engine as a stressed unit and sets a rake angle of 24.5 degrees with a four-inch trail. That short of an angle imparts agility to the bike.

At the suspension we see the first divergence between the V4 and the V4 S; the former rides on fully-adjustable, 43 mm Showa BPF forks with a similarly adjustable Sachs shock out back to support the rear and tame the motion of the single-side swingarm, as well as a Sachs steering damper. Honestly, that’s some pretty good stuff, and the best that many bikes could hope for, but the V4 S takes it up a notch or three with electronically-adjustable Öhlins hardware front and rear and the Öhlins Smart EC 2.0 event-based control system for the effortless, automatic damping tweaks it provides, as well as an Öhlins steering damper.

Another design variance occurs at the wheels. The Streetfighter V4 rolls on light-alloy, five-spoke rims while the V4 S drops two of those spokes in a bid to minimize weight, but no matter which you choose, you can count on Pirelli Diablo Rosso Corsa II hoops in a 120/70-17 up front opposite a fat, 200/60-17 in a Z rating that’ll take anything you can dish out.

The anchors are a constant across the board with dual, 330 mm discs and four-pot Brembo Stylema calipers to haul down the front wheel and a 245 mm disc and twin-pot caliper to slow the rear.

ModelStreetfighter V4Streetfighter V4 S
Frame: Aluminum alloy "Front Frame" Aluminum alloy "Front Frame"
Front suspension/Travel: Fully adjustable Showa BPF fork. 43 mm chromed inner tubes/ 4.7 in (120 mm) Öhlins NIX30 43 mm fully adjustable fork with TiN treatment. Electronic compression and rebound damping adjustment with Öhlins Smart EC 2.0 event-based mode/ 4.7 in (120 mm)
Rear Suspension: Fully adjustable Sachs unit. Aluminum single-sided swingarm/ 5.1 in (130 mm) Fully adjustable Öhlins TTX36 unit. Electronic compression and rebound damping adjustment with Öhlins Smart EC 2.0 event-based mode. Aluminum single-sided swingarm./ 5.1 in (130 mm)
Front wheel: 5-spoke light alloy 3.50" x 17" 3-spoke forged aluminum alloy 3.50" x 17"
Rear wheel: 5-spoke light alloy 6.00” x 17” 3-spoke forged aluminum alloy 6.00" x 17"
Front tire: Pirelli Diablo Rosso Corsa 2 120/70 ZR17 Pirelli Diablo Rosso Corsa 2 120/70 ZR17
Rear tire: Pirelli Diablo Rosso Corsa 2 200/60 ZR17 Pirelli Diablo Rosso Corsa 2 200/60 ZR17
Front brake: Dual 330 mm semi-floating discs, radially mounted Brembo Monobloc Stylema® (M4.30) 4-piston calipers with Bosch Cornering ABS EVO. Dual 330 mm semi-floating discs, radially mounted Brembo Monobloc Stylema® (M4.30) 4-piston calipers with Bosch Cornering ABS EVO.
Rear brake: 245 mm disc, 2-piston caliper with Bosch Cornering ABS EVO 245 mm disc, 2-piston caliper with Bosch Cornering ABS EVO

2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 Drivetrain

2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 / V4 S
- image 871026
2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 / V4 S
- image 871009
2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 / V4 S
- image 871011
At 12,750 rpm, the mill cranks out a whopping 208 horsepower with 90.4 pound-feet of torque.

The real magic on the Streetfighter V4, both mechanical and electronic, resides in the engine space. Power comes from the 90-degree V4 Desmosedici Stradale that has a back-spinning crank to use the gyroscopic forces it generates to keep the front end planted. It’s a Desmodromic engine, so it uses a pull-closed cam in lieu of valve springs to close the poppets in a bid to eliminate harmonic valve float and the loss of power and damage that can occur with that old-school system.

Massively oversquare, the mill runs an 81 mm bore and 53.5 mm stroke for a total displacement of 1,103 cc and an incredibly-hot, 14-to-1 compression ratio. I don’t know if you can even run the thing on pump gas, at least not without some serious octane additive to prevent dieseling/detonation/preignition. That’s some serious compression, sports fans.

A fly-by-wire throttle controls elliptical throttle bodies that rock a pair of injectors per cylinder for optimized atomization of the hydrocarbons with Lambda probes in the pipes that monitor the exhaust gasses to allow the system to self correct if the mixture gets too rich for complete combustion. Not only does this help with power generation, but it keeps emissions reasonable as well.

What kind of power are we talking about? Buckle up folks. At 12,750 rpm, the mill cranks out a whopping 208 horsepower with 90.4 pound-feet of torque that maxes out at 11,500 rpm. The factory doesn’t explicitly state the top speed, but I feel like the max-downforce speed of 168 mph is probably the magic number.

As with any Ducati sportbike, the mechanicals are only half of the package. Both models run the same safety equipment with Riding Modes, Power Modes, Traction-Control, Wheelie-Control, and Slide-Control features, as well as cornering ABS and Engine Brake Control to round out the package. The Ducati Launch Control, Quick Shift feature and Ducati Multimedia System are also constant across the board to wrap up the fandanglery and deliver a fully-controllable ride.

ModelStreetfighter V4Streetfighter V4 S
Engine: Desmosedici Stradale 90° V4, rearward-rotating crankshaft, 4 Desmodromically actuated valves per cylinder, liquid cooled. Desmosedici Stradale 90° V4, rearward-rotating crankshaft, 4 Desmodromically actuated valves per cylinder, liquid cooled.
Displacement: 1,103 cc 1,103 cc
Bore x Stroke: 81 mm x 53.5 mm 81 mm x 53.5 mm
Compression ratio: 14.0:1 14.0:1
Power: 208 hp (153 kW) @ 12,750 rpm 208 hp (153 kW) @ 12,750 rpm
Torque: 90.4 lb-ft (123 Nm) @ 11,500 rpm 90.4 lb-ft (123 Nm) @ 11,500 rpm
Fuel injection: Electronic fuel injection system. Twin injectors per cylinder. Full ride-by-wire elliptical throttle bodies. Electronic fuel injection system. Twin injectors per cylinder. Full ride-by-wire elliptical throttle bodies.
Exhaust: 4-2-1-2 system, with 2 catalytic converters and 2 lambda probes. 4-2-1-2 system, with 2 catalytic converters and 2 lambda probes.
Gearbox: 6 speed with Ducati Quick Shift (DQS) up/down EVO 2 6 speed with Ducati Quick Shift (DQS) up/down EVO 2
Primary drive: Straight cut gears; Ratio 1.80:1 Straight cut gears; Ratio 1.80:1
Ratio: 1: 38/14, 2: 36/17, 3: 33/19, 4: 32/21, 5: 30/22, 6: 30/24 1: 38/14, 2: 36/17, 3: 33/19, 4: 32/21, 5: 30/22, 6: 30/24
Final drive: Chain: Front sprocket, 15: Rear sprocket 42 Chain: Front sprocket, 15: Rear sprocket 42
Clutch: Hydraulically controlled slipper and self-servo wet multiplate clutch. Hydraulically controlled slipper and self-servo wet multiplate clutch.

2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 Pricing

2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 / V4 S
- image 870998
2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 / V4 S
- image 870982
2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 / V4 S
- image 871008
MSRP starts at $20k and runs up to $24k for the V4 S.

The 2020 Streetfighter V4 rolls for a $19,995 MSRP, but if you want that V4 S model, you can expect to cough up an additional $4 grand. As for color, you’d better like that bright Ducati Red (I do), ’cause that’s all you can have this year.

ModelStreetfighter V4Streetfighter V4 S
Instrumentation: Last generation digital unit with 5" TFT color display Last generation digital unit with 5" TFT color display
Safety equipment: Riding Modes, Power Modes, Cornering ABS EVO, Ducati Traction Control (DTC) EVO 2, Ducati Wheelie Control (DWC) EVO, Ducati Slide Control (DSC), Engine Brake Control (EBC) EVO, Auto tire calibration. Riding Modes, Power Modes, Cornering ABS EVO, Ducati Traction Control (DTC) EVO 2, Ducati Wheelie Control (DWC) EVO, Ducati Slide Control (DSC), Engine Brake Control (EBC) EVO, Auto tire calibration.
Standard equipment: Ducati Power Launch (DPL), Ducati Quick Shift (DQS) up/down EVO 2, Full LED lighting with Daytime Running Light (DRL), Sachs steering damper, Quick adjustment buttons, Auto-off indicators, Passenger seat and footpegs. Ducati Multimedia System (DMS). Ducati Power Launch (DPL), Ducati Quick Shift (DQS) up/down EVO 2, Full LED lighting with Daytime Running Light (DRL), Sachs steering damper, Quick adjustment buttons, Auto-off indicators, Passenger seat and footpegs. Ducati Multimedia System (DMS).
Ready for: Ducati Data Analyser+ (DDA+) with GPS module, Ducati LinkApp, anti-theft, heating grips. Ducati Data Analyser+ (DDA+) with GPS module, Ducati LinkApp, anti-theft, heating grips.
Warranty: 24 months unlimited mileage 24 months unlimited mileage
Color: Ducati Red Ducati Red
Price: $19,999 $23,999

2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 Competitors

2020 Kawasaki Z H2
- image 869655
2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 / V4 S
- image 871019
The electronic edge goes to Ducati, but Kawi scores at the checkout with an accessible $17k sticker that is bound to buy it some business.

Truly badass naked sportbikes are few and far between, but I think the Big Four may have a worthy competitor in the brand-new Z H2 from Kawasaki. Those of you familiar with Kawi products will recognize both the “Z” designator as the naked line and the “H2” tag as the supercharged powerplant. Combined, that adds up to something very special, namely a streetfighter with some true grit.

The Kawi is similarly sparse in its body appointments though it shuns the sportbike cowl in favor of a more truly naked build that leaves absolutely nothing to the imagination. The Z H2 uses the engine as a stressed unit, but unlike Ducati, the Trellis frame is an uninterrupted assembly unto itself without the major disconnect the latter brings to the table.

Kawi falls short of the electronic stems that float the V4 S, but more or less breaks even with the base V4. As far as electronics go, the Z H2 rocks a quick-shift feature and a Launch Control to help you nail the holeshot and rip your way out of corners. Integrated riding modes and a slipper clutch help keep it dirty-side down, and so the Kawi cedes a slight electronic edge to the Duc.

Kawi is mum on the horsepower output, but the supercharged engine churns out a soul-crushing 101 pound-feet of torque to top the Desmosedici in the grunt department. While the electronic edge still goes to Ducati, Kawi scores again at the checkout with an accessible $17,000 sticker that is bound to buy it some business.

He Said

“Holy smokes y’all; I’m digging this new Duc. Lookswise, the minimal cowling dresses it up from the Monster and down from the Panigale for an attractive middle ground, but the real star of the show is the powerplant and its impressive numbers. Sure, the Z H2 beats it in torque, but let’s be honest, you’re never going to do either bike justice on public roads, and you’d better not even try. If I had to identify a negative, it’s that the Streetfighter line isn’t as liable to attract new customers as it is to steal wind from the sails of the Monster and Panigale range. Sales figures will prove me wrong, or not.”

She Said

My wife and fellow motorcycle writer, Allyn Hinton, says, “Let’s look at some figures. The Streetfighter V4 has a 25 percent better power-to-weight ratio over other naked bikes and Ducati claims 208 horsepower and 90 pound-feet of torque. That seriously is nothing to sneeze at. And look at the double wings on each side. Why is it significant that there are two pairs? Because it’s a naked bike. There is no fairing to stream the wind up and around you so your body is the wind resistance, pushing you back. You’re holding the bars so while you are being pushed back, you are pulling up the front end. That’s bad when you want positive traction so the downforce of the wings keeps that front end down. The wings on each side are angled on different planes to create what sailors would call a slot effect. This effect makes the total downforce more than the combined total of what each wing will exert on its own. It’s brilliant, really.”

2020 Ducati Streetfighter V4 / V4 S Specifications

ModelStreetfighter V4Streetfighter V4 S
Engine & Drivetrain:
Engine: Desmosedici Stradale 90° V4, rearward-rotating crankshaft, 4 Desmodromically actuated valves per cylinder, liquid cooled. Desmosedici Stradale 90° V4, rearward-rotating crankshaft, 4 Desmodromically actuated valves per cylinder, liquid cooled.
Displacement: 1,103 cc 1,103 cc
Bore x Stroke: 81 mm x 53.5 mm 81 mm x 53.5 mm
Compression ratio: 14.0:1 14.0:1
Power: 208 hp (153 kW) @ 12,750 rpm 208 hp (153 kW) @ 12,750 rpm
Torque: 90.4 lb-ft (123 Nm) @ 11,500 rpm 90.4 lb-ft (123 Nm) @ 11,500 rpm
Fuel injection: Electronic fuel injection system. Twin injectors per cylinder. Full ride-by-wire elliptical throttle bodies. Electronic fuel injection system. Twin injectors per cylinder. Full ride-by-wire elliptical throttle bodies.
Exhaust: 4-2-1-2 system, with 2 catalytic converters and 2 lambda probes. 4-2-1-2 system, with 2 catalytic converters and 2 lambda probes.
Gearbox: 6 speed with Ducati Quick Shift (DQS) up/down EVO 2 6 speed with Ducati Quick Shift (DQS) up/down EVO 2
Primary drive: Straight cut gears; Ratio 1.80:1 Straight cut gears; Ratio 1.80:1
Ratio: 1: 38/14, 2: 36/17, 3: 33/19, 4: 32/21, 5: 30/22, 6: 30/24 1: 38/14, 2: 36/17, 3: 33/19, 4: 32/21, 5: 30/22, 6: 30/24
Final drive: Chain: Front sprocket, 15: Rear sprocket 42 Chain: Front sprocket, 15: Rear sprocket 42
Clutch: Hydraulically controlled slipper and self-servo wet multiplate clutch. Hydraulically controlled slipper and self-servo wet multiplate clutch.
Chassis:
Frame: Aluminum alloy "Front Frame" Aluminum alloy "Front Frame"
Front suspension/Travel: Fully adjustable Showa BPF fork. 43 mm chromed inner tubes/ 4.7 in (120 mm) Öhlins NIX30 43 mm fully adjustable fork with TiN treatment. Electronic compression and rebound damping adjustment with Öhlins Smart EC 2.0 event-based mode/ 4.7 in (120 mm)
Rear Suspension: Fully adjustable Sachs unit. Aluminum single-sided swingarm/ 5.1 in (130 mm) Fully adjustable Öhlins TTX36 unit. Electronic compression and rebound damping adjustment with Öhlins Smart EC 2.0 event-based mode. Aluminum single-sided swingarm./ 5.1 in (130 mm)
Front wheel: 5-spoke light alloy 3.50" x 17" 3-spoke forged aluminum alloy 3.50" x 17"
Rear wheel: 5-spoke light alloy 6.00” x 17” 3-spoke forged aluminum alloy 6.00" x 17"
Front tire: Pirelli Diablo Rosso Corsa 2 120/70 ZR17 Pirelli Diablo Rosso Corsa 2 120/70 ZR17
Rear tire: Pirelli Diablo Rosso Corsa 2 200/60 ZR17 Pirelli Diablo Rosso Corsa 2 200/60 ZR17
Front brake: Dual 330 mm semi-floating discs, radially mounted Brembo Monobloc Stylema® (M4.30) 4-piston calipers with Bosch Cornering ABS EVO. Dual 330 mm semi-floating discs, radially mounted Brembo Monobloc Stylema® (M4.30) 4-piston calipers with Bosch Cornering ABS EVO.
Rear brake: 245 mm disc, 2-piston caliper with Bosch Cornering ABS EVO 245 mm disc, 2-piston caliper with Bosch Cornering ABS EVO
Dimensions & Capacities:
Dry weight: 397 lb (180 kg) 392 lb (178 kg)
Curb weight: 443 lb (201 kg) 439 lb (199 kg)
Seat height: 33.3 in (845 mm) 33.3 in (845 mm)
Wheelbase: 58.6 in (1,488 mm) 58.6 in (1,488 mm)
Rake: 24.5° 24.5°
Front wheel trail: 4 in (100 mm) 4 in (100 mm)
Fuel tank capacity: 4.23 gallon ( 16 l) 4.23 gallon ( 16 l)
Number of seats: Dual seats Dual seats
Details:
Instrumentation: Last generation digital unit with 5" TFT color display Last generation digital unit with 5" TFT color display
Safety equipment: Riding Modes, Power Modes, Cornering ABS EVO, Ducati Traction Control (DTC) EVO 2, Ducati Wheelie Control (DWC) EVO, Ducati Slide Control (DSC), Engine Brake Control (EBC) EVO, Auto tire calibration. Riding Modes, Power Modes, Cornering ABS EVO, Ducati Traction Control (DTC) EVO 2, Ducati Wheelie Control (DWC) EVO, Ducati Slide Control (DSC), Engine Brake Control (EBC) EVO, Auto tire calibration.
Standard equipment: Ducati Power Launch (DPL), Ducati Quick Shift (DQS) up/down EVO 2, Full LED lighting with Daytime Running Light (DRL), Sachs steering damper, Quick adjustment buttons, Auto-off indicators, Passenger seat and footpegs. Ducati Multimedia System (DMS). Ducati Power Launch (DPL), Ducati Quick Shift (DQS) up/down EVO 2, Full LED lighting with Daytime Running Light (DRL), Sachs steering damper, Quick adjustment buttons, Auto-off indicators, Passenger seat and footpegs. Ducati Multimedia System (DMS).
Ready for: Ducati Data Analyser+ (DDA+) with GPS module, Ducati LinkApp, anti-theft, heating grips. Ducati Data Analyser+ (DDA+) with GPS module, Ducati LinkApp, anti-theft, heating grips.
Warranty: 24 months unlimited mileage 24 months unlimited mileage
Color: Ducati Red Ducati Red
Price: $19,999 $23,999

Further Reading

Kawasaki Z H2

2020 Kawasaki Z H2
- image 869621

See our review of the Kawasaki Z H2.

Ducati Monster 1200 / 1200 S

2017 - 2020 Ducati Monster 1200 / 1200 S
- image 832356

See our review of the Ducati Monster 1200 / 1200 S.

Ducati Panigale V4

2018 - 2019 Ducati Panigale V4
- image 773931

See our review of the Ducati Panigale V4 / V4 S.

Ducati

ALLYN IMAGES: DO NOT DELETE
- image 792903

Read more Ducati news.

TJ Hinton
T.J got an early start from his father and other family members who owned and rode motorcycles, and by helping with various mechanical repairs throughout childhood. That planted a seed that grew into a well-rounded appreciation of all things mechanical, and eventually, into a formal education of same. Though primarily a Harley rider, he has an appreciation for all sorts of bikes and doesn't discriminate against any particular brand or region of origin. He currently holds an Associate's degree in applied mechanical science from his time at the M.M.I.  Read More
About the author

All images featured on this website are copyrighted to their respective rightful owners. No infringement is intended. Image Source: ducati.com, kawasaki.com

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