Ducati Powered Model Bimota DB7

By: Tim Carrithers, Roland Brown, Photography by Courtesy Of Bimota, Milagro

Some shorter riders had the same problem, and a wider fuel tank would help the rider use leg pressure to steady himself when hard on the anchors. But it's hardly fair to criticize the DB7 for a problem that also afflicts the 1098, and which I've previously noted when testing MotoGP bikes.

Inevitably, the DB7's other main drawback is its high price. Performance comparisons with the 1098S are academic given that the Bimota will retail for around $40,000-closer to that of Ducati's lighter, even more powerful and traction-control-equipped 1098R.

Still, unless you're going racing, the DB7 has an appeal that is subtly different to the 1098R's, and arguably just as strong. This bike might not match the sheer performance of Ducati's homologation special, but it's hardly lacking in horsepower. Bimota badly needed a model with the speed to match its style and handling ability. The DB7 provides just that-on Misano's back straight or anywhere else.

Hard Parts

Engine
The eight-valve, 1099cc desmo twin is cut from Ducati's 1098 and pasted into Bimota's typically atypical steel-tube skeleton. Salient particulars for the 138-pound lump are the same as you'd find in a 1098S. The 104.0 x 64.7mm cylinders use 12.5: 1 compression to deliver an alleged 160 bhp at 9750 rpm, just under the 10,700-rpm rev ceiling. Elliptical bores in the Marelli throttle bodies flow 30 percent more than an equivalent round inlet shape, which accounts for five of those horses.

Frame
The Testastretta Evoluzione twin works harder as a stressed chassis member than it does in Ducati's 1098. Oval-section 50 x 30mm chromoly tubes form a more rigid lattice than round stock using the same 1.5mm wall thickness. The stiffer skeleton let Bimota shift the engine 12mm higher and 8mm farther vs. its location in a Ducati, shifting weight forward to enhance front tire grip. Side plates are milled from aircraft-spec, Italian Aticorodal 100 aluminum. The net result is 2.6 pounds lighter than Ducati's 1098 frame.

Suspension
Bimota uses a 43mm Marzocchi inverted fork, complete with low-friction nitride-coated sliders. Rake is set at 25 degrees, buffered by 3.9 inches of trail. Stout billet triple-clamps keep everything in line. Constructed from the same oval-section tubing as the rest of the chassis, the DB7's swingarm cues a fully adjustable ExtremeTech 2v4 shock via a 7 percent rising-rate linkage. There's 3/4-inch worth of ride-height adjustment in there as well.

Wheels & Brakes
Russian Magaltech 10-spoke forged-aluminum wheels wear Continental Race Attack radials: 120/70-17 front and 190/55-17 rear. MotoGP-spec Brembo braking hardware can slow things down in a big hurry. Billet-aluminum Monobloc four-piston, four-pad front calipers grab 320mm floating rotors via hydraulic input from an adjustable billet lever and radial master-cylinder. A two-piston Grimeca caliper pairs with a 220mm floating rear rotor.

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