Ducati Desmodromic Variable Timing | UP TO SPEED

See the computer-generated video demonstration of the next evolution of Ducati’s Desmo.

The problem is as old as the internal combustion engine itself: Static valve timing is always a compromise. Figures that produce good power at lower engine speeds aren't ideal for higher-rpm operation and vice versa. With Ducati's new Desmodromic Variable Timing (DVT) , the intake cams and exhaust cams are independently variable, allowing for optimum valve events from idle to redline. The system works via valve-timing adjusters built into the ends of the cam pulleys. Oil pressure—controlled by valves operated by the ECU—determine how much each cam is advanced or retarded.

The system differs from Honda's V-TEC system (employed on the VFR800 beginning in 2002), which activates an additional intake and exhaust valve above each cylinder at a certain rpm, but those valves still operate based on fixed cam timing.

The DVT actuator assembly is built into the end of the cam, inside the pulley.
Where the magic happens: Ducati's "valve timing adjusters" reside inside the cam pulleys and vary cam timing based on engine speed. The adjusters are manipulated via oil pressure that is regulated by special valves controlled by the ECU.

The previous Testastretta 11° DS was said to make 150 hp at 9,250 rpm and 91.8 pound-feet of torque at 7,500. This new engine, which appears unchanged save for the addition of DVT, is said to produce 160 hp at 9,500 rpm and 100 pound-feet of torque at 7,500 rpm, with 59 pound-feet available from just 3,500 rpm. Additionally, Ducati says the new DVT engine is 8 percent more efficient than the 11° engine.

It remains to be seen how Ducati’s system works in practice, but in theory it seems to be a competent and compact adaptation of technology long proven effective in the automotive world. And it makes sense that Ducati has applied it to the Testastretta 1200 motor, which is used in the Multistrada, Diavel, and Monster 1200.