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Ducati 1098 and 1098S (2007-2008): Review & Buying Guide

Massively experienced road tester



2007 Ducati 1098 1098S Review Used Price Spec_01
2007 Ducati 1098 1098S Review Used Price Spec_17
2007 Ducati 1098 1098S Review Used Price Spec_46


Price: £6000-£10,000 | Power: 160bhp | Weight: 173kg | Overall BikeSocial Rating: 5/5


It is hard to overstate just what an important motorcycle the 1098 was for Ducati. Following hot on the heels of the somewhat disastrous 999, the 1098 not only introduced a whole new desmo V-twin engine into the range (one whose derivatives have only just stopped being used by Ducati in favour of their V4 motor), it also marked a major turning point for the firm in regards to reliability. And performance, never forget performance...

A ground-up modern V-twin superbike, the 1098 took all of the good points of the 916-style of models, namely their looks and handling, but injected more power, more agility and even a small smattering of tech. Stunning to ride, beautiful to look at and also impressively reliable, if you want a Ducati superbike to ride and enjoy – buy a 1098 or 1098S.


Ducati 1098 and 1098S (2007-2008) Price

Costing £11,250 for the base bike and £13,995 for the higher-spec S version, the 1098 was typically Ducati expensive in 2007 but you were paying for a totally new model and also a Ducati superbike, so that didn’t seem to put buyers off! Nowadays the 1098 is still far from cheap but with prices of the base bike starting at £6000 and the S model costing roughly £1000-£1500 more, it is within touching distance of most used bike buyers. You need to expect mileages touching 20,000 if you are looking at the lower end of the price bracket but there are lots of mid to low teens bikes out there if you are worried about these kind of numbers and are prepared to pay a bit more.


  • Beautiful engine

  • Amazing looks

  • Good reliability

  • Fairly uncomfortable to ride

  • Expensive to get major service completed

  • It lacks modern tech


Engine and Performance

The Testastretta Evoluzione engine was all-new in 2007 and marked a significant step in Ducati’s history. While still retaining the firm’s traditional 90-degree angle as well as cam belts and the desmo valve train system, the rest of the engine was brought bang up to date with modern engineering techniques and even a focus on making it easy to maintain. And reliable, it is far more robust than the aging 916/996/998 motor with most of the older engine’s ‘character’ reliability issues removed...

Compared to the 999, to ride the 1098 motor feels basically the same but better in every single department. With a genuine 144bhp at the rear wheel and 104Nm of torque, the 1098 still manages to retain that lovely lazy V-twin attitude but does so with even more impressive performance. Open the throttle on the 1098 and it is litre inline four fast, which the 999 never really was, but it doesn’t feel at all intimidating to ride - instead it is just brilliant fun and wonderfully engaging. Some may argue the throttle is a touch abrupt (it is nowhere near as brutal as the 1198 and can be refined through an ECU remap) but realistically, there is very little to dislike about the 1098 motor and it is an absolute joy to ride. And reliable too...

When buying used, aside from the usual service history, there aren’t too many issues to worry about. The fuel pump relay is a bit weak, so it is worth changing it every service to be safe as it is only £5, and the clutch slave cylinder can leak but that’s about it. A few older bike are starting to suffer from age-related issues such as the fuel tank breather becoming blocked, creating a vacuum in the tank and starving the engine of fuel and therefore performance, and also a clogged fuel filter but that’s about it - watch out for lethargic-feeling bikes.

When it comes to servicing, the 1098 is now under the extended Ducati service schedule so that means 7500-mile valve-clearance checks and cam belts every 15,000 miles or five years. Obviously these services aren’t cheap, about £500-£700 for valve clearances and new belts adding £200 to this figure, but they are well spaced out and the simple oil and filter interim service is only about £200.

When buying used, it isn’t uncommon to find a 1098 with an exhaust system fitted, which is a good thing as removing the cat and emissions junk and sorting the fuelling releases a lovely dose of mid-range. A few owners also play with the 1098’s gearing, dropping a tooth on the front sprocket or adding two to the rear. Although not necessary it is worth experimenting with gearing if you want a bit of extra zing in its acceleration. Interestingly, some aftermarket fuelling modules (Nemesis for example) even offer the option of traction control, something that the 1098 lacks but the 1198S gained. If the bike has such a system fitted, be a touch wary as they often also add a quickshifter, something that only arrived officially from Ducati on the 1198SP and can put extra strain on the gearbox. Speaking of gearboxes, if the bike has a slipper clutch fitted, question if it has been used on track. The 1098 never had one and they are really necessary for track use due to the bike’s high compression ratio.



Ducati 1098 and 1098S (2007-2008) Handling & Suspension

Starting with the upgrades, the stock 1098 comes with Showa forks and shock while the S features Öhlins front and back. The S also has lightweight forged Marchesini wheels where the base bike has standard alloy items. These changes make the S model 2kg lighter than the base bike and obviously, the Ohlins shock has the advantage of being fully-rebuildable where the Showa item isn’t and also lightweight wheels make the S more agile by reducing its unsprung weight. So that’s the major differences covered, now what to look out for.

When buying used, you need to be a touch careful with the 1098 it does have one slight weak area that needs to either be addressed or kept an eye on. The swingarm collects water on early 1098 models and this can cause the lower shock mounting to rust and seize up. A quick fix is to drilling a hole in the swingarm to allow water to escape (something Ducati actually did on later models and the 1198) and to ensuring the shock nut is always lubed and rust-free. And then there is the obvious check of the rear hub and eccentric adjuster, which should be rebuilt and regreased every four years or so or it could seize up. Give the bike a good check over for dings in the wheels and general wear and tear but all should be good.

So, if you buy a good one, will it make you happy? Oh yes, very much so. Although undeniably a touch lazier-handling than a Japanese inline four, the 1098 is still a brilliant bike to ride and is far closer to a ‘traditional’ sportsbike in its agility than the 999, which does feel a bit long and low. This is due to Ducati altering the 1098’s weight bias to make it feel sportier, something that has most certainly worked. On smooth, twisty, roads the 1098 is a joy and one of the most enjoyable and engaging Ducati sportsbikes you can buy thanks to a near perfect balance of performance, handling and soul. As you would expect, the suspension is a touch firm for the UK’s potholes in standard trim and the riding position is sporty but that’s a given and if you buy a Ducati sportsbike you will accept these facts. Ignore the occasional grumble from your wrists and instead just enjoy the whole 1098 experience – what a fabulous bike.



Comfort & Economy

Comfort levels are certainly better than a 916-style of bike or a Panigale on the 1098 but that’s not saying much! It’s a Ducati sportsbike, just put up with the pain! When it comes to range, the 1098 is a bit limited due to its small 15.5-litre tank. There again, the 120-130-miles until the fuel light come on are about all your wrists and bum can take so it’s not a huge drama!



Ducati 1098 and 1098S (2007-2008) Equipment

The 1098 models never came with traction control, that first arrived on the 1098R before filtering down to the 1198S in 2009. You can fit aftermarket fuelling systems that have TC as an option but if you are that desperate for it, buy an 1198S as it is a factory-fit system and therefore more reliable. Both the 1098 and 1098S come with Ducati’s datalogging system (DDA) as standard but only the S has it actually activated, you need to pay extra to get it up and running on the base bike. Other than that, the 1098 is pleasingly analogue with no ABS, no power modes and even a fairly basic digital dash. Do you need any more? Not really.

When it comes to accessories the 1098 falls into two camps – standard or accessorised as owners tend to either add parts or completely avoid doing so. Common additions are taller screens, exhaust end cans (full systems are quite rare) and occasionally a vented clutch cover or a slipper clutch. There are a few aftermarket paint jobs out there, which you need to treat with caution as the 1098 was never offered in any replica paint scheme, only the R came as a Bayliss. And an R is a whole new kettle of very expensive fish!!!



Ducati 1098 and 1098 S (2007-2008) Rivals

Due to its modern engineering and good reliability record, the 1098 appeals not only to Ducati sportsbike nuts but also those willing to try a Ducati sportsbike out for the first time having grown up on Japanese machinery. There is also a bit of transition from the 848 but generally the 1098 buyer is an experienced sportsbike rider.


Aprilia RSV-R Factory (2004-2010) | Approx Price: £4000-£5500.

Power/Torque: 139bhp/78lb-ft | Weight: 185kg


Yamaha YZF-R1 (2007-2008) | Approx Price: £5000-£7000

Power/Torque: 180bhp/83lb-ft | Weight: 177kg


KTM RC8 R (2009-2016) | Approx Price: £7500-£12,000

Power/Torque: 175bhp/94lb-ft | Weight: 182kg



Ducati 1098 and 1098S (2007-2008) Verdict

Although undeniably not as refined at the 1198 models, in many ways the 1098 bikes are actually better to ride as the 1198 with its boosted mid-range can be too much of a good thing and a bit brutal on initial throttle application. Ok, you are missing out on traction control, but you can get a good 1098S for the same price as an 1198 base model and given the choice, the Öhlins-shod 1098S with its lightweight wheels and friendlier engine is probably the better buy. That said, the stock 1098 is also absolutely brilliant.



Ducati 1098 and 1098S (2007-2008) - Technical Specification

Original price

£11,250 (£13,995 for S)

Current price range




Bore x Stroke

104mm x 64.7mm

Engine layout

Desmo V-twin

Engine details

Liquid-cooled, DOHC, 8V


160bhp (119.3kW) @ 9750rpm


90.4lb-ft (112.6Nm) @ 8000rpm

Top speed



6-speed, chain final drive

Average fuel consumption


Tank size

15.5 litres

Max range to empty (theoretical)

140 miles

Reserve capacity

24 miles

Rider aids



Tubular steel trellis

Front suspension

Showa 43mm forks (Öhlins on the S)

Front suspension adjustment

Fully adjustable

Rear suspension

Showa monoshock (Öhlins on the S)

Rear suspension adjustment

Fully adjustable

Front brake

2 x 330mm discs, four-piston Brembo radial calipers.

Rear brake

245mm disc, two-piston caliper.

Front tyre

120/70 – ZR17

Rear tyre

190/55 – ZR17


24.5°/ n/a

Dimensions (LxWxH)

2100mm x n/a x 1100mm



Ground clearance


Seat height


Kerb weight

173Kg Dry (171kg for the S)


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