First Impressions: 2017 Ducati SuperSport S

This year, though rapidly coming to an end, has been pretty exciting for those of us whom are passionate about premium motorcycles. We’ve seen some rather significant debuts throughout the year, and as the new year approaches, too approaches the dates in which these motorcycles will be made available for purchase. Among the several bikes that Ducati is introducing to its 2017 lineup are the SuperSport and SuperSport S. Three days ago, I had the opportunity to familiarize myself with the latter, and more desirable of the two, in the flesh.

Consistent with my expectations of the esteemed Italian marque, the high quality of the motorcycle’s componentry was immediately evident. The first parts of the bike with which you interact when mounting the bike, such as the handlebar grips, the front brake lever and the foot pegs, felt to be undeniably premium to the touch. In fact, I noticed a discernible difference in quality between the aforementioned parts utilized on the Ducati and the same parts on other arguably comparable motorcycles. Then, once you’ve mounted, you’re introduced to the wide and plush seat, which promises to be comfortable for extended road riding. The buttons had a very sensible and ergonomically correct placement. They also had a premium tactile feel, both in their surface finish and when depressed.

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In fact, the only ‘negative’ I found with the bike was not at all quality related, and was highly subjective in nature. Part of the appeal, and frankly the purpose, of the the SuperSport offerings is to offer something decidedly sporty, but also far more road-friendly than a Panigale. Part of that means having a less severe, more upright seating position. It does have this, however, I was expecting it to be even a bit more upright than I found it to be. As I said, this is highly subjective. It will be more or less severe for different body types, and I recognize that most prospective buyers and Ducati enthusiasts will find the slightly aggressive bar position to be ideal and consistent with brand overall.


I was hoping that, similarly to the 959 Panigale, we here in the United States would benefit from a far more appealing underbody exhaust, rather than the large, dual side-mounted exhaust system which is seemingly going to be offered. However, I find this to be rather inconsequential, as many will opt to swap the stock exhaust cans anyway.

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In all, the new SuperSport S has made a phenomenal first impression upon me. All of this in addition to the bike benefitting from 9,000 mile service intervals, and 18,000 mile intervals for valve maintenance, suggests that the SuperSport S ownership experience is likely to be filled with peace of mind, as well as joy and exhilaration. Unsurprisingly, though I haven’t yet been able to test them, the motorcycle adorns the best names in braking and suspension, which should perfectly compliment this already very enticing synergy. However, to truly determine whether or not the SuperSport is the perfect road-oriented sport bike, we’ll have to wait for the opportunity to test ride it.

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