Interview with Andrea Levati, V4 Granturismo engine lead designer/project leader.

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Hours and hours of design, calculation and processing: a meticulous engineering work has been carried out for the new V4 Granturismo in order to obtain the characteristics of smoothness and progressive torque delivery that make this new engine extremely versatile and performing in the most varied conditions.

We talked about it with Andrea Levati, V4 Granturismo Project Leader

From the first drafts to the definition of the final layout, the new V4 Granturismo project kept the engine development team involved at all levels.

“We started by defining its displacement. Working on a large bore, we were able to avoid having a “long” and “high” engine, which would have meant excessive seat height, an unmanageable centre of gravity and little ground clearance, thus heavily compromising off-road riding.

The maximum compactness of a short engine was also the key to increased handling. From its compact engine, easy to place in the vehicle's layout, came a precise centre of gravity positioning and a more effective chassis, whose end result is an agile, easy-to-ride bike.

It is a matter of destination: even if it comes from it from the engineering viewpoint, the V4 Granturismo shares with the Desmosedici Stradale the overall layout and the technical know-how on components. 

Every single component has been revised to obtain an extremely compact and lightweight V4 engine, even lighter than a V2 engine.

A flat oil sump reduces the volume in the lower part of the engine and increases the ground clearance, while the generator better supports the electronic part for the connection with any device.

The entire thermal unit has also been modified. The con-rods, pistons, crankshaft and throttle body respond to the need of adding more torque at low/medium revs, without sacrificing Ducati sporting character that can be achieved when the rider opens the throttle. 

"We managed to reach an ultra compact volume, even more than the previous Testastretta DVT twin-cylinder engine of the Multistrada 1260. It is lighter by 1.2 kg, 85 mm shorter and 95 mm lower, despite a width increase of only 20 mm. We exceeded our best expectations, so much so that, once assembled in CAD, we could not believe how much space was still available!". 

The concept of versatility - i.e. the commitment to give the engine the widest possible array of uses - has characterised the whole project.

Together with the innovative work on architecture and components, other technical solutions already developed by Ducati were transferred to the new V4 Granturismo to achieve the goals of fluidity, smoothness, progressiveness and personality required by this engineering effort. 

"The finishing work has been carried out following the principle of rider and passenger comfort. After the design stage of the layout, we tried to adopt various technical solutions already developed by Ducati in order to maximise vibration reduction and thermal comfort.

The adoption of the counter-rotating crankshaft - borrowed from MotoGP - makes it possible to reduce the gyroscopic effect of the wheels on the vehicle, so as to deliver neutrality and ease in riding, but also handling when changing direction.

To this, we have added the de-activation of rear cylinders at idle. At idle, the rear bank, the one being closer to the rider and the passenger, is switched off so as to lower the temperature and vibrations when the vehicle is not running." 

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