Ducati 996 WITH SPS CAMS

Another way to increase the performance of a 996 Biposto is to fit the SPS cams. Although these cams are not a great deal larger than the standard cams, the differences certainly show up in use. Maybe the engines just like these cams. Given they are the most recent development in 4V cams, this should be expected. The job is not cheap, with the cams, installation ( reshimming heads and dialing cam timing ) and tuning coming to $3300. An FIM eprom is an extra $240, if needed.

The result, though, is more power through the rev range to the power peak and response akin to an SPS, along with the wonderful, hard edged induction noise that the SPS makes. As you can see from the graphs below ( first graph power, second graph torque ), the bike makes more power up to and past the power peak than with the standard cams. The three lines you see are standard ( green ), standard cams dialed in ( blue ) and SPS cams dialed in ( red ). This bike had the standard cams dialed in early in its life, but now the owner needs a little more to keep the chasers at bay down the front straight at Phillip Island. Taking the blue ( standard cams dialed in ) line out makes the difference over std very obvious, particularly on the torque graph.

Whether or not the performance increase justifies the cost, however, is a decision best made by the person fronting with the readies. For Steve, the man who owned this one, it was money very well spent.

(dyno graphs courtesy of DYNOBIKE, (03) 9553 0018)

It does not hold this new found top end hp to the redline, however, like an SPS will. As the only difference between the two engines is the exhaust, we can only assume that the larger SPS exhaust helps the top end over 9,000 RPM. The std exhaust is 45mm all through, the SPS exhaust is 50mm all through. What little you gain at the top it appears is lost many times over below the power peak, however. Changing up at 9,500 instead of 11,000 will be nicer on the engine anyway.

The bottom graph compares this 996 ( red ) with a 996 SPS ( green ) we have done. Both bikes have the same cam timing settings. As you can see, the Biposto is a lot stronger down low than most people would believe, from 5 up to 9 hp in places. The difference in riding, however, is overshadowed by the lighter weight engine components of the SPS. This allows the SPS engine to spin up faster, giving acceleration that is as good or better. Hopefully a light weight flywheel will be available soon for the late model, large alternator Ducati engines like the 996. This will balance the rotating mass difference. As usual, a 14 tooth front sprocket will help free up some more engine acceleration, but this won't help if the SPS has one too.

(dyno graph courtesy of DYNOBIKE, (03) 9553 0018)

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