S4R With Ducati Performance Corse Kit - Written 12/06

The Ducati Performance “Corse” kit for the S4R comprises a full 50mm Termignoni exhaust, 996SPS camshaft set, Air filter kit and specific ECU.  If you compare the price of these kits to the exhaust only kits you’ll see what good value they are for what they come with. 

We didn’t fit this kit, but the owner bought it in to me for me to dyno and give my thoughts on anything further.  I’m not sure the kit comes with recommended cam timing settings, but in this case they had been fitted at 109/109 centrelines.  996SPS cam specs are 119.5/107, so the fitted specs gave the inlets advanced 10 degrees and the exhaust retarded 2 degrees.

I’d run 107/107 with these cams, so they were pretty close to where I’d set them.  However, as the kit comes with an ECU, it’s more a case of setting the cams where those who mapped the ECU had them set, replicating that setup.  Advancing the inlet cams like I normally do requires more fuel in the midrange, requiring further tuning that the 5.9M ECU doesn’t allow.

A note here about Ducati Performance ECU.  They are functionally the same as the std fitment 5.9M ECU, just having different mapping stored in their software.  This means they still only have the usual idle trimmer adjustment and no other adjustment facility.

So if we wanted to advance the cams and then tune it for more midrange fuel we’d need to fit an Ultimap U59 replacement ECU (as I like to) or an add on box such as the Dynojet Power Commander, Dimsport Rapid Bike or Dobeck Techlusion.  Which realistically translates as more money to most people.

My comments about cam timing and how the settings relate to the settings used on the bike this ECU was developed on in Italy should show up in the air/fuel curve.  If the kit was made for 109/109 it should be a good curve.  If the kit was made for 119/107 it should be lean in the midrange and rich at the top end.  The other question here is how it will go running a single injector with the 996SPS cams and big exhaust.  The rev limit is set to 10,000 RPM, which in my experience is a little below where it would go lean if it was going to.

First up is a power and air/fuel graph.  The comments I made above re cam timing don’t really relate to the air/fuel curve – it’s a bit all over the place.  So I don’t really know what they had in mind.  I’d have maybe expected a bit more power too, but 120 to 125 is the range an otherwise unopened SPS cammed 996 would usually run on this dyno.

Next we’ll compare it to a couple of std cam S4R we’ve played with.  Green is the above curve.  Red is DP muffler, air filter and ECU kit, std header (cat box), cam timing at 113/110 and the idle trimmer raised 30 points.  Blue is Staintune mufflers, Spareshack header, DP air filter kit and U59 ECU mapped.  As I’d somewhat expect the big exhaust gives a bit of a dip in the midrange and combined with the bigger cams gives more top end.  Although the somewhat dodgy fuelling could be responsible for some of the comparatively lower midrange.  On the road it felt nice all through the RPM range without any real flatness.  Power then torque.

Perhaps the more relevant and interesting comparison is to an S4Rs with the DP 50mm exhaust kit.  In this case, both bikes are running very similar style exhausts of the same diameter with mufflers from the same manufacturer, the same airbox, air filter and throttle bodies.  With the S4Rs cam timing reset to 107/107 the cam settings are also very similar, while the 996SPS cams have 10 degrees more inlet and 2 degrees more exhaust duration they also have 1mm less inlet and 0.3mm less exhaust valve lift.  Power first, then torque.

You can see the curve shapes are very similar, which I would contribute to the exhaust more than anything else.  The peaks move progressively further up the RPM range on the S4Rs and it makes more top end power due to its bigger valves.  Having ridden them both I’d say the S4Rs feels stronger, especially higher in the RPM range, but there’s not much in it.  The next graph of acceleration times on the dyno gives a bit of a feel for this.  As you can see by the conditions, the S4R had the better day for making power, which affects the graph somewhat as this is an uncorrected graph, unlike al the power and torque curves that are corrected.  But it’s not much, and you can see the steeper curve of the S4Rs as the speed and revs build.

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