This past weekend I test rode a stock 2003 999S.
I rode a friends 998 Matrix the 150+ km to the dealership through some
serious twisties and 36 degree celcius heat; so I was wringing wet and
and a little weary on arrival.
My daily ride is a Monster 620, so the kick ass power delivery of the 998 and full Termis had me smiling the whole way.
I couldn't believe the difference between the 999s and 998 in handling.
The triple 9 was on rails and was easy and fast on the line changes.
I threw in a few emergency avoidance flicks, couldn't discern any difference
between it and the Monsta (which is real easy to throw around).
I have two questions that I hope to get some feedback on:
1. Is the 998 really that cumbersome (in comparison) or is it likely that it hasn't been optimally setup.
2. The power delivery of the 999s was so linear I was almost bored; I mean, the 998's delivery seemed more lively/raw and perhaps the experience was helped along with those lovely termis growling away.
The dealer later told the 998 owner that the 999 do in fact have a more linear delivery (in relation to 998s) so as to make the bike more rideable/controllable for joe citizen (seems a bit odd to me).
Sorry, long lead up :-)
Will adding a termi + chip and changing the rear sprocket change that delivery?
How do you 999 riders respond to my impressions and what about the 749?
We owners of Tamburini superbikes don't have any handling problems that I know of. In fact, some of the racers (think P. Chili) don't like the 999 racebikes as they don't have enough weight on the front end in comparison to the older models. The 748/916/996/998s are like on rails on road/track, but any/every bike benefits from proper suspension setup, of course.
The 999 power shouldn't feel so different from the 998, as they both have the Testastretta motors, but there may be engine computer software changes incorporated into the later 999 model.
Did he still have a 190 rear tire? This as well as rear ride height and having the suspension set up for your weight and riding style makes a big difference in how the bike turns and feels. Section 8 has a great write up on tuning your suspension as well as Sport Rider. Ken.
My 03 999 is considerably smoother than my 998S, as you described. The 998S has Termi, the 999 does not. The difference in how the bikes feel has everything to do with rider/bike relationship and geometry. You are perched on the 998 and feel more like you are in the cockpit on the 999 bikes.
Perhaps tire pressure was also a bit low on the Matrix as compared to the 999 you rode.
I much prefer the 998 to the 999 as I feel like Iím more part of the bike, if you know what I mean. Iím not a big guy, but an old guy 57, 165lbs, 5,11.
Also, while they both have the same lump, the 998 sounds bloody wicked with the pipes. Raw, like you described. IMO the 998 has a more race bike feel, the 999 more refined ride.
749 is completely different bike Ė very quick to spool up and feels much lighter, but does not have the grunt of larger engine. Itís a fun bike, buy no kick ass power delivery as you described for the 998. I prefer to ride my 749S, with full Termi, over my 03 999.
If I could only have one of these three it would be hands down the 998S.
ive gone from 998s to 999 and your first impressions are pretty accurate. the 998S is much more a raw race bike, requires alot more setup to handle as well as the 999. The 999 for me turns easier, feels lighter and feels easier to rev.
i feel there is more weight over the fron on the 9. Both will hold a line and change as little or as much as you want but the 9 will do this easier. The 9 will also back into corners easier. I wish i had gone to a 9s but the cost was just too much. if i had the choice it would be 9r, 9s, 8s, then basic 9. only becuase of the engine.
I dont think the build quality is as good on the 9 as the 8.
both bikes are good, but i think you'd really want to get a current model not an old bike. who cares who designed the bike, is it better or not?
no one rides 8's in any race class now.
a termi, open mufflers, and a bigger rear sprocket make a huge difference.
it makes it peakier at around 7.5 grand. plus remember that dukes dont realyl loosen up till 10000km. And ive really noticed it bigtime since i just hit that mark.
Changing to a 180 rear is a good idea as well.
if youve got the money a full exhaust will bring back any of the raw power that the 9 misses over the 8s.