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Old Jul 11th, 2009, 7:42 am   #1 (permalink)
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998 Matrix or 999S?

OK everyone, I need some opinions and advice here. I'm going to be upgrading from my '01 M750 to a Superbike. I've got really 2 main choices I'm looking at as far as local bikes are concerned, an extremely low mileage '04 998 Matrix and an extremely low mileage '05 999S. Both are within $2,000 of each other, so price isn't that big of a concern. Now before you go to the default answer of "999S, DUH!", I know a lot of you don't particularly care for the Matrix Edition, let's weigh the factors here.

I've wanted a 998 Matrix Edition ever since I saw one at a dealership (I even have a pristine tank off of one that was crashed). I know that under the paint it's just a standard '03 998 with a TiN coated fork and Ohlins rear shock, but I love that color. Besides, few will disagree that the 916 series of bikes are probably the best looking every designed. Single sided swingarm, Tamburini sexiness! It's also a biposto which is important because my girl really enjoys going for a ride. (BTW, she prefers the 999S over the 998, based on looks alone, but it's a monoposto and would require mods before she could go for a ride.) Disadvantages, it's 100% bone stock. That means an exhaust of some sort, plus tuning (I'd probably pop for dyno tuning if it's not too outrageous). Another worry is the low production numbers for the bike, especially when I finally take it to the track (do I want to take a chance of wadding up my rare bike on the track?).

Advantages of the 999S...well they're pretty obvious, full Ohlins suspension, full Termi exhaust (I think it's a full system), more power out of the box, and what many say is a better handling chassis. I wouldn't hesitate to tack it to the track. Plus it's black, black is nice! Disadvantages? It's a monoposto and in order to keep my lovely and wonderful girlfriend (who approves of upgrading to a Superbike!) happy, I'd have to get a biposto setup. I'd still might get the bike tuned as well, but it's already got the exhaust. I haven't lusted after the 999 design like I have the 998, but it's looks have grown on me and I do appreciate the way it looks.

So from the novel I've just written you can see I'm honestly torn between the two. Would I miss the performance of the 999S if I purchased the 998? And would I miss the fantastic looks of Mr. Tamburini's design if I purchase the 999S? I need to hear some input, especially from people who have owned both generations of bike! Thanks for making to the end of this post!
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Old Jul 11th, 2009, 8:05 am   #2 (permalink)
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i had a 2000 996 and now own an 06 999 and still get to ride a 996 fsirly regularly

comparing the motor on the 996 to the 999 the 996 kinda feels like a tractor. it is not as smooth, revs slower and is slower.

chassis wise the 999 for me deff wins but both bikes are very good and on the street either bike is plenty capable. The 999 has a very diff feel then the 996 your more on the 999 and in the 996.

looks wise no one will argue that the 998 isnt a beauty but for me it is starting to show its age, it is almost a 20 y/o design.

quality wise its no comparison. the 999 is an extremely well put together bike. the valves are easier to adjust, the paint is miles thick, the adjustability is sweet, the little details are very cool it just is a better bike all around.

im sure youll be happy either way but i would go with the 999.

if you get the 999 and are interested id trade you my very nice red biposto bodywork and subframe for your black mono bodywork and subframe
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Old Jul 11th, 2009, 3:27 pm   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks for your input vcyclenut! Anyone else care to chime in?
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Old Jul 11th, 2009, 3:36 pm   #4 (permalink)
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Pure technical, the 999 for sure!
But if you always wanted a matrix 998, then there's not much left to choose from right? Like all Ducatisti: follow your heart If you get the 999, you will still be longing for that 998 matrix.

Personally I hate the colour of the matrix and absolutly love the 999-series.

You can always buy a Minichamps from the one you don't buy
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Old Jul 11th, 2009, 8:23 pm   #5 (permalink)
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Matrix.. Matrix, Matrix MATRIX!!! 999s's are easily found... Matrix bikes are not. I'd be hard pressed to turn down an opportunity like that, especially if you'd been lusting over the matrix for that long.
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Old Jul 11th, 2009, 8:44 pm   #6 (permalink)
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For some reason I see Matrix bikes all the time for sale around here. The 998 is a testastretta motor too so I wouldn't worry about performance advantages so much. If you have the opportunity to ride them back to back that would give you a much better basis for comparison. I just rode my 748 today and it really does feel like you're "in" the bike. The seating position and pegs are much taller on my bike and with the tall tank you're sitting in there. On my 999 the rear part of the tank slopes downward so you feel like you're sitting over it. Personally I prefer my 999S. I'm biased, I know. I have several 999 projects going on all the time. I love them. As soon as I finish the one I'm working on now I already have my next project in mind...

I'd get whichever one feels most comfortable. It'll be around 500 for a biposto setup. The S doesn't come with a full system, it's a slip-on. Still, it sounds and feels great. You said they're within 2k of each other...how much are they? I've seen the Matrix sell for 7-9k, I even saw one go for 6k. And even though it has low miles you're going to want to replace those belts for peace of mind. They've been on there for five years now.
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Old Jul 11th, 2009, 10:16 pm   #7 (permalink)
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My take on the Ducati experience is it is all about passion... I felt the same way about the FE I purchased last year. I would get the Matrix, it is what you are passionate for. And... thinking of that Carrie Ann Moss scene everytime you ride the bike is reason alone.
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Old Jul 11th, 2009, 11:18 pm   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Artistimo View Post
I'd get whichever one feels most comfortable. It'll be around 500 for a biposto setup. The S doesn't come with a full system, it's a slip-on. Still, it sounds and feels great. You said they're within 2k of each other...how much are they? I've seen the Matrix sell for 7-9k, I even saw one go for 6k. And even though it has low miles you're going to want to replace those belts for peace of mind. They've been on there for five years now.
The Matrix asking price is $9,995, one owner (whom I actually met), less than 4500 miles, and fully maintained (I think it had valves and belts done recently). The 999S asking price is $12,000, one owner, and about 1300 miles. Both bikes are absolutely mint and locally owned and maintained since new. I will say that when sitting on both bikes back to back, the 998 feels more comfortable. I feel a sharp edge on the inside of my thighs when I set on the 999 (and a 1098 too), the feeling mostly goes away when I put my feet on the pegs. Maybe what I'd like to know is will I miss the additional power and suspension upgrades of the 999S? I know that I can eventually upgrade the forks and the steering damper, but how much can I gain from say a full exhaust and some dyno tuning? Is that even necessary?
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Old Jul 12th, 2009, 2:34 am   #9 (permalink)
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+1 for the "go with your passion" school of thought. I have no use for Harley's (for example) but I've suggested to some friends that they buy one because they just had to scratch that itch. Once you have, you will either love what you have or you will move on. At least you won't be wondering if you should have.
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Old Jul 12th, 2009, 5:28 am   #10 (permalink)
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Here's a solution, get them both!
Jokes aside, follow your heart, you love the 999 but also the Matrix green, how about the mentioned above swap and painted Matrix? You would have the color you love on the bike you get hard on, also your gf will be on it to share the feeling with you and you'll also enjoy the better mechanic technology that 999 has to offer over the 998.
Badabing!
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