The legendary Desmoquattro is one of the landmark designs in the history of Ducati, a fabulous sport bike that set the benchmark for performance and styling for almost a decade. Debuting in 1994, the 916 shared little with its 888 predecessor aside from the basic engine architecture and heralded the beginning of a renaissance for the legendary Italian brand. Originally designed by the legendary Fabio Taglioni, the 916's V-twin liquid-cooled engine employed the signature desmodromic system, whereby the camshafts opened and closed the engines valves. Taglioni's successor, Massimo Bordi, came up with a new four-valve head for the 916 and this, combined with a new engine management system, made the latest Ducati both faster and more reliable. The 916's V-twin unit was housed in a lightweight tubular steel trellis frame featuring aggressive styling. Ducati replaced the 916 with the updated 996 in 1996, with an enlarged engine good for 122 horsepower at 8500 rpm thanks to the latest Weber 1.6 M.B1 injection system and 11.5:1 compression. Several features of the limited edition 916 SPS were incorporated, including the bigger 36mm inlet valves, higher primary drive ratio and stronger crankcases, while the airbox now had shorter intakes and the 45mm exhaust header pipes were oval section. The 996 received better brakes and new lightweight triple-spoke Brembo wheels while there was little need to mess with the stunning styling. Once again the Ducati was sold in either red or yellow and, with a dry weight of just 198 kgs, the 996 could hit a top speed of 260 km/h. Although the 996 had a relatively brief production life, being replaced with the 998 in 2001, it too enjoyed its share of on track success with Fogarty winning the Superbike World Championship in 1999 and Troy Bayliss tasting success in 2001. Demonstrating the crushing superiority of the 916/996 series, Ducati locked out the Superbike Manufacturer's Championship every year between 1994 and 2001. The 916/996 Desmoquattro series was a critical and commercial success, winning numerous design awards and is regularly included in lists of the most significant motorcycles ever made. Destined to be a future classic, ownership of one of these stunning bikes has never been more affordable.