The new Pirelli DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SP is the ultimate expression of Pirelli technology, its racing soul approved for road use. In fact, the DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SP is the third generation of Pirelli’s highly popular race replica tire featuring tread design, profile and structure that are nearly identical to those of the racing tires which are used in those competitions that, according to regulations, require the use of grooved and not slick tires.
The new DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SP has been developed through Pirelli participation as the Sole Tire Supplier for all classes in the FIM World Superbike Championship. In particular, the DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SC tires — the track version of the SP product available in different compounds — are used by all World Championship Supersport and Superstock classes of production-derived motorcycles and in all national championships in which Pirelli participates as the sole supplier or in open competition with other tire manufacturers.
The new DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SP establishes a new benchmark for the replica racing sector, paving the way for the next generation of the DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA. Indeed, thanks to its innovative features, Ducati has already chosen it for the original equipment on its new Panigale V4.
As a technical partner and exclusive tire supplier, Pirelli worked closely with Ducati in the development of the new Panigale V4, the very first motorcycle to use the new Pirelli DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SP as original equipment — 120/70 ZR17 on the front and the innovative 200/60 ZR17 on the rear. As has occurred in the past — for example with Multistrada and Diavel, but above all with the forerunner of the new DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SP developed jointly with Ducati and presented in Abu Dhabi as part of the original equipment on the Ducati 1199 Panigale — the Ducati performance targets required Pirelli to make technically radical choices to achieve a highly innovative tire. That is why the company developed the latest version of the DIABLO ™ SUPERCORSA SP in a new size: 200/60 ZR17. Already widely used on slick tires in the FIM World Superbike Championship, this size offers a true and proper generational leap in the field of race replica tires.
In addition, the new DIABLO ™ SUPERCORSA SP has been developed to work in perfect synergy with the most advanced electronic systems of the latest generation superbikes such as the Ducati Panigale V4.
Key benefits for the biker
The innovative profile of the new rear tire maximizes contact at peak leaning angles and reaps utmost benefit from the bi-compound technology used, adopting the same SC2 compound used for slick racing tires to offer the grip typical of competition-grade products while guaranteeing the robustness and versatility needed on the road. To ensure that it works in complete harmony with the rear tire, the front tire, too, has benefited from a new important development: all driving features related to handling — from feedback provided to the rider, to firmness of the support, all the way to the feeling of safety and ability to predict the limit grip — have been optimized in a new front tire profile that offers a slightly higher maximum cord than the previous version. Redesigning the geometries of the semi-finished materials and strip belting scheme has set new absolute benchmarks for agility and rideability, associating them with peak racing performance. Finally, the new DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SP tread design features new “flash” geometry that optimizes track performance by improving wear and reducing groove widths designed to provide adequate support for higher lateral thrusts.
In general, the new DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SP is a product that makes versatility and adaptability its strengths: in particular, it does not require a sophisticated set-up of the bike and it can easily adapt itself to the different configurations and temperature conditions that can be found on different tracks.
Who it is for
DIABLO ™ SUPERCORSA SP is designed for all bikers, above all the owners of large engine supersport and naked models, seeking a tire that can provide maximum performance on the road and, at the same time, be a superb product for the race track, second only to the performance offered by blend racing tires. For this reason, DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SP is the ideal tire for all those who not only require peak sports performance on the road, but who also love a spin on the track and who want to ride their bikes directly to the circuit without loading them onto a trolley and without having to change the tires or arrange for special set up once they reach their destination.
THE NEW TIRE IN DETAIL
As anticipated, the DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SP has a new racing profile. More specifically, this is the same profile Pirelli uses in its FIM World Superbike Championship DIABLO™ SUPERBIKE slick tires, a tire that achieves new levels of maneuverability and grip both on the track and on road.
The new multi-radius profile can ensure uniform distribution of the stresses over the entire contact area.
The 200/60 ZR17 rear tire has been completely redesigned and adopts the same profile used in the slick tires. Compared to the 200/55 ZR17, the new profile is 9 mm wider and its overall diameter is 16 mm greater. Much of this larger diameter is used in the tread area that, thanks to the increase of the cord, allows lean angles never reached before and a greater footprint.
All this improves maneuverability and ensures a wider contact area which, in turn, means increased grip, stability and trajectory precision, not only when leaning into a bend, but also when entering and exiting the bend, i.e. when the rider is still braking or has started accelerating. With this technical solution, the tire achieves a new degree of grip at maximum lean angle and, since it maintains the same radius at the center of the profile, it does so without forfeiting the manageability typical of the 200/55.
The front profile has been enhanced and is now 2 mm wider than that of the previous 120/70 ZR17. It has been perfectly balanced to work in unison with the rear tire, thus guaranteeing excellent handling and good support in the bends. The advantages are the same as those achieved on the rear tire but with the added benefit that, thanks to its wider area of contact, less stress is applied on the compound.
In addition, with the new sidewall profile, management of the strain on the tire structure is improved, imparting greater flexibility in acceleration when coming out of a bend and enhancing traction. As a result, the general feeling of safety and the degree of feedback the biker receives from the front tire also increases.
The advantages of the solutions adopted in terms of driving features can be summarized as follows:
• Speed in the bends
• Greater sense of safety and control both on the race track and on the road
• Hesitation-free entry into bends so that speed can be maintained, even when leaning
• High traction enabling acceleration even before exiting the bend
The casing for the new DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SP has been derived directly from the DIABLO™ SUPERBIKE slick product. The rear tire has a pure radial carcass, the front is also radial but with an angle of the carcass plies optimized for road use. In particular, these insights have been aimed at improving stability at high speeds and on long straight stretches such as on highways.
Among the new solutions developed for the DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SP, a key factor is undoubtedly the compounds. Different compounds are used in the front and rear tires, the dual compound used on the rear tire has three different application zones. The new profile also required optimizing the thickness of the compound applied.
The front tire is a mono-compound, a solution that allows rapid warm-up and a steadfast grip in any situation. The thicknesses of the compound on the tread band have been optimized in every area from the center to the shoulders using a new high automation Pirelli process that optimizes the amount of material to be applied with utmost precision.
The rear tire is a bi-compound and for the first time ever in a tire approved for road use, Pirelli decided to use a racing blend developed in the FIM World Superbike Championship. Using the Enhanced Patch Technology (EPT) it proved possible to use a very soft compound on the shoulder. By using new polymers for the compound in the DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SP it was possible to achieve even faster warm-up and an even better grip under all conditions while keeping consistency of performance.
The use of different compounds for the shoulders and central area is the winning solution, designed to give the DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SP performance typical of a product for the race track plus the versatility and endurance of a product designed for the road.
In the central area, the compound is 100% Black Carbon Black, thus ensuring superb grip and good mileage, particularly on the road; the compound used on shoulders is the one used in the DIABLO™ SUPERBIKE SC2 slick tire, which offers the biker the highest grip, even at sharp leaning angles.
To recap, the solution adopted by the Pirelli Research and Development Department has made it possible to:
• use a less rigid compound on the shoulders, a compound with high hysteresis and soft enough at both low and high temperatures to provide rapid warm-up and a steadfast grip, always secure when cornering. And all this regardless of the weather conditions
• A new profile with a bigger cord and wider angle at the shoulders to provide grip at all leaning angles
• High mechanical strength materials in the center area, materials with a high concentration of Carbon Black to ensure optimal traction and uniform wear, even under stress, as well as high mileage.
When compared to its predecessor, the DIABLO™ SUPERCORSA SP has a new, optimized eight-step tread pattern, a pattern that repeats eight times over the entire tire surface. Now the full/void ratio is 4% for both the front and rear tires, which is the minimum threshold imposed by the International Motorcycling Federation for sports activities and which Pirelli has adopted and approved for use on racing road tires.
After years of experience at international and national Superstock and Supersport class competitions, Pirelli has succeeded in further optimizing the tread pattern by building on its own angular “flash” geometry, the typical shape of Pirelli’s supersport products. The bridges between the longitudinal grooves have new angles, designed to ensure better response to lateral forces. New angles, together with the narrower grooves, improve stability and ensure more uniform wear, particularly in intense use.
Starting in January, the new DIABLO™ Supercorsa SP will be available only as spare parts in the two sizes for the Ducati Panigale V4; the line will be completed in the fall of 2018.
Text and photo courtesy Pirelli North America