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Hen’s tooth: 237-mile 1998 Ducati 916 SPS

As homologation specials from Italy go, the 1998 Ducati 916 SPS isn't the rarest of them all, though the seller claims only 50 were ever "officially" brought to this country. As a matter of fact, this is the second of the 1,098 1998 916 SPSs that we've featured this week. What sets this example apart is the claim that it was originally imported to the U.S., and the fact that it hasn't even covered its break-in miles yet.

1998 Ducati 916 SPS for sale on eBay

The 1997 and 1998 Ducati 916 SPS was the bike with which Duc introduced and homologated the stronger 996cc version of the 916 engine for World Superbike competition. It had more compression, new heads, bigger, stronger cylinders, titanium connecting rods and a lighter crankshaft. High-lift short-duration cams meant the motor still revved freely, notwithstanding its new midrange shove. Street friendly it was not.

The machine carried a lightened frame, Ohlins shock paired with a Showa fork and the close-ratio gearbox from the 748.

Despite this example's low mileage, there is rash on one of the mirrors, the brake lever and lower mounting point of the carbon fiber front fender, which indicates that those first few hundred miles got pretty exciting. The seller doesn't mention the rash, but it's there. Beyond that, the bodywork, gauges, wheels and exhaust look like new, and the bike appears to have been treated to a new front tire fairly recently.

From the eBay listing:

You are purchasing a

1998 DUCATI 916 SPS SUPERBIKE RED LIMITED EDITION #739, 1 OF 50 IMPORTED TO USA.

MINOR SCRATCHES/ EXCELLENT CONDITION. ONLY HAS 237 MILES. FROM THE M. VANN COLLECTION.

OTHER BIKES FROM M. VANN COLLECTION AVAILABLE CALL FOR DETAILS.

CLEAN TITLE. VIN# ZDM3SB5V7WB001204

WE CAN HELP YOU ARRANGE FREIGHT TO ANY WHERE IN THE WORLD. (MUST ADHERE TO AND COMPLY WITH EBAY RULES)

WE HAVE HUNDREDS OF SHIPPING CONTACTS, SHIPPING CRATES AND PACKAGING MATERIALS TO PROPERLY PACK YOUR MOTORCYCLE FOR SAFE DELIVERY

BIKE IS BEING SOLD WITH RESPONSIBILITY FOR CUSTOMER TO PICK-UP. BUT FOR EXTRA CHARGE WE CAN HELP YOU SHIP IT ANYWHERE.

WE DO HAVE CRATES IN STOCK, CALL US TO GET A QUOTE. WE SHIP ALL OVER THE WORLD.

BUY AS IS.

The Buy-It-Now for this bike is set at $39,000, which is aspiration even considering the mileage. Even if this is one of just a handful officially imported here, you can find very nice street legal SPS bikes for less than half this ask all day long.

12 Comments

  • Wow! The 1998 SPS featured the 1998 mid-panel on the right and 1997 mid-panel on the left. Who knew! For the price this should be perfect.

  • Good spot, Ray!

  • LMAO! You’re right!

  • Bike’s been down on both sides, per the lever ends. Probably explains the unorthodox mix of mid-panels. And wildly overpriced.

  • Are the sprocket bolts normally safety wired?

  • The price should be closer to that Yellow Tag in the opening picture.

  • Looks like both rearsets are new as well. The bike that sold last week with mileage was very clean with no story… and only $12500! Many of these bikes were tracked and the speedo/odo disconnected. I picked one up in 2011 conveyed very similar. Every bolt on it had been turned. The body work was pristine as it was removed when new for track application. The mileage was low because they had disconnected the cluster.

  • What’s with the corrosion on the front wheel?

  • l know someone who owns one of these (95 mdl)and the fairing panels are not mixed. Large font Ducati logos on each side.

  • Why do you need a giant tank protector, on a bike you don’t ride? Just based on the panels and scuffed levers, hard to trust anything about this one. Are these motors like the R’s, in that (pretending the 237 miles is correct) you would be about 1/3 – 1/2 of the way to an engine rebuild, particularly if these were track miles?

  • As pointed out, lever ends are trashed. This seems like outright fraud. A shop to be avoided if nothing else.

  • The comment about the front wheel got my closer attention- it looks like it came from a completely different bike- why? Lots of red flags on this example as pointed out already, and the price is ludicrous.

Comment rules: Add something useful and constructive, and don't be a jerk. Comments that don't add value will be deleted. Comments will automatically close after 30 days. Thank you. -dc

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