Black Cycles Australia has unveiled “SOFFIATO” — a true masterpiece of innovation and craftsmanship. This turbocharged marvel, born from the bones of a 2001 Ducati S4 916, is a testament to the endless possibilities of custom bike building. Join us on a thrilling ride through the fascinating story of “SOFFIATO.”

A Customer’s Vision

The journey of “SOFFIATO” began when a loyal customer, Simon Lin, entrusted Black Cycles Australia with his beloved 2001 Ducati S4 916. Simon’s bike had a unique history; it developed a crack in the fuel tank, leading him to contemplate some custom work. After two long years of waiting for work to commence at a Sydney shop, Simon decided it was time to take the bike to Brisbane and seek the expertise of Black Cycles Australia.

A Transformation Unveiled

Upon arrival in Brisbane, it was clear that the retro kit originally fitted didn’t quite align with the modern water-cooled Ducati. So, a bold decision was made: alongside the restoration of the 916, they would build a 1998 air-cooled 900 Monster using the kit and other supplied parts.

For the 916, a contemporary styling approach was adopted. Handmade aluminum tank and panels were meticulously crafted while awaiting a set of custom Kineo wheels from Italy. The wheels, however, had an unexpected delay of 10 months. During this waiting period, a playful suggestion was made — why not fit a turbocharger and make the 916 truly exceptional? Simon enthusiastically embraced the idea, and the project took a new direction.

Turbocharged Transformation

The previous tank design was discarded as the team embarked on the turbocharging journey. A ceramic-coated Garrett turbo was expertly fitted, complete with custom exhaust in and out. A plenum was ingeniously created in the front of the fuel tank’s usual location, now housing all the electrics and a full-size gel battery in the rear. The aluminum tail was handcrafted, and a belly tank was integrated beneath the bike, accommodating the fuel pump and filter while holding around 11 litres of fuel.

The build also involved fabricating a front fender from aluminium, making frame modifications to accommodate a Motogadget motoscope pro speedo, and replacing factory brackets under the seat area. The frame, rear spring, and single-sided swing-arm were sent for chrome plating, while the rear shock and other parts received a polished finish.

The Heart of the Beast

The Ducati 916 engine underwent an overhaul, thanks to Theo at Bike Therapy. It received essential upgrades, including lowering the compression to 9:1 to suit the turbocharger.

The Art of Electronics

Justin at PopBang Classics played a pivotal role, customizing the wiring loom to work seamlessly with Motogadget components, keyless start, LED lighting, and more.

Attention to Detail

The build included numerous bespoke elements, such as 316 stainless rear sets, headlight mounts, brackets, and mounts, as well as HEL Performance brake and oil lines. Italian-made billet triple trees required modifications to fit the bike’s unique design, while billet clip-ons, Highsider mirrors, and a custom overflow bottle added to the bike’s allure. A blow-off valve was discreetly placed under the plenum.

Adam at Carmen’s Auto Trimmers contributed to the final touches with a clean and simple seat cover, emulating the classic rubber track seat appearance.


This exceptional machine has been bestowed with the name “SOFFIATO,” which translates to “blown” in Italian, a fitting moniker for a bike that’s been transformed into a force to be reckoned with.

“SOFFIATO” is a marvelous work of art designed to have onlookers get lost in it’s glossy exterior and impeccable workmanship. For a closer look at “SOFFIATO,” visit the BikeBound article and immerse yourself in the artistry and engineering that brought this turbocharged masterpiece to life.

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