Ducati 1199 Panigale, KTM 1290 Super Adventure, Suzuki Hayabusa and Yamaha YZF-R3


25th Pictures


From south to north, as fast as possible, with different combatants, a lot of collected data, pain and the knowledge: From Berchtesgaden to Flensburg is a real ox tour.


Tschacka – done! The Suzuki Hayabusa in Flensburg.


Tobi has speed in all situations, his colleague Seitz is obviously not in the mood for such jokes.


A little tip: remove disposable gloves from the tank. Then the fingers are still cold, but at least not wet anymore.


Tea temporary PSler approaches the matter with absolute optimism and underestimates the editorial team’s ambition.


And what is Uwe doing? Super-U is bored at 170 km / h.


And with just a single chocolate bar for a good 10 hours, the stomach is pretty empty.


But the tank is full because the consumption is limited. At the last gas station, all pain is forgotten.


Like Rossi once, Uwe Seitz said goodbye to the Yamaha YZF-R3 in Flensburg – this time sadness was not part of the game.


Once through the republic diagonally and still in possession of the driver’s license. Our points account in the KBA was empty. In any case, nobody wanted our rags.


So first a fish roll to strengthen.


The second Tobi in the race is on his Japanese falcon.


Secret weapon flip-up helmet: looks stupid, but allows food to be consumed while driving.


Nevertheless, it has to go through: the Elbe tunnel.


The idea for this is probably due to one beer too much. The fact that the regulations were determined on site nevertheless speaks for the planning ability of the editors.


Yamaha YZF-R3, Ducati 1199 Panigale, Suzuki Hayabusa and KTM 1290 Super Adventure.


… those are the reactions to the lottery drawn – the cheers are
just as real as the horror. The pity against it
is 100 percent hyped.


Uwe Seitz was the first to reach into the lottery pot and promptly caught the weakest bike. Meanwhile …


… the southerner first has to find out how to get to the far north.


Tobi Münchinger started first.


His tactic: oxyhydrogen. But 200 HP full pipe on the tires, that makes round square.


The gas station attendant pushes a lead-free bottle over the counter to the wounded cowboy at the finish. Done.


The Ducati 1199 Panigale is only relaxing the other way around.


Jacko is much more comfortable there and can approach the journey quite relaxed.


The Jacko is now allowed to drive the loser bike back to Stuttgart as first prize.

Autobahn shootout with Ducati 1199 Panigale, KTM 1290 Super Adventure, Suzuki Hayabusa and Yamaha YZF-R3

On your marks, get set, go!

Content of

Ducati 1199 Panigale, KTM 1290 Super Adventure, Suzuki Hayabusa and Yamaha YZF-R3: four bikes, four riders, one goal – who can get from Berchtesgaden to Flensburg the fastest?

D.hat one more beer after a long day of testing was to blame. As soon as the head of foam was drunk on the tester glasses, the memorable sentence fell: “We should do a real Gaga story together again!” These carelessly thrown words had not yet faded away, the source of ideas was already bubbling up. With the fiber felt of the nice wait staff and the back of the day ticket, the troop immediately worked out regulations for a horsepower sprint, which should lead from Berchtesgaden in the very south to Flensburg as the northernmost city in the republic. 

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Autobahn shootout with Ducati 1199 Panigale, KTM 1290 Super Adventure, Suzuki Hayabusa and Yamaha YZF-R3
On your marks, get set, go!

Ducati 1199 Panigale will bend down and enslave one of the participants.

Tower box brand living room wall unit did not come in the bag

And what about a real Autobahn burner? Sure, the Suzuki Hayabusa has a legendary reputation in this respect – and since Kawasaki unfortunately crashed the test H2 itself, the Suzuki Falcon flew with it to the north. Last but not least, there should be something that is really under pressure, does not go through as real sports equipment in terms of reputation, but still has winning genes for the Gaga bet.

Of course, a touring box branded living room wall unit did not come in the bag, even if everyone in the editorial office was convinced of the almost only purpose such buckets have, namely to eat a lot of kilometers as comfortably as possible. "These aren’t motorcycles at all" or "I swore to myself that I would never ride such a thing" were the mildest reasons for rejection for the RTs, Gold Wings or full dressers of this world. This is how the guys brought the KTM 1290 Super Adventure into play. A lot of pressure, a lot of fuel, a favorite? Bought!

Lot decides on the motorcycle award

This was the framework, only the other disputed points in the regulations had to be clarified and drafted. On the day of departure for Bavaria, the lot was supposed to decide who was allowed to drive which motorcycle across Germany. The boss had a pitch-black day and was the first to pull the almost 42 hp Yamaha YZF-R3 with in-line twin – not only his bike, but also his mood was in the basement. PS-Tobi as a full-throttle fanatic was subdued about the Ducati 1199 Panigale, as was namesake Tobi W. about the Suzuki Hayabusa.

In return, PS cynic Volkmar “Jacko” Jacob screamed about his lot with the KTM 1290 Super Adventure, as if he had won the lottery – which made our boss even more angry and angrily asked about the idiot who had thought of this crap. All of the tester’s fingers that were now pointing to him immediately silenced him. In view of the meager 42 hp, colleague Seitz quietly slimmed down his luggage by several kilograms and finally led the group to Bavaria with wild cursing in their helmets. From midnight, everyone was allowed to start whenever they wanted. The first refueling in Berchtesgaden was the starting shot, the last in Flensburg, after almost 1200 kilometers, the finish line – for the Gaga story of the year.

Ducati 1199 Panigale


Tobi Münchinger on the Ducati 1199 Panigale.

The alarm goes off at 3:30 a.m. Where am I and what am I actually doing here? Oh yes. Berchtesgaden. Got to Flensburg quickly. Had a strange dream about a girl that I once thought was great. Old story, actually long forgotten. I’m all foggy in the pear. No matter. Toothbrush in the neck and then off to Bad Reichenhall for the first refueling stop. 

In my backpack, next to the toothbrush, there is a cell phone charger, a set of light civilian clothes, a water bottle and some energy bars. I do without a tank bag as well as a roll of luggage – all unnecessary ballast. I want to do as many kilometers as possible before the morning rush hour and let the Ducati 1199 Panigale run. Chance played the Italian steed from the long-term test fleet into my hands, and I’m not at all unhappy with it. I like the red beast. She’s fast and sexy, but incredibly uncomfortable on the long haul and drinks a lot on top of that. Nothing for mumus.

Yamaha YZF-R3 no competition?

Uwe shouldn’t be a competitor on the Yamaha YZF-R3, and Tobi Wassermann has to stop every 200 kilometers for a pack of cigarettes. Only Jacko remains as a great adversary. And if I want to beat the one on the KTM 1290 Super Adventure with its crazy 30-liter fuel bunker, I definitely have to pull off the endurance number. Turn indicator left, cock and just go out to refuel. I don’t have to take a long break on the road, otherwise I won’t be able to convert my speed advantage into time savings. As long as the Ducati 1199 Panigale does not suffer a major technical defect on the way, everything is fine.

Full throttle. With the exception of a few trucks and heavy loads, I have a free run. Some still seem to be asleep and use two lanes at the same time, which sometimes becomes quite late to me at 250 km / h plus darkness. Just come past to the left and keep the kidneys taut. After Munich, take the A7 northwards, then near Nuremberg on the A9. Shortly before Hof, the Ducati 1199 Panigale wants fuel for the fourth time. Now very urgent, after 37 kilometers on reserve. That gnaws at the nerves.

On-board computer has never shown above 14 degrees since Berchtesgaden

Then comes the right moment of shock: I take the wrong turn near Halle and drive towards Berlin. Turning back? It is certainly a detour, but perhaps it is faster than the hook via Hanover back to the much more traveled A7. Could work, but could also fail. So keep going straight ahead, “Hamburg” will be written somewhere.

Now my whole body is aching, from my knees and ass to my back and wrists. It’s also really cold, the on-board computer has never shown above 14 degrees since Berchtesgaden. And to top it all, it starts raining too. After refueling number five, I stumble rigid from the cold like a drunk in the direction of the truck stop and hardly make it around the corner clean. With my shoulder I ram the edge of the entrance gate and half-angledly slam a Zwanni for 14 liters of Super on the checkout counter. Don’t look at me like that, gas station attendant. I’m on a mission and it’s called victory! It smells like espresso and I would die for a hot coffee, but I have to move on. Nothing would be worse than letting the helmeted Jacko win – because of a coffee!

Wrists about to break from fatigue

Back on the track, I wish the Ducati 1199 Panigale would radiate as much warmth as when it was stationary or in city traffic. On the A24 behind Berlin in the direction of Hamburg, the speed limit is 120 or less for several kilometers – I was completely overgrown. Gas, boy, step on the gas! Suddenly I see mobile speed cameras everywhere where there are none. Shortly before the Hanseatic city, refueling number seven is due. My wrists now feel like they’re about to break from fatigue any moment.

The chorus of Disclosures “White Noise” runs up and down in my head: “If you want to get tough, then let’s play rough.” In Hamburg, I am stuck in traffic jams forever. On the A7 in the direction of Flensburg you can hardly make any progress because of the endless construction sites. Meanwhile I hang on the Ducati 1199 Panigale like a wounded cowboy. Finally arrived in Germany’s northernmost city, I order a Flens in the petrol station saloon. To be on the safe side, a lead-free one. Nevertheless, I am foggy again, as if I got up in this far away Bavarian mountain world. Girl, we should meet again…

Ducati 1199 Panigale – the bottom line

Driver: Tobias Münchinger 

Tactics: Very simple – oxyhydrogen!

Refueling: 9

Travel time: 9 hours 22 minutes

KTM 1290 Super Adventure


Volkmar Jacob on the KTM 1290 Super Adventure.

A sea of ​​hectically blinking blue light illuminates the dark night from afar. I’m just rolling onto the autobahn. Traffic control? Heavy transport? Full closure? Just don’t! But the all-clear: the authorities are looking for gangs of smugglers in buses and trucks near the Austrian border who are illegally smuggling refugees into the country. For normal traffic this means free travel. Lucky! Suddenly wide awake, I set off on the KTM 1290 Super Adventure to over 1100 kilometers of uncertainty. What will I have to experience on the long trip across our republic? 

Shortly beforehand, the cashier at the agreed 24-hour petrol station told me that a colleague had started an hour beforehand and a second had only filled up about ten minutes ago. It is exactly 4:27 a.m. The early bird is probably a young drifter and new horsepower member Tobias Münchinger ("Tobi 1") on the Ducati 1199 Panigale. He had already announced in advance that he would drive full Lotte as often as possible and accept one or two more refueling stops. He calls it oxyhydrogen. Not a bad tactic. Because the experience of an earlier crossover comparison has shown that shooting and frequent stops can be faster than cucumbering around in order to have to refuel less often (PS 10/2013). But such a motorway offers imponderables such as roadworks, traffic jams or second-hand goods in all lanes, so that one has to ask oneself how much full throttle this will end up with.

30 liter tank, plenty of steam in the boiler and a comfortable sitting position

PS Capo Uwe Seitz ("Super-U") is the other one who started before me – with the Yamaha YZF-R3. Har, har, har, what bad luck too. He really wanted the KTM 1290 Super Adventure. But now I’m driving them! Fat 30 liter tank, plenty of steam in the boiler, comfortable seating position: who or what should be stopping me? I’m guaranteed to catch the poor Super-U before Munich. 

The speed limits are fatal for the psyche. Darned 100 km / h on the free track. Little angels and devils report in the head. “Take it easy, you know what the regulations say: drive to StVO. And if they catch you again at too fast a pace in the next eight months, your rag is gone, ”warns Engelchen. The little roast of Satan replies: “Give some material! It’ll go wrong. Senseless speed limits are something for weak-minded wimps. You can see for yourself, nothing going on here – or do you not want to win at all? ”The devil has the better arguments again.

Where the hell is Super U?

PS auxiliary heater Tobias Wassermann ("Tobi 2") interprets the rules a little more freely and rushes past between Munich and Nuremberg. Shit, he started after me! In addition, he represents a serious opponent on the Suzuki Hayabusa: large tank, killer performance, an absolute speed bike. His full throttle strategy had already been indicated yesterday when driving from Stuttgart to Berchtesgaden, the unofficial qualifying. At the slightest gap, he disappeared, never to be seen again. Gradually I doubt the victory I thought was certain. And where the hell is Super U? 

Only after 460 kilometers do I catch up with him on his loop. How did he do that? He will later claim that he largely adhered to the speed limits. Yeah, right. I speed past with Mach 2 and cheekily point to my stern that it should follow me. Hey, hey, that’s good.

Two refueling stops en route and one more at the destination are sufficient

Except for the usual left-driving senior teachers, two and a half hours of continuous rain and a 50-kilometer construction site to Hamburg, the remaining kilometers are completely uneventful. On the KTM 1290 Super Adventure, two refueling stops are sufficient en route and one more at the destination, which documents the arrival time. The cruising speed is 180 km / h. The consumption is kept within limits, and the Austrian also begins to commute significantly at higher speeds. In addition, wind and noise protection for a travel enduro could be better. But otherwise the bike is a wonderful kilometer eater with all the pipapo.

However, the somewhat capricious display of the remaining range on the KTM 1290 Super Adventure suddenly jumps to zero shortly before the goal of sixty kilometers. With the full tank, the load is over 400 kilometers under its belt. Now please don’t give up! Twelve kilometers of fear, then finally the relieving gas station in Flensburg. 26.27 liters fit into the fuel barrel. Time: 1:10 p.m. Not bad. But the trembling continues. Where are the others? Is that enough for victory?

KTM 1290 Super Adventure – the bottom line

Driver: Volkmar Jacob 

Tactics: Around 180 km / h, very little refueling, speed limit by feeling

Refueling: 3

Travel time: 8 hours 43 minutes

Suzuki hayabusa


Temporary PSler Tobi Wassermann on the Suzuki Hayabusa.

Heinz Rühmann’s teacher Bömmel in the “Feuerzangenbowle” would have asked: “Watt eat a Schnappesidee?” And added: “Thu ask me janns dam!” Well, a crazy idea is usually more or less late in the day, gladly even after extensive enjoyment rich drinks are born. Tobacco products or films sometimes serve as inspiration for something that one usually regrets immediately after having dealt with these inspirations. In our case, a B-Movie DVD with a title like “Canon Ball” or “Hard at the Limit” could have been the trigger. It is also part of the essence of a crazy idea that the greater the threat of realization, the sometimes meager moral nutritional value is critically questioned. Anyway, one of the originally planned colleagues was “prevented” at short notice, and I was invited to the editorial office with the words “pack a toothbrush and a warm sweater and come over here”.

There I found out about the plan. And because a crazy idea is not synonymous with anarchy, there are also strict regulations. Above all, they want to convince me of the sense of this number, which only works moderately, but as a sociable guy I was certainly not called without intent and finally consent because I have never been to Flensburg in my life. So – I’m in!

Hayabusa is still a formidable long-distance bike

The luck of the draw brings me to the Suzuki Hayabusa. Although it has been on the market for 16 years and technically not quite up to date, it is still a formidable long-distance and motorway bike that straps its pilot over the tank in old-school style, but is still quite comfortable is. I use the 400 km journey to the starting point to get to know and explore the real range. A real qualifying!

After a short night, I taxi to the start at 4.35 a.m. Everyone is gone by then. Damn it, they really mean business. My tactic is simple: full snot, whatever goes. Unfortunately, ebb tides in the barrel after around 170 kilometers at the latest. Because there is usually no gas station there, I have to stop for the first time after a good hour and 145 kilometers. Average speed of 124 km / h. Not that bad at all, because free driving wasn’t possible everywhere.

Rain from Bayreuth forces you to slow down

From 230 km / h, the Suzuki Hayabusa, loaded with a roll of luggage, tends to commute in long curves. Strangely more to the right than to the left. From 240 onwards the helmet begins to vibrate and above that up to speedometer 299 the view becomes blurred. Speaking of swimming: The onset of rain from Bayreuth forces you to slow down. Nevertheless, things are going extremely well: The next stop takes place after 76 minutes and 183 kilometers in Pegnitz in Franconia. Makes a cut of 150 km / h. As it turns out later, it won’t get any better on this tour. Although I was able to overtake Jacko shortly before the second stop and experience a formidable sunrise and rainbow, then the cause of the arc came: rain. And with it the rush hour. So change of tactics, from now on you will actively swim.

But only externally. The clothes – windproof undersuit, fleece sweater, one-piece leather suit, softshell vest and rain suit – are warm and keep you tight. Since the gloves are always a weak point on long rides in the rain, a trick helps: just put on disposable diesel gloves. Your fingers get cold anyway, but they stay dry.

Tilt away and go!

And since it doesn’t take me too long after the third refueling stop in Osterfeld to convince my ambition that I didn’t have the crazy idea and that my well-being is more important than anything else, I take the time and stick to a break. Suddenly Uwe appears on the Yamaha YZF-R3. Is there such a thing? Tilt away and go: I will certainly not let myself be evaporated by 42 HP, and I prefer the sadness of the wet highway blast to personal enjoyment again. At the next stop, however, Uwe reappears. This time I stop and appear particularly friendly. I give the stooped and battered PSler a chocolate bar with the label "Speed" on it. Since he misinterprets my warm gesture, I just start again.

So the kilometers go by, Königslutter and Hamburg are the next refueling stops. The average sinks to 86 km / h around the Hanseatic city. In between there is time to think about it. They are not always ready for printing. Because: the ass hurts, the neck burns, or was it the other way around? Why is everyone driving on the left? And above all, why so slowly? Also, an empty, fast-paced highway on the Suzuki Hayabusa is like watching porn with your hands tied behind your back. Ultimately rather unsatisfactory. But this suffering also has an end. At 2:13 p.m. I arrive in Flensburg, penultimate. As a reward and – you remember – because of the idea there is a schnapps. And the return trip? Just don’t think about it.

Suzuki Hayabusa – the bottom line

Driver: Tobi Wassermann 

Tactics: Full throttle until the connoisseur awakens in you

Refueling: 7th

Travel time: 9 hours 38 minutes

Yamaha YZF-R3


PS boss Uwe Seitz and the Yamaha YZF-R3.

At three o’clock my night was over suddenly. Right outside my hotel window, someone is holding a hell of a spectacle with a Ducati 1199 Panigale. Tobi starts! So up – just don’t be the last to leave the farm. After a short jump through the starry night in the Berchtesgadener Land and a coffee at the start tank, real life in Bad Reichenhall quickly catches up with me. I will also witness the border controls. The thought of the intercepted people and their uncertain fate immediately dampens my frustration with the R3 lottery ticket. Meanwhile, the Yamaha YZF-R3 purrs below me towards Munich and clearly signals that the speedometer is over at 175 km / h. At top speed and just under 10,000 rpm, the big, bright shift light comes on, which I don’t get set and which annoys me in the dark. So I settle down to just under 170 km / h if the traffic rules allow. 

The stress level on such a bike is low on an empty motorway. Even tighter turns go fully. Accordingly, it quickly becomes boring. I play license plate rates, hum across my record shelf and try to slip behind the low paneling as relaxed as possible. A bead running across the road tears me out of lethargy. The soft fork of the Yamaha YZF-R3 cannot cope with this sudden impulse and makes the handlebars fidget for a moment.

The Yamaha YZF-R3’s tank holds 14 liters

The first refueling shortly before Ingolstadt. A little more than 10 liters go in after about 210 kilometers, the tank of the Yamaha YZF-R3 holds 14 liters. Not a bad cut with almost always full throttle. I decide to keep this rhythm, to do some daring late-tank activities and notice from my shoulder muscles that a break like this can be quite relieving after 90 minutes of crouching. 

It is also cold, even the attempt first rays of sunshine past Nuremberg do not bring any warmth. The traffic is restrained and I rarely have to make way for a faster car in the moderate row twin. That is a good thing, because the rear view in the mirrors is relatively modest. If I don’t bend to the side, all I can see is my arm. Now my butt is really starting to burn too. The seat roll of the Yamaha YZF-R3 is damn soft and sat through quickly. Another 700 kilometers! At least the spectacle of twilight in the sky comforts me over the pain in my seat.

Rain doesn’t make things any easier

Then continuous rain sets in. At the next gas station, Tobis Suzuki Hayabusa is in the parking lot. A short chat, everyone whistles a chocolate bar in and on. Hardly five minutes later the Suzuki shoots past me. Bye-bye my friend, it flashes through my head, and with a feeling of no chance I roar lonely towards the courtyard. Deep twin hum tears me out of my thoughts there. Jacko swings with the KTM 1290 Super Adventure, grinning nastily, right next to me and sardonically asks me to just stay at his rear. The main flaw of the R3 is the lack of any weapon systems. It didn’t even have to be a surface-to-surface missile, a volley of darts would have been enough for me. Before my last curses completely cloud my visor, the KTM is over the mountains. Speaking of mountains: With the Yamaha YZF-R3, in order to skilfully cross them, you should drive with foresight and take enough momentum with you, otherwise it will be extremely tough at 140 km / h maximum speed. 

Unfortunately, it is now already broad daylight and the nationwide meeting of the “Association of talent-free drivers” has already started in the middle lane. Why you always have to drive right in the middle of it at a snail’s pace, despite miles of abstinence from trucks, never goes into my head. This bad habit now causes real stress at 42 hp, because backwards you have to look out for the speed guys, while the middle lane occupant is parked in front. The Yamaha YZF-R3 has to go through that somehow. The rain doesn’t make things any easier either.

62.01 liters over 1138 kilometers

The Yamaha twin does its thing really well for its circumstances between 9000 and 11,000 rpm. While underneath there is almost a scooter feeling, the bike really gets going at these speeds. That is a super sport feeling for beginners. Anyone who takes the Yamaha YZF-R3 by the horns will later know how to whip an R6 down the slopes.

The rest is patience, regular refueling and relaxation exercises for the pain in your buttocks and upper body. And that’s how I finally reach Flensburg. Without the longer break at Hanover, because I could hardly turn my head, it would have been 20 minutes less possible. But 62.01 liters per 1138 kilometers is a remarkable figure.

Yamaha YZF-R3 – the bottom line

Driver: Uwe Seitz

Tactics: Drive off, suffer, suffer, suffer even more, arrive, drink Flens

Refueling: 7th

Travel time: 10 hours 17 minutes

Technical specifications


The bikes could hardly be more different. By the way, the reactions of the drivers to the lucky draw also did not.



Ducati 1199 Panigale, Yamaha YZF-R3, Suzuki Hayabusa and KTM 1290 Super Adventure.

Tobi Münchinger


Tobi Münchinger.

She subdues you like a dominatrix and also takes a lot of money for it. This means that the Ducati 1199 Panigale is an integral part of real life, in which you unfortunately have to accept defeats. If I hadn’t lost my way, the pain would have paid off in full and I’d rather have won Jacko, you flip-up cucumber!

2nd place: Ducati 1199 Panigale – 9 hours 22 minutes

Volkmar Jacob


Volkmar Jacob.

Had, had, Ducati chain! No matter how good excuses Tobi 1 can come up with, there can only be one winner and that’s me. Also, how relaxed I got off the KTM 1290 Super Adventure in Flensburg! I really felt sorry for the other three, how they hung stiffly like Quasimodo over their pizza hours later, har har har!

1st place: KTM 1290 Super Adventure – 8 hours 43 minutes

Tobi Wassermann


Tobi Wassermann.

A Japanese proverb says – probably: "A hawk only flies fast when its wings are not wet." In the madness of the motorway under constant rain, you cannot use the power of the Suzuki Hayabusa without real contempt for life. Jacko not only had luck, but also luck with the weather. The water should run into his helmet next time!

3rd place: Suzuki Hayabusa – 9 hours 38 minutes

Uwe Seitz


Uwe Seitz.

In 1986 I drove the MTX 80 from the Black Forest to Scotland. I must have been more capable of suffering then. Nevertheless, the Yamaha YZF-R3 reliably beamed me through Germany and saved my wallet in the process. But let’s be honest: I no longer rely on luck again. "Me boss, you nothing" is my new motto, dear Jacko.

4th place: Yamaha YZF-R3 – 10 hours 17 minutes

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