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Power racer

A sports bike like the Yamaha YZF-R1 is at absolute odds with choc-a-bloc city traffic. But do diehard fans care?

autos Updated: Feb 25, 2010 02:11 IST

The fast and furious Yamaha YZF-R1 was the very first big bike to boldly make it to India when the CBU route opened in 2008. While 2009 saw the global launch of a radically different all-new R1; it didn’t make it to our shores. But now it’s here.


Aggressive but compact, the latest R1 looks like an evolution of its legendary predecessors. The front fairing, which houses a pair of radical-looking projector lights, incorporates ram air scoops into the headlight assembly. Instrumentation is comprehensive; the cockpit is dominated by a large analogue tachometer and digital read-out that now gets a gear indicator. Switchgear includes a new ride mode selector — Yamaha D-Mode — that allows the rider to toggle between three levels of power delivery for varied riding conditions.

Racing technology

A muscular 18-litre fuel tank, which sits atop exposed sections of the YZF-R1’s frame, leads to the racy rider seat and its tiny pillion perch. A pair of aerodynamically-styled titanium underseat exhausts, which are accompanied by a triangular LED brake lamp, bring up the rear.

The latest R1 borrows cutting-edge technology from the Yamaha YZR-M1 race bike that recently powered Valentino Rossi to his seventh MotoGP World Championship.

— Autocar India