The internet sleuths across the pond at MCN have uncovered more evidence on the next-generation Yamaha R1 and think we may see a new R6 launched alongside. If any of the conjecture is true, expect the Japanese brand to catapult back into the limelight and take its place next to the European manufacturers.
The new Yamaha R1
The boys at MCN claim that Yamaha is aiming directly at the BMW S1000RR and Aprilia RSV4 in terms of technology and performance. They had spy shots over a year ago showing what was clearly an R1 wrapped in R6 plastics being tested alongside the Bimmer. Their sources say the new R1 will be revealed at Intermot in Cologne in a few months, and will be available in 2015.
With sportbike sales weak worldwide in recent years, the current R1 hasn’t seen anything except new colors since the 2009 model year. The new R1 will supposedly get electronically adjustable suspension, traction control with multiple riding modes, and ABS, all of which are absent from the current model. MCN also claims that Yamaha has been working on their own dual-clutch, semi-automatic transmission, but it's unclear if they think some version of this will be fitted to the new R1. Check out MCN's more lengthy report here.
A new Yamaha R6?
Speculation around the R6 is even dicier than it is with the R1. Japanese brands don't typically release new 1,000cc and 600cc supersports at the same time. We only thought it worth mentioning because MCN has this crazy idea that the new R6 would be based on a 675cc derivative of the three-cylinder engine in the FZ-09 — which would be absolutely incredible, if it's true. Check out MCN's report here.
New bike season is almost here
Late summer and early fall is one of my favorite times of year. Football starts again, new iPhones are released, and the Internet is buzzing with new bike news. Yamaha, a company that seemed dormant for far too long, has lately had a string of hits with the FZ-09, FZ-07, and Star Bolt.
Between the aforementioned bikes, the video teaser of the R3, Yamaha’s trademarking the "FJ-09" moniker, and now this supersport news, I’m beginning to get really excited for any news with the Yamaha name on it. The Japanese brands have done a great job making quality bikes for new riders in recent years. I really hope we see them start to focus on more lust-worthy options.