Making its way to India quickly after its global debut at the Tokyo Motor Show, India Yamaha Motor has launched the 2018 Yamaha YZF-R1 in the country. The flagship offering from the Japanese giant is priced at ₹ 20.73 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi) and sports a host of cosmetic upgrades along with new feature and tech improvements. Much like the previous version, the 2018 R1 continues to arrive in the country as a Completely Built Unit (CBU) and will be available in two colours - Tech Black and Yamaha Blue.
Commenting on the launch of the 2018 Yamaha R1, Yamaha India, Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing, Roy Kurian said, "The new YZF-R1 model will strengthen Yamaha in its superbike segment in Indian market. It inherits its technology from Yamaha's racing machine YZR-M1. This model also highlights Yamaha's improved aerodynamics which posts it closer to the MotoGP attributes, and which is a rare potential available in today's market. Yamaha plans to increase its market share in supersports segment as the new YZF-R1 is expected to attract the younger racing enthusiasts."
Visually, the 2018 Yamaha YZF-R1 does not any major changes and continues largely with the same design language with the M1 inspired front sporting the LED DRLs and headlamp. The new colours do add a refreshing touch though. Under the fairing, the same 998 cc cross-plane, four-cylinder, four-valve engine continues to serve purpose. The engine has been derived from the YZR-M1 MotoGP bike and is tuned to belt out 197 bhp, which can be improved with the ram pressurisation. The chassis remains the same as well sporting a long swingarm, magnesium rear frame and magnesium wheels.
Coming to upgrades, the 2018 Yamaha R1 sports a new Quick Shift System (QSS), which offers quicker changes through the gears without using the clutch. There is also the new lift control system which uses the 6-axis ECU to calibrate adequate power delivery to the rear in order to avoid unintentional wheelies. The 2018 R1 comes with a kerb weight of 199 kg, which gives it a fantastic power-to-weight ratio.
The 2018 Yamaha R1's motor also comes with a higher compression ratio of 01:01 per cylinder head, and comes with titanium con rods and forged aluminium pistons. A large 10.5 litre air box feeds the engine with air via the central air inlet, which can be electronically controlled using the Yamaha Chip Controlled Intake YCC-I) funnels. This allows for more useable performance on the bike, Yamaha says.
The updated Yamaha YZF-R1 will be locking horns with a host of offerings in the litre-class superbike space, including some older rivals like the Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade and the Suzuki GSX-R1000R, along with the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R, BMW S1000RR, Aprilia RSV-4 Factory and the likes.