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2015 Yamaha YZF-R1 and R1M Press Launch, Report 3: Final Thoughts on Press Introduction (with video)




Fracture-Split Titanium Rod

The 2015 Yamaha YZF-R1 and YZF-R1M are remarkable motorcycles, both of which are available now in the U.S. The standard model is priced at $16,490, while the R1M is $21,990. Both models are distinguished by the highly advanced, computer-controlled systems they utilize to aide the rider.

Before we get to the electronics, let’s talk about what else is new. Virtually everything, actually. A new frame, with magnesium sub-frame results in a 10 mm shorter wheelbase. Weight saving efforts are everywhere. From the aluminum gas tank (3.5 pounds lighter) to the magnesium wheels (1.9 pounds lighter, in total) and the all-new 998 cc inline engine that is 9 pounds lighter.

That engine is also narrower by 1.2 inches at the crank, and features a number of changes to increase power or reduce parasitic loss thereof. The airbox is 19% larger, and the valves are actuated (including the titanium intake valves) by rocker arms. A new forged piston moves with less friction, in part due to a 2 mm cylinder off-set that reduces cylinder-wall load during the compression stroke. The fracture-split titanium rods are a first on a production motorcycle, and contribute to what Yamaha claims is a 20% reduction in inertial moment for the engine.

Compression comes in at a healthy 13.0:1, and the motor is extremely oversquare with a 79 mm bore and a 50.9 mm stroke.

Wet weight is a claimed 439 pounds, and agility should be substantially aided by the reduction in rotating mass, both the magnesium wheels and the engine internals.

The electronics/computer control package is extremely extensive and sophisticated, and warranted an entirely separate article written by MD on November 11. Take a look at that article for details, but here is a summary.

Perhaps most interesting is the “Inertial Measurement Unit”. This IMU is the first of its kind on a production motorcycle, and is capable of 6 axis of measurement, including pitch, roll and yaw (handled by a gyro sensor), as well as acceleration fore-aft, up-down and right-left (handled by an accelerameter).




Aluminum Fuel Tank

Measurements from the IMU are used to add input into the appropriate level of traction control, slide control, lift (or wheelie) control, launch control and the quick shift system (which allows full throttle, clutchless upshifts with a brief power cut).

By factoring in G-forces and motorcycle positioning, these systems on the new R1 promise much more sophisticated, and effective, rider assistance. In addition to numerous settings available for rider adjustment for each of the systems described above, there are four power settings selectable by the rider, all the way down to a setting appropriate for rain or other low traction conditions.

The new R1 also features an Unified Braking System (with ABS) developed on the race track with the goal of reducing unwanted motion during braking (such as fork dive). It does activate the rear brake when the front brake is applied, but the brake force distribution is based on the attitude of the bike and its lean angle.

A new instrument gauge (a thin film transistor LCD meter) can be set by the rider in either Street or Track mode, the later of which focuses on the high rpm range and can display lap times, best lap, last lap, etc.

The more expensive R1M takes all of the features of the standard model and adds carbon fiber fairing and front fender, a polished aluminum fuel tank and swing-arm, as well as Öhlins electronic racing suspension. The Öhlins suspension includes 3 automatic modes that evaluate input from the IMU, and 3 manual modes. These, of course, are adjustable with regard to several parameters.

The R1M also comes with a smart phone and tablet app that can send, via wi-fi, data to your mobile device, which allows the rider to analyze information overlaid with the course map so that the rider can make changes that can be uploaded to the bike.  This is an optional accessory that can be added to the standard R1.

Of course, all of this electronic/computer wizardry is pointless if it doesn’t help a rider go faster, and stay safer.




Magnesium Wheel

Quite remarkably for a first year model with so much sophistication, the R1 seems to integrate all of the data and control systems in a way that allows the rider to simply get on with the business of circulating a race track quickly, and under control. We spoke about the very positive first impressions from our test of both the standard R1 and the R1M earlier.

Both bikes are very fast, and appear to have a big step-up in horsepower versus the prior model R1.  We will try to confirm this on a dyno later. Despite the huge power, fuel injection and throttle response is smooth and predictable, allowing the rider to pick up the throttle on corner exits without any drama.

Both models change direction easily, almost belying their open-class engine displacement. The lighter wheels and engine internals, together with the shorter wheelbase, all play a role here. The bike is also rock steady at high speed (with Ed hitting 159 mph at the end of the Eastern Creek front straight).

The KYB suspension on the standard model is fully adjustable (with both high and low speed compression adjustment on the shock). Ed thought the standard suspension performed superbly, both while cruising around to learn a new track, all the way to full tilt boogie. Mid-corner bumps, including a rather large one while leaned over in 4th gear, were handled without upsetting the chassis, leading to even more confidence.

The KYB units, although not tested on the street, appear to be more street friendly than the Öhlins units on the R1M, which only came into their own at a higher pace.

Braking was powerful, fade free and drama free, as both bikes scrubbed the rapid velocity achieved prior to some of the tight turns at Eastern Creek impressively. Together with the other systems on the R1, trail braking to the apex became a comfortable process.

The transmission and clutch performed their duties seamlessly, and the clutchless, full power upshifts enabled by the Quick Shift System were very smooth and did not upset the chassis. Downshifts were consistently, and controllably, responded to by the slipper-clutch.

MD is expecting to receive a long-term test unit from Yamaha for evaluation, so you can expect more stories on the R1 from us. One thing that Ed was not able to do at the launch was try a number of the adjustments available, and combinations of adjustments in the electronic control systems present on the new R1.  We will also have a separate article discussing the tire technology Bridgestone brought to the R1. At the bottom of this article is a video of Ed riding the R1 at Eastern Creek behind another motorcycle equipped with a video camera.

In the meantime, you can look at Yamaha’s web site for additional details and specifications for the R1 and R1M. Color options for the standard model include Raven, Team Yamaha Blue/Matte Silver, and Rapid Red/Pearl White.  The R1M is available only in the Carbon Fiber/Liquid Metal color shown.




  1. Auphliam says:

    I don’t have near enough ability to begin to utilize even a fraction of this bikes capabilities. That hasn’t tempered my desire to try it out in the least.

    What a gorgeous machine.

  2. Gary says:

    “The R1M also comes with a smart phone and tablet app that can send, via wi-fi, data to your mobile device, which allows the rider to analyze information overlaid with the course map so that the rider can make changes that can be uploaded to the bike.”

    If I had this feature my smartphone would laugh hysterically at me after every ride.

  3. Neil says:

    It’s exciting. It’s a beautiful machine. I think all the electronics are great, but, let’s face it, the FZ07 motor in a race bike frame is all you need for the street. I can get to 75 in the blink of an eye on this bike in second gear let’s say for the street. So like the 2004 ZX10 I rode, it’s like idling around all over the place. Anything mid throttle was a speeding ticket. Mid throttle! Any gear. I really like it. It would be fun to ride once. But as an everyday bike, I’d only like commuting left lane on a long highway commute. I’m a big fan of the bike itself. Fantastic machine. The bike itself? Nothing bad to say about it. Very nice indeed.

    • Blackcayman says:

      Just please use “I” instead of “you”.

      Nobody needs to define my passion. Thank you very much.

      And as a matter of fact, I do need more than 75 HP and 50 Torques to feed my passion.

  4. Kagato says:

    I kept waiting (on the vid) for dude to romp down on it–Sydney has no straight run on the track apparently : – ( didn’t sound like he went over 4k rpm–I do like the sound of the mill–and the bike itself is gorgeous–looks like a great commuter bike ; – )

    • Ed Sorbo says:

      Sadly, there were a lot of us who wanted a lap behind the camera bike so there was only time for each of us to do what you saw. The front straight is long enough for me to reach 159 mph but we did not get a full lap for this vid.

  5. North of Missoula says:

    I am a big BMW fan. I own a K1300S. If I was 4-6 inches shorter and 50lbs lighter I would own an S1000RR.

    Having said that I hope that Yamaha takes a good chunk of BMW’s lunch with this bike….which will not be an easy thing to do right out of the paddock.

    IMO styling wise it blows the BMW out of the water. And let’s face the facts: The super bike genre was created by the Japs, the S1000RR was more than a shot across the bow, it was an outright insult.

  6. Artem says:

    This thing is too expensive

    • mickey says:

      As compared to what? 900 pound 65 horsepower Harleys and Indians cost more than the tricked out version of this bikes. Goldwings cost more. BMW has many models that cost more. The base model of this is really reasonable comparable to it’s competition and the upgraded model of this has a lot of unobtanium that cost a lot.

      • xLaYN says:

        Compared to the Ninja 650, Sv650 or the CB500 line; what most of the sensible us need.
        Those Harley buyers you mention are like this R1 a luxury and as such rationale it’s not a good tool on defending their price/value relationship.

        • mickey says:

          Nobody NEEDS a motorcycle. It’s a luxury item. Even a Ninja 650 or SV 650. Somebody with no car would think someone else who buys an Ninja 650 is not being sensible.

          • xLaYN says:

            nice point

          • Norm G. says:

            re: “Somebody with no car would think someone else who buys an Ninja 650 is not being sensible.”

            and there it is…

            the wisdom of Methuselah.

          • Hot Dog says:

            I use a company pickup but I don’t own a 4 wheel vehicle. I need to own a “cheap to operate” means of transportation and that’s a motorcycle.

          • mickey says:

            Hotdog I would bet if you tracked your expenses on your motorcycle you would find out that they are very expensive to operate per mile and only get marginally better gas mileage than a compact car. Tires every ten thousand miles, brakes every 15,000 miles, chain and sprockets every 25,000 miles, valve adjustments every 10,000 miles, spark plugs every 8000 miles, air cleaner every 15000 miles. I can tell you that I had two 2006 4 CYL 125 hp Hondas, a CIvic and an ST 1300 and over a two year period the ST cost me a ton more to drive than the Civic. The ST was a lot more fun though.

          • Hot Dog says:

            You’re probably right Mickey but I’m ignorant enough to fool myself so I’ll remain in my own state of suspended animation.

          • mickey says:

            Lol…good plan!

      • xLaYN says:

        Start adding Titanium, Aluminum and Carbon Fiber everywhere is like making the screen of the next iPhone bigger, do not mention more and more electronics and computers.
        I wonder if we have hit the ceiling of the “Sitius Altius and Fortius” of sportbike?, remember the Bandit 400? the 89 version of it had 59 horsepower on a 410 pounds package.

      • Vince says:


    • Norm G. says:

      re: “This thing is too expensive”

      that’s what she said about the Ferrari. then you come off of the dime for one and an epiphany occurs…

      you quickly come to the realization, you are so busy enjoying life and the riding/driving experience (prior to death)…? that you never really “gave a rats” about the damn price to begin with. LOL

      it’s not the money you want…? it’s the OBJECT the money buys. as it were, you had been suckered the whole time by the “wily and elusive” advertisers of Madison avenue.

      • TimC says:

        “then you come off the dime”

        Supposing you are one the fortunate ones for whom the planets, stars, shoulders of others, etc etc all lined up perfectly for…make up your mind Norm

        • Norm G. says:

          re: “make up your mind Norm”

          wait, are saying that I haven’t…?

          anyone who visits this site with any frequency would have to confess, I’ve made it pretty clear from day ZERO the importance of having a “valuing mentality”.

          on this all depends. (Yoda voice)

        • Norm G. says:

          re: “Supposing you are one the fortunate ones for whom the planets, stars, shoulders of others, etc etc all lined up perfectly for”

          mentally…? intellectually…? yes.

          • TimC says:

            I was pointing out the contradiction of expecting someone to come off the dime (one of your favorites) they may or may not have because of your stance (which I disagree with) that whether they have that dime depends on something other than their own personal heroism as opposed to what broadly would be termed as “fate” or what you argue amounts to being some Nietzschean superman or whatnot.

            Try to keep up if you’re going to comment in your oblique style. It’s been fun but it’s gotten pretty tiresome.

      • Neil says:

        Hey Norm, what do you ride by the way?

    • mickey says:

      Heck the std model is $500 less than the Indian Chief Darkhorse ( the least expensive and lightest Chief) recently reviewed here.

      • Philip says:

        Oh yes, comparison please! I’d like to see a drag race(video) between the two! I know they are apples oranges but money is money and this bike is just an amazing piece of cutting edge tech. for under 20k!

    • Artem says:

      Ducati Monster is very cheap

    • North of Missoula says:

      How much would a car cost with that level of performance and technology built into it?

  7. Norm G. says:

    omg, that fuel tank has an abundance of “seam”…!!!

    • mickey says:

      That made me laugh out loud

    • Curly says:

      Yes, and the welds on them are pure industrial art. The tank itself feels like satin to the touch. Get up close to one a let your eyes drink it all in for 10 or 15 minutes. Then, just then, let yourself swing a leg over the saddle and imagine that you are actually good enough to ride it to something like 25% of its potential. We earthlings aren’t worthy of course but we can dream can’t we?

      • Random says:

        Uh… This was probably a joke, based of the fact many of this sites’ users complained about visible tank seams.

      • Curly says:

        No I’m totally serious, the seam welds are really nice and the finish on the tank itself is something you need to put your hands on to appreciate. More seams like these please!

  8. Gman says:

    Looks like Yamaha is bringing a sword to a gun fight. Without a turbo or Supercharger this bike will fall short of the new horsepower bar set by Kawasaki.

    • red says:

      Only in the minds of the extended chrome swingarm crowd. Yamaha is for racing, Kawasaki is for bragging.

    • Norm G. says:

      re: “this bike will fall short of the new horsepower bar set by Kawasaki.”

      my CAR falls short of the new horsepower bar set by Kawasaki.

    • MGNorge says:

      That’s been Kawasaki’s shtick as long as I’ve known. BMW kind of upstaged them a few years ago but I think BMW knew they had to come out swinging. I rather knew that Kawasaki wouldn’t sit back for long and I have a hunch their newest effort took extra R&D.
      As always it gets the attention of horsepower above all else crowd. I see it as an achievement but something I’m not too interested in for myself.

    • Dave says:

      I think the only customers who would cross shop the H2 and this aren’t actually “riding” them.

  9. Denny says:

    Looks good, but the sound is awful. Is it because 270 degree crank?

    • x-planer says:

      That crossplane crank IL4 is the best sounding engine in the paddock. Hear one in person and it’s pure sex.

    • Ed Sorbo says:

      The sound is awesome and it goes to 11!

    • Norm G. says:

      re: “Looks good, but the sound is awful.”

      fairplay. once you develop your moto-IQ, I think you’ll begin to see things differently. or who knows, maybe it will only solidify your dislike more…? that’s fine too, if you read in the comments of this link, you’ll see you’re not alone in your preference for the traditional sound of an I4.

      no worries, the sound you’ve been conditioned to EXPECT from the configuration arrives at 3:10. i’m of the opinion they BOTH sound good, but that’s just me.

      re: “Is it because 270 degree crank?”

      yes and no. that’s but ONE of the throws when you reference the firing order from zero. anybody into classic muscle cars and American V8’s have long known what this crank looks like. “old hats” of car world (looking down from on high) wonder what all of us in bike world are on about…?

      • Doc says:

        I will give you that the Yamaha sounds ok in the video. Definitely better that the on bike videos during races that I’ve seen. But compared to the bike at 3:10, which is a Honda V4 by the way, not an I4, the Honda beats it by a million miles in sound alone. Especially after the bike leaves the picture. Sometimes the Yamaha sounds like it’s running on 3 cylinders. The Honda has the sound of an exotic. Sounds racy. It stirs my soul honestly. The Yamaha doesn’t. Another bike that sounded fantastic was the Ducati the year Stoner won the championship.

    • cyclemotorist says:

      I thought it sounded fantastic!

  10. Blackcayman says:

    When BMW released the S1000RR, it gapped the industry in a major way. So to say Yamaha was aiming at BMW makes sense, but I think its more simple than that.

    I think they were looking to leap-frog all the competitors and set a new high watermark. With 200 HP being the new minimum acceptable power level, they had to add lightness and harness technology to make the bike more controllable. Fist pump for Mag Wheels!

    These initial reviews are promising…

    How and when will Honda and Suzuki (KTM?) respond to the new realities of this class?

    Aprilia has a revised RSV4 R, Ducati the 1299 (for the civilians)…This year the Superbike Shootout looks to be something to see.

    For about $20,000, these new Superbikes for sale at your local dealer are beyond the performance of Grand Prix race bikes from our very recent past. Chew on that for a second.

    • mickey says:

      I don’t expect Honda would respond. That hasn’t been there style for 15 years.

      • Dave says:

        Honda confirmed sometime last year that a V-4 superbike is coming. They painted a GP bike up in street livery at EMICA, but I don’t think anyone was fooled into thinking that’s what they’d really release.

        All of these are brand builders, especially the BMW. They have been reporting sales growth. I’d be really interested in knowing how much of it was the S1000r, both revenue and profit (if that bike is even profitable at what they retail it for).

        • Jeremy in TX says:

          “but I don’t think anyone was fooled into thinking that’s what they’d really release.”

          Actually, they are releasing that bike. I think I read the price of entry is $168,000.

      • Blackcayman says:

        In the larger picture they can’t expect to continue to sell CBR1000RRs with a change to the shape of the headlight. For 2015 they can say their 1000 is thousands cheaper and still a good motorcycle….but after a while that’s going to be embarrassing.

        The Big Four have been manufacturing 600s and 1000cc sportbikes for decades, the performance differentials being mostly small.

        Honda and Suzuki must respond….

        • mickey says:

          I think Hondas goals have changed. They no longer seek to be leaders in given categories, especially in the sport bike category, but rather choose to build bikes that fit a more world wide perspective for the average Joe. They never win shootouts in the magazines, but it’s always reported in the oomparisons the Hondas are the most refined, have the best fit and finish and are the easiest for most people to ride

          • MGNorge says:

            Well, things could change. Honda just announced a change at the helm. Takanobu Ito is out with Takahiro Hachigo who seems to be mostly a car guy. Ito has been criticized by his peer and prior Honda CEO’s as not staying on top of quality issues, most notably the Takata airbag issue which cost Honda (and others) big.
            How Hachigo runs the company and which directions it will go is anyone’s guess?

          • mickey says:

            We will just have to wait and see, but I don’t see a car guy being very concerned with being the tech leader in the small ( compared to cars) motorcycle industry, especially since Honda is number one in sales in the motorcycle world. Super enthusiasts ( the kind that spend their time on blogs and magazine subscriptions) care about the latest and greatest. the average joe who walks into a dealership just wants a motorcycle that looks good, is reliable and doesn’t cost him as much as his house, car, or kids braces monthly payments. Honda pretty much has that covered.

        • Norm G. says:

          re: “Honda and Suzuki must respond”

          hey, good luck with that.

          • Blackcayman says:

            if not, the liter-bike segment would be seriously bifurcated, which it hasn’t been in the recent past…

    • Norm G. says:

      re: “Chew on that for a second.”

      you bet your a$$ pal, it tastes like chicken…!!!

  11. Norm G. says:

    re: “Both bikes are very fast, and appear to have a big step-up in horsepower versus the prior model R1.”

    re: “We will try to confirm this on a dyno later.”


  12. Dino says:

    I need to lose about 30 pounds, gain about $30 grand, and maybe grow another testicle…
    Then this bike would be PERFECT for me!!

    How about a comparison of this M1R with the BMW SS100R and Kawi H2? Maybe from a overweight “common man” perspective?? I would humbly volunteer to fly out to any track for this test, and I’ll bring plenty of spare skivvies so I can clean up after every test run!

  13. Trent says:

    Awesome feat of engineering!

  14. Tommy says:

    Let’s hope the IMU’s are covered under warranty for a long, long time.

    • Jeremy in TX says:

      Very robust little devices, and pretty cheap as well. It would probably cost more to replace a blinker and mirror. Unless of course the IMU is bundled up with other items into a part that can only be replaced as a unit rather than individual components.

    • MGNorge says:

      Those have been used in the RC aircraft world for a bit now. Ever wonder how those multi-rotor (quads or drones) craft can sit almost motionless in the sky while filming what’s below? Three-axis gyros are being used in some cases to help new fliers get the hang of controlling their airplanes but can feel like unnecessary training wheels to experienced pilots depending on how much gain is employed. Six-axis gyros have become quite popular in beginner quads.

      For example, those road racers who are fond of hanging the rear wheel out when entering a turn might need to back off of the influence that such sensors provide. The electronics just might not allow that kind of shenanigans.

    • Provologna says:

      One of my best friends is a Marine Aviator. Aircraft have used electronic gyro aides for a few decades. In training, successive levels of electronic aides can be separately switched on/off. Pilots train in inclement weather, successively turning off aides till they fly in full manual mode for as long as possible, simulating case of aides being disabled in combat.

      So the Japanese employ the most sophisticated technology and evolution of equipment used in military aircraft with history back to at least the late 80s (possibly earlier, that’s when my friend trained). There’s every reason to predict high reliability and no reason to suspect otherwise. The implementation is state of the art but the general architecture is well known.

      The worst case abuse in a motorcycle pales next to helicopters being shot at in flight, me thinks. Besides, I bet every single thing described in this article is already long proven and used in automobiles. Ten years ago the Porsche Turbo had system that sensed the speed with which the accelerator pedal is released. When that speed passes a certain threshold, the ECU presumes impending danger, and automatically feathers the braking system, anticipating imminent emergency braking required, before the pilot’s foot reaches the brake pedal.

      I’m reminded of H-D guys not too many years wringing their hands about FI systems employed continuously and almost exclusively in four wheel vehicles for twenty five years prior.

      • Norm G. says:

        re: “Aircraft have used electronic gyro aides for a few decades.”

        I mention previously when we last discussed this 6-axis IMU, it’s ultimately what the ‘Merican military use at the core of all the current drone programs you hear discussed on the 6 o’clock news. and really even before the ‘Mericans used it en masse, the first I heard of miniaturized “multi-axis” gyro development was pioneered by the Israelis. and yes, I confirmed Yamaha has developed their own rather than using what had already been developed by Bosch and thus was “sitting on the shelf” so to speak.

    • Tommy says:

      I was mainly thinking of the cost to replace should one eventually fail rather than general reliability. ECU’s, though generally reliable, seem to be quite pricey once the warranty expires. Why would IMU’s be different?

      • Dave says:

        There are even accelerometers and gyros in smart phones these days. Surely we could expect to pay a premium for the fact that those is a motorcycle part (ever priced the plastic handlebar control housings on a Honda?), but the “tech” aspect shouldn’t be much of a cost driver at this point.

  15. Hot Dog says:

    Holy button constipation Batman! I can’t find the camping button!

    • Dino says:


      Don’t you know, the camping button is actually just a knob… You turn it to “off”, and enjoy the moonlight! Now, where do you stuff all the gear for camping on the back of that slick Race-Tool!?!?

  16. ApriliaRST says:

    These are great bikes within the group of motorcycles they compete against, and many of the technologies will eventually trickle down to bikes built for riders like me. But the technologies don’t address the problem of errant drivers violating our right-of-way. So, WOW! and Ho-hum.

    • x-planer says:

      Paying attention to traffic is your job Aprilia boy. Ho Hum? This R1 is a stomper and it’s great looking.

    • Jeremy in TX says:

      “But the technologies don’t address the problem of errant drivers violating our right-of-way.”

      Until somebody comes up with something akin to a Tomahawk cruise missile that can mount to the front fairing, we’ll just have to accept that risk.

      • Blackcayman says:

        Leave it to a Texan to bring up cruise missles as defensive weapons for a motorcycle.

        I’ll take the magnetic mine that I can slap on the drivers door and speed away before I activate the trigger! (you know, like the kind they trained dolphins to plant on the bottom of enemy ships!)

        I’ve always hankered for a shoulder fired Nuclear tipped rocket….

        #sarcasm for you haters

        • Jeremy in TX says:

          You clearly miss the point. It would be an offensive weapon. While not a perfect solution, it would be preferable to using your body weight x velocity to clear the F250 from your path.

          • Blackcayman says:

            You are from Texas.

            I thought we’d only be able to obliterate someone who had thrown the first punch

          • Jeremy in TX says:

            A punch from an F250 is not one you get up from. Offense is the better defense in this case. 🙂

        • Norm G. says:

          re: “Leave it to a Texan to bring up cruise missles as defensive weapons for a motorcycle”

          don’t mess with Texas…!!! 🙂

          • Vince says:

            That slogan originated by the state of Texas DOT in a campaign to reduce litter on Texas roadways…

          • Jeremy in TX says:

            “a campaign to reduce litter on Texas roadways…”

            Correct. Litterbugs were eventually remedied with cruise missiles. We are now considering drone attacks to fix the texting-while-driving problem run rampant in this state.

    • MGNorge says:

      You must mean the fairing mounted laser sonic torpedo that all the companies are working on? Ka-Pow!

    • Norm G. says:

      re: “the technologies don’t address the problem of errant drivers violating our right-of-way. So, WOW! and Ho-hum.”

      look, nobody said motorcycling wasn’t a gamble…? neither did somebody promise you safe passage through life only to arrive (whole and intact) at death’s door.

      • ApriliaRST says:

        Look, if my view doesn’t match yours… GET OVER IT. LOL, Wankers.

        • x-planer says:

          And Aprilia boy descends to childish name calling in the end. Your comments just became even easier to ignore. Oh, and try to pay attention when you ride, neither your bike, nor any other, can do that for you.

          • Norm G. says:

            re: “And Aprilia boy descends to childish name calling in the end.”

            see, x-planer gets it.

            or should we call him explainer. get it…? “explainer”, see what I did there…? 🙂

          • Blackcayman says:

            I thought that was always the point of his handle…

      • mickey says:

        The technology is coming. The new Subarus have a sensor that detects stuff in front and not only gives visual and audible warnings but will slam on the brakes for you preventing the accident. 10 years from now, some motorcycle will have that. Probably a BMW. Someone turns left in front of you..WARNING, WARNING, motorcycle detects it, slams on ABS brakes and brings you safely to a halt.

        Wait and see

        • Dave says:

          Re: “10 years from now, some motorcycle will have that.”

          These future BMW’s will also have to employ a tech they have had on their European “roof-scooters” too – seat belts. If ^that^ thing slammed on the ABS’ without the rider’s input, the bike would stop and the rider would keep going. lol

  17. Provologna says:

    It’s almost beyond belief, there is so much technology in this thing.

    I suspect I’d feel safer and more comfortable using this superbike’s power than any other bike making over 120 hp.

  18. Alex says:

    Overwhelming! I’m going to use my winnings from tomorrow’s lottery to go back to school so I can understand what buttons I’ll need to press to do what.

  19. Norm G. says:

    re: “Fracture-Split Titanium Rod”

    mmmmmnnnn… (Homer Simpson voice)

  20. matt g says:

    I wish my beat up, abused old body would fit on one of those.

  21. TimC says:

    “One thing that Ed was not able to do at the launch was try a number of the adjustments available, and combinations of adjustments in the electronic control systems present on the new R1.”

    I’m wondering – does this include the statement about the Ohlins only working better at higher speeds?

    • Ed Sorbo says:

      No, it means there are way too many combo’s to try in 3 rides. I used the pre set modes A,B,C & D between the R1 and the R1M. On the R1M I had some pre-load removed and comp added, did not help. Going faster, loading the suspension more, made the M work better.

  22. Tom R says:

    Yamaha has upped the ante to compete against BMW.

    Anyone know how that supercharged Kawasaki is fairing?

    • I just read somewhere that the press intro, or some opportunity to ride, is within the next couple of weeks. We’ll hear soon enough, I suspect.

    • TimC says:

      My thoughts exactly as details on this thing have come out – they are (impressively) taking the fight straight to BMW.

  23. Ron H says:

    Too bad the M is $5k+ more.

    • I bought a bike with Ohlins suspension one time. The difference from stock stuff was incredible. I would have paid more. Now, with the electronics? Pretty rave reviews, journos saying it’s better than the BMW system, etc. Suspect it’s worth it, if you can spare the cash.

      • Dave says:

        Sounds like one really has to run this thing hard to get additional benefit out of the Ohlins adders. 95% of this bike’s owners would probably never miss the difference if they weren’t told.

        • “…never miss the difference…”

          Depends upon the settings, I’d guess.

          Mr. Sorbo’s statements about the M Ohlins suspenders working better the faster he went implied the setup was firm. There are so many options for the settings (which he admitted there wasn’t time to explore), I’d bet there’s a more accommodating ride in there somewhere.

          Indeed, like most people, I’ll probably never get to ride this bike. But on the one Ohlins-suspended bike I have owned, well, despite being a decidedly average rider myself, it took not a great deal of discrimination to tell the difference between chalk and butter. Don’t sell yourself short! 🙂 And try some nice suspension sometime. IMO, it’s the most important modification you can make to your bike, and I’m not the only rider who holds this to be true.

          • Dirck Edge says:

            The KYB suspenders on the standard R1 for 2015 might be hard to beat.

          • Dave says:

            Re: “it took not a great deal of discrimination to tell the difference between chalk and butter. ”

            Very fair, but what was your Ohlins experience compared against? I don’t mean to downplay the quality of Ohlins (or Penske or any other proven quality suspension provider), more to compliment the work they’ve done with the KYB stuff the standard bike comes with.

            Compared the average motorcycle suspension I can believe that a properly set up Ohlins suspension would be sublime.

          • Dave, I can’t reply to your comment below so I’ll do it here. Couple of disclaimers: 1) Admittedly I haven’t ridden in a handful of years, and won’t try to claim my hiney is any more well-calibrated than anyone elses. To the contrary, it’s exactly due to my average-ness, and yet the amazing difference I perceived in nice suspension, that makes my point. 2) We really all should just be riding this newfangled R1 and drawing our own conclusions, that’s the only way to really know. But since we all can’t ride the new R1, since we’re just here to chat anyway, and since I don’t want to leave your question unanswered, I’ll proceed.

            Dirk’s right, the new base model suspension sounds great. Though I admit, if I get another bike soon, I’m tempted to max out the specs in terms of this newfangled electronic wizardry.

            Dave, to get to your fair question, what was my suspension experience? I’m referring specifically to a 2008 Ducati Hypermotard S, which came sporting sublime Ohlins kit. I tell you, the suspenders on that thing were aMAYzing. I did not compare that bike to the base model. But at the time my experience included an RC51 (ok, granted, a stiff one that!), an older (but new) R1, two Interceptors (one of which was contemporary, give or take, to the Hypermotard), several 600s (CBR, R6, etc), etc. So, a variety of fairly sporty bikes, all with more-or-less properly adjusted stock suspension. Again, your mileage may vary, but the Duc was, in my opinion, vastly superior, suspension-wise, to anything I’d ever ridden.

            And so I maintain that it is premature to write off the up-spec version of these machines, when the up-spec involves premium suspension. These bits are often really pricey if bought by the piece, and might add up to a better riding experience than you think.

          • Jeremy in TX says:

            Years ago, I rode my bike back-to-back with the same model equipped with Ohlins suspension. Ever since then, I’ve spent a pretty penny on suspension upgrades for just about every bike I have ever owned, and I have never been disappointed. The difference even just during regular road riding has been pretty amazing on every bike I have upgraded.

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