Yamaha – the name once synonymous to performance bikes in India, thanks to gems like RD350 and RX-series of bikes. Off late the company’s offerings were anything but what one expects from Yamaha, once they ventured out with 4-strokes in India. Result? Sales chart dipping downwards but at faster rate was sinking the heart of Yamaha fans.
For how long will this continue? Has the time come for Yamaha to pack their bags and leave country for better? No, wait. We are not loosing Yamaha from India. With 1,000cc Super Sports YZF-R1 and 1,670cc Torque Sports MT01 already up for grabs for those with deep pockets, Yamaha officially announced the arrival of 150cc, Liquid-cooled YZF–R15, for those who seek performance but can’t afford “The One” (for various reasons, not just financials alone).
Having represented BN at the 2008 Auto Expo concluded recently, this is my first post, actually second (after teasing with the “Aliens”), in which I’ll try to share few of the 300+ pictures I clicked at the Expo.
After looking at all the stalls at Expo (related to machine powered two wheels), I can’t think of any stall other than Yamaha to start the Expo series of posts.
Right at the exit of pavilion was standing the MotoGP bike, Yamaha M1, which Rossi was pushing to its limits and beyond (of the tyres ) till few weeks back.
YZF–R15 (150cc, Liquid-cooled)
Right in the center of attraction (stealing from R1, M1 and MT01) were the beautiful R15’s which will go on sale, probably in time to celebrate the start of our National road racing season, with the sole aim to end the dominance of TVS Racing in the Indian 150cc 4-stroke Group D class and to give the performance hungry Indian biker, what they deserved for so long.
R15 is probably one of the very few bikes on sale in India on which one can go racing right out of box. At the heart of things is a 150cc 4-stroke liquid cooled motor which is claimed to have 4 valve head layout and probably a DOHC. A fuel injection system will be feeding the combustion chamber where a forged piston will be getting pushed up and down at a frightening pace to make sure all other Indian bikes currently on sale, stays behind at a comfortable distance, be it the boring flat straight road or the thrilling twisty. To transmit all the juice to the rear wheel will be a 6 speed gear box. To get the maximum power to weight ratio and probably unmatched handing, engine will be enclosed in the light weight Deltabox frame. Sadly for those who believe lightweight motorcycle means unstable bike, this bike will be a huge disappointment as it will be one of the lightest bike in India, weight probably around 125kg.
To provide maximum aerodynamic advantage is a lightweight full fairing spotting twin headlamps, which would be good enough (as per the claims) to brighten up the Indian roads which traveling at night. The most important and visible moving part of bikes will be light weight alloy wheels spotting sticky tubeless rubber from MRF. For the fans of fat tires there is sad news that the bike will probably sport tires of the size same or thinner than that of what we get on the “performance” 150cc and bigger bikes in India.
To halt the zipping bike in time, before the rider misses a few heart beats are two disc brakes doing duty at each wheels. As per the dimensional figures given on the Yamaha official website, going by figures there is another disappointment for the fans of long bikes.
Yamaha hasn’t yet announced the exact performance and engine specifications but who cares as long as this bike can fulfill the claims made by Yamaha to be the fastest of all current Indian bikes.
Yamaha is planning to competitively price the most technically modern bike, compared to current Indian bikes still running on the technology as old as 70s. No, being a 150cc don’t expect it to fight out with the current 150cc bikes on the price front as in terms of performance the current 150s won’t be even in the same galaxy, forget planet
So, I’m eagerly waiting for this lean ‘n’ mean machine, are you?
FZ (150cc, Air-cooled)
Right next to R15 were the more conventional looking (no full fairing) FZ150, a bike for those who like the naked aggression. Though Yamaha hasn’t spoken much about this bike but the looks of it speaks a lot about it. Well as they say, a picture is worth thousand words, so feast your eyes on a few pictures worth million words. Yeah, I’m lazy to write
This machine will sport a relatively lesser powerful engine as compared to R15. It will be air cooled unit, with performance probably on par with other 150cc bikes (minus R15). Hopefully this will be for those who can’t afford or don’t want the more costly R15. There is no news from Yamaha about the performance about this bike but I’m sure it will not be a dud.
So those who are lesser flamboyant, keep a close eye on this bike which is supposed to hit the roads anytime after the monsoon has cleaned up the Indian roads and washed off them at some places
Super Sports FZ1 (1,000 cc)
Away from the center stage were the three big machines with much bigger heart. Well, it will be foolish for me to say any thing about them, if you are a motorcycle enthusiast you would probably know about them more than me, so why don’t you make your fingers and keyboard a bit useful?
Torque Sports MT01 (1,670cc)
Super Sports YZF-R1 (1,000 cc)
Gladiator Type SS and RS (125cc)
While Yamaha is going to launch some exciting new bikes, they did manage to revamp their current Gladiator with some fancy visual touch ups. So if you liked Gladiator, there are few more reasons to buy it.
To view image(s) in larger size, click them.
So how did you find this small presentation about the Yamaha stall? Do write about it.
Auto Expo 2008 – Alien attack
Yamaha’s official Auto Expo2008 website