The 2015 YZF-R1 and YZF-R1M waiting patiently on pit lane at Sydney Motorsport Park, eager to hit the track.
Kiwi Rider Magazine’s Ben Wilkins tucked in and the hammer down at the 2015 R1 Global Launch at Eastern Creek.
Bike Rider Magazine’s Kevin Kinghan reckons Yamaha has found its mojo with the new R1 and demonstrates his approval with text-book form as he powers through a downhill right-hander at Sydney Motorsport Park.

NZ Media Impressed With New R1

11 Mar 2015

Among the 100-plus journalists that attended the 2015 R1 Global Launch at Sydney Motorsport Park recently, were New Zealand’s very own, Ben Wilkins (Kiwi Rider Magazine) and Kevin Kinghan (Bike Rider Magazine).

Both Wilkins and Kinghan enjoyed three standout pre-lunch sessions on the new YZF-R1, each session incorporating opportunities to tweak bike set-up. Those three morning sessions, were then followed up with three afternoon sessions on the special edition, R1M – a model fitted standard with Öhlins Electronic Race Suspension.

Öhlins ERS communicates directly with the R1’s sophisticated 6-Axis Inertial Measurement Unit to calculate the attitude of the bike and automatically modify rebound and compression settings relative to the information being received from the rider, machine and track. Of course, along with automatic settings, the Öhlins ERS can be set to manual mode to suit your own needs in relation to the track conditions.

Further to the Öhlins ERS, all R1Ms were also fitted with Bridgestone Racing Battlax V02 slicks, replacing the standard Battlax Racing Street RS10 Type R tyres, in order for the journalists to extract the maximum feeling from the machine in a closed course environment.

It was evident right from the first morning session that Wilkins and Kinghan were blown away by how smooth and easy the new R1 and R1M were to ride fast. And, perhaps more importantly, how close the new machines are in appearance and performance to a fully-fledged MotoGP machine like the YZR-M1.

“The change in the weight of the R1 is the main thing that stands out for me,” says Kiwi Rider Magazine’s, Wilkins. “But not just the weight, the flickability; the way the bike is nimble through corners and changing lines; all it takes is a small movement of the bars and you feel a completely different bike.”

Bike Rider Magazine’s, Kevin Kinghan, was also impressed by the new R1’s agility and power, but was truly blown away by the R1’s seamless electronics package. “The R1 has a 6-Axis IMU, so it knows your angle as well as the yaw and pitch of the machine,” Kinghan explains. “As well as that you’ve got slide control – where you can literally dial in the amount you want the bike to step out. There’s even wheelie control and launch control. It really is one of those bikes that is very, very easy to ride particularly fast.”

To hear more from Kevin Kinghan click here, and for additional comments from Ben Wilkins, click here. Or if the feature is supported, hit play on the videos below.

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