Yamaha Motor Co. launched the brand new, fourth-generation YZF-R6 sport bike at this year’s Bangkok International Motor Show at the “Yamaha - Beyond The Limits” booth. The middleweight motorcycle comes with a new look, advanced electronics, lightweight materials, and technology directly derived from the YZF-R1 super bike.
The updated aesthetics of the fresh R6 brings it closer to the angularly futuristic design language that Yamaha has recently adopted for some of the company’s current models. Its front fairing, inspired by the R1, looks robotically menacing while increasing aerodynamic efficiency by 8%. While the fourth-generation R6’s aluminum chassis and swingarm dons familiar geometry without radical changes, the new sport bike does get significantly more high tech with new rider aids.
The air intake on the R6 has been revised, and its new aluminum 17L fuel tank and magnesium rear subframe are more lightweight than the previous generation’s — however, the bike’s overall wet weight remains (or even becomes a little heavier) at around 189kg. The reshaped narrower seat, at a height of 850mm, improves rider movement and positioning on the svelte R6. Suspension is upgraded thanks to R1-derived 43mm KYB inverted front forks and an R1-derived 25mm axle shaft; the rear gets a lightweight, fully adjustable KYB piggyback shock. Braking at the front is done with dual 320mm hydraulic discs with a single 220mm hydraulic disc in the back; ABS comes standard and cannot be disabled.
Powering the 2017 YZF-R6 is a liquid-cooled, DOHC 599cc inline-four motor positioned with a forward incline and rated to make 118.3 PS at 14,500 rpm and 61.7Nm of torque at 10,500 rpm. The engine features sixteen titanium valves, a high compression ratio, and lightweight forged pistons. It makes use of Transistor Controlled Ignition (TCI) and is mated to a close-ratio 6-speed gearbox with a slipper clutch. A quick shifter is available as an option. The R6’s compact exhaust system features a midship titanium muffler with Yamaha’s Exhaust Ultimate Power Valve (EXUP) integrating an oxygen sensor for optimal fuel injection and cleaner emissions.
The high-revving YZF-R6 uses Yamaha Chip Controlled Throttle (YCC-T) and additionally receives the same Yamaha Chip Controlled Intake (YCC-I) as seen on the YZF-R1 — which adjusts intake tract length for better cylinder filling, more responsive power delivery, and a broader power band. A six-level Traction Control System (TCS) has made its way into the R6, as well as Yamaha’s D-Mode System which offers three throttle response maps for different road and riding conditions. The 2017 R6’s instrument cluster combines digital and analog in an LCD package which includes fuel economy readings, dual trip meters, rider aid indicators, and a programmable shift light.
The 2017 Yamaha YZF-R6 is available in three colors: Matte Black, Team Yamaha Blue, and Intensity White/Matte Silver.