It is a well known fact that the Yamaha R1 is Honda’s CBR1000RR nightmare and it seems that in 2009 nothing will change in the fight for the 1000cc Queen. We have the recently-launched Fireblade and the R1 plans on coming strong from behind and it will stand out as the awesome combination between the heavily-improved R6 and the M1 MotoGP bike.
But this is no newness. Yamaha has tried this thing before on the R6 and this is the first time the power to weight ratio is expected to be so good on the R1. So what comes new is the weight reduction as close to the one of an actual 600cc bike (the R6) and a horsepower number close to 200 (inspired on the M1). The fly-by-wire throttle and the race-inspired exhaust should also not miss this perfect harmony.
As you can see in the picture, design features also make you think at the “youngster” and at the “racer” so who knows, maybe the next R1 model will sort things out between Honda and Yamaha.
This competition goes a decade back when the R1 was first introduced and got a big slice of CBR’s target public. It was a big punch in the nose for Honda, who had dominated the scene with the ‘90’s models of its well known Fireblade.