Updated With Technology Derived From The YZF-M1 MotoGP

Yamaha announced the new 2020 YZF-R1 and R1M to boost its supersport lineup with improvements throughout the build. A refined engine pushes optimized fairings and cowlings across the board, and the R1M has panels made of carbon fiber in a bid to keep weight down. The upgraded electronic ride-quality and safety suite has new top-shelf goodies to make this latest generation R1 family a marvel of engineering. While it isn’t a racetrack-only bike, it definitely falls in the stupidfast category, and of course, track days are still a viable option with very little tweaking to set it up for the circuit.

  • 2020 Yamaha YZF-R1 / R1M
  • Year:
    2020
  • Make:
  • Model:
  • Model:
  • Engine:
    inline-4
  • Displacement:
    998 cc
  • Top Speed:
    182+ mph (Est.)
  • Price:
    17399
  • Price:

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1 / R1M Design

It's lean and aggressive, and seems to scream “Take me to the track.”

The factory revisited the bodywork on the YZF-R1 and R1M to maximize its penetration, and it claims to have increased the efficiency of its new fairing by 5.3 percent. You benefit, also, from a reduction in wind noise and an improved weather pocket for the pilot. Dual LED headlights split the night from their recesses both sides of center. In between, a ram-air induction port capitalizes on the pressurized air at the leading edge for an inexpensive boost to the volumetric efficiency. Granted, the curve is pretty flat until you get up around 100 mph, but let’s not get bogged down in numbers. It’s a nice feature that doesn’t hurt to have at any speed.

Although the body panels are newly revised, they display enough classic R1 DNA to maintain that “R1” look. It’s lean and aggressive, and the ram-air intake isn’t the only trick. Look closely above the headlights and note the little winglets immediately above. These are actual spoilers that generate downward force at speed to keep the front wheel planted and the front contact patch spread out.

A clear bubble-screen tops the front fairing like a jet-fighter’s canopy, and the front blinkers are integrated with the mirrors for easy removal as a unit come race days. A rather typical cowling extends all the way down to the belly pan with strategically-placed vents to reintegrate the waste air with the slipstream and give a tantalizing glance at the beating heart lying just beneath the surface.

Clip-on bars and jockey-mount footpegs work with the 33.7-inch tall seat to form an aggressive rider’s triangle that is meant to help you tuck into the pocket. Both models rock a set of fold-up passenger footpegs and a p-pad, and the R1M adds another bit of carbon fiber at the tail. Nestled beneath is another LED emitter for the taillight, and like the mirrors up front, the rear tun signals mount to the mudguard/plateholder for easy removal ahead of track days.

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1 / R1M Chassis

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1 / R1M
- image 850008
Handling is aggressively agile and can take anything you dish out.

Yamaha refined its Deltabox aluminum frame for the 2020 version of the YZR-R1 and R1M, and it delivers the expected level of agility with a rake angle of 24 degrees and four inches of trail over a 55.3-inch wheelbase. A gull-wing, yoke-style aluminum swingarm finishes out the standing structure with 17-inch, cast-magnesium wheels to round out the rolling chassis.

The siblings start to diverge in the suspension department; the base R1 rolls with KYB components that deliver the full range of adjustments, front and rear while Öhlins is the weapon of choice for the R1M. Öhlins’ Dynamic Electronic Racing suspension reads data from the Inertial Measurement Unit and adjusts the suspension damping accordingly. Dual, four-pot, radial-mount, opposed-piston calipers bite 320 mm discs in front with a single-pot, piston-and-anvil caliper and 220 mm disc in the rear.

Yamaha’s Brake Control system delivers ABS protection along with a Brake Control feature that modulates the brakes according to a pair of profiles and the available traction as calculated from the data gleaned by the IMU. The hoops are the new Bridgestone RS11 tires that come in a 120/70 and a 190/55, front and rear, respectively. Of course, the rubber comes with a “ZR” rating that means it can take anything you or the bike can dish out.

ModelYZF-R1YZF-R1M
Suspension / Front: 43 mm KYB® inverted fork, fully adjustable; 4.7-in travel 43 mm Öhlins® Electronic Racing Suspension NPX fork, fully adjustable; 4.7-in travel
Suspension / Rear: KYB® single shock, fully adjustable; 4.7-in travel Öhlins® Electronic Racing Suspension single shock, fully adjustable; 4.7-in travel
Rake (Caster Angle): 24.0° 24.0°
Trail: 4.0 in 4.0 in
Brakes / Front: Dual 320 mm hydraulic disc; Brake Control System and ABS Dual 320 mm hydraulic disc; Brake Control System and ABS
Brakes / Rear: 220 mm hydraulic disc; Brake Control System and ABS 220 mm hydraulic disc; Brake Control System and ABS
Tires / Front: 120/70ZR17 120/70ZR17
Tires / Rear: 190/55ZR17 200/55ZR17

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1 / R1M Drivetrain

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1 / R1M
- image 850014
Yamaha's next-generation engine provides the power, and it looks like it's right at home at the top of the range.

A next-generation engine on the YZF-R1 and R1M provides the power with a claimed 83.2 pound-feet of torque at 11,500 rpm and an estimated 200 horsepower at the redline. Yeah, it looks like it’s right at home at the top of the range, and although the numbers aren’t in yet, the outgoing models claimed a top speed of 182 mph (293 Km/H). I expect the new models to be at least that fast; maybe even a skosh faster.

Dual over-head cams time the 16-valve head with finger-follower-type rocker arms that keep top-end mass down. Each of the four cylinders mike out at 79 mm with a 50.9 mm stroke for a 998 cc total displacement and a smokin’-hot 13-to-1 compression ratio. That is near the top of the range for a non-dedicated race bike, but that’s the trade off for all those ponies. Besides, it’s not like you’ll ever do it justice on public roads, and I’ll thank you not to try. Save it for your track/strip/salt-flat of choice.

Both variants roll with titanium connecting rods and intake valves that are both tough and light, and no doubt about it, this reduction in reciprocating mass is a major contributor to its high-revving nature. It’s a crossplane-crankshaft engine tuned to have self-canceling properties that limit the vibration generated by the engine, and that contributes to high revs, as well.

A slip-and-assist clutch couples engine power to the six-speed transmission for another layer of control and traction protection for the rear contact patch. It’s backed up by the new Engine Brake Management that delivers a trio of engine-brake profiles so you dial in for conditions and preference.

Fuel delivery is ride-by-wire with Yamaha’s Chip-Controlled Throttle and an all-new Accelerator Position Sensor on board to make power delivery smooth and reliable. All of the above features fall under the control of the on-board Yamaha Ride Control and/or Yamaha’s Y-TRAC smartphone app.

ModelYZF-R1YZF-R1M
Engine: 998 cc, liquid-cooled inline 4 cylinder DOHC; 16 valves 998 cc, liquid-cooled inline 4 cylinder DOHC; 16 valves
Bore x Stroke: 79.0 mm x 50.9 mm 79.0 mm x 50.9 mm
Compression Ratio: 13.0:1 13.0:1
Fuel Delivery: Fuel injection with YCC-T and YCC-I Fuel injection with YCC-T and YCC-I
Transmission: 6-speed; wet multiplate assist and slipper clutch 6-speed; wet multiplate assist and slipper clutch
Final Drive: Chain Chain

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1 / R1M Pricing

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1 / R1M
- image 850031
MSRP starts at $17.4k for the R1 and $26.1k for the R1M.

The base-model 2020 YZF-R1 rolls out with a $17,399 MSRP in either Team Yamaha Blue or Raven. Carbon-fiber is both the material and the finish of choice for the R1M, and it comes complimented by glossy-black components for $26,099 MSRP.

ModelYZF-R1YZF-R1M
Warranty: 1 Year (Limited Factory Warranty) 1 Year (Limited Factory Warranty)
Colors: Team Yamaha Blue, Raven Carbon Fiber
Price: $17,399 $26,099

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1 / R1M Competitors

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1 / R1M
- image 850026
2019 Ducati 959 Panigale / 959 Panigale Corse
- image 829704
It's a toss-up on the major points, including the electronics, though Ducati throws a quick-shifter into the mix.

No doubt about it, Yamaha puts together a serious machine for its latest YZF-R1 series, so rather than using a predictable source like another of the Big Four, I went straight to Europe’s boot for Ducati’s base-model 959 Panigale. Ducati courts the same market as the R1: buyers who are looking for a racebike experience on the street, and even the track with the proper equipment options. Like the R1, the Panigale is made to strip with the front blinkers in the mirrors and the rear turn signals and plateholder mounted on the short mudguard.

The Panigale is a typical Duc with a sensuality like nothing else on the market. Showa forks float the front of the Duc with the full range of adjustments and a Sachs shock out back with same plus a steering damper to take the edge off the kickback as the front end comes back down.

The Panigale slacks a bit in the power department with a 955 cc engine that cranks out 150 horsepower and 75 pound-feet of torque against 200/83.2, but makes up for it a bit in the electronics. In addition to breaking even on the traction control, ABS, engine brake control, and power modes, Ducati edges ahead with a quick-shift feature . The pain gets worse for Yamaha at the checkout as the Panigale hits the register at $15,495 MSRP, even though I doubt a couple grand won’t be overcoming any brand loyalty at this price point.

He Said

“Frequently, the price acts as a sort of firewall between the stupidfast bikes and the riding public, but not this time. Yamaha puts the power in a relatively affordable price bracket, but honestly folks, unless you have access to a track or strip, you’ll never do it justice. Like ever.

She Said

My wife and fellow motorcycle writer, Allyn Hinton, says, “This is one of those bikes that’ll get you into trouble in a hurry and reveal all the weaknesses in your skillset. I said of last year’s model that seat height was only half the story since the bike was wide and the distance from ground-to-ground took more inseam than I have. I feel like that’s probably the same this year, but I’ll have to wait for a test ride to find out for certain. I expect it to be smooth and even more aggressive than last year.”

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1 / R1M Specifications

Model YZF-R1 YZF-R1M
Engine & Drivetrain:
Engine: 998 cc, liquid-cooled inline 4 cylinder DOHC; 16 valves 998 cc, liquid-cooled inline 4 cylinder DOHC; 16 valves
Bore x Stroke: 79.0 mm x 50.9 mm 79.0 mm x 50.9 mm
Compression Ratio: 13.0:1 13.0:1
Fuel Delivery: Fuel injection with YCC-T and YCC-I Fuel injection with YCC-T and YCC-I
Transmission: 6-speed; wet multiplate assist and slipper clutch 6-speed; wet multiplate assist and slipper clutch
Final Drive: Chain Chain
Chassis:
Suspension / Front: 43 mm KYB® inverted fork, fully adjustable; 4.7-in travel 43 mm Öhlins® Electronic Racing Suspension NPX fork, fully adjustable; 4.7-in travel
Suspension / Rear: KYB® single shock, fully adjustable; 4.7-in travel Öhlins® Electronic Racing Suspension single shock, fully adjustable; 4.7-in travel
Rake (Caster Angle): 24.0° 24.0°
Trail: 4.0 in 4.0 in
Brakes / Front: Dual 320 mm hydraulic disc; Brake Control System and ABS Dual 320 mm hydraulic disc; Brake Control System and ABS
Brakes / Rear: 220 mm hydraulic disc; Brake Control System and ABS 220 mm hydraulic disc; Brake Control System and ABS
Tires / Front: 120/70ZR17 120/70ZR17
Tires / Rear: 190/55ZR17 200/55ZR17
Dimensions & Capacities:
L x W x H: 80.9 in x 27.2 in x 45.9 in 80.9 in x 27.2 in x 45.9 in
Seat Height: 33.7 in 33.9 in
Wheelbase: 55.3 in 55.3 in
Maximum Ground Clearance: 5.1 in 5.1 in
Fuel Capacity: 4.5 gal 4.5 gal
Fuel Economy: 33 mpg 33 mpg
Wet Weight: 448 lb 450 lb
Top Speed: 182+ mph (est)
Details:
Warranty: 1 Year (Limited Factory Warranty) 1 Year (Limited Factory Warranty)
Colors: Team Yamaha Blue, Raven Carbon Fiber
Price: $17,399 $26,099

Further Reading

Ducati 959 Panigale / 959 Panigale Corse

2019 Ducati 959 Panigale / 959 Panigale Corse
- image 829702

See our review of the Ducato 959 Panigale / 959 Panigale Corse.

Yamaha

ALLYN IMAGES - DO NOT DELETE
- image 788830

Read more Yamaha news.

All images featured on this website are copyrighted to their respective rightful owners. No infringement is intended. Image Source: yamaha-motor.com, ducati.com

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