Video and full specs of Yamaha's R1 and R1M

Mr Valentino Rossi Esq. shows us Yamaha's new road-going weapon

Yamaha took the covers off their hotly-anticipated, completely revised and MotoGP-inspired  R1 last week at the Milan Motorcycle Show with the help of their Factory MotoGP rider and nine-times World Champion, Valentino Rossi. Here, we take a closer look at the bike and include our video from the Milan show.

R1 & R1-M

November 2014

"I helped to develop this one and already Jorge has a better one!"

Valentino Rossi

At the launch, no sooner had Rossi ridden onto the stage on the bike he'd been involved in developing, his team mate, Jorge Lorenzo, bought on the higher-spec R1M, a more race-focused machine. Rossi quipped, "I helped to develop this one and already Jorge has a better one!"

Rossi's version is the standard road-going R1 which features a compact, all new inline 4-cylinder, 4-valve crossplane engine which develops 200PS (197bhp) without ram air induction. The bike is much smaller than its predecessor with a shorter wheelbase and benefits from weight reducing features such as a magnesium subframe, swing arm and wheels, meaning it weighs in at just 199 kilos fully wet.

Shorter wheelbase on the R1

Technology has moved on at a rapid rate since the previous incarnation of the R1 and this latest model comes equipped with banking sensitive Traction Control, as well as Slide Control, Front Lift Control, Quickshifter, Launch Control, ABS and a Unified Brake System.

The engine is brand new. It's lighter and more compact than its predecessor and with a newly designed crankshaft, it provides a strong linear torque output. It has a different stroke, compression ratio, cylinders and fuel injection system. It has the same name but is completely different.

Spot the headlightsPart of the new design is the twin 'headlight-less' LED headlights. They hide either side of the air intake below the fairing almost undetected while the titanium 4-2-1 exhaust with midship muffler and new exhaust valve is the move away from the twin-underseat design which has been used on the YZF-R1 since 2004.

Rossi said, "The difference is huge between the new and old and they have improved it even more since I tried it. It feels comfortable, we tried to keep it like an M1 but as agile as the old R1. We needed a good feeling from the front so we tried to make the brakes have a MotoGP feeling. The engine behaviour is smooth from the bottom and the electronics are very similar to the M1 too. The feeling is unbelievable, when you arrive at the limit she wants you to go faster."

Despite its road-going nature, the R1 has been spawned from highly-focused racing DNA and this is most evident with what Yamaha call a '6-axis Inertial Measurement Unit' (IMU). This provides data to the ECU 125-times per second so it can then make necessary adjustments to the various electronic controls to optimise performance and controllability. It's vastly more complex than that and much more confusing on paper.

The new R1 will be available from March 2015 in one of two colours; Race Blu or Racing Red.

Racing Red - colour option 1 of 2Race Blu - colour option 2 of 2

At the Milan Show we ventured to the Yamaha stand to take a closer look:

A closer look at the array of controls


And if the standard R1's not high-tech enough you might be interested in the limited-edition R1M which is expected to cost between £20,000 - £25,000 and potential owners can register their interest from 1st December. Yamaha have confirmed that prices will be announced at the NEC's Motorcycle Live event which begins on Saturday 22nd November.

Yamaha's promotional model is clearly a fan of the R1M

This limited edition, race-spec version features highly sophisticated Electronic Racing Suspension (ERS) from Ohlins and will be aimed at ‘professional teams and highly experienced riders’ looking to make the most out of the R1 on track. From the data provided by the 6-axis IMU featured as standard on both models, the ERS system makes integrated adjustments to both front and rear suspension to provide additional stability and control during braking, improved cornering control and increased traction when entering corners.

On track for professional riders; the R1M

Even closer to its YZR-M1 cousin than the standard R1, the R1-M will feature a full carbon fairing, carbon front fender and carbon seat cover. The carbon cowling is coated in a clear finish and pained in a new metallic-look silver paint with racing blue accents that match the bike’s blue YZR-M1 style magnesium wheels.

Fitted as standard on the R1-M is a Communication Control Unit (CCU) comphrensive data logging function that allows riders to record a wide range of running data, including lap times, speed, throttle position, GPS tracking, lean angle and more. This data can be shared on a tablet using a wireless connection.


This is Yamaha's official film with a V. Rossi in the saddle of the standard R1:



998cc, Liquid cooled, 4-stroke, DOHC, 4-valve, forward-inclined parallel, 4-cylinder

Max. Power

197.3 bhp / 147.1 kW / 200 PS @ 13,500 rpm

Max. Torque

112.4 Nm / 82.9 lb ft @ 11,500 rpm


Constant mesh, 6-sped with chain drive


Front: KYB telescopic forks, Ø 43 mm

Rear: Swingarm (link suspension)


Front: Dual Hydraulic Discs, Ø 320 mm

Rear: Single Hydraulic Disc, Ø 220 mm


Front: 120/70 ZR17M/C (58W)

Rear: 190/55 ZR17M/C (75W)


H: 1,150mm

W: 690mm

L: 2,055mm

Seat height


Weight (wet)


Fuel Capacity

17 litres

Do you own an R1? Have you ever? What do you think of the new version?