The long awaited successor, the Yamaha R15 V3 has been finally launched, but sadly not in India. Make no mistake, the new R15 V3 is a ground-up design that promises to take what you know about entry level performance motorcycles and throw it out of the window. At the heart of the new machine is a fuel injected, liquid-cooled, 4 Valve SOHC motor that now displaces 155 cc. Peak power output is 20 PS at 10,000 RPM and a peak torque of 14.7 Nm is delivered at 8,500 RPM. Given that peak power is now found 1,500 RPM higher than the previous model, we hope that bottom-end of the power-band has been paid attention to. It would be a shame if the motor was gutless at city speeds. The engine is mated to a six-speed transmission that now features an assisted slipper clutch. Yes, you read that right – a slipper clutch on a bike that makes 20 PS. The high compression ratio of 11.6:1 may have some adverse effects when the engine is fed the adulterated fuel found plentifully in India.
The design of the Yamaha R15 V3 has been heavily influenced by the older R6. Twin LED headlamps are separated by a massive ram-air style intake. LED lighting is found all around the bike. The bike is highly defined and geared even more toward sporty riding, with the fuel tank been sweetly designed for the needs of the knee dragger. The V3 now has an all-digital console with a gear position indicator, while the switch-gear and levers are similar to the existing model. The triple clamp features cut-outs and the tank features gills that feel sporty without being cheesy. The seat too looks cut just right for hanging off. Pillion riders must suffer patiently as the pillion seat is just a formality.
A 282mm two-pot front disk and a 240mm single pot rear disk can be counted upon to stop the bike in a hurry. However, ABS has not been offered which should at-least have been an option. It is hoped that the handling and feedback provided by the V2 will be present and improved upon in the V3. The new inverted forks and rear mono-shock should also help the V3 become a track demon in the right hands. The wet weight has gone up by just a kilo when compared to the V2. Fuel capacity is down a litre, the wheelbase is 10 mm shorter and the seat is a lot higher. The front and rear tires are 10mm wider also.
The Yamaha R15 V3 has raised the bar for the “Big Small Bike”. The style, quality and performance of the R15 family has attracted all sorts of buyers. The V3 with it’s long list of features is expected to add about 20,000 over the price of the V2 which seems a small price to pay for the materialisation of boyhood dreams. May the Gods of Speed bless us with a worthy successor to the V2, so that we may continue to worship them with our knees on the tarmac.
Yamaha R15 V3 specifications
- Engine type: Liquid Cooled 4-stroke, SOHC, 4 Valve, VVA
- Cylinder volume: 155.1cc – single cylinder
- Bore and Stroke: 58.0 x 58.7 mm
- Cmpression ratio: 11.6 ± 0.4: 1
- Max power: 14.2 kW / 10000rpm
- Max torque: 14.7 Nm / 8500rpm
- Engine oil capacity: Total = 1.05L
- Fuel system: Fuel Injection
- Clutch type: Wet Multi-Plate Clutch with Assist & Slipper function
- Ground Clerance: 155mm
- Seat height: 815 mm
- Kerb weight: 137 kg
- Fuel tank capacity: 11L
- Wheelbase: 1325mm
- Chassis: Diamond Frame
- Front suspension: USD forks
- Rear Suspension: Link monoshock
- Front tyre: 100 / 80-17M / C 52P
- Rear tyre: 140 / 70-17M / C 66s