Yamaha looks to turn the liter bike class upside down with this 2009 Yamaha R1Call the new engine's uneven firing interval revolutionary and groundbreaking and you'd be right - we've seen it in the past, but never on a street legal motorcycle... The engine's crossplane crankshaft doesn't tick over like a standard inline four cylinder motor. Traditionally, an inline four cylinder's firing order offers one bang per 180 degree turn of the crank, but the new 2009 Yamaha YZF-R1 fires differently. It's staggered in a 270-180-9000-180 degree order. Yamaha claims this all but eliminates undesirable inertial crankshaft torque, which allows the engine's compression torque to build smoothly and provide linear power delivery.
Could the Yamaha YZF-R1 2009 be the best of both world?The torquey bottom end of a twin matched with a screaming, high-rev powerband of an inline four? That's the idea, and it's exactly how the Yamaha M1 MotoGP motor functions - and it seems to do just fine.
Helping the new motor exhale is an all-new exhaust system, and though perhaps a bit unsightly it certainly sounds impressive. Chances are high that you'll want to replace it with an aftermarket pipe though, and hopefully there will be a few options when the Yamaha YZF-R1 hits showroom floors.
Increased rigidity is one of the benefits of the new frame, but more interesting to the chassis updates are the front forks. The SOQI forks are similar to the MotoGP racer in that compression damping is controlled with the left fork while the right leg does the rebound damping duties. This used to be a designed relegated to budget motorcycle suspensions, but apparently Yamaha has found a way to make it work for the Yamaha YZF-R1. And once again, if it works on the Yamaha M1 MotoGP bike.