Yamaha launched the Euro 5-compliant YZF-R1 and YZF-R1M in 2020. While the superbike underwent a substantial facelift on the similar time, the present technology nonetheless dates again to the 2015 mannequin. That could change in 2023, with FIM (Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme) paperwork pointing to a track-only variant subsequent season.
The worldwide race group maintains a file titled “FIM Recognized Competition Vehicles”. The newest model of that doc (revealed on June 15, 2022), features a new YZF1000W mannequin. Yamaha’s track-only YZF-R6 Race bears an analogous FIM designation with its YZF600W code identify. Additionally, the doc lists the YZF1000W as a “Road race” mannequin kind with a four-stroke, 998cc, four-cylinder engine—matching the YZF-R1’s specs.
Motorcycle’s Dennis Chung dove even deeper into Iwata’s VIN code conventions, deciphering the YZ1000W sportbike will probably be produced in Japan as a competition-only variant. The new denotation could point out an incoming closed course R1, however what does that bode for the street-going mannequin?
In 2018, Yamaha filed a patent for a seamless gearbox. Honda debuted seamless gearbox expertise in MotoGP, and Team Blue hoped to beat Big Red to the punch by bringing a bonafide rendition to the buyer market. The patent illustrated a ratchet mechanism that quickly engages two gears directly, delivering easy upshifts whereas minimizing lack of drive.
Many anticipated the brand new tech to hit the flagship R1, however when the 2020 mannequin got here and went, the seamless gearbox was nowhere to be seen. Thanks to the recently-filed FIM Recognized Competition Vehicles, some imagine a revised street-going R1 may very well be on the horizon, catapulting Yamaha’s seamless gearbox expertise to the highest of the rumor heap.
However unlikely, the competition-only YZF1000W additionally opens the door for Yamaha to doubtlessly discontinue the street-legal R1. After all, that’s the identical route Team Blue took with the R6 earlier than changing the supersport with the MT-07-derived 2022 R7. We extremely doubt that Yamaha would pull the plug on its top-tier superbike, however with out proof of an up to date mannequin, we can also’t rule it out.
Unfortunately, all we all know for now could be that the YZF1000W will probably be a race-approved mannequin in 2023. We’ll have to attend and see what that entails for the long-lasting R1.