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Yamaha R6 Sports Motorbike Review

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Yamaha YZF-R6 (2008-current)



Detail Value
New price £9,299
Used price range View Yamaha R6 bikes for sale to see current asking prices
Engine size 599 cc
Power 133 bhp
Top speed 165 mph
Insurance group 15 of 17
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 4 rating is 4.5
Engine rating is 4 rating is 4.5
Ride & Handling rating is 5 rating is 4.5
Equipment rating is 4 rating is 4
Quality & Reliability rating is 4 rating is 4.5
Value rating is 5 rating is 4.5

MCN overall verdict rating is 4

Yamaha’s designers had one problem with superceding its 2006-07 R6, and that was how to improve a motorcycle that was very good in the first place. But improve it they have with clever attention to details borne from its World Supersport racing program. A designer’s touch here and the same effort there, has led to the Yamaha R6 being the definitive supersport package – on the track, that is. How its screaming performance will fare on UK roads against the mid-range king Honda CBR600RR remains to be seen.

 

Watch the Yamaha R6 take on Honda's CBR600RR, Triumph's Daytona 675, Suzuki's new GSX-R600 K8 and Kawasaki's ZX-6R.

Watch the Yamaha R6 take on the Suzuki GSX650F

Watch the track launch of the Yamaha R6 at the Sugo circuit, Japan

 

Engine

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

Top end performance was the Yamaha R6’s strong point and still is. But with updated ECU and fuel injection, the highest ever compression seen on a Yamaha and variable height inlet trumpets (as used on this year’s R1), the R6’s midrange drive has been propped up. Not that there was a reliability issue with the R6, but Yamaha has revised various internals (camchain tensioner, oil-ways on the rods etc) to deal with the high rpm live it leads.

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 5
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

Biggest area of improvement with the Yamaha R6 happens here. The frame has been stiffened around the headstock to reduce braking effect through the frame and then reduced the frame’s overall stiffness for more agility. This is topped off with a heavier braced swingarm. The motorcycle is more stable but retains its quick steering ability. The suspension has been revised internally and is arguably the best mass-produced stuff on any current production bike. The bars are 5mm lower and angled slightly different, but it’s still the same motorcycle to ride; only better when riding faster.

Equipment

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4

As a pared to the bone supersports the Yamaha R6 is not loaded with niceties such as heated grips and panniers. The only equipment to shout about here is the fly-by-wire-throttle and variable inlet tracts. Yamaha crowed about the new magnesium alloy subframe (lighter by 450g) but the motorcycle’s overall weight hasn’t dropped due to the mechanicals operating the inlet tracts. But we love the new slimline tailpiece, reshaped fairing and colour schemes.

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

No qualms with the previous Yamaha R6 – apart from the lying tachometer (18,000rpm was the claimed figure, only 15,800rpm in reality) – so MCN doesn’t envisage any problems with this latest version. What is slightly annoying is the original 18lt tank size has dropped 0.7lt to 17.3lts.

Value

MCN rating rating is 5
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

If your view of a race-replica supersports 600 is a motorcycle that delivers high rpm performance, razor sharp handling and is finished off with looks straight from the race track, then the Yamaha R6 is yours. In answer to the question why not change this models looks from last year’s, Yamaha’s answer was that it means owners of the older bike won’t have bikes that look outdated and therefore the resale value won’t plummet. Find a Yamaha R6 for sale

Insurance

Insurance group: 15 of 17

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Model History

2007: New model launched.

Other Versions

None.

Specifications

Top speed 165 mph
1/4-mile acceleration 10.75 secs
Max power 133 bhp
Max torque 51 ft-lb
Weight 166 kg
Seat height 850 mm
Fuel capacity 17 litres
Average fuel consumption 45 mpg
Tank range 160 miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group 15 of 17
Engine size 599 cc
Engine specification Liquid-cooled,16v dohc, in-line four four-stroke, 6 gears, fuel injection
Frame Dual beam aluminium
Front suspension adjustment Rebound and high & low speed compression damping with pre-load adjustment
Rear suspension adjustment Rebound and high & low speed compression damping with pre-load adjustment
Front brakes 2 x 310mm front discs with 4-piston calipers
Rear brake 265mm rear disc with 1-piston caliper
Front tyre size 120/70 x 17
Rear tyre size 180/55 x 17

See all Yamaha R6 motorcycles for sale

Yamaha
R6

15760 miles

£5,495

Yamaha
R6

15869 miles

£2,690

Yamaha
R6

7524 miles

£5,499

Yamaha
R6

27040 miles

£2,450

Yamaha
R6

7586 miles

£3,799

Owners' Overall Rating rating is 4.5(10 reviews)

  • Always a YZF rider

    Paul Higbee

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Ride and Handling
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    Quality and Reliabilty
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    Engine

    I am miffed that this review is based on a 2008 R6 when the bike had changes to tech in the engine, suspension and ergonomics (a little) in 2010. Just colour changes since, so come on guys (MCN or Yamaha) update the page. Ta. I will be picking up my 2010 R6 this coming weekend and riding 240 miles home. so, I will get to know this bike by the time I get home.

    04 August 2013

  • R-sex

    tamlin23

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Ride and Handling
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    If you want to know how good these bikes are, select 'bikes for sale' and compare these with the equivalent value of GSXR's and ZX6R's. These really hold their value well, partly because Yamaha have not devloped them away too quickly, so not lowering the value through the ageing affect, and because they don't do silly discounts like Kawasaki do, which kills the residual value of ZX6R's. You may have spotted I didn't include the CBR in that analysis, and thats because they are in a very similar position to the Yamaha of course. Top quality, parts and paint, built to un-questionable standards, and the R6 brings with it that amazing rev ceiling! I really enjoy the sound of a GSXR under load and revving high, but this R6 seems be just that bit better, I can't really explain how (great for a review I know), but again, it just has that edge of quality to it. When sittig on an R6 straight after a GSXR or ZX6R, I notice it feels more like you are on the bike than in it, a bit like Triumph's 675, but for me this just makes it feel more edgy and sportier. I wasn't sure about them before, I'm not the kind of chap that tries to make friends with the popular guy, but instead likes to see if I can support a worthy underdog. So though I hate to say it, I really do like this bike... So on that note it may surprise you to learn I would actually buy the ZX6R instead! Why? well it's just as quick on the road as the R6, but most of the time in the used market, for the equivalent year/miles the ZX6R is a grand cheaper! I know, I'm tight ;-)

    26 April 2011

  • Average rating rating is 5

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    I traded in my 08R6 for a zx10 to keep up with my nephew who has an 09 blade - several bikes down the line and I am back on the best bike ever - had a gsxr750 for 5 months - nice bike but couldnt get the R6 out of my head - rode 180 down to crescent yamaha and traded in for a 200 mile 59 reg demo - I honestly think that the look, sound and feel of this bike beats all for pleasure/excitement - I know it is a little flat in the middle, but the way it spins up and that howling sound - magic. I also think that it has the finest build quality and beats my nephews blade with its rusty flaky exhaust and rusty nuts!

    10 April 2010

  • Great

    dev_d7

    PETERBOROUGH , ZA

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Engine

    I own an R6 race bike... and I love it. Sure it's been tweaked and gets ridden hard - but I thought that was the point?! I would not buy one for the road though, as being lucky enough to have ridden a number of other bikes, I'd go for something like a GSXR 750 or a CBR 600 for the road. Can someone please explain to me how MCN rates the 2006/7 bike as being a better bike overall (5/5) and has more equipment (5/5) when this bike is improved and the equipment stays pretty much the same???

    07 September 2009

  • Speed

    FMF1983

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Ride and Handling
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    Engine

    If, like me, you get on one of these with no previous experience of sportsbikes you'll wonder what the hell all of those bike journalists are on about when they moan about this bike having no mid-range - it's all relative. The rush this bike(or any sportsbike Im sure)can give is a fantastic feeling. The only negative for me is the wrist pain that can set in during stop-start city centre traffic. Get it out on the open road and hold on tight!

    12 March 2009

  • Only 1 Year

    JesteR6

    DUNSTABLE

    Average rating rating is 4

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    Alway loved the R6 as I had a couple of early models. This model is far more focused, keep the revs up and the grin factor just doesn't go away. I commuted on mine and had a bad accident, although the bike was riden off the motorway, shows the quality of the chasis and engine. Only had her for a year as she was written off but would get another in a heart beat.

    18 September 2008

  • 08 R6

    jocasaja

    Average rating rating is 5

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    talk of it being too focussed is rubbish. Yes it is at its best when being thrashed, but it can also be enjoyed at a more relaxed pace. I owned an 06 R6, and this is that bit better. The extra midrange shove is noticeable. I get fed up of tyres that burn out in 2000miles so I have just put on a pair of diablo stradas! Apart from feeling 'stiffer' and looking like tractor tyres they seem fine. I have slackened off all the suspension settings a litle to help them work better, and give a slightly plusher ride. Fantastic bike, best looking 600 by far, and I reckon I could do several hours on it wihout any comfort issues.

    28 June 2008

  • 2008 R6

    Chri5

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Two words.Love it! Gotta agree with Rsix, gotta be in the mood which i always am when out on it, and if im not, i soon get into it :) Love the engine, keep it up over 10k and its just mental. Quite stiff as standard but find a smooth road or track and its a blast!!

    04 May 2008

  • 2008 R6

    Chri5

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Two words.Love it! Gotta agree with Rsix, gotta be in the mood which i always am when out on it, and if im not, i soon get into it :) Love the engine, keep it up over 10k and its just mental. Quite stiff as standard but find a smooth road or track and its a blast!!

    04 May 2008

  • My 08 R6

    Rsix

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Two words.Love it. Definately have to be in the mood when riding it.Not a great bike at slow speeds, but then who buys a supersport 600 to go to the shops on?? Begs to be ridden hard and fast, with a fantastic screaming motor.Very solid handling and very flickable.In my opion, the sexiest bike/600 out there. Bring on track day season.

    27 April 2008

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jocasaja

User's Badge

jocasajasays

The best 600

This is my 3rd R6 - I know that the journos really slate it as a road bike, BUT I still reckon it is the best 600 - Although nose down and bum up - I still find it fairly comfortable. The noise, build quality and looks cannot be beaten - I am no Valentino but I really rate this bike - only ride on the roads and have not got my knee down and still need to learn to do a wheely - but I love this bike - I get fed up with those that knock it!

12 April 2010 17:43

chrisgold

chrisgoldsays

Rev Counter

The all new Yamaha 600 R6 has a higher revs than the current Honda CBR 600RR, will this bike sound better when pushed and will it perform better on the open track?

26 February 2010 21:35

LJay

User's Badge

LJaysays

Brought it and...

Well, Going from a yzf-R125 to a yzf-R6 was a massive jump! been ridding for 1 month now and done 1100 miles already. My Honda Civic Type R is left to rust :-(

 

Anyways it's the first 600 superbike I haven't ridden not sure how the others run but I have to say... I feel like a speed freak now! love it!

15 July 2009 13:45

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