YAMAHA R1 (2007 - 2008) Review
At a glance
|Owners' reliability rating:|
|Annual servicing cost:||£300|
Overall ratingNext up: Ride & brakes
The 2007 Yamaha R1 features new-found midrange drive from junking Yamaha’s tried and tested five-valve per cylinder in favour of the traditional four-valve set up, but at the same time installing some of the “bad boy” engine manners the original model was famed for.
- Related: 2020-on Yamaha R1 review
The chassis also gets updated by way of new frame, swingarm and suspension to make this latest Yamaha R1 a perfect road bike tool and the basis for a stonking trackday and superstock motorcycle.
Ride quality & brakesNext up: Engine
With race-like suspension front and rear, the standard set-up of this latest Yamaha R1 is just about right for dealing with everyday riding on UK roads. Turn the pace up (road or track) and there’s enough adjustment to suit every situation and riding style.
Typically the R1 is a front end motorcycle, meaning that every road detail is felt through the bars and it drops into a turn as quick as you like. Race track manners along with road motorcycle stability takes some beating and believing, but it does both with style.
EngineNext up: Reliability
The Yamaha R1 was never short of top end drive and that’s true of this latest version. What the 2007 Yamaha R1 does have though is a healthy dollop of midrange kick.
Not that this will be a worry in the lower gears as the fly-by-wire system, linked to detailed ECU mapping, won’t deliver everything the rider asks for, instead giving what it thinks is best.
Variable length inlet trumpets (worked by electronic motor at 10,400rpm) boosts midrange revs and props up top end poke – not just a gimmick, it actually works.
Reliability & build qualityNext up: Value
As there are only three major motorcycle fastener suppliers in Japan –used by all the Japanese manufacturers – the old belief that Yamaha’s finish is inferior is complete rubbish nowadays.
What is questionable is the bitty way certain panels of this latest Yamaha R1 are tacked on or used to cover areas eg the flimsy placcy bit covering the down pipes. Reliability shouldn’t be a problem as the Yamaha R1 hasn’t got a reputation for being a lemon.
Value vs rivalsNext up: Equipment
Yamaha’s pricing has always been strange: in 2005 the R1’s list price was £9k-plus, but then dropped to just over £8k in 2006.
For 2007 the R1’s price was around £8999, which (typically) was around £200 more than the competition. Value for money? Yamaha think so, as do previous Yamaha R1 customers.
You can find a used 2007-2008 Yamaha R1 for sale for around £5,000 with reasonable miles on the clock.
As a leading sports bike/race replica, niceties of heated grips and shaver points simply don’t exist. The Yamaha R1's dash layout is spartan but effective; big tachometer face, gear shift light and LCD speedo are all you’ll really need.
Yamaha has brought back six-piston brake calipers to fly in the face of four-pot fashion, but they work very, very effectively on the smaller-sized discs of the latest R1. The rear shock features high/low compression damping, which is good, as is the roomy seating position. Six-feet plus? Not a problem.
|Engine type||16v in-line four, 6 gears|
|Frame type||Twin spar aluminium|
|Fuel capacity||18 litres|
|Front suspension||Preload, compression, rebound|
|Rear suspension||Preload, high/low compression, rebound|
|Front brake||2 x 310mm discs|
|Rear brake||220mm disc|
|Front tyre size||120/70 x 17|
|Rear tyre size||190/50 x 17|
Mpg, costs & insurance
|Average fuel consumption||39 mpg|
|Annual road tax||£96|
|Annual service cost||£300|
|Used price||£4,300 - £7,200|
17 of 17
How much to insure?
|Warranty term||Two year unlimited mileage|
Top speed & performance
|Max power||170 bhp|
|Max torque||87.3 ft-lb|
|Top speed||182 mph|
|1/4 mile acceleration||-|
|Tank range||146 miles|
Model history & versions
Yamaha launched the original R1 in 1998 to go up against the fastest sportsbikes of the day, the Honda Fireblade and Ducati 916. In 2000 it recieved detail changes including sharper styling and a 2kg weight reduction.
The 2002 version was a new model which featured fuel injection, angular styling and a new chassis. This model lasted just two years before being superceded in 2004 by a new version with underseat pipes, a new chassis, braced swingarm and more power.
This version of the R1 recieved a few changes in 2006 including a longer wheelbase and a limited edition SP version was made available with Ohlins suspension, Marchesini wheels and a slipper clutch.
In 2007, Yamaha scrapped their five valves per cyclinder engine format in favour of a four-valve head version. The bike got more power, ride-by-wire, electronically-controlled inlet trumpets and a new chassis and styling.
A major change came in 2009, when the engine was changed for a crossplane crank design to create more grunt lower down the range. This version also got a new chassis and styling and had detail changes including six-stage traction control in 2012.
Yamaha R1-SP: 2006 limited edition with Ohlins suspension, Marachesini light weight wheels, and slipper-type clutch
Centenary: limited edition all-yellow model in 2005/2006.
Owners' reviews for the YAMAHA R1 (2007 - 2008)
11 owners have reviewed their YAMAHA R1 (2007 - 2008) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.
Summary of owners' reviews
|Ride quality & brakes:|
|Reliability & build quality:|
|Value vs rivals:|
|Annual servicing cost:||£300|
Annual servicing cost: £300
Focused bike, light and firm but perfectly capable of being a road bike without snapping your spine or wrists. Rides like a 90s 600, you have to work for it alittle but the reward is brutal power at the top and a great noise thanks to the clever intake. The last of the screamers and the last of the brutal bikes without too much computer aid. Makes a great addition to my daily thunderace which is abit slower, abit heavier but much more road friendly day to day.
Handles beautifully, it feels like a 600 compared to my thunderace, with twice the kick of a 600. Brakes are progressive and very powerful, never had any issues on fast road riding at all though cannot comment on track use.
Rides like an older 600 in my opinion, nothing really under 6k, 6k-8k it's starting to think about going for it. 8k to 10.5k it's pretty damn quick (really dont need any more than 10k for the road and itll pick its front wheel up in this range in second if you want it too) 10.5k to red line? Mental quick and each shift stays in the top power band which is both awesome and terrifying.
Over good soild bike, mine is currently on 63000 miles (it really is) only problem I've faced is it has the usual yamaha issue of the mag rota destroying itself, the magnets work loose and get chewed up and it can be costly. I caught mine early before one mag totally came loose ( funny whirling noise) and managed to swap it out for the updated version before it caused any damage. This happened on alot of 04 to 08 bikes and is due to the glue/resin that holds the magnets in breaking down.
Spares are steep depending but no different to most litre bikes so no real issues here
It's a race bikes with lights and a number plate. Nothing fancy though everything feels solid and is very clear. There is no traction control or anti wheelie or abs. There is a power limiter in first for sure and a slight one in second I think but this is as close as you'll get to a modern(ish) raw bike hence I went for this over the 2009
Buying experience: Got mine stupidly cheap due to a friend in the trade who made me an offer I couldn't refuse on one of my dream bikes.
Got an R6 and part ex'ed my bandit 1200 for a brand new R1. Its my first litre sports bike, and it really is'nt as scary as you'd think.........until.... you rev it!!pass 9-10 grand its unbelieable, completely insane, what a rush, so fast! But to be honest, I really miss the low down torque of me old bandit and the R1 just does'nt have it, maybe i'm expecting too much here. Basically, performance and handling are great, looks stunning too,great value, everything you could wish for in a sports bike, just like an R6 but more! not as wheelie happy as my old bandit 12 huny. should've kept her,but still love my R1 more, 9/10.
Got an R6 and part ex'ed my bandit 1200 for a brand new R1. Its my first litre sports bike, and it really is'nt as scary as you'd think.........until.... you rev it!!pass 9-10 grand its unbelieable, completely insane, what a rush, so fast! But to be honest, I really miss the low down torque of me old bandit and the R1 just does'nt have it, maybe i'm expecting too much here. Basically, performance and handling are great, looks stunning too,great value, everything you could wish for in a sports bike, just like an R6 but more! not as wheelie happy as my old banit 12 huny. should've kept the her,but still love my R1 more, 9/10.
I never really bonded with this bike. To make this easier to read I'll summarise: Background: I owned an 08 R1 from new and just sold it last month with 4k miles on it. I took it on 4 track days. I took my wife pillion a few times and used it for the supermarket too. Mods: Screen, sliders, Michelin 2CTs, suspension set-up for me. Pros: - Amazing power up top. I don't understand why anyone would need more power from one of these. - Above 6k rpm the bike feels 100% 'right': like the best bike money could buy. Highly recommended. - Gearbok (nimble). - Very fast on the track - quicker than an equivalent (stock) GSX-R 1000. - Easy to remove tail piece, mirrors, screen etc for track-days. - Just looks so cool! Cons: - Not as much toruqe in the mid-range as everyone says. - Terrible for anything under 6k rpm (which is 90% of the time for 'normal riding'): weak, uncomfortable... - Bad niggles: horn (poor), steering damper? What steering damper (did NOTHING), hard to get at battery, kickstand (bad angle), clip-ons (bad for wrists compared to Fireblade), seat angles (both seats push you forwards unless at high speed). I don't want to groan too much, but that last point there is the reason I sold the bike - that's how bad the riding position was at low speeds. My previous bike was a CBR1000RR 2006 and it had no confort issues. I've had 2 Yamahas and 2 Hondas. It's 2-0 to the Hondas.
I bought a new R1 in early 2008 and I've now clocked up 20 000 miles and do a minimum of 550 miles commuting to work every week here in Gibraltar. The riding position is very comfortable and you can cover long distances easily without numb butt cheeks and aching wrists. I’ve covered many miles across Europe even with the misses on the back and it’s been a pleasure. Don’t get me wrong if you’re used to Beemers or Goldwings you won’t be happy it but compared to other superbikes the R1 is much easier to ride for long periods. However when you’re in the mood to thrash it on a track day the bike is transformed into a snarling beast. Honestly one of the best track weapons I’ve used. This bike has a split personality. It can be the sensible tourer or by a twist of the wrist and some fast bends it makes you feel like an adrenalin fuelled racing god. And the noise of those under seat exhausts and the backfire-rumbling on deceleration still makes me smile like a kid. On the negative side I’ve been through 3 Exup cables in two years and when the warrenty runs out I will be dishing out for these out of my own pocket. For a modern sportsbike I find this unacceptable and I live in Gibraltar where the weather is lovely all year round so if you live in UK be prepared to change these a few times a year. They’re the achilles heel with this bike. Other than that it’s been faultless! Overall I’m very happy with it and I couldn’t imagine riding anything else.
I have been riding for over 25 years have part-ex'd my SP1 for an 07 R1 in white and red. It is standard with 3500 miles on the clock and looks stunning. On the road it is a peach to ride, comfy, smooth with great controls and power. I am 6' tall and fit it really nicely. We did a 300 mile trip and had no discomfort problems. I have been on track at Mallory and |Donington (twice). Once the suspension had been tweaked the handling is smooth and sure with excellent ground clearance, awesome power, suberb brakes and she sounds andf looks fantastic!! Sorry I'm a bit gushy but I love the Yam!! It's the best looking Jap bike out there and up with the Ducatis on looks as well...... Must dash gotta ride!
I had the choice of getting this bike for 7999 in december of 08 in red and white, or waiting for an 09, i came to the conclusion that i'm not the fastest of riders and won't get the best out of either of these bikes so i went for the better looking one, which the 08 wins every time. i've got onto this after riding an 07 FZ6 and it can be just as easy to ride, a little awkward keeping to 30mph limits though. it reminds me of my Aprilia 125's, almost like it's got a powerband feel to it, below 10k it's very pokey but managable, above that it's all about holding on very tight!! it's very comfortable compared to an R6, the only pain i get is from my wrists but it takes a lot of riding for that to happen. although i change my bikes quite a lot i think i'll have this for a while, i suppose i would say it but i honestly believe it's the best looking bike out there. Until yamaha sort out the 09's front end. it reminds me of dame edna, do you wanna ride dame edna??!!
I had an '06 R1 previously & was tempted by the '08 because of the Yamaha 0% finance. It feels like the same bike but different, which obviously makes no sense. Below 7000 it's so easy to ride, between 7 & 10 it demands your attention & anything over 10 rquires 100% of you. It is roomy for my 5'9" frame, the head lights are brilliant. I'm torn between the looks of the 06 & the 08. Sometimes I prefer the cleaner lines of the older model & sometimes I prefer the angular lines of the O8. I can't say I can really feel much difference in performance between them although the 08 does seem to take off a 1000 revs sooner. I like the Pirellis that come with it, much better than the dunlops of the 06 model. Handels well, makes me feel confident even on winter roads. My friends ride Blades ZX10's, when we are out there is nothing between them performance wise. It all comes down to looks & in my opinion the R1 wins that every time.
I traded in my '05 R1 for a '57 face-lift and was extremely impressed. I didn't think anything could be better but the face-lift model feels smoother and more balanced. Still a bit slow in low revs but a Dynojet power commander soon sorts that. I also have a Renthal front sprocket fitted, Akropovic system, K&N etc coming soon. I'm still getting used to the addition of the tps, makes the bike feel restricted until you look at the speedo! Awesome bike, amazing power, highly recommended!
Came from a K6 GSXR 750 to this and wow what a bike!!. Nice and easy below 7,000 rpm which is around 100mph in top and handy for rain, town usual stuff but go beyond this and the thing starts to fly. Hit 10,000 rpm and you enter a very different and scary world !! After a week in France touring with a few mates the bike was faultless and suprizingly comfy. The only time it suffered was over tight twisty broken tarmac roads which had it sliding around but I would have struggled on a BMW GS to be fair. Quality is excellent and it makes the GSXR 1000 look like a pig !!!
I sold my CBR600RR, Hayabusa & Bandit 12 to fund my new R1 I also bought a old 918 blade for track use and work so I have a bit of bike knowledge. Now I have got my bike fully run-in (1k) and the sun was shining I took the R1 out to put it through its paces and amazing simply amazing. It was so nimble and you dont realise the lean you get. I was arriving at my favorite corners probably twice as fast and going round and I thought not realy trying but my knee was firmly planted and even though twice as fast as im used to the bike sorted it all out. Dont be fooled it doesnt take anything away from you it still lets you know your going fast the front has an habbit of jumping up in the air. The noises coming from under the fuel tank i.e the moving air intakes and the loud standard pipes behind that pop and burble make it a very interesting and exciting bike to ride. You can here the air intakes pop at 10k if accelerating hard can feel a slight bit of extra surge. After having such a good ride on the bike I had to write it down. New R1 officially brilliant!