The 2008 Yamaha R6 motorcycle revealed

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Yamaha has given the new 2008 Yamaha YZF-R6 a complete workover and despite the motorcycle looking pretty similar to the current Yamaha R6, it gets a new frame and swingarm, reworked 599cc engine, new slipper clutch, improved front brakes and more aerodynamic bodywork.

Yamaha is claiming the changes have made the 2008 Yamaha R6 the most advanced production 600 class motorcycle it has ever made.

See the rest of the 2008 Yamaha range, here.

The changes are clearly aimed at increasing the racing success of the 599cc Yamaha R6 – the engine has titanium valves, increased compression ratio from 12.8:1 to 13.1:1 for improved response. It also gets new domed pistons with valve cutouts to produce a more compact combustion chamber.

The Yamaha R6 now gets the same YCC-I (Yamaha Chip-Controlled Intake) system found on the Yamaha YZF-R1 which is a variable-length intake system that boosts power at high revs by lengthening the inlet tracts to increase the amount of air entering the engine. The full Yamaha explanation is below.)

Other engine enhancements have centred around reducing the amount of internal friction with a claimed 50 changes inside the motor – including wider crank bearings.
The twin-injection system has been remapped to suit the higher compression ratio for better throttle response and reduced engine braking and also has a redesigned airbox and a new-shape rear exhaust silencer.

Yamaha has become the first manufacturer to introduce a magnesium alloy subframe with the aim of taking weight off the back of the motorcycle to improve the mass centralisation of the motorcycle. The firm says it saves 450g over the previous aluminium alloy subframe.

For 2008 the thickness of the twin 310mm diameter front discs has been increased from 4.5mm to 5.0mm, a change which improves the heat dissipation qualities during extended use.
Available colours: Blue, White, Grey


The YCC-I system made its highly successful debut on the 2007 model Yamaha YZF-R1, and for the 2008 season Yamaha have further increased the performance on the latest Yamaha R6 with the application of this high-tech intake system.

The sophisticated YCC-I system consists of four lightweight plastic resin funnels, and each of these is divided into an upper and lower portion which form a single funnel when in normal use.

However, when the ECU detects that the Yamaha R6 engine speed exceeds a specific rpm, and that the throttle opening is also above a specific level, the funnel portions separate so that the shorter lower part functions as an intake funnel, making the longer upper funnel redundant. The actual movement of the funnels is performed instantaneously by an electrically controlled servo-motor which handles the function so smoothly that the rider is unaware it is happening. And because the actual YCC-I components are light, compact and relatively simple, the whole system is effective and reliable, and is maintenance-free.

The new YCC-I system works with the existing YCC-T (Yamaha Chip-Controlled Throttle) to optimise the effectiveness of the fuel injection system and deliver an incredibly precise volume of fuel/air mix to this high performance engine. The remarkable degree of control achieved by the Yamaha R6’s intake system gives improved low to mid-range torque, and also enhances the power feeling in the higher rpm band. In effect, the YCC-I and YCC-T work together to expand the engine’s power band, making the 2008 model Yamaha R6 an even stronger and more exciting performer, offering higher levels of easier-to-use power right across the rev range.

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Andy Downes

By Andy Downes

Former MCN Senior Reporter