The Yamaha MT-03 is the street-fighter derivative of the R3 that is on sale in India and uses the same mechanicals as the full-faired offering.
After a patient wait for little over a year, Yamaha India introduced the YZF-R3 in the country, a twin-cylinder quarter-litre offering posing a threat to the Kawasaki Ninja 300 and KTM RC 390 in the segment. While India received the super sport version, the Indonesian market was updated with the street-fighter derivative called the MT-03 and now news comes in that the quarter-litre naked will be arriving on Indian shores in 2016.
Underpinned by the same mechanicals as the R3, the MT-03 also draws power from the same 321cc parallel-twin, fuel-injected engine churning out 41.6 PS at 10,750 RPM and 30 Nm of torque at 9000 RPM, paired to a 6-speed gearbox. Void of the fairing now, the MT-03 is 4 kgs lighter than the R3 with a kerb weight of 165 kgs and comes with a more relaxed styling, featuring a single headlight cluster with LED pilot lamps, air shrouds flanked below the fuel tank, a wide handlebar and special MT badging.
The tail section has been completely carried over from the R25 on the MT-03 with the split seats, LED tail lamp and tail tidy retained. Like the R3, Yamaha India will also bring its street-fighter version via the CKD route, so expect prices to be in the vicinity of Rs. 2.80-3 lakhs (ex-showroom). Much like the super sport, we do not expect Yamaha to introduce ABS even as optional on the MT-03, but will surely appreciate if the automaker chooses to do otherwise.
The quarter-litre street-fighter segment has some very interesting set of offerings like the Kawasaki Z250 and Benelli TNT 300, both of which come with twin-cylinder motors while single-cylinder powered KTM Duke 390 and Mahindra Mojo 300 are more affordable choices. The MT-03 could also pose as competition to tourers with the upright seating position. The R3 is off to a good start in India and Yamaha feels quite positive about the MT-03 being a success too it seems.