Bike Tested: Yamaha R15

Price OTR Mumbai: Rs. 1,15,000/-

Yamaha R15! Yamaha R15! Yamaha R15! Those are the words that have been ringing in the minds of bike enthusiasts since the day Yamaha announced the R15. It was a long wait indeed as Yamaha did take some time launching the bike. But when they did launch it, they did it in style, on the track. We got our hands on the Yamaha R15 and a test ride of the bike has made us fall in love with it.

There is no denying that the R15 is the best looking bike (Leaving the higher capacity bikes aside) in the country. Inspired by the R1, I have heard some not so knowledgeable people comment on the R15 calling it a modified Pulsar. The rear is a bit disappointing. The small tail lamps and thin tires can confuse the R15s rear with a Unicorn. The Quality of the bike is superb though and fit and finish is top notch.

Performance of the R15 is a little disappointing for a bike costing 1+ lac. Surely it has very good performance for a 150cc engine but still as the old saying goes “There is no replacement for displacement”.  Low end grunt is missing, you need to revv the engine to extract the best out of it. This makes it not so easy to ride the R15 in the city. However as the revvs climb higher this Yamaha justifies why it has a “R” in its name. Once above 5000RPM the R15 really starts to pull and once past 6500RPM the Yamaha motor comes in its own. The power comes in beautifully at higher revvs, something no other bike in our country can boast of. Top speed depends on your weight and your leaning ability :) I also noticed the test bike to have some sort of vibrations and the engine didn’t feel as smooth as would have expected from a Yamaha that packs such a punch of technological innovations. However i have been told that once the bike finishes run in there won’t be any such issue. The 6 speed gearbox is easily the best you will find anywhere and shifts very smoothly.

The tires may be thin but they are very sticky and offer good enough grip. Braking is fantastic and handling is easily the best in the country. Overall i find the R15 to be a very good bike. It is light at 120kgs and thus with less power it can keep up with higher CC bikes. But at the price Yamaha is selling it, it could have been better. We would have loved it if Yamaha would have tweaked the engine to atleast 20bhp and given this bike split seats and a better rear. However there is no bike in India which can give you such a wide smile on your face and make you feel like Rossi and still keep you smiling when you fuel up. This Yamaha is easily the most fun to ride bike available today. It looks great, rides like no other, handles like a train on rails and gives good mileage too. Easily the pick of the segment and the best performance bike in our country by a fair margin.

What’s Cool

  • High End Power
  • Braking
  • Handling
  • Gearbox
  • Mileage
  • Looks
  • Technology

What’s UnCool

  • Could do with more power
  • A better rear end
  • Could have a fatter rear tire (looks aesthetically pleasing)
  • No Safety Stand
  • No Split seats

Yamaha R15 V1 Specifications –

  • Engine: 150cc liquid-cooled, four-stroke, single-cylinder, SOHC, 4 valves
  • Power: 17 PS @ 8500rpm
  • Torque: 15 Nm @ 7500rpm
  • Transmission: 1 down 5 up
  • Top Speed: 135kmph
  • Fuel Consumption: 45-50 kmpl (City), 50-55 kmpl (highway)
  • Fuel Tank Capacity: 12 litres
  • Fuel Type: Petrol Unleaded
  • Fuel System: Electronic fuel injection
  • Tires: 80/90/R17 (F), 100/80/R17 (R)
  • Brakes: Hydraulic, single disc (Front/Rear)

Yamaha R15 V1 Dimensions –

  • Overall length x width x height: 1995mm x 670mm x 1070mm
  • Seat height: 790mm
  • Wheelbase: 1,290mm
  • Minimum ground clearance: 160mm
  • Dry weight / Curb weight: 120 kgs / 131 kgs