2020 Yamaha YZF-R1 and YZF-R1M | First Look Review

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1M and YZF-R1
The 2020 Yamaha YZF-R1M (left) and YZF-R1 (right) benefit from engine refinements, new electronics and suspension upgrades. Photos courtesy Yamaha.

Yamaha has taken the wraps off its latest-generation flagship sportbikes, the 2020 YZF-R1 and the track-ready YZF-R1M, with both featuring refinements to their CP4 crossplane crankshaft engines, an augmented electronic rider aids package, enhanced suspension and redesigned bodywork.

Check out Rider’s Guide to New/Updated Motorcycles for 2019 here!

The 998cc inline-four powering the R1/M was already potent, and for 2020 it gets new cylinder heads, fuel injectors, finger-follower rocker arms and camshaft profiles. Controlling the beast is an all-new Accelerator Position Sensor with Grip (APSG) ride-by-wire system with Yamaha’s Chip Controlled Throttle (YCC-T) that eliminates throttle cables and reduces weight while providing smoother throttle operation.

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1M and YZF-R1
The 2020 YZF-R1/M’s crossplane crankshaft inline-four is mostly unchanged, with a few refinements like cylinder heads, injectors and finger-follower rocker arms.

A robust electronics package centered around Yamaha’s proprietary six-axis IMU now lets riders choose between two intervention modes for enhanced Brake Control (BC): BC1 is optimized for upright, straight-line braking and BC2 increases intervention timing deeper into the lean, for enhanced braking into corners.

A new Engine Brake Management (EBM) system also allows the rider to select between three levels of engine braking force. Both the BC and EBM are adjustable through the onboard Yamaha Ride Control and Yamaha’s Y-TRAC smartphone (Android only) and tablet app (Android and iOS).

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1M and YZF-R1
Full-color TFT display includes Yamaha Ride Control, where the rider can make adjustments to various electronic systems.

Premium Öhlins Electronic Racing Suspension (ERS) has been a staple of the R1M’s chassis performance, and a new NPX pressurized front fork with a gas cylinder built into the front fork axle bracket, along with revised rear shock settings to complement the performance of the front fork, are features of the new 2020 model.

The 2020 YZF-R1 also receives suspension performance enhancements courtesy of a new KYB front fork with a new internal shim stack design and a KYB rear shock with revised internal settings. Together, the changes result in smoother suspension dampening paired with an improved feeling of contact and grip with the street or track surface.

Lastly, redesigned bodywork creates a claimed 5.3-percent increase in aerodynamic efficiency while reducing wind noise and pressure on the rider when in a tucked position, and improved comfort comes from smoother side section where the rider’s legs contact the bike. The R1M also gets a new carbon fiber tail cowl.

The 2020 YZF-R1M will initially be available in limited quantities exclusively through Yamaha’s online reservation system in a Carbon Fiber color scheme for $26,099. Dealerships will begin receiving reserved orders in September. To place a reservation, click here.

The 2020 YZF-R1 will be available in Team Yamaha Blue or Raven for $17,300, and will begin arriving in dealerships in September.

2020 Yamaha YZF-R1M and YZF-R1
2020 Yamaha YZF-R1 in Team Yamaha Blue.
2020 Yamaha YZF-R1M and YZF-R1
2020 Yamaha YZF-R1M in Carbon Fiber.


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