2018 Yamaha YZF-R15 V3.0 Review
- Published On: 15 June 2018
- 3 min read
We take the new R15 V3.0 for a spin to see how much of a leap ahead it is.
The R1/R6-inspired R15 is gorgeous to look at. Yamaha has kept the bike’s design sharp and proportionate. Its dual LED headlights are powerful enough and the fairing is cleverly designed to keep muck out of the belly pan. The bike isn’t the most practical though - the V3.0’s rear seat is still too high to sit comfortably on long journeys. The cockpit looks good and you can see the R1 inspiration on the tank’s gills, the handlebar’s hollow slots and the substantial bubble visor. The plastics feel a bit flimsy though in some places and there are some ugly, uneven welds in exposed spaces like the front subframe. The stitching on our test bike was already wearing even though it had covered only 1,200km. However, overall quality is still quite good.
The R15 V3.0 is powered by a 155cc, liquid-cooled, SOHC, four-valve motor that comes with a new intake and exhaust system, and Variable Valve Actuation (VVA). You also get a slip-and-assist clutch that works well and makes downshifting quickly with its six-speed gearbox feel almost effortless. The punchy engine and the smooth-shifting gearbox and light, 139kg kerb weight, make the R15 feel agile and quick. The bike makes 19.3hp, and it is now the quickest accelerating 150cc bike we’ve ever tested, doing 0-100kph in 10.7sec.
The added performance however, comes with a slight decrease in refinement but it’s not enough to write home about. The VVA tech has also improved efficiency and the R15 returns a very decent 37.2kpl (city) and 49.7kpl (highway) in our test cycle.
The bike features a more committed riding position, with lower-set clip-ons and a higher seat (815mm). There’s now a much better sense of control, and, of course, you look cool while riding. The bike features a more aggressive steering rake angle and despite having the fattest tyres ever fitted to an R15, its dynamics feel alert and immediate. You can attack corners effortlessly, and with confidence – as a beginner’s sports bike, it doesn’t get much better than this. The 282mm disc up front and 220mm disc at the rear offer decent braking performance, but we missed having ABS.
Suspension comfort is still very reasonable, and the bike soaks up small bumps and imperfections quite well, but it feels a bit firm.
The New R15 looks stunning, is quick for its class, handles well and is fuel-efficient as well. You can forgive the lack of ABS because this bike does a lot well. Its Rs 1.25 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi) price tag is reasonable for what’s on offer, and if you can live with the aggressive riding position, this is easily one of the best sub-Rs1.5-lakh bikes you can buy.