Good morning from cloudy California. Today’s adventure takes us to one of my favorite race tracks, Thunderhill Raceway Park, to test the 2017 Yamaha YZF-R6.
It should be an interesting day, namely since Northern California is getting some much-needed rain, although that makes it tough to test a 120hp+ supersport machine.
On second thought though, maybe these are ideal conditions for the “new” R6 – with its freshly added traction control, riding modes, and anti-locking brake system.
It’s this electronics suite that will be the focus of our testing today, considering that the 2017 Yamaha YZF-R6 keeps the same frame and engine as its predecessor.
Definitely more evolution than revolution, other changes to the R6 for 2017 include revised suspension and braking components, magnesium subframe, aluminum tank, and bodywork that improves aerodynamics.
Yamaha calls this its “4th Generation” YZF-R6 model, though the spec list is suggesting something closer to a “3.5 Generation” machine…maybe 3.75, if I have had my Mountain Dew this morning and am feeling generous.
Yamaha feels confident that the 2017 model is a “new” bike though, and they even brought a 2016 model to ride, in order to prove the point to us. So, that will certainly be interesting. It looks like Bridgestone W01 full-wet rain tires will be the order of the day, and we’ll keep our fingers crossed that things don’t get too moist out there.
Per our new review format, we will be giving you a live assessment of the 2017 Yamaha YZF-R6 right here in this article (down in the comments section), and there we will try to answer any questions you might have. So, here is your chance to learn what it’s like to ride the 2017 Yamaha YZF-R6, before even my own proper review is posted.
As always, if I don’t know an answer, I will try to get a response from the Yamaha personnel (we have members from both the Japanese and American teams here on-site) that are here with me here at Thunderhill. So, pepper away.
You can follow our thoughts on the bike live via Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. You can also try searching for the hashtags: #Yamaha #RWorld #R6FirstRide for the thoughts of my colleagues as well.