Debuting today in Spain, the Yamaha Racing factory MotoGP team took the wraps up the 2016 Yamaha YZR-M1 race bike, and debuted its team, which features riders Jorge Lorenzo and Valentino Rossi.
Seemingly, not much has changed to the Yamaha YZR-M1, though the bike now features 17″ wheels and Michelin tires. Yamaha’s spec-sheet (full listing, after the jump) is sparse on specifics as usual, and thus is vague on its details – horsepower is listed simply as “over 240hp” for instance.
Indeed, most of the changes to the Yamaha YZR-M1 reside beneath the fairings, with perhaps the most important changes coming to the M1’s ECU, which is now a spec Magneti Marelli unit that runs the unified team software.
Coming to terms with the new electronics package will be the biggest hurdle for teams in 2016, though the different characteristics of the Michelin tires will prove to be a challenge as well.
As we have seen with Honda, teams seem to struggle the most with the software changes, trying to get the Magneti Marelli system and its unified software to work like the factory units the teams are accustomed to.
Dealing with the tires seems to be an issue tackled more by the riders, with some clearly getting on better with the Michelins, than others. The Michelins have tremendous rear grip, with relatively less front-end stick – the exact opposite of the Bridgestones.
The riders who can adapt their style to these changes, or whose style it already favors, will have the upper hand at the start of the 2016 MotoGP Championship.
Technical Specifications of the 2016 Yamaha YZR-M1:
Engine: 1000cc Liquid cooled inline four-cylinder with crossplane crankshaft
Power: Over 240 horsepower, 176KW
Chassis: Aluminum twin tube deltabox with multi-adjustable steering geometry. Aluminum swingarm
Transmission: Six-speed cassette-type gearbox with alternative gear ratios available
ECU: By Magneti Marelli, in accordance with FIM Regulations
Wheels: MFR Forged Magnesium 17” font and rear
Tires: Michelin, 17” front and rear, available as slick, intermedium, and wet tires
Brakes: Brembo, two 320 mm or 340 mm carbon front discs, two four-piston calipers. Single stainless steel rear disc, twin-piston caliper
Weight: 157 Kg, in accordance with FIM Regulations
Source: Yamaha Racing