Yamaha has unveiled the new YZF-R6 in a video that shows it is basically a smaller version of the R1 with similar, styling and the same suspension and front brakes.
The bike was revealed overnight at the AIMExpo in Orlando, Florida, and will be available in March.
The fact that Yamaha Australia sent the video to motoring journalists shows we will definitely be getting it. However, the release schedule and pricing are not yet available.
The supersport category is dying and there has not been a significant update among the Japanese manufacturers for eight years.
Honda is rumoured to be scrapping the CR600-RR while Kawasaki and Suzuki are believed to be developing forced-induction models.
Yet Yamaha is sticking with its tried-and-true formula, by emulating the R1 in substance and styling.
In fact, Yamaha claims the new R6 has improved its aerodynamics by 8%. That’s all thanks to the R1-style cowl, windscreen, indicators in the mirrors, ram-air intake and recessed LED headlights.
While the engine remains the same, the 2017 YZF-R6 features a lightweight aluminium fuel tank, slimmer rear subframe and flat single seat.
It also comes with Traction Control System (TCS), three Yamaha D-Mode engine maps and ABS. A Quick Shift System for clutchless upshifts only is available as an option.
The instruments look fairly similar, but there is now extra information about the new electronic rider aids.
YZF-R1 forks and brakes
R1 43mm KYB inverted forks replace the slimmer 41mm forks and it gets the R1 KYB rear shock. It is adjustable for preload, rebound damping, and low- and high-speed compression damping.
It also gets the R1 320mm front brake discs, up from 310mm, with four-piston aluminium callipers, plus a new ABS.
There are no tech specs yet, but the bike must be lighter as the subframe is lighter and the contoured aluminium fuel tank with knee recesses is 1.2kg lighter. That may also mean reduced fuel capacity but there are no further details.
It will come in three different colours – Intensity White/Matte Silver, Matte Raven Black, and Team Yamaha Blue – but we are not yet sure if they will all be available in Australia.