Well you did expect something like this from me, didn't you?
Since my thread "Ralphael's New bike" was well received (without an incident; unless the flame posts were deleted by the mods), I thought I would go ahead and post a quick review of the R1.
In answer to a PM that I got inquiring on my purchase; yes I got the first R1 from Pacific Yamaha (1 week after its arrival on the show room floor). It had 5 klicks on the odometer when I got it with no test rides ever.
First off, I did not ride it into the gutters from the show room floor and the thought did pass my mind as I opened up the throttle; thinking new tires, a sensitive fly by wire throttle, accidental clutch popping etc. as well as the new method of breaking it in by redlining it out the door. However, I kepted it under 7000 (with an occasional red line) for the first 400 klicks before finally opening her up for an amazing ride.
The surprise is that the fly by wire throttle smooths out the sudden blipping of the throttle. Gone are the lurch of the bike from throttle blips. I am still debating whether this is a good thing or a bad thing, as there seems to be a lag between the time your flick the throttle to the actual response and many times the response is a smooth acceleration rather then a heart wrenching burst of power.
On the R1 forums there is talk about 2nd gear at 5500 rpm where there is absolutely no response from the bike if you blip it (quick power on throttling) however if you use "slow hand" throttling (smoothly powering it on), the bike accelerates smoothly and quickly. It may be a safety feature or it may be a glitch; I am waiting for the recall or a 3rd party fix as I am use to the old 03 R1 where the bike reacts instantaneously.
Now the 0.1 sec lagginess does not affect the performance of the bike. On a recent trip up to harrison (see 3 nutbars declare the new season, OPEN), the bike was almost able to keep up with the leading Nutbar Land speed record but unfortunately the second nutbar was in the way thus preventing me from breaking the record .
Quick sudden passing, quick acceleration are all there but it seems that you need to keep the rpm above 8000 (powerband) to get the quick response. I cannot tell you if it is the user friendly fly by wire throttling that prevents you from sudden throttling or the low end is still lacking in power. In fact I'm not sure you can even get accidental wheelies on the new R1; either it is the fly by wire throttle, or my throttle hand preventing me from blipping the throttle hard.
Quick change from 3rd down to 1st and popping the clutch kicks in the slipper clutch; smooth deceleration without locking. Nice!!!
During the initial break-in period, I ran through all 6 gears to keep the rpm below 7000 as I rapidly accelerated from 60 to 160 for passing. Very smooth transition from one gear to the next as each gear clicked into place.
Without a double bubble, it is difficult to bring this bike above a speed that I will not mention, as your vision blurs from helmet shaking. 2nd gear alone will take you up to 200kph. 3rd will take you 240 and beyond.
Steering Damper, Diablo Corsas, focus beams are all standard with this bike. Even on semi icy roads (Friday night with temps of -1) the diablo Corsas seems to grip the road nicely. The steering damper adds to my confidence of this bike. No need for HID's at the moment as the focus beams seems to light up river road at night very nicely; illuminating all the upcoming corners.
The bike rides just a bit higher then my old 03; about 2 inches. I'm not sure if this is by design or the fact that the dampers has been adjusted to my weight. However the ride is firmer and more responsive then my 03.
As with any new bike so early in the season, it has been difficult to get accessories for the bike. special order Frame sliders are slightly offset from the bolt in order to get around the plastic. No clutch sliders are available yet. Steel lines will be added next week. No integrated tail light, thus preventing me from completely removing the overhanging plate and signal light. Optionally there is just the plate and smaller signal light holder. I may leave the pipes as is, until later in the season; my eyes are on the akrapovic adding another 5 hp to the mix.
So there it is.... the first R1 review in BC from your favorite accidental troller.
See you at the next butter chicken ride/supper!!