hmmm my only issue with the thundercat/thunderace statment is that the thundercat is the european version of the yzf600r which is still in production to this day. The yzf600r and r6 are different animals, even though the yzf600r has the old carb'd r6 motor in it still.
true that adam...
it's the same reason that Kawasaki still has the ZZR 600... which is really just the 2000 ZX6. marketing and trends are strange bedfellows and hindsight, bike genesis, and history are always interesting studies. when the YZF series of Yamahas were being released they were set to replace the FZR line of sportbikes, which at the time, were considered getting to be "too hard core" for the buying public. hence the more upright super-sport-touring riding positions and larger dimensions of these machines.
yet not too many model years later... the YZF's were "replaced" on showroom floors by the R6 and R1 - next genesis motors and technology (no yamaha pun intended) and hardcore take-no-prisoners race replicas that were smaller, lighter, and faster... and blew the YZF's right into the bargain bins.
what's next? who knows... but whatever it is... it's ALL good. :laughing
the yzf600r was intro'd in '97 as competitor to the best selling middleweight sportbike at the time, the cbr600 F3. A nice all-rounder with a low cost steel frame, a curb weight of about 480lbs, big fairing, plush seat and a engine tuned for torque. It was alway intended to be the sport touring 600. The R6 intro'd in '99 and changed the 600 class as a viable alterative to 750's. Low weight, 97hp, braced rear swingarm in a small-for-time chassis.
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