10 Things We Want To See On The Upcoming Yamaha R9 - SUV VEHICLE

10 Things We Want To See On The Upcoming Yamaha R9

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Each day, we edge closer to seeing the Yamaha YZF-R9 in the flesh. Although there’s been little confirmation from its maker, several sources in and around Team Blue have unofficially confirmed its arrival. Name trademarks kickstarted the rumor mill a couple of years back and trusted Japanese sources then added fuel to the fire. Most notably, though, the company’s WSSP team boss recently confirmed the R9 as its weapon of choice for next year.




All this is bubbling up quite nicely, generating heaps of hype around the middleweight sports bike. Heck, we’ll even say it’s the most anticipated sports bike of the year so far. So we thought it’d be fun to imagine the ‘perfect’ version of a Yamaha YZF-R9. A hypothetical version imagined with realistic elements that would make the R9 well worth all the hype it’s creating. Accordingly, here are 10 things we’d want to see on the incoming beast.

In order to give you the most up-to-date and accurate information possible, the data used to compile this article was sourced from various manufacturer websites and other authoritative sources.

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Blue 2023 Yamaha YZF-R7 on the track coming out of a curve
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No matter what you say or feel, looks matter in the real world. You have to have your own identity and personality to woo people and leave a lasting impression. This is the first thing we want to see the R9 boast: a unique identity. We know for a fact it’d take some inspiration from the YZF-R7 (because just look at it!), but Yamaha should throw in extra, standout elements.

One such thing could be aerodynamic wings, inspired by the YZR-M1. If so, this would make the R9 the first-ever YZF-badged offering with wings. Yes, not even the YZF-R1 has had them in its 25-year life. Another design touch could be a newly positioned headlight–neither centrally mounted like the R7, nor the dual-pod setup as the R1.

9 Aggressive Ergonomics

Yamaha YZF-R6
Yamaha


This is a no-brainer, yet something that needs to be said. Modern-day middleweight sports bikes all prioritize comfort over downright sportiness, and we’d want the YZF-R9 to be different. We want it to take the torch from the YZF-R6, employing nose-heavy, wrist-hurting ergonomics. Low clip-on bars, flat-ish saddle, and a muscular tank should all be there, topped by rear-set pegs for ample cornering clearance. It’s worth noting the YZF-R7 is one of the sportiest sub-700cc sports bikes out there, so its elder sibling could very well follow the same path.

Yamaha YZF-R7 Saddle Height

Saddle height

32.9 inches

Rake

23.7 degrees

Trail

3.5 inches


8 Technological Wizardry

2024 Yamaha MT-09 TFT
Yamaha

A decade ago, middleweight sports bikes rarely focused on features. But today, features are key. Accordingly, we believe the YZF-R9 will boast plenty of them. Everything that’s present on the MT-09 seems like a no-brainer here. In case you’re unaware, the naked bike comes ripe with:

  • Traction control
  • Back slip regulator
  • Slide control
  • Wheelie control
  • Brake control
  • Six-axis IMU
  • Five ride modes (three present, two customizable)
  • Third-generation bi-directional quickshifter (two settings)
  • Cruise control
  • Auto-cancel indicators
  • Chip-controlled throttle


All this is topped by a five-inch TFT instrument cluster. It’s armed with smartphone connectivity via Yamaha’s app and turn-by-turn navigation via the Garmin StreetCross app. If all this is present on the R9, it’d be the most loaded sports bike in its category. Even budget liter-class bikes like the Kawasaki Ninja ZX-10R miss out on some of these bits!

7 Upgraded 889cc CP3 Engine

2024 Yamaha MT-09 Engine
Yamaha

Why all those electronics? Because the YZF-R9 will borrow its powerhouse from the MT-09. It’s an 889cc, triple-cylinder engine, partnered with a cross-plane crank and forged pistons to fire at an 11.5:1 compression ratio. The result is 117 horsepower and 68.6 pound-feet–an output that would position the R9 above the Aprilia RS 660, Suzuki GSX-8R, and the new Triumph Daytona 660.


While this is the obvious path, we would want Yamaha to throw in some upgrades. For instance, we’d love to see a higher redline than the MT-09’s 10,600 RPM. This will not only boost performance, but will also bring the engine character closer to the high-revving YZF-R6. It’s something we’ve seen Triumph do with its new Daytona, and trusted reviewers can’t help but sing its praises.

Yamaha MT-09 Power Figures

Engine

889cc, triple-cylinder

Power

117 horsepower @ 10,000 RPM

Torque

68.6 pound-feet @ 7,000 RPM

Transmission

Six-speed

Fuel efficiency

48 miles per gallon

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6 Proven Deltabox Chassis

2024 Yamaha YZF-R1M front 3/4 action shot
Yamaha


Coming to underpinnings, we want to see the R9 flex Yamaha’s proven Deltabox chassis. This type of frame has been present on all top-class YZF bikes, whether it’s the YZF-R6 or YZF-R1. It’s a perimeter frame constructed from aluminum, joined with a magnesium subframe and aluminum swingarm. The engine sits inside as a stressed member to ensure optimal rigidity and swift riding dynamics. Considering the R6 and R1 both handle bloody well, it won’t be too wrong to expect the same for the R9.

5 High-Quality Suspension

2024 Yamaha MT-09 SP
Yamaha 


No matter how good the chassis may be, suspension is equally important. So we want the R9 to go the same way as the R1. It features fully adjustable KYB forks and monoshock, topped by 17-inch magnesium wheels front and rear. Even the MT-09 has a fully adjustable KYB suspension setup. Let’s just hope Yamaha doesn’t opt for the 41 mm USD forks (from the MT) and picks the 43 mm ones from the R1. Thicker forks would give the sports bike better front-end stability in corners, in a straight line, and while dropping the anchors into corners.

4 Strong Anchors

2024 Yamaha MT-09 SP
Yamaha 

Speaking of dropping anchors, the YZF-R9 needs to have a kickass braking setup. We would at least want dual 320 mm disc brakes up top and a sizable rear disc. Of course, with none other than Brembo calipers for utmost braking prowess. It’s not a far-fetched expectation at all and one that makes total sense.


You see, the new MT-09 has two 298 mm disc brakes up top and a 245 mm rear disc. So considering the fairings would increase the R9’s weight (the MT weighs 425 pounds for reference), bigger discs at both ends would be a valid inclusion. The MT also has a Brembo master cylinder for 2024, in case you’re unaware.

3 Did Someone Say YZF-R9 M?

2024 Yamaha YZF-R1M Action
Yamaha

Aside all the aforementioned bits, we would love to see an ‘M’ variant of the YZF-R9. Japanese publication Young Machine hinted at the same a few months ago, suggesting the R9 would have multiple variants. The R9 M could follow the path charted by the top-shelf YZF-R1 M. As a refresher, the R1 M has Ohlins electronic suspension and carbon bodywork to set itself apart from the standard model.


Now, this might be too much for a middleweight sports bike. But the R9 M could very well employ upgraded brakes (Brembo Stylemas), an Ohlins monoshock, and some aesthetic upgrades (carbon fenders, bubble windscreen, billet footpegs). The MT-09 also has an ‘SP’ version serving the same duty.

2 Competitive MSRP

Yamaha YZF-R6
Yamaha

That brings us to pricing. Take a look at Yamaha’s price list, and you’ll know it does a good job at it. So we’d want nothing but a competitive MSRP for the R9. According to us, a strong price would be between $11,000 and $11,500.


At this price, the R9 would be roughly $1,000 clear of the MT-09 and $2,000 clear of the YZF-R7. But it’ll still be well below the $18,399 YZF-R1. For further reference, the 2021 YZF-R6 used to sell for $12,199. This means even at $11,500, you’ll be getting a more technologically loaded and modern motorcycle at a lesser price. Not to mention, with comparable peak output.

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1 Rivalry With Fellow Middleweight Sports Bikes

2024 Kawasaki Ninja ZX- 6R on the track
Kawasaki

Finally, if all of the above boxes are met, the YZF-R9 will shake up the middleweight sports bike segment. Not only will it be more powerful and loaded than big names like the Aprilia RS 660 and Honda CBR650R, but it’ll be right in the ballpark of the Honda CBR600RR and Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R. Plus, at around $11,500, it would also be priced similar to the $11,499 RS 660 and $11,399 ZX-6R.


Yamaha YZF-R9 Rivals

  • Aprilia RS 660
  • Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R
  • Honda CBR600RR
  • Ducati Panigale V2
  • Suzuki GSX-R750
  • Upcoming KTM RC 990

Is there anything else you’d like to see on the YZF-R9 that we missed? Tell us in the comments!

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