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faffi

What We Can Expect For 2015 And Beyond

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I saw the new R1 in a shop this Saturday. My goodness how fugly the front/headlights design is! And I say this as a Yamaha stalwart!!!

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Right, I forgot to mention that the store had just taken part in a maintenance training for the new R1, and not only does it have some very non-standard bolt heads (they look like torx, but with more edges on them*) but Yamaha recommends to replace the bolts once you've been loosening them, like stretch bolts.

 

Seriously, Yamaha???

 

Edit: *) Looks like either Spline or triple-square when looking at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_screw_drives

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For me the annoying part is the hype. Very little real information is out there yet about any of the new stuff. Instead of releasing the bike and letting the market decide the hype machine releases little bits here and there and makes the bikes artificially scarce. Some manufacturers are worse than others. At least after 5 years they are finally waking up and putting out new designs. :)

 

As for the bolts I'm sure that's going to go over quite well with people who regularly wrench on their bikes between sessions at the track. Yamaha is not the only guilty one there though. The Magnesium side covers on the BMW's use disposable bolts too. I get to drop my second RR off and get case protectors put on it. New bolts and you have to drain the oil and wait for the sealant to dry. I'm letting my mechanic deal with all of that.

 

For me appearance is always secondary to everything else. One of the things I admire about my RR is how darn ugly it is. It's pure form vs function. Even the uneven headlights are part of it's performance optimization. Weight savings for a high beam headlight. Once you start to see the little details the ugly becomes beauty. As nice as the new RR looks it's almost a bit of a let down that they cared enough to try and make it more attractive. I admire the angular somewhat defiant look of the original. But if more attractive bodywork draws people to a great bike I suppose it's ok in the grand scheme of things. :)

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Not to derail the topic. But.......

 

What technologies do you see coming in 2015 and beyond that will change the way's that we relate to our motorcycles? Advanced ABS, Traction control and Active Suspension technologies are common place now. What do you see beyond those? I see those systems becoming a LOT more refined and advanced. I also see riders being given more data about how the bike and they are performing. What kind of stuff do you see or what would you like to see in the future?

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Personally, nothing of those new electronic gadgets appeal much to me, although I will admit there are times when ABS of the latest generation could have saved my bacon. Still, for me, the complexity add more negativity than the function they bring. I lament the day when I can no longer buy motorcycles without ABS, TCS, power delivery settings etc. It's the same thing with cars. For me, there are only three reason to buy a modern car over an older, simpler car; the added passenger protection in case of a crash, the reduced noise and that it is new - 30-40 year old cars are generally rusty and rubber bits have hardened etc.

 

Of course, advances in technology has been going on for ages and I know I'm just resisting the inevitable. But whereas an automatic oil pump is far superior to a manual item and always knows what to do, an automatic rain sensor is hardly ever in total sync with my needs. In other words, having technology just because it can be done doesn't do me any good.

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I used to have a very similar opinion on ABS and TC. Then one day I realized I'm only human. When I get tired I make mistakes. Those mistakes could be a pesky orange light on my dash or a an agricultural experience sliding on my backside at the edge of the track. Most of the times the electronics minds it's own business. When you make a mistake it steps in, does what it can and goes away again. Having that safety net is one more thing not renting space in my head out there on the track.

 

I'll completely agree with you on the car thing. Another story entirely of course but cars have slowly increased in price and lowered in quality and performance over the years. It's not all bad news though. A friend of mine has a diesel SUV that gets simply amazing mileage towing his trailer to the track. My big V8 powered Land Rover on the other hand is getting single digit MPG's towing mine.

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Well, yes, I would want the gizmos on a track bike. But I don't do tracks. But despite most likely having avoided a head-on if I had the lastest version of ABS on my street bike back in 2006, I still doesn't want it for my road machines. It is complexity that takes the joy out of owning a motorcycle for me. I know it's not rational thinking, that it is about emotions, but it's the emotions I have :P

 

Single digit mpg figures, eh :blink:

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Really? You can have mine :D I will replace my flexing wire wheels and tubes with cast Lesters and tubeless. Wire wheels, other than offering a different look and be repairable to some extent doesn't offer any benefits over cast wheels for road bikes. They are heavier, more flexible, needs some maintenance, are a pain to keep clean and more often than not require tubes to be run inside the tyres.

 

See? I'm not totally against modern advancements :P

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Yeah. I'm not feeling the wire wheels either. They look nice for sure but the prospect of them being heavier and weaker does not lend them well to the type of riding I enjoy the most. Give me Forged Aluminum Wheels or even Carbon ones any day. The MV Agusta Dragster has both trellis frame and wire wheels. They look nice but... :)

 

There's a whole lot of charm to be enjoyed which is why I put up with single digit MPG's when I tow. Then again towing most enclosed trailers you aren't going to break the MPG record unless you have something like a diesel. It goes back into reasonable double digit MPG's when I detach the trailer. Thank goodness.

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The new R1 seems to be missing some of the reported ponies it was supposed to have. Interestingly, the BMW has almost exactly the HP bump they claimed for the '15 model. Some makes are a bit exuberant with their claims.

 

https://youtu.be/pJAQIYzC45c

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