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xBhp was born more than 16 years ago and since then we've had a chance to ride or drive hundreds of machines running on two wheels or four wheels, and sometimes even three wheels. We are not done yet, and this list is still growing. In these pages, we take a deep dive in the treasure trove of our ride experiences and bring you all that we have ridden or driven.

Yamaha R15M :: Baby R1 in Australia

155CC 18.1BHP 14.2NM

If you ever get to travel back in time, go back to 2008 and ask any biker about the bike they want. In most cases, the answer would be ‘R15’. And why not? It was inspired by the legendary R1 and brought to our shores as a petite 150cc motorcycle with intentions much sportier than its displacement. The design, the Deltabox frame, the performance, and the sheer popularity; it was a revelation.

Not resting on their laurels, Yamaha continued to improve the R15 and the success continued along with it. We are currently at V4, the fourth generation of the R15 and while we may very well see more improvements, at present, the R15 V4 is the pinnacle of everything that made the original R15 so special. And the top dog in the R15 V4 line is the R15M. It gets traction control and a quickshifter as standard. And, as seen here, the R15M is offered in this exclusive silver-black-blue paint scheme straight from the R1M. Then there are touches like the fork caps, golden brake callipers, 3D logos, a more premium seat and a grey heat shield for the exhaust.

Despite its diminutive size, the Acer Swift 5 punches way above its weight in terms of performance and blazes through all the creative work we do on the go.

Regardless of the add-ons and such, the R15M looks like a dream. It has bits of the R1M and the R7 rolled in a sleek package that has tons of road presence. With the redesigned and more aerodynamic fairing, the bi-functional LED headlamps, LED DRLs and the overall stance, it looks like a much bigger bike than it is. The rear end is more or less identical to the R15 V3 but we are not complaining. It still looks like a proper supersport machine.

The brilliant engine of the original R15 was like a yardstick when it was launched. With the R15M, Yamaha has managed to squeeze even more from the 155cc mill- 18.4 PS of power, and 14.2 Nm of torque. Despite the diminutive engine, the R15M is capable of some serious speed thanks to its engine and also, the aerodynamics. It has a screaming top end but it is not anaemic in the lower rev range like that original. For that, we have VVA to thank. All said and done, the R15M is a motorcycle that loves being ridden hard and it relentlessly rewards the rider when they do that.

That said, is the legacy of the R15 built on its uncanny similarity to a superbike legend? Not entirely. Simply put, it is a very good motorcycle too. Starting with the engine, it is as smooth as a single-cylinder can get. It revs high and it ensures that the rider is rewarded for keeping the revs high. The 6-speed transmission is another great thing about the R15M. It is seamless and with the quickshifter, gets the job done without any hiccups at all.

Moving on to the handling department, it is one of the best in class and even shames some pricier motorcycles when it comes to dynamics. The geometry is bang on and it complements the chassis to ensure that the motorcycle doesn’t just talk to the rider, it sings! With the new USD forks, this is made even better. Corner entry is simply a breeze on this motorcycle. Corner exits are the same and now even more so with traction control. However, we believe that the R15M makes it very easy to be your own traction control. Then again, it is a good add-on for a combination of tricky conditions and a tumultuous mind.

The riding position is very committed and it is so to remind you that you are astride something that is inspired by the mighty R1M. More than that, the now wider handlebars, also make it very easy to manoeuvre the motorcycle be it in traffic or side-to-side transitions on a winding road.

On top of all that, the R15M is now technologically very sound too. It comes with a whole lot of information with a dedicated track mode that makes the tacho start from 6,000 rpm- as is the case with the R1. It is also Bluetooth-enabled now and you can pair your smartphone with it for notifications and other updates. All that said, the real power of the R15 lies in the fact that it is a great teacher, one of the best you can get your hands on if racing means anything to you at all.