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Yamaha YZF R15v3.0 – First Ride experience extensive Review

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  • Yamaha YZF R15v3.0 – First Ride experience extensive Review

    Yamaha YZF R15v3.0 – new Racing DNA of the town

    Yamaha has become a synonym for racing DNA in India and they done it again with the launch of its new R15v3.0, existing benchmark from R15 series, carrying and evolving with new R-DNA instinct.

    When R15 was launched first here it brought a revolution in India in terms of sports bike in small cc-bike segment. After years of performance & results Yamaha came up with much successful flagship model version 2 of R15 also known as R15v2.0. Almost similar engine, deltabox frame and the new fairing (adopted from the elder siblings R6 and R1) was the complete package which some said was missing from the first version. It did prove its mantle on tracks and even riding junkies made it success in terms of touring also apart from perfect city commuter ranging from college students to daily office goers.

    But again, human desire doesn’t end there and it keeps craving for something more perfect. Yet one can’t be ideally perfect but it can be achieved. And in pursuit of this Yamaha has launched the version 3.0 of its running flagship model the R15 v3.0.

    Early scoops of R15v3.0 started coming on social media as early as Oct 2017 and it kept people on toes to know more about it. It was already launched in Indonesia and with much fanfare motorcycle community was excited to see the new model hitting Indian offshores asap.

    More and more scoops pouring in and we Indian customers started to picturise the production model. Some of us were baffled enough to see many changes missing on the upcoming Indian version of R15v3.0 as compared to Indonesian counterpart. But it was understandable that to control pricing and localise more this was obvious.

    Finally, on Feb 7th, 2018 Yamaha India launched the new YZF R15v3.0 in Auto Expo 2018.
    I was there at the launch and it was amazing to see the bike in flesh. A sports bike taking the Racing DNA from its elder siblings it did steal the eyes and everyone was intrigued to know more about it as this time it was not only changes in terms of fairing but there were huge lot of modifications from the version 2 of the R15 series.

    Bike at a first glance
    New Fairing, headlamps, tail lamps, tyres, digital console, tank cover, seats, clip-ons and rear sets are few things which get full marks in terms of aesthetics

    Coming to the technical part it got a new and bigger engine of 155cc, with VVA technology and 6-gear delta box and highlighting feature of Assist-&-Slipper clutch.

    Telescopic standard forks and absence of ABS were huge let-down for many but the pricing didn’t play the spoilsport and many were intrigued to know more about it.

    Build up to this Review:
    I was still processing snaps from R15v3 for the Yamaha Riders Club FB page which I clicked in Auto Expo and then suddenly on 6th Feb 2018 my good friend Arnab Choudhary(@ArnabC ) pinged me telling “be ready for a surprise tomorrow”. Next day, he called up and guessed what did he got to ride and it was none other than new YZF R15v3.0 He said he has got the bike to test and ride for next three days and invited me to join him soon. After wrapping up from my work I joined up for quick night ride 50kms out of Bengaluru city and perfect place to enjoy the bike with new engine. Unfortunately, Arnab got pox and he was bed ridden and in disguise I got to ride more and I took it for couple of more spin over next 3 days for around 320kms.

    First Impressions

    • Bike is big and AGGRESSIVE. Yes, the stance of the bike is sportier and it is made for tracks. One will always be leaned forward and rear sets are also sportier which balances out the body positioning and one will always keep craving to hit the corners.
    • It is more responsive in terms of power delivery all thanks to new 19.3PS@10000rpm engine and the small difference from the earlier sibling R15v2which was churning out 16.6@8500rpm was easily observable.
    • Even though there isn’t much change in torque band, bike is more responsive in low end torque and bit better in mid-range.
    • Clip-ons are not much wide enough even though bike is sportier.
    • Wind shield looks more like “double bubble” windscreen.
    • Slipper clutch does it job cleanly and effectively and during hard shifts wheel was not locking up.
    • LED lights are way better than candle light headlamps of v1 and v2. Though the spread could have been better.
    • Rear sets are highly placed and meant majorly for tracks.
    • VVA kicks in at around 7.5k rpm and does give around 10-15% more boost but I felt the difference only on 2nd, 3rd and 4th gears.
    • Exhaust note has got bit bass.
    • One can keep revving it in 4th 5th and 6th gear.
    • It has got MRF Zapper-S 140/70-17 66H rating tyres on the rear which was discarded by many existing R3 owners due to performance and low-quality rubber.
    • Over all fit and finish is good keeping up with brand name Yamaha.

    Detailed Analysis

    New R15v3 has come up with 155cc engine churning out 19.3PS@10000rpm which is an appreciable amount of power as compared to R15v2. It has enough power to keep revving the engine at high RPMs. R15v2 lacked enough power to exit fast corners or having juice enough to quickly gain speeds in corners, but R15v3 has appreciable amount of power which helps in accelerating quickly while exiting. Even the torque figure remains almost the same as previous sibling, the low-end torque and mid-range torque is more which gives the bike enough grunt to maintain speeds even if ridden in bumper to bumper traffic.

    Model cc Power Torque Compression Ratio
    R15v3 155cc 19.3 PS@8500 15 Nm@8500 11.6:1
    R15v2 149cc 16.6 PS@10000 15 Nm@7500 10.4:1
    Pickup remains the same and so is the power band in mid-range uptill 6k rpm, VVA technology kicks in post 7.5k rpm. Though one can’t observe the VVA kicking in at higher gears, you won’t even find any jerk or pull when the VVA kicks in at lower gears too.

    155cc seems to be just a 1mm extra lathe work on existing R15v2 engine bore but the overall power band of R15v3 is higher.

    Here is speed range where the speed cuts in each gear (all speed ratings are as per odometer prone to error):

    GEAR Speed Range
    1st 48kmph
    2nd 72kmph
    3rd 98kmph
    4th 117kmph
    5th 141kmph
    6th 155kmph

    Pickup: 0-60kmph – 5.01secs
    0-100kmph – 11.6secs

    3rd 4th and 5th gear are the ideal gears to ride in city and I observed that one can keep riding on 5th gear at higher speeds constantly without putting much stress on the engine.

    As compared to R15v2 which used to scream while going on 115kmph+, R15v3 is more relaxed engine and it gives urge to push more.

    Handling and response of the bike is very smooth, all thanks to 6 speed gearbox and smoother clutch it makes the ride seamless.

    Assist& Slipper clutch is big addon and upon hard shifts it plays its role very efficiently. I tried deaccelerating and shifting gears quickly while coming down from triple digits and A&S clutch was quite handy which brought a big smile on my face.

    I also observed that while hard downshifting, slipper clutch not only helped smooth deacceleration it didn’t let much power loss on rear wheel and I was able to accelerate quickly and gain speeds faster which was not the case in R15v2. Engine braking is negligibly observable only on smaller gears and at lower speeds.

    This is off course a big morale boost for those hitting tracks on new R15v3.

    Clutch lever is smooth and so are the gears. Sporty rear sets make the foot position comfortable and always in sportier position thus making movement of foot easier.

    Most interesting feature in terms of performance is the fuel consumption (well one has to think as no one is controlling surging oil prices in the country). Even after riding hard on highways for more than 100kms and riding in bumper to bumper traffic we got a mileage of average 40km per litre at three different occasions for three different riders. (Lottery lag gayi)

    By resetting mileage meter 3 times (3 scenarios – city riding, riding hard on highway and moderate riding on highway), it did give me mileage of 40+kmpl every time, so did it give for Arnab also while riding in city and on highway.
    What more can one ask from this small 155cc bore with high power and still returning a mileage anything north of 40kmpl!

    And even with this mileage figure a smaller tank of 11L should not be a worry for riders going for longer rides or taking longer brakes.

    Heat dissipation is neatly managed too and it doesn’t heat up the legs. Nor did the fan makes sound like a reactor making more sound than the engine. Fan kicks in very late in traffic and it is much cooler to ride in city. Though riding with pillion fan kicks in bit early but bike cools down fast.

    Brake, Suspension and Chassis

    R15v3 R15v2
    Brake Dimensions &Type Dimensions &Type
    Front Brake 282mm single Hydraulic disc 267mm single Hydraulic Disc
    Rear Brake 220mm single Hydraulic disc 220mm single Hydraulic Disc

    Brakes have got good bite. Front has a much more bite than the rear one. It is more than in R15v2 all thanks to thicker metal plate in front as compared to R15v2. I even observed rear brakes have lesser bite than the R15v2 brakes. Though there is no change in dimensions.

    Interesting part to see here is that front comes with Bybre brakes whereas the rear comes from Nissin. (enter your own emotions here)

    Suspension are as hard as the R15v2 with standard telescopic forks at front and link type monocross suspension with standard settings at the rear. No, it doesn’t come with suspension setting adjusters.

    With 130mm front wheel travel and 97 mm rear wheel travel, suspensions are stiff enough and it doesn’t dampen unevenly on any type of corners. I doubt if anyone will go for any after-market dampers or fork balancers as it is at perfect position. Comparing with elder sibling Yamaha R3, R15v3 has got better front suspension and seems to be perfect for riders hitting tracks.

    I didn’t find any requirement of USD forks and doesn’t seems to fit the bill too for a 155cc engine where price control is also a major factor.

    Legendary “Deltabox Chassis” is one of the trademark of Yamaha which R15 carries and on this sporty bike it is doing its job perfectly.

    The rigidity of the frame helps to ease out the lateral movement of the poor MRF Zapper-S tyres.

    R3 was also launched with Zapper S tyres earlier in 2015 and it used to have lateral movement sideways on fast corners, but coming to the Delta Box frame on R15v3, it counters this tendency of movement of the Zapper-S tyres and thus give enough confidence to rider.

    Counter steering for me was easier and quick on R15v3 as compared to R15v2 and even R3.

    Full size forks on the new R15v3 complement the Deltabox frame and longer aluminium swingarm delivers stable yet responsive handling. It has a steering angle of around 33 degrees and trail of 88mm for stable handling under all conditions.

    It is high time Yamaha should emphasize on ABS and steel braided brake lines to be atleast.

    With increased performance and still having same braking system apart from slight difference in disc brake is not an impressive upgrade on R15v3.

    Giving steel braided lines is not a costly affair and company can easily localise considering its competitors are going for it.

    Seating posture:

    As said earlier the bike is sportier and coming from the R15v2 ownership and 6ft in height, I found the bike to be very sportier.

    Even though total wheelbase of the bike is 1325mm which is 20mm shorter than R15v2 and seat height is 15mm more measuring up to 815mm, again 15mm more than the previous version, overall stance of the bike is aggressive and considerable amount of body weight gets pushed down over the wrists. Shorter people you have to consider it first as anyone of 5.8ft or lesser height will have to tiptoe on the bike.

    Ground clearance of the bike have also increased and it is now 170mm as compared to 160mm in R15v2.

    I found the bike easy to manoeuvre over potholes and speed breakers in the city and even on highways at major junctions. Ground clearance of the bike is much appreciable even with pillion.

    Clipons on R15v3 seems to be at perfect position there by giving an aggressive sportier position and it also helps in weight distribution. One can easily tuck in their thighs around the tank and ease out the weight distribution over the hips and thighs.

    Rider seat seems to be bit longer but Arnab found it negligible. Pillion seat is shorter now and the fairing is designed so that rear seat seems to be nestled inside the fairing.
    Pillion can still sit easily with rider having a small shoulder bag. There are no grab rails again and don’t get confused with the design of fairing as it has been inherited from R6, no they are not grab rails.

    Those planning to ride it for long or for touring it would be good if you consider changing the padding of the seats or look for another alternative for cushioning your bum. (else apply vaseline)


    Aesthetically bike looks amazing. I will not stop by giving it 9/10 just for the looks.

    It does have a more beefy and pricey element on road and while parked resembles to R6. One of the onlookers did got confused and he did question “is it by any chance a R6?”. Funny, right!!! But one can’t ignore. Currently owning a R3, even I felt the appearance of new R15v3 to be flashy and eye-catchy and onlookers did give a double look to it to confirm which bike it is.

    It seems Yamaha has spent considerable time in redesigning the appearance of the bike. Right from designing and placement of clip-ons, T-joint design, digital cluster, fairing, headlamps, taillamps, rear tyre hugger and even the windscreen. 3 different people apart from me did agreed it does appear like a “Double bubble Windscreen”

    Front number plate position is a big let-down and it does give it an ugly appearance. Air ram in between the headlamps does the job well but don’t expect too much of aerodynamic advantage. Headlamp design is narrow and sharp and along with windscreen the front doom looks big. Seems doom has been designed to be bit spherical and again add on to overall aerodynamics.

    Tank has got a plastic cover and actual metallic tank of capacity 11L remains inside it. Tank cover is one of biggest design advantage adding on to aesthetics of the bike and fins over it gives it a sharp look.

    139kg kerb weight doesn’t play much difference due to increased weight as compared to v2 which was 136kg.

    Carbon fibre finish plastic parts below the tank are neatly done and doesn’t run overlaying on the fairing. Bike comes with a new tyre hugger which is pivoted over the aluminium swing arm, but still in rainy seasons rear part of the bike is going to have a mud splash. And mind it that tyre hugger is going to be used on other bikes for sure.

    Small saree guard is attached to the tyre hugger and can be easily removed along with the hugger.

    Tail section has got number plate holder and reflectors on it facing sideways along with redesigned LED Tail lamps looking similar to litre class sibling.

    Rearsets are already sporty, redesigned and doesn’t resemble to the ones in R15v2.

    Pillion foot-pegs remain the same and at similar height.

    Indicators of the bike seems to be exactly same as in R15v2. Again, thumbs down for me and yes, they were ugly for me. Wonder how much money will Yamaha save by localizing same indicators on almost all of its bikes in India.

    R15v3 (in mm) R15v2 (in mm)
    Overall length x Width x Height 1990 x 725 x 1135 1970 x 670 x 1070
    Seat height 815 800
    Wheelbase 1325 1345
    Ground Clearance 170 160


    Digital cluster. That is the most fancy and beautiful upgrade on R15v3. It comes with a digital cluster comprising of 18 different features, namely:

    Speedometer Odometer Tripmeter1
    Gear indicator High beam light Tripmeter2
    Gear shift indicator Indicator Dynamic Mileage meter(fuel)
    Revv meter Time Mileage meter(fuel)
    Welcome note Temperature Reserve fuel meter
    Good bye note Engine heat light VVA meter

    (Hope I have not missed or exaggerated it).

    Bike now also comes with a USB charger though it was not provided in the bike which I have ridden.

    Tyres: R15v3 is now coming with wider tyres with Alloy based wheels.

    Wheel Base Tyre Size Type Speed rating
    Front Wheel Alloy Wheel 100/80-17 MRF Nylogrip Zapper FX-1 52P
    Rear Wheel Alloy Wheel 140/70-17 MRF Zapper-S 66H

    Coming from the background of R3 ownership, these Zapper tyres doesn’t have a good history with existing owners. But if I ignore it, tyres are perfect in terms of speed rating, life, radial behaviour and grip (only if it gets heated up soon).

    It does take some time to heat-up but not much considerable. Grip of the front tyre seems to be also phenomenal when it gets heated up.

    But can anyone ask Yamaha who decided to give tyres of this rating: 52P in front (150kmph speed rating) and 66H in rear (210kmph speed rating). Either the official was drunk and so were all others who approved to go forward to it or they don’t even know how much important does these rating play roles into the tyre combination

    Though Yamaha has got some brains and offering Metzeller tyres as part of racing kit at additional price, wonder what stopped them to include in standard bike setup.

    Anyways future owners can replace these tyres or atleast get tyres of better speed rating combination.

    Last but not the least are the LED headlamps and Taillight. Yes, you read it right. New R15v3 is now coming with LED headlamps and auxiliary lamps. This is much appreciated move as the classic “Candlelights of R15” are gone and one can easily ride in night. Though the spread of the headlights could have improved as it covers a lesser area.

    LED taillamps have also been redesigned which now looks more similar to elder siblings R6 and R1. It is brighter and looks completely different from v2 also.

    (Guess you have not got bored reading it, or even if then take get bored a little more)

    My Take over it

    Well, it is a good bike, goes fast, carries a lot of character of “Dhoom Bike of India”

    Yes, Yamaha has thought over this tagline of “dhoom machale” and style factor is too much to handle.

    I would off-course rate it 9/10 in terms of aesthetics and styling whereas 8/10 for power & performance. (Remember that rant 150cc R15v2 does 150 kmph, so does this new R15v3 does: 155cc engine and it do155kmph).

    Ergonomics well I will love to be harsh and rate it 6/10 since I felt R15v2 to be more comfortable on it but again R15v3 is more track oriented bike.

    Pricing 9/10(bound to change) only on the current cost price. I am yet to get maintenance cost and thus this rating can change depending on overall cost including maintenance.

    Last but not the least, a mileage of 40kmpl on this high revving engine well it does come out mullah to the possession.

    I am anticipating more headless riders (read it as without helmet) going to college or rolling around city streets.

    For serious riders and tourers, it can be a thumb down just because of ergonomics, but don’t we see people touring on KTM RC bikes also! So, yes there will be lot of sore bums and swollen wrist riders touring on it but for sure they will be happy to ride a reliable bike.

    For Track riders, well R15v3 is going to give a run for the money to other makers.

    Appearance & Styling 9/10
    Power & Performance 8/10
    Ergonomics 6/10
    Pricing 9/10

    Some More Pics:

    All High Resolution Photo Credits goes to: @seahorses (Ashish Menon)

    Closeups are taken by yours truly at time of Auto Expo and after the ride.

    Photographer also poses (ashish menon below):

    Last edited by saquib3005; 03-13-2018, 01:47 AM.
    True Wanderers 4.0 | Chasing The Destiny | Finalist | Viaterra Raptor Tail Bag Review

  • #2
    Re: Yamaha YZF R15v3.0 – First Ride experience extensive Review

    Initial impressions' thread approved!

    Kudos on the effort and detail. This has to be quickest review on the bike in India.
    Waiting for (more) pics from the 320 km ride.
    Got a $5 head? Get a $5 helmet.
    Because everyone who passes, isn't a martyr!

    Bullet Service Guide CBR 250R Parts Manual Fz16 service manual -
    Hero Moto Corp Bikes' Parts RE STD 350 Wiring Diagram (CI) Service Manual - Classic 350/500
    ZMR parts -
    P200NS Spares' prices -


    • #3
      Re: Yamaha YZF R15v3.0 – First Ride experience extensive Review

      Excellent write up sir, but the pics are not visible.

      I have a query and I am sorry if its a noob question.

      Why are manufacturers keen on providing a slipper and assist clutch rather than ABS?? Why do slipper clutch have a higher priority than ABS?

      We saw the same thing on baby ninja300 and now the R15V3. I have been riding for close to 9 years now; 4 of which are on a R15V2 (March 2014 model, still going strong). I am one of those riders you talked about above, who tour on a racing bike. In nearly a decade of riding I have never felt the need of an assist and slipper clutch, either in daily commuting or on long tours. But I definitely have felt the need of ABS countless times. The 2 spills I had on my V2 (panic braking due to a jaywalker on phone) in past 4 years could have been avoided if I had ABS. So in my humble opinion and 9 years on the saddle, I feel the need of ABS much more than the Assist and slipper clutch.

      You see most of us who buy these bikes don't even have a race track in our cities. So the main purpose of buying it is for daily commuting, (and if you are crazy like me) for touring. And in both these scenarios ABS is much more needed than a slipper clutch (Just my opinion). Yes, a slipper clutch might do wonders on a race track and it might save your wheel from hopping on a fast corner and you might get a blistering lap time, but how many people who buy the bike are going to use or need that feature in day today riding? And even if you do take it to the track, its 1% of its entire life, the other 99% of times the bike is going to be on public roads where you don't need to kiss the apex, but you need to be on the look out for dogs running on the road suddenly, cows, pigs, other animals and people behaving like animals. Any of these situations will have you grabbing a handful of the front brake and that's when you need the ABS.. It happens every day, sometimes several times in a single day.

      I can ride without a slipper clutch all my life without any worries, it will not affect my riding in any way, but I surely need ABS and I need it yesterday.

      Am I missing some key info here which makes Slipper clutch more important than ABS? Please enlighten me....
      I would like to thank my legs for supporting me, my arms for being always by my side and my fingers; I could always count on them.


      • #4
        Re: Yamaha YZF R15v3.0 – First Ride experience extensive Review

        thanks for approval @Divya Sharan

        I retried uploading pics but seems now others are not able to see the pictures.

        I uploaded the pictures on g-drive.
        Made it public
        copied the shareable link and added with url starting as:

        attached the pic using url from attachment tab, and pics got uploaded.
        I am able to see the pictures from Chrome even if I am logged in or not but not from other browsers.

        Others are not able to see the pics at all.
        [MENTION=38603]The Monk[/MENTION] can you also suggest?
        Last edited by saquib3005; 03-14-2018, 12:02 AM.
        True Wanderers 4.0 | Chasing The Destiny | Finalist | Viaterra Raptor Tail Bag Review


        • #5
          Re: Yamaha YZF R15v3.0 – First Ride experience extensive Review

          Originally posted by saquib3005 View Post
          Made it public
          copied the shareable link and added with url starting as:
          Brother, please correct the GDrive URL. The above link returns a HTTP 400.
          Got a $5 head? Get a $5 helmet.
          Because everyone who passes, isn't a martyr!

          Bullet Service Guide CBR 250R Parts Manual Fz16 service manual -
          Hero Moto Corp Bikes' Parts RE STD 350 Wiring Diagram (CI) Service Manual - Classic 350/500
          ZMR parts -
          P200NS Spares' prices -


          • #6
            Re: Yamaha YZF R15v3.0 – First Ride experience extensive Review

            Originally posted by Divya Sharan View Post
            Brother, please correct the GDrive URL. The above link returns a HTTP 400.
            Using ""this is one of the ways to use google photos URL on social media.
            Specially on the forums.

            So if gdrive link is:

            then shareable URL will be:

            By the way if I am using xbhp forum from phone(browser based) without logging in then also I am able to see pics.
            True Wanderers 4.0 | Chasing The Destiny | Finalist | Viaterra Raptor Tail Bag Review


            • #7
              Re: Yamaha YZF R15v3.0 – First Ride experience extensive Review

              Originally posted by saquib3005 View Post

              By the way if I am using xbhp forum from phone(browser based) without logging in then also I am able to see pics.
              I cannot see pics. Logged in as well well as logged out.
              This is from a laptop.
              Last edited by Divya Sharan; 03-14-2018, 05:38 PM.
              Got a $5 head? Get a $5 helmet.
              Because everyone who passes, isn't a martyr!

              Bullet Service Guide CBR 250R Parts Manual Fz16 service manual -
              Hero Moto Corp Bikes' Parts RE STD 350 Wiring Diagram (CI) Service Manual - Classic 350/500
              ZMR parts -
              P200NS Spares' prices -


              • #8
                Re: Yamaha YZF R15v3.0 – First Ride experience extensive Review

                Unable to see any pics, this is from my Laptop guys, do sort it out eager to see the fresh set of photos.
                Biker @ heart


                • #9
                  Re: Yamaha YZF R15v3.0 – First Ride experience extensive Review

                  Nice and comprehensive review.
                  A bike on the road is worth two in the shed.

                  Weekend Rides Around Kolkata
                  My Ride To Sunderbans -
                  Hemnagar & Samsernagar
                  Saagar Kinare - Bakkhali Calling