A few months back, when Yamaha decided to keep the R6 only for racetracks, the loyalists across the world felt the pain inside. However, the successor to the R6 was a big ray of hope, and enthusiasts (including us) were quite hopeful that the bike would be equally exciting as the outgoing inline-four screamer if not more. Now, the time has come and Yamaha has finally unveiled the all-new 2022 YZF-R7. While it looks like a successor to the R6 at first, the Yamaha purists across the globe would not agree to that and the reasons are many. The first and the biggest one being, the fact that, unlike the Yamaha YZF-R6 that used to draw power from a potent 599cc, inline four-cylinder engine, the R7 instead shares its 689cc, parallel-twin motor with its naked streetfighter sibling – the MT-07.
With this, against the R6’s respective power and torque outputs of 118 hp and 62 Nm, the R7 sees a massive drop in power with 73 hp on tap while the peak torque is now rated at 67 Nm. Transmission is a six-speed and as an upside, you do get a slip and assist function on this one. In addition, there is also an upshift-only quickshifter that is being offered as an optional extra. As far as the chassis is concerned, there is a difference here as well compared to the R6. The R7 gets a narrow, high-strength steel frame, which is similar to the one on the MT-07. In comparison, the R6 used to come with a tried and tested twin-spar chassis.
And hey! how can we forget the design bit! The Yamaha YZF-R6 had an R1-like face with those twin LED projectors sneaking out of the front fairing. In comparison, the R7 gets a single LED unit that is fitted right in the center of the air scoop. The LED DRLs have been retained though! With all these ‘compromises’ then, will it be right to say that the R7 can be seen only as a ‘spiritual successor’ of the R6 and not a direct one? Well, perhaps!
Now, in such a case, while you might have started to think that the R7 is just an MT-07 slapped with a front fairing, well, this also doesn’t stand entirely true as there are a lot of differences between these two. The new 2022 Yamaha YZF-R7 gets 41mm fully adjustable KYB upside-down forks upfront compared to non-adjustable telescopic units on the MT-07. Moreover, the brake set up is also different, as with the MT-07, you get twin 298mm discs at the front with axial calipers while the R7 comes with radially-mounted four-pot calipers.
All said and done, the new 2022 Yamaha YZF-R7 clearly can’t be called a worthy successor to the mighty R6 that was known as a track junkie’s wet dream. However, on the upside, it can be a good option for riders looking to sharpen their riding skills while getting all the feel of a proper supersport with that committed riding position, thanks to the rearset footpegs and clip-ons. Now, the big question remains – Should you wait for the Yamaha R7 in India? Well, the company hasn’t given any indications as of now. But given the price-sensitive nature of our market and growing interest in middleweight supersports here, the day might not be far away. The R7 is priced in the US at USD 8,999 or simply Rs 6.57 lakh, with Aprilia RS660 being the prime rival.
That said, the R7 certainly benefits from the massive price advantage compared to the R6, which is another reason why Yamaha should bring this to India. If priced under the Rs 10 lakh mark, the R7 can turn out to be one super interesting motorcycle.
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