5. Racy, aerodynamic looks

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The carbon-fiber enhanced bike in the above photo is the exclusive R1M, but the pedestrian model also gets the subversive LED head and positioning lights, which reinforce Yamaha’s assertion that this streetbike was built with racetrack intentions. Slap on numbers and a couple pieces of tape over the lights and you should sail through tech inspection unhindered. The shark gills in the tank cover look like the ones on the MotoGP bike, so do the slots in the top triple clamp that first appeared on the race bike in an attempt to tune its “flex.”

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Everywhere you look you see slots and airfoils and winglets, all of which lead you to believe Yamaha’s assertion that the new bike is 8% more aerodynamic than the old one. An engine that’s 1.2 inches narrower probably doesn’t hurt either. Racers are allowed to use aftermarket bodywork, of course, but it must “closely resemble” the original stuff.

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