2020 Yamaha YZF-R6

Essential supersport performance in a lightweight, pocket-size package.

2020 Yamaha YZF-R6Yamaha

Some say the 600cc supersport class is dead, that it has left the station never to return. Detractors argue modern-day motorcyclists don’t want racy ergonomics, a top-end-focused powerband, or anything less than 150 hp measured at the rear wheel. Well, perhaps they should ride the latest-generation Yamaha YZF-R6 to remember why middleweight sportbikes were—and remain—so special. And why the R6 owns a big chunk of the trackday pie.

Unlike many smaller-displacement sportbikes that have an air of soft-edge civility, the R6 is pure race replica with trick bits to match. The engine boasts titanium valves, ceramic-composite-plated cylinder bores, and magnesium cases. With a 16,500-rpm redline, the R6’s key components need to be strong, slippery, and light. There is, as a matter of fact, a replacement for displacement: light weight.

2020 Yamaha YZF-R6Yamaha

To that end, the R6 also has a magnesium subframe, a titanium muffler, and an aluminum fuel tank. The electronics package features six-level traction control, including “off,” and three-way-adjustable throttle response. A slipper clutch and variable-length intakes further evince the single-minded pursuit of middleweight performance. The Yamaha YZF-R6, significantly updated three years ago, is a quintessential example of the breed.

2020 Yamaha YZF-R6 Reviews, Comparisons, And Competition

2020 Yamaha YZF-R6Yamaha

2020 Yamaha YZF-R6 Claimed Specifications

Price $12,199
Engine Liquid-cooled, DOHC, four-cylinder
Displacement 599cc
Bore x Stroke 67.0mm x 42.5mm
Horsepower N/A
Torque N/A
Transmission 6-speed
Final Drive Chain
Seat Height 33.5 in.
Rake 24.0°
Trail 3.8 in.
Front Suspension 43mm fully adjustable; 4.7-in. travel
Rear Suspension Fully adjustable; 4.7-in. travel
Front Tire 120/70-17
Rear Tire 180/55-17
Wheelbase 54.1 in.
Fuel Capacity 4.6 gal.
Claimed Wet Weight 419 lb.

Cycle World Tested Specifications

Seat Height N/A
Dry Weight N/A
Rear-Wheel Horsepower N/A
Rear-Wheel Torque N/A
0–60 mph N/A
1/4-mile N/A
Braking 30–0 mph N/A
Braking 60–0 mph N/A