Cheaper, quicker and more re­fined than the sought-af­ter orig­i­nal

Performance Bikes (UK) - - CONTENTS -

Time to buy a 2000-2001 Yamaha R1

The ven­er­a­ble YZF-R1 turned 20 years old this year, but rather than get dewy-eyed over the orig­i­nal, 1998 in­car­na­tion of Yamaha’s su­per­bike, you’d be well ad­vised to lower the rose-tinted spec­ta­cles, and fast­for­ward a few years in search of more af­ford­able thrills.

The 2000-2001 5JJ model is a bet­ter bike on every level. Re­ject the ’98 bike and you’ll not only save your­self the hefty ‘orig­i­nal­ity pre­mium’ but also gain a bike that’s al­to­gether more pol­ished, and ready for ac­tion on UK roads and track­day fast groups.

Find a stock ex­am­ple and you’re on to a win­ner (and if you’re swap­ping the ex­haust, squir­rel the orig­i­nal one away for re-sale time – they’re hugely cher­ished items). The per­for­mance can be in­stantly im­proved by rais­ing the nee­dles to erad­i­cate lean run­ning in the midrange, and by tak­ing a closer look at the sus­pen­sion. At 18 years old, stan­dard forks will be due a re-valve, and the worn rear shock could bear re­place­ment. The beauty be­ing that, with the money you’ve saved over a 1998 model, this kind of work – from the likes of K-Tech – could net you a sweet-han­dling litre bike for the same price as a show­room-con­di­tion 20-year-old, which you’d find the lim­its of much sooner. Braided hoses will re­turn a lit­tle more power and feel from your brakes. In our ex­pe­ri­ence, fid­dling with al­ter­na­tive mas­ter cylin­ders doesn’t garner enough of an im­prove­ment to war­rant the in­vest­ment.

Want to make your 5JJ re­ally shine? Washed-up ex-PB editor Matt ( never heard of him – CN) fit­ted forged al­loy Dy­mag wheels to his, which trans­formed it into the king of Cad­well (in his mind, at least).

5JJs can re­spond bet­ter to a slip-on to a full sys­tem. And some­times even bet­ter with the stock can... Sus­pen­sion is the first place to start with the mods

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