We probably got so tired of asking our government to improve the quality of our roads, we decided to change our machines and our riding style instead. Must be one of the reasons why off-road-friendly motorcycles are gaining popularity in India. There is now one for everyone and for nearly every budget. However, an extra choice never hurts and Yamaha has one such machine in its portfolio, elsewhere. The best part, the Yamaha WR 155R is powered by the same engine as the R15 and the MT-15 which are on sale in India.
Powering the WR 155R is a 155cc, liquid-cooled engine which features variable valve actuation and runs the same compression ratio and bore and stroke as the India-spec R15. It cranks out more torque though at 14.3 Nm and slightly fewer horses at 16.7PS, compared to 14.1 Nm and 18.6 PS for the R15 in India. All that power is transferred to the rear wheel via a six-speed gearbox. At 134 kilos though, the bike is 8 kgs lighter than the R15.
The WR 155R gets off-road friendly rubber mounted on a 21″ front and 18″ rear wheel, which makes the engine sit rather high inside a semi-double-cradle frame. Front 41mm forks are of the conventional type and offer loads of travel and at the back, there’s a link-type monoshock which offers adjustability for preload. The fuel tank can swallow 8.1-litres at one go and all the fumes exit an under-seat exhaust pipe which should make this bike as good as a submarine. An all-digital instrument cluster displays all necessary information. Braking is handled by petals-shaped discs, a 240mm unit up front and a 220mm disc at the back.
It’s not a complicated machine, this Yamaha, and its biggest and most expensive component, the engine, is already powering motorcycles in our country. Shouldn’t be all that difficult to introduce it here then. And since the R15 and MT-15 are such brilliant road-going machines, the WR 155 R will make for a perfect addition to the range where there would be a 150cc Yamaha available for almost every genre of motorcycling.