Bad news for Yamaha YZF-R3 fans in India, as multiple sources are reporting that it’s been discontinued. The BS6 emissions compliance deadline looms in April, and the R3 was apparently not popular enough that Yamaha felt it needed to go through the update process to bring it into line.
There are a few contributing factors to consider. For one, while the rest of the world got the updated R3 last year, India, unfortunately, did not. While I didn’t ride either R3 in India, I have ridden both R3s and can confidently say that Indian riders missed out. The updated R3 was much more responsive and fun to ride, while the previous generation R3 felt much more vague and floaty.
Another big reason was apparently pricing, according to the Financial Express. The R3 commanded a premium price across India, one that didn’t seem justified when the bike was stacked up against competitors including the KTM RC 390. Having ridden both the outgoing R3 and the RC 390, the fun factor is no contest. That goes double if the RC 390 was also priced lower than the R3, as was apparently the case.
Several sources suspect that this discontinuation may not be permanent. The updated R3 released in the rest of the world currently complies with the old BS4 emissions standards. However, CarAndBike, BikeWale, and Indian Autos Blog all speculate that Yamaha could be retooling it to fit BS6 standards, with a reintroduction to the market possibly planned for 2021.
How that updated model might be priced as compared to its competition will remain to be seen—if it even happens. The outgoing R3 is priced at Rs. 3.52 lakh, or US $4,700. Meanwhile, the current KTM RC 390 costs Rs. 2.71 lakh, or US $3,619. Both the actual bank-math and the fun-math make this particular equation anything but mysterious.