Ever since Yamaha released the 2022 YZF-R7 in May, 2021, sportbike fans have clamored for a YZF-R9 to join Team Blue’s lineup. Heavily based on the popular MT-07 naked bike, the R7 offered new levels of approachability and affordability in the struggling supersport segment. The move was a win-win for all, with Iwata adding a few chassis and ergonomic tweaks while carrying over the well-loved CP2 engine.
Many anticipated Yamaha to apply the same formula to a potential R9 model. Thanks to MT-09's firm foundations, the bLU cRU could easily leverage the heavy middleweight platform for a fully-faired affair. Those R9 rumors gained validity when trademarks filed in the summer of 2021 secured Yamaha the rights to the YZF-R9 name.
A new trademark filed by the brand not only protects the use of that title but also designates the nameplate's presentation. As a result, the document reveals the YZF-R9 logo that Yamaha could use for the prospective supersport. It comes as no surprise that the R9 branding falls in line with the current R series typography found on the YZF-R3, R7, and R1.
Kardesign Yamaha YZF-R9 Concept
Unfortunately, the file doesn’t divulge any technical details or specifications. Based on Yamaha’s R7 approach, we would expect the R9 to harness the firm's punchy 890cc, inline-triple CP3 engine that powers the MT-09. However, with the supersport aimed at road and track riders, we wouldn’t be surprised to see the XSR900’s longer swingarm help the R9 hook up out of the corner.
Of course, one nameplate and one branding trademark don’t confirm the R9’s imminent arrival. At the same time, we have to recognize the gaping hole within Yamaha’s current sportbike range. The R3 acts as the line’s entry point while the R7 caters to slightly more advanced riders. From there, customers can only graduate to the flagship R1, which packs a fire-breathing, 198-horsepower inline-four.
When compared to the R7’s 74 ponies, the R1 is a massive leap for riders. The CP3’s 117-horsepower output could bridge the gap between the two R series members, making the R9 a prime candidate to join the lineup in the coming months.