The RD Turbo by Frateschi Garage in Sao Paulo pays homage to Yamaha's cult bike, the RD 350, but with a twist. They've taken the classic two-stroke engine and upgraded it with a modern four-stroke R3 engine, breathing new life into the twin-cylinder beast. Adding to the excitement, they installed an exhaust gas turbocharger to maximize performance.
The bike retains the original tubular steel frame from a Yamaha RD 350 LC YPVS, reinforced for stability. Renato Frateschi, the mastermind behind the project, transplanted a liquid-cooled, 321cc 180-degree twin-cylinder engine from Yamaha's R3 or MT-03. Either model could have been the donor as they share a platform and an engine. Given how four-stroke power is different from that of a two-stroke, Frateschi thought that the little 321cc twin needed a bit of boost to put a smile on RD fans' faces.
To enhance the café racer's performance further, Frateschi introduced a specially ordered turbocharger, optimizing the exhaust system, turbine, air box, and injection nozzles. Without Euro 5 restrictions, they had room to fine-tune the bike to their liking. As with most turbos, exhaust gasses spool up the impeller, compressing the air that enters the engine. More air equals more boost, which equals more power.
Gallery: Yamaha RD R3 Turbo cafe racer by Frateschi Garage
The suspension received attention too, with an adjustable upside-down telescopic fork at the front and an aluminum swingarm from a Triumph Daytona 675 at the rear. The braking system was upgraded with radially adapted four-piston Brembo calipers.
To retain a classic touch, they replaced the original wheels with 17-inch wire-spoke wheels. The fairings were crafted using a 3D printer, resulting in a sleek design featuring a pointed half fairing, a solo rear rump, and Yamaha's iconic red Speedblock decor.
Additional details include sporty clip-on handlebars, LED lights, and other stylish elements. While this modern interpretation of the Yamaha RD is a dream come true for motorcycle enthusiasts, it's unlikely that Yamaha will release a similar model with a two-stroke engine or turbo. Nonetheless, the RD Turbo showcases the perfect blend of old-school cool and contemporary performance.