In October 2018, Yamaha unveiled the MT-15 in Thailand. The bike is essentially a sport naked version of the R15 V3.0. It has now been spotted testing in India and it’s clear that there are a few key differences between it and the international-spec bike.
For starters, like we had earlier predicted, it's equipped with a conventional telescopic fork rather than an upside down fork used on the bike showcased in Thailand. Another significant change seems to be the use of a basic, box-section swingarm rather than the aluminium unit found on the R15 V3.0. These changes are likely a move to reduce costs.
While the front end of the bike isn’t clearly visible, it seems like the bike gets the same bug-eyed headlights derived from its bigger sibling – the MT-09. We believe it will be a LED unit like on all of the company’s other bikes. The wheels are also different from the international-spec bike and look like the same ones used on the R15 V3.0 and the recently-spotted, upcoming FZ-S. Other styling aspects like the tank design and side panels look identical to the bike seen in Thailand. The pictures don’t allow us to see if there is an ABS ring but Yamaha will have to launch the bike with the safety tech as ABS will be mandatory on all Indian bike (125cc and above) from April 1, 2019.
The MT-15 is powered by the same engine as on the R15 V 3.0 – the 155cc, single-cylinder, SOHC unit that makes 19.3hp and 15Nm of peak torque. However, the company could tune it differently for the MT. What we can be certain of is that Variable Valve Actuation (VVA) will make its way to this bike as well. It will also use the same 6-speed gearbox and a slip and assist clutch.
The launch of the MT-15 will see it become the most premium naked motorcycle offering from the manufacturer in the 150cc segment. It will also take on the likes of the recently-launched 125 Duke. As for pricing, expect the MT-15 to be slightly more affordable than the R15 V3.0.
The manufacturer earlier announced that a new product will be unveiled on Jan 21, 2019. We could either see the Japanese manufacturer launch the MT-15 for India or the next-gen FZ-S that was recently spotted as well.
Yamaha YZF-R15 V3.0 ABS launched at Rs 1.39 lakh