Propelling the Yamaha YZF-R3 is a liquid-cooled, four-stroke, parallel-twin engine, which displaces 321cc. Each cylinder has four-valves, controlled by dual camshafts. The cylinders are coated by a Yamaha trademarked DiASil coating, to reduce friction. The R3 motor remains silky smooth throughout the rev range, with barely any hint of vibrations.
The engine makes a maximum of 41.4bhp of power, delivered at 10,750rpm, and peak torque is 3kgm, delivered at 9,000rpm. The power curve is linear. Although one will notice that once you pin the throttle, post 3,000rpm there’s an urgency, as all the engine horses ride in, gaining smoothly in aggression past 6,000rpm. The tachometer needle swings freely to the 12,500rpm redline, and hits the limiter at 13,000rpm.
The engine is quiet and doesn’t sound aggressive at all. This gem of an engine is mated to a smooth-performing gearbox, which shifts precisely with the minimum of light toe input. The clutch too, feels spot on.
The YZF-R3 is quick off the mark, covering naught to 60kph in 2.62 seconds and 100kph in 6.75secs. We touched a true top speed of 155kph.