Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bike Reviews on Cycle Insider (16)
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2011-01-19 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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I've now owned my 03 R1 for almost a year. I've owned many bikes, CBR6's, GSXR'6s, ZX9R, ZX636 and an R6. Two bikes ago I owned a ZX9r which ripped and was a joy to ride (2002). When I sold it, I bought a 2007 GSXR600. I was quickly disappointed by the gixxer coming from an bigger bike so I immediately started looking for a little bike. I found my R1 and actually traded the guy plus cash on his end (he was afraid of the R1, first time rider). This bike has hauls, I thought my ZX9 with 130 at the rear wheel was fast. Well, this R1 has redefined what fast is for me. Quite simply, it rips. The only thing I can say that is lacking is Rider feedback in the front end because it's so smooth (when riding hard/spirited) which is a great thing for a experienced rider but not so much for an intermediate or beginner. This bike will do exactly what you tell it to, then a little more if you get cocky. It will not allow you to make a mistake and punish you when you do make a mistake. If you're a beginner, stay away from this machine or stay away from riding it hard. The Mill whispers sweet nothings in your ear begging you to push it harder, be careful. This handling is bar none, tip in is great and confidence inspiring as long as you're in the right line. The bike responds well to a bit of trail breaking and doesn't stand up too quick. It will roll on wheelie in 2nd, no whacking twitching the throttle to get the front end skyward. Overall this bike is a very nice machine, just make sure you feed it and handle with care because this thing will eat you the first time you decide it's been bad and needs a spanking.
- Mike, oregon city, Oregon

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2007-02-16 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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I purchased an 03 R1 in WV. The 04 models were already out so I got a great deal for a new R1. I've had two other new sportbikes and a cruiser over the last nine years, and they were all good bikes, but none of them have compared to the R1. I have had no problems with the bike. I chose the 03 because of the price and I wasn't sure about buying a bike with the exhaust under the seat. I was afraid that there would be excessive heat, but that doesn't seem to be a problem from what I've read. I moved to Lafayette, LA in 05 and miss the mountains and curves in WV. I can't wait to ride it again in the mountains where the bike really shines. If you're looking for a used sportbike and can find a used 03 R1 that's in good condition, I highly recommend the purchase. Be careful and please do your racing on a track!
- Samuel, Lafayette, Louisiana

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2007-01-04 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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I use to ride a YZF 600 but I have now moved to a R1 BIG BOY. I love it!! There is nothing that compares to instant throttle response. When you roll that grip back and you have to tighten your hold on the bike because it wants to throw you off, than you know you have a powerful machine. I ride it rain or shine and I feel safe doing so because of the superb way that it was designed.
- Ricky , Portland, Oregon

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2005-03-18 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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THIS BIKE IS GREAT. I WENT FROM A KATANA 750 TO THIS, SO I GUESS ANYTHING IS AN IMPROVEMENT. I LOVE THE R1. IT'S LIGHT, SMOOTH, AND COMFORTABLE. HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT TO ANY LEVELHEADED, MODERATE TO EXPERIENCED RIDER. RODE THE WIFE AND SHE SAID SHE FELT LIKE SHE WAS FLOATING. OH AND IT'S VERY FAST.
- jason , eglin afb, Florida

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2004-07-17 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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How long can these reviews be? I doubt I have enough room to say everything good about the '03 R1 that I would like to. After nearly a year of ownership, 4000 street miles, and years and years of experience with other makes/models, I am as happy with the R1 as the day I rode it home. The level of overall refinement of this machine is inspiring. The fuel injection system is pure brilliance. The Yamaha's fit and finish are far superior to any of the three Honda motorcycles I've owned, despite Honda's reputation for supremacy in that area. The engine's seamless spread of torque/power is comparatively astonishing, and hard throttle application anywhere above 8000 rpm is adrenalized accelerative nirvana. The brakes are powerful and intuitive, the transmission smooth (enough) and positive, and the handling characteristics very nearly the Holy Grail of supersport handling. What few flaws, then, could marr this otherwise perfect showing? The seat is wonderful but the riding position is less so. Combined with a bit of engine buzziness through the bars at midrange rpms, this leaves something to be desired for long-haul superslab rides---but that's not what the bike was really designed for! The stock Dunlop tires should be replaced with something more inspiring before the bike ever rolls off the showroom floor. In short, if you're considering an '03 R1 for purchase, it is extremely unlikely that you will be disappointed with your decision.
- xpovos, Murfreesboro, Tennessee

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2004-06-11 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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I got my 04 R1 in early February and still am smiling. The power is awesome, going into hyperspace when hitting 10k RPMs. The transmission is like silk and the handling a dream. It falls into corners and can be flicked around with ease. The 100 mile an hour wheelies on PCH are cool:) The bonus is it looks good! What great fit and finish - not cheasy like the ZX-10. I feel like I am wearing Armani but driving a Lamborghini. It is the best bike I have ever owned - although I still love cruising on my FZ-1!!
- Mike, Huntington Beach, California

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2004-05-09 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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I just bought a 2003 R1 and this has to be the best bike out there. The acceleration and handling are beyond words. You think about it and the bike responds. Even at 6'3", I found the ride to be a comfortable one and before I knew it, hours had passed. If you're looking for a bike to buy, make it this one!
- Delano Davis, Killeen, Texas

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2004-04-04 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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I'm on the other end of a 24-year hiatus in riding anything. Got a wild hair and went out and bought a 2003 R1 in October and have not stopped grinning since! The bike is so light, so fast and it handles like a dream. I have never ridden anything like it! The R1 has an awesome engine, excellent brakes, flicks into turns effortlessly and powers out of them, in any gear, with gusto. I'm looking to complement my R1 with a Hayabusa next year for the longer runs, though the R1 is comfortable enough for now.
- Cearbhallain, Lake Elsinore, California

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2004-01-29 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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I thought my 900 Ninja was fast, this bike would run circles around it. I just got a new 03 R1 and its awesome in everyway.
- Riceburner, Idaho Srings, Colorado

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2003-10-24 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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The R1 is the perfect balance of performance, speed, and beauty. It loves curves, wheelies, backroads etc... Just note, that this bike is not for the faint of heart, kind of like an elite soldier.
- Justin Killings, Decatur, Georgia

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2003-10-23 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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I bought an 03 R1. It looks, sounds, rides great. Being the first time rider, I have had doubts if I could handle the bike, but if you are not taking the rpm up pass 7,000, it can be a comfortable and rather easy bike to ride around the city streets. It would also provide the power you need should you decide that you are ready for some canyon rides......
- CJ, Irvine, California

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2003-08-28 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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This is the prettiest, most exciting and best handling bike I've ever been on.
- telis, thrakomakedones, Greece

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2003-07-15 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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I'm a clear headed kid, quite rational and bright... I fell in love with this bike when i first saw it.... the dealer tried to sell me an r6 (cuz its my first bike) but i wasn't having it. It's the first thing in my life that i have really wanted and have actually gotten. I even got the helmet i wanted! It's nice to have such a beautiful piece of mecha in my drive way. This thing is tough!
- Ever, covina, California

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2003-06-18 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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Had the R6 for a month and then decided to trade it for the R1. Actually, I wanted the R1 from the start, but had not ridden in years, so I wanted to play it safe. The R6 is great.. but no punch when you throttle the thing... great acceleration though. The R1... its got balls. It boils down to this... the 600's are like turbo'd rice rockets, the 1000's are the muscle bikes. Justification... those who drive high powered cars, like the viper, rarely drive at its potential.. but it's nice to have that juice one motion away. Plus it feels good knowing you are riding one of the baddest machines on two wheels, it's true.
- Ace, Orlando, Florida

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2003-04-30 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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This bike make you feel like you are a part of it, not like you are riding on top of it. I have only been riding for a year but the bike makes you feel so comfortable and like it will do anything you ask it to do. This bike is fast with no modifications so hold on tight and enjoy the ride. Latin Gringo
- Tony Arellano, Annandale, Virginia

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2003-03-31 2003 Yamaha YZF-R1 Sport Bikes View Listings

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While starting the bike for the first time I noticed a loud bang, kind of a metal to metal sound, then I relized it was still in gear, I put it in nutral and fired her up, rooooooom rommmmmmm it was alive, I drove around the block poping wheelies and shouting at young girls, boy was that fun,,, then I drove over a gsxr 1000 , yes, I drove right over it. that is all I have to say.
- Jake Benatali, Chicago, Illinois

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