Does the R15 V4 pack enough to triumph over the new RC 125?
Yamaha has left everyone stunned with the YZF-R15 V4, as the Japanese supersport received some crucial updates in its fourth iteration, along with a notable price hike. But while the Yamaha R15 V4 is already here, its Austrian rival, the 2022 KTM RC 125, is also headed our way. So we pitted the two baby supersport bikes against each other, and here are the results:
In its latest avatar, the R15 V4 sports a YZF-R7-like fascia, with a centrally located projector headlight flanked by LED DRLs. The 2022 KTM RC 125, too, has gone under a major overhaul with a new LED unit replacing the previous version’s twin lateral projectors.
The R15’s fairing has been tweaked and the overall styling remains quite sharp. The KTM receives a major design overhaul as well, and the bike now looks way more accommodating.
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The Yamaha R15 V4 is powered by a 155cc liquid-cooled single-cylinder motor developing 18.4PS and 14.2Nm. On the other hand, the KTM RC 125 retains the 125cc liquid-cooled motor with its output rated at 15PS and 12Nm. Both bikes feature a 6-speed gearbox. However, the Yamaha R15 V4 gets slipper clutch, with select models also getting an upshift-only quickshifter.
Yamaha has equipped the R15 V4 with a new digital instrument console. The 2022 KTM RC 125 gets a TFT display (likely borrowed from the current-gen 390 Duke). Expect the India-spec bike to get an LCD dash, akin to that on the KTM 250 Adventure, to keep costs in check.
The Yamaha R15 V4’s cluster offers Bluetooth connectivity via the Y-connect app which allows you to access call/SMS alerts and check your phone’s battery status. Furthermore, the dash also gets a lap timer and two display modes (Street and Track). The KTM RC 125’s dash also offers Bluetooth connectivity using the KTM My Ride app.
The YZF-R15 V4 retains the Deltabox frame while the 2022 KTM RC 125 gets a trellis frame with a bolt-on subframe. The latter is easier and more affordable to replace if needed.
Finally, the Yamaha R15 V4 gets a USD fork. It retains the linked monoshock setup at the rear. The KTM RC 125 is suspended on a 43mm WP Apex fork and WP Apex monoshock.
Braking hardware on the latest R15 comprises a 282mm front and 220mm rear disc, whereas the 2022 KTM RC 125 uses a 320mm front and a 230mm rear disc. Both get dual-channel ABS.
Yamaha has also equipped the YZF-R15 V4 with a traction control system that the KTM misses out on.
The R15 V4 gets an 11-litre fuel tank while the KTM RC 125 benefits from a larger 13.7-litre unit.
With a seat height of 815mm, the 2021 R15 should be more convenient for shorter riders as compared to the RC 125’s 824mm seat height.
The Yamaha R15 V4 should also be easy to move around with its 142 kerb weight against the RC 125’s 147kg weight.
Pricing for the Yamaha YZF-R15 V4 starts from Rs 1,67,800. Expect the 2021 KTM RC 125 to bear a premium of Rs 7,000 - 8,000 over the current model’s retail price of Rs 1.80 lakh (all prices ex-showroom, Delhi).