The first true sports bike that we saw in India was way back when the Yamaha launched the R15. The R15 was a very potent and track focused bike. In the more powerful, quarter litre sports bike segment, we have so far had only the KTM RC 390 and the Ninja 300. The RC 390 has been the reigning king of this segment so far. Yamaha would soon be launching either the R25 or the R3, in hope to grab a share of the success the bikes in this segment have been enjoying. The R3 was introduced by the Yamaha to take on the Ninja 300. Since the Ninja 300 is already being sold in India it is very likely that the Yamaha would offer the R3 instead of the R25. The bike would most likely come in via CBU route and pricing it close to the competitor –RC 390 would be big challenge.
We bring you the specification comparison - Yamaha R3 Vs Yamaha R25 Vs KTM RC 390
Design and Looks
Let’s treat the Yamaha R3 and R25 as one and the same bikes since there are no differences between these two bikes, except the name that you find on the side of the fairing. Sports bikes are designed to go fast. The R3 as well as the R25 look edgy and sharp; there are twin elongated headlamps at the front which are like the Ninja but sharper.
The RC 390 is also a sharp looking bike which uses twin headlamps, recessed into the fairing. The rear view mirrors, mounted on the fairing are wide and extremely useful. The RC 390’s trellis frame and alloy wheels are colored in bright, KTM orange and the bike wears it with pride. Another distinguishing feature of the KTM 390 is the cast alloy swing arm which is not only ornamental. It offers exceptional torsional stiffness too.
The KTM 390 as well as the R3 and R25 use split seats have deep knee recesses for aggressive riding position.
Features and Engine
The KTM RC 390 is the most powerful bike among the three and boasts of a 373cc engine. It produces peak power of 43bhp at 9500rpm. The R25 uses a 249cc engine that manages to produce 35.5bhp at 12000rpm and 22.1Nm of torque at 10000rpm. The larger capacity engine (321cc) on the R3 produces 41.4bhp of peak power at 10750rpm and torque of 29.6Nm at 9000rpm.
RC 390 is the lightest (166kg) and has the highest power-to weight ratio. The RC 390 uses a single cylinder motor which may be more powerful but is not as smooth as the in-line twin cylinder motor on R3 and R25.
The R3 and R25 use a combination of analogue and digital instrument console which is identical and looks as sharp as the bikes themselves. The unit on the KTM RC 390 has been borrowed from the RC 200 and it is completely digital.
Suspension, Wheels & Tyres and Brakes
The KTM RC390 uses upside down forks at the front and monocross suspension at the rear. The spring on the rear is adjustable and has been progressively wound. The R3 and R25 use normal telescopic forks at the front which is indeed disappointing considering the price point at which it would sell. At the rear there is a monocross suspension like the KTM.
The R3, R25 and RC 390 use aluminum alloy wheels, the tyres on the front on each of the bike is 110mm wide. On the rear, the R25 and R3 use 140mm tyre while the RC 390 use a more wide 150mm tyre.
The R3 and R25 have identical brakes – 298mm disc at the front and 220 mm at the rear. The KTM RC 390 uses 300mm disc at the front and 230mm disc at the rear.
It cannot be said for sure if the R3 would offer ABS as standard or not as we see on the RC 390. But it is expected at least as an option since the bike sold in European countries comes with ABS as standard.
We would give the crown right away to the KTM RC 390 for the simple reason that has to offer best performance figures. The R3 is not here but it expected to be marginally expensive that the rest.
Yamaha would need to price the bike very competitively if want to be ahead in the race.