Yamaha R3 And MT-03 India Launch Soon: Here’s What To Expect
Featured Stories by Team Drivio | 29th Nov 23
Both are powered by the lovely 321cc parallel-twin mill making 42PS and 29.7Nm
- In terms of styling, both bikes look like their much older siblings, albeit with a few changes
- The Yamaha R3 will rival bikes like the KTM RC 390 and the Kawasaki Ninja 300
- The MT-03, on the other hand, will go up against the 2024 KTM 390 Duke, Triumph Speed 400, TVS Apache RTR 310 and the Zontes 350R
Yamaha’s 321cc parallel-twin platform is known to be brilliant and really versatile. The engine displays a rather calm nature at lower revs, meaning it’s easy for even newbies to handle. But the moment the revs build past around 7,000rpm, this engine pulls and it pulls hard, ensuring even more experienced riders have a lot of fun on it, be it around a race track or a winding road.
Unfortunately, the bikes based on this platform have been eluding us. The R3 was brought in select numbers and was extremely expensive for what was a 300cc at the end of the day. The MT-03, meanwhile, never even came to India. So now that Yamaha is all set to launch them both here in India, here are five things about both of them that you absolutely must know:
Yamaha R3 & MT-03: Design
Both the R3 and the MT-03 are designed in a way that they’re reminiscent of their much older siblings. The R3 looks a lot like the 700cc parallel-twin R7 with its aggressive body panels and the projector LED headlight, both of which make it look very mean and sporty, exactly how a supersport should look like.
As for the MT-03, there are a lot of elements from the MT-09 and the MT-10 in it in terms of design. That said, we’re not very sure if it looks aggressive enough to take on its rivals. The 2024 KTM 390 Duke, for example, looks as aggressive and mean as anything, so if people would want to decide solely in terms of looks, the Duke might present itself as the better option for many.
Yamaha R3 & MT-03: Engine
Both the R3 and the MT-03 are powered by the high-revving 321cc twin-cylinder mill that has a solid 42PS and a decent 29.7Nm on tap. Interestingly, it makes its power at an astronomical 10,750rpm and the torque at 9000rpm. Except the Kawasaki Ninja 300, there are no bikes in this segment that have a rev limiter set at 13,000rpm. So riders will have to rev the engine out to extract all that the bike has on offer.
What’s another standout feature of this lovely engine is its smoothness. Be it pottering around the city at low revs or revving it out around a race track, the engine remains butter-smooth throughout. So even if you do have to rev it out, it’s not that you will mind it anyway.
Yamaha R3 & MT-03: Handling
What we really love about the supersport and streetfighter segment of motorcycles are their handling of course, and the R3 and MT-03 are no different. Both handle beautifully and one will have a lot of fun with both of them. While we haven’t ridden the MT-3, we did get a chance to ride the R3 at BIC a couple of years ago and the bike impressed us a lot with its sharp yet forgiving handling.
As Yamahas usually are, the R3 tips in with almost no effort and maintains its line beautifully. This tippiness doesn’t come at the cost of confidence though and the R3 will inspire a lot of confidence even among newer riders.
Yamaha R3 & MT-03: Underpinnings
Both the R3 and MT-03 get decent equipment. While it’s nothing extremely impressive, they have their basics sorted out. They both get a 37mm inverted fork at the front, while there’s a linked monoshock suspension setup at the rear. From whatever we remember of the R3, it was set on the softer side. Meaning despite its supersport looks, ride quality in the city wasn’t jarring. In fact, it was quite comfortable.
The downside of that was that the R3 felt squishy and wallowy when going out on a race track and really pushing its limits. It’s nothing unnerving though and if you don’t mind that with the added benefit of practicality in the city, it’d be perfect for you.
Yamaha R3 & MT-03: Expected Launch & Price
The Yamaha R3 and MT-03 are all set to be launched on December 15 2023. We expect the R3 to be priced around Rs 3.50 lakh, ex-showroom. It’ll then rival bikes like the KTM RC 390 and the Kawasaki Ninja 300. The MT-03, on the other hand, could carry a price tag in the ballpark of Rs 3 lakh, ex-showroom, and its rivals then would include the 2024 KTM 390 Duke, Triumph Speed 400, TVS Apache RTR 310 and the Zontes 350R.