India has had enough of malnutrition. The young blood was starving with an unquenched appetite. The restless generation was desperately awaiting an adrenaline pumping machine. The much hyped Pulsar-220 was here, but it was a pulsar again. Indian streets have been witnessing more pulsars than street dogs lately. Hero Honda shamelessly wasnt showing any signs of upgrading the Karizma. Honda Unicorn was aging and it looked like Honda motorcycles was squarely targeting the uncle jis. Dis-satisfaction and gloom all around. And then came the saviour, The YZF R-15 from the YAMAHA stable?? What?? Yamaha has long died in the Indian hearts after the 2-stroke era of RD-350 and RX-100, after which it started pretending to be a commuter oriented company. Its market share was down to a jaw dropping 3%. Worthless machines like the enticer, crux, libero and fazer were crushed by competition. Its reputation of bad customer service of our reviewers recommend us shooed away potential customers. But, Yamaha was working hard to get back on to its original genes. Ad midst the laurels for P-220, performance figures of TVS Apache RTR and design gimmicks of the CBZ Extreme and HH Hunk, it was quietly developing a machine exclusively for India in Japan, in the same design shop in which the legendary YZF R-1 was sculpted. It grabbed attention when it was first showcased at the 2008 Auto Expo in New Delhi. No one knew, it was going to hit the streets this soon. And all of a sudden, the R-15 arrived. Its specifications seem alien to the common man. It was now speaking a true blue bikers lingo. To start with, it came with 1) Liquid cooled engine 2) Forged piston 3) Dia-sil cylinder 4) 4 valves per cylinder 5) Fuel injection 6) Six Speed gear box 7) Delta box chassis 8) Rising rate link-type monocross suspension 9) Clip-on handle bars 10) Alloy wheels 11) Front and rear disc brakes 12) Specially developed sticky MRF rubber 13) Digital meter console 14) Split grab rails 15) R-1 styling DNA Yamaha has rammed in all the world class technology into this 150 cc motor to produce an astounding 17 PS of power. This machine can give you the taste of the lost thrills of an RD or an RX. This machine can take you to a speedo-indicated 140 kmph, which actually is 130 kmph. Its rock solid and stable even at triple digit speeds. Its precise around corners like a true super sports bike. Its a head turner and will keep peoples eye balls hooked on. The engine is so smooth that even at 100+, youll get confused whether the engine is running at all. Its damn comfortable for both the city and hi-way, unless you are considering a trip to Leh or Ladakh. Riders above the height of 58 might find the bike uncomfortable due to the small size of the bike. On long hi-way stints however, you might suffer from back and shoulder ache, due to the sporty riding position. Its all about getting accustomed to. The suspension can handle even the worst roads with aplomb. To derive that extra-ordinary top end from a puny 150 cc motor, yamaha engineers had to compromise on the low-end torque. Hence, the bike isnt much fun until 5000 rpm. You might feel a lack pick-up at slow riding. Dont get disappointed. It gets into a league of its own after 60 kmph. The pulsars and the karizmas will fade away in your rear view mirrors. Now, the eternal Indian question. Mileage kitna hai? To answer that, first let me tell you that YZF R-15 is yours for just Rs. 1,10,000 on road approximately. That might sound too much for a 150 cc, considering that we live in the country of TATA Nano, the 1 lac car of our reviewers recommend us. Even now, if you want to know the mileage, it will give you 35 kmpl if you thrash it the way it should be. You can expect upto mid-40s if you ride decently. So, is the R-15 worth it? Of course Yes. Its after all Indias first Super-sports bike. After the launch of this model, Yamaha sales have shot up. The industry sales is succumbing to the rising inflation, but in contrast, Yamahas sales are inching up. R-15s are being more and more visible on Delhi streets. Yamaha has revamped its brand image. It took a bold step to show that YAMAHA = Performance. It is sure to dethrone the P-220. Its becoming a pride to own a yamaha. People unable to afford the R-15 are going for the Gladiator. Its evident from the sheer number of Gladiators on Delhi streets. Yamaha is all set to launch FZ-15, another naked 150cc street bike costing around 70K. All the Pulsars, Apaches and Hunks, BEWARE!!! Yamaha is eyeing for a 10% market share within the next 2 fiscals. Yamaha is already selling their international super bike R-1 and cruiser MT-01, both for 12 lacs on road in India. YAMAHA turn around story is truly inspirational and motivational. We all have something to learn from it. Its STRATEGY. Hope you enjoyed reading the article. Id love to see your comments. Good Luck, D. Vijay Krishna.