What exactly are we talking about when we talk about a super streetbike? Looking at the magazine, it might be easy to get confused-is it a stunt bike with a 12 bar and rashed plastics? A stretched and slammed liter bike with a nitrous bottle, chromed-out rims and candy paint? A canyon-killing middleweight with carbon-fiber bodywork, lightweight magnesium wheels and trick suspension? None of the above? Or all of them?
Break the title of the magazine down into two words:
Super: To an extreme or excessive degree.
Streetbike: A bike ridden in the real world, on the street, as opposed on limited to the rarefied environs of the racetrack.
Any and all of the above-stunt bikes, corner carvers or pro street customs all qualify as super streetbikes, and we feature all of them in this magazine for just that reason. What genre of bike you connect with best depends on multiple factors, including your lifestyle, your location, what type of riding options are available to you and the amount of money you have to spend on your ride. Do you hang out at drag strips, bike nights, blocks, lots or the track? If you live in a flat-land state where the roads are laid out in a grid and the nearest racetrack is a day's drive away, a built-to-lean sportbike with carefully calibrated suspension is about as good as a 17-year-old girl with bolt-on boobies. If, on the other hand, you live just minutes away from God's own twisties, the thought of stretching and lowering a bike (and effectively killing its ability to corner) is equally outrageous. And what good is an acre of chrome and gallons of candy paint if stunting's your thing, and you're going to drop the bike on its side a dozen times a day? Different strokes for different folks, you know.
Recognizing these differences, and wanting to take this opportunity in our special projects issue to feature project bikes that speak to the unique demands of all of our readers, we decided to build not one, not two, but three Yamaha project bikes with carefully selected mods that would appeal to all of our readership: a stunted-out R6, a kneedragger R6 and a completely tricked-out custom R1 show bike. Because most of us are forced to live within our means (read: credit card limit), we are setting dollar limits on two of the bikes, a slim $3K for the stunter and a slightly richer $6K for the track refugee, while the sky will be the limit for the custom R1. By soliciting help from the best vendors and builders in the nation, we hope that this special ops project gives you an idea of exactly what it takes to build up the super streetbike of your dreams, perfectly suited to your unique sportbike needs. Flip the page to find out more about each individual project bike, what our plans are to set them off, and what you can look forward to reading about as these three trick rides come together over the course of our next few issues.