It's been mostly fun in the sun aboard our ZX-10R, R6 and 848 test bikes. But after mucho modding and fine tuning them just to our liking we got the call; It was time to send them back to their rightful owners. All good things do come to an end apparently.
So, until we can convince someone to hand over some replacements we're back on the bus, but not before we went out for one last blast...
Justin Fivella: Associate Editor
Miles Ridden: 3125
As I bid farewell to the R6 I can't help but wonder if my Budget Brawler theme succeeded. An all-out street killer would have been dope but I felt a budget cap would hit closer to home.
Initially I set the budget at $1000, and after building a badass bike for under a G I moved forward, still keeping it short on coin.
Life with the R6 started innocently enough with a proper break-in and an oil/filter change at 1,000 miles. Shortly after the first service I changed a few pieces to tidy the appearance up.
I then added some sticky tires and bettered the brakes. The last fish to fry was adding "mo powa." While the '08/'09 R6s are hampered by throttle-bodies that close 20 percent at high-RPM to cut sound emissions, I wasn't deterred. To make things more interesting, the only fix at the moment is a race ECU that eliminates street necessities like headlights, so until there's a solution you're down 5 HP on an '07 model. Nonetheless, my R6 baselined at 100.8 HP and 40.8 LB-FT at the tire. After the budget bolt-ons, power jumped to 105.6 HP and 41.9 LB-FT, which represent gains of nearly 6 HP and 2 LB-FT for about $500.
The R6 was no slouch in stock trim but words can't compare the stock steed to this modified monster. Power and sound are the first things you notice; it rips on the top-end and sounds like a Super Sport front-runner at WOT. Braking was also greatly improved thanks to the new rotors, and the sticky tires were the shiz.
If performance is only half the battle, looks would be the other chunk. In that department the R6 achieved exactly what I wanted-understated excellence. Ultimately I found out that shallow pockets won't spoil the fun. When funds are lacking, ingenuity will prevail.
Pirelli Diablo Supercorsa SP Tires
Without a doubt these were the superstar mod of the build. They heat up with a quickness, stick like stink and last forever. I've never been this impressed with a tire before.
Be it a track day, bike night, commuting or back-road bombing, these are the things sticky dreams are made of.
Hotbodies Racing Undertail
Fender eliminators are cool but an undertail is king. An R6 isn't complete without a proper undertail, and this LED unit is as clean as they come.
BMC Race Air Filter
For under a Benjamin it added 1 HP and made the R6's intake sound like a superbike.
Competition Werkes GP Slip-On
For under two bills it dropped weight, added 1 HP and unleashed some sweet sounds.