Bimota YB11 Superleggera 25 Anniversary

 

 

 

Make Model

Bimota YB11 Superleggera 25 Anniversary

Year

1998
Production 50 units

Engine

Four stroke, transverse four cylinder, DOHC, 5 valves per cylinder.

Capacity

1002 cc / 61.1 cub. in.
Bore x Stroke 75.5 x 56 mm
Cooling System Liquid cooled
Compression Ratio 12.0:1

Induction

4 x 38mm Mikuni carbs

Ignition

Digital electronic 
Starting Electric

Max Power

105.7 kW / 145 hp  @ 10000 rpm 

Max Power Rear Tyre

97.7 kW / 131.hp @ 10100 rpm

Max Torque

109 Nm /11 kgf-m / 80.4 lb/ft. @ 8500 rpm

Transmission

5 Speed

Final Drive

Chain
Frame Two diagonal beams with a rectangular cross section. The swing arm is also made of aluminium.

Front Suspension

Telescopic fork with 51 mm stanchions and rebound, compression and preload adjustments

Rear Suspension

Single shock absorber with compression, rebound, pre-load and length adjustments

Front Brakes

2x 320mm discs

Rear Brakes

Single 230mm disc

Front Tyre

120/70 ZR17

Rear Tyre

180/55 ZR17

Dry Weight

183 kg / 403.4 lbs.
Wet Weight 215 kg / 474 lbs.

Fuel Capacity

15 Litres / 4 gal.

Consumption Average

6.5 l/100 km / 36.2 mpg

Braking 60 - 0 / 100 - 0

12.9 m / 37.1 m  / 42.3 ft. / 121.7 ft.

Standing ¼ Mile  

12.9 m / 36.6 m  /  42.3 ft. / 120.1 ft.

Top Speed

10.4 sec / 215.0 km/h / 133.6 mph

Bimota's reputation as a manufacturer of top class super-sports bikes had been based on its advanced and lightweight chassis. This left the tiny Italian firm vulnerable during the mid-1990s, when mass-produced Japanese superbike chassis had become so good that many were difficult to equal, let alone better. But Bimota continued to produce super-sports machines offering outstanding performance, notably the YB 11 Superleggera of 1996. Ironically, the YB 11 's twin-spar aluminium frame, far from being futuristic in Bimota tradition, was closely based on that of the YB6 of several years earlier. But that took nothing away from the YB 11, which was beautifully styled, fitted with top quality cycle parts, and had an uncompromisingly aggressive personality.

 The YB 11 justified its Superleggera, or superlight, name by scaling just 4031b (183kg), a substantial 331b (15kg) lighter than the Yamaha YZF1000R Thunderace that supplied its 1002cc four-cylinder engine. Although the frame's main beams were unchanged from the YB6, the top cross-member was located nearer the steering head, adding rigidity. A sophisticated Paioli rear shock operated a new aluminium swingarm; Paioli also supplied the large-diameter front forks. Bimota made no internal changes to the 20-valve, liquid-cooled Thunderace motor, which in standard form produced 145bhp. But the Rimini firm fitted a larger airbox, fed via ducts in the fairing nose. According to Bimota this added a few horsepower in conjunction with a new four-into-one pipe and reworked carburettors. Although the YB 11 shared its engine and chassis type with the YZF1000R, the two bikes felt distinctly different.

The Bimota was more racy, with firmer suspension, thinner seat and stretched-out riding position. The Italian bike's reduced weight gave a slight edge to straight-line performance, as the Superleggera had a power-to-weight ratio that no mass-produced rival could match. Vicious acceleration:  A crack of the throttle sent the Bimota hurtling forward towards a top speed of 170mph (274km/h). Peak power was produced at 10 000rpm. and the acceleration at high revs was vicious. But its Yamaha engine's greatest strength was mid-range response, and that remained true of the YB11. Ii pulled with stunning urgency when the throttle was wound open even from below 4000rpm in top gear. Like most Bimotas. this was not a practical motorbike. Its suspension was too firm to work properly at low speed on bumpy roads, but on smooth surfaces the bike handled superbly. Its Brembo brakes were wrist-punishingly powerful, and its levels of steering agility, roadholding and ground clearance immense. Inevitably the YB 11 could not match the performance advantage that some of its predecessors had enjoyed over their mass-produced contemporaries.

 Equally inevitably, the hand-built Italian bike was hugely expensive as well as impractical. But it was beautiful and rare as well as seriously fast, and enough people were prepared to pay the premium to make the Superleggera a success.

Source: Fast Bikes by Roland Brown