September 14, 2005 The supersport category is a key category in motorcycle sales in most countries, creating a chicken and egg relationship with Supersport, Superbike and more recently Superstock racing. Since 2003, the emphasis has increasingly been focused on 1,000cc models and in 2004, all four of the big Japanese manufacturers launched new 1000 supersport bikes for the 2005 model year. All have sold well, though the biggest sales went to Suzuki due to the company’s early season dominance of World Superbike Racing and its success in the American Superbike Championships. For 2006, all but Suzuki will again offer completely new machines and this article covers the specifications of the first two to be made public - the Yamaha and Honda. The evolution of the 2006 Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade makes an interesting story – it is a lighter, faster and more visually refined machine than the current machine. The surprise though is the Yamaha 2006 R1 SP – this is a special very exclusive, limited edition bike with special Ohlins suspension, lightweight rims and a host of refinements designed to ensure the bike wins on the racetrack. Suzuki's contender will be unveiled in the next few weeks but is essentially a new coat of paint. And Kawasaki's new beastie can be seen in fine detail here.
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