Skip to content


Aprilia and Yamaha go head-to-head with the ultimate ride-day models

Aprilia’s RSV4 Xtrenta goes head-to-head with Yamaha’s 2023 R1 GYTR

While Aleix Espargaro and Fabio Quartararo go to head to head for motorcycling’s biggest prize, Aprilia and Yamaha have released track-only versions of their best performing roadbikes. Aprilia is celebrating 30 years since its first world title (1992, 125cc GP) with its limited-edition MotoGP-inspired RSV4 Xtrenta while Yamaha Europe is finally offering a blank canvas version of its R1 Superbike, loaded with WorldSBK tech and named the 2023 R1 GYTR.

For around $70k for the Aprilia and $50k for the Yamaha (Aussie pricing is yet to be confirmed), you have the choice of a ride-day piece of exotic Italian engineering or the 1000cc version of Yamaha’s race-ready YZF-R6 that was released last year.

Aprilia has become the first manufacturer to offer the full kit of MotoGP aero on a production motorcycle. This means along’ in MotoGP. It also features a huge bill-like wing up front that is much larger than the one used on its MotoGP racer. The carbon fairing is made using the same processes used in Aprilia’s MotoGP racer and Aprilia claims improved aerodynamic load of 25 percent and a four percent reduction in drag.

2023 R1 GYTR Static

Meanwhile, Yamaha has stripped out all unnecessary road-oriented parts and replaced them with more than 25 components from its GYTR range of bolt-on competition parts.

So it comes standard with an Akrapovic race exhaust, engine covers, an adjustable ECU and wiring harness with a PC interface cable. There’s also an ABS emulator to allow the system to be disconnected. Less obvious, but just as important details include a racing handlebar and associated steering lock stops, a GYTR petrol tank filler cap, a shark-fin chain guard, billet alloy brake lever guard and rear sets with the option to turn the gearshift into a reverse, race pattern.

Both the Aprilia and the Yamaha are seriously strong engines. While the R1’s 998cc cross-plane-crank engine relies on revised computer management and changes to the specification of its sprockets and drive chain, the RSV4 Xtrenta has seen Aprilia boffins boost horsepower with raised compression, a titanium and carbon SC-Project exhaust and a Sprint air filter. The Magneti Marelli electronics have been upgraded to suit the new engine spec, which takes peak power out to 172kW (231hp). While we know that Yamaha’s stock YZF-R1 lays down 147kW, upgrading the engine to GYTR specs should bring it much closer to the Aprilia.

2023 R1 GYTR Static

Chassis, suspension and brakes are key components of both track weapons. The Aprilia is based around the existing RSV4 chassis but the Öhlins suspension has been tweaked using technical input from Aprilia’s MotoGP team. The braking system uses Brembo GP4-MS monobloc calipers. Wheels are the trick Marchesini M7R Genesi rims, which are 2kg lighter than standard. They are shod with Pirelli Diablo SBK slicks. Similarly, the Yamaha uses a standard chassis. It hasn’t released any information on possible suspension changes but has said the braking system has been upgraded with GYTR steel pistons, Brembo Z04 pads and stainless steel brakes lines. Bridgestone R11 tyres complete the specification. There is a 400-plus parts range coming, too, including a WorldSBK-style inverted swingarm, Öhlins FGR400 fork, large-capacity fuel tank, carbon subframe, Marelli electronics, a GYTR PRO radiator and much more.

While Aprilia is only selling this limited version of 100 as a trackday model, the fact that patents have been registered means much of this tech will filter down to a road-registered model. Yamaha is offering the initial production run in Europe initially, through its 17-strong GYTR PRO shop network.