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05 Katana 600 VS 05 YZF 600 R

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  • 05 Katana 600 VS 05 YZF 600 R

    I wanted to know how people at KR would compare these two bikes. Both are suposed to be part of the sport cruiser market. Here is some info from the the factory,



    Kat 600 2005 Yamaha YZF 600 R
    Dry weight--- 462 lbs Dry weight-----412lbs
    Seat Height---30.9 Seat Height----31.7
    Price--------$6,399 Price--------$7099


    PS does anyone know the HP?

  • #2
    The YZF is a much more current technology bike. It's fairly comfortable, liquid cooled and much better suspended.

    HP wise, you're looking at about 91 rwhp on the YZF and 65 rwhp on the Katana. Yes, the YZF has about 30% more power. Torque wise, the Kat is about 35 lb ft and the Yamaha about 46.

    Do you have any riding experience? The YZF is less forgiving. However, if you can afford it, I'd go with the Yamaha.

    They haven't changed in years, either. So, you should be able to find a used one in great condition for about half of the MSRP of new...
    -Steve

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    • #3
      http://www.motorcycledaily.com/20may...600review.html

      The suspension and chassis are the main reasons I'd go with the YZF. Handing wise, they're pretty far apart.
      -Steve

      Comment


      • #4
        Depends on what kind of riding you are doing too.. even though the 2 bikes are similar in what they are designed for, the kat is much more comfortable to ride, and definately more forgiving to the rider, it also inspires more confidence in the rider for that very reason of being forgiving.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by stevnmd
          ...HP wise, you're looking at about 91 rwhp on the YZF and 65 rwhp on the Katana. Yes, the YZF has about 30% more power. Torque wise, the Kat is about 35 lb ft and the Yamaha about 46.

          Do you have any riding experience? The YZF is less forgiving. However, if you can afford it, I'd go with the Yamaha.
          Stevnmd, could you say where you get your HP and torque numbers from? Such a difference in horsepower. How is that possible? Both bikes have DOHC and 16 valves. The YZF has 12:1 compression, while the Kat has 11.3:1. The YZF has 36mm Keihin CV downdraft carburetors, while the Kat has smaller Mikuni BSR32's.

          What is Yamaha doing and Suzuki not doing to have such a power difference?

          I briefly rode my nephew's 2004 YZF last summer, before I bought my new 2004 Kat this spring. My recollection is the YZF felt like a smaller, shorter, and lighter bike. I don't doubt that the YZF has more power, based on it's higher compression, and larger carbs. But I recall that the power and torque wasn't all that strong until the engine got to the 8,000 range and higher. It was a noticably more mild engine until the power band was reached.

          My Kat is not broken in yet, but it gives me the impression that it will provide its power sooner and at lower rpm. The 2004 Kat brochure says the engine's valve timing is tuned for strong low to mid-range performance. The carburetors have throttle position sensors to provide quick throttle response and enhanced mid-range power. The exhaust system is tuned for strong low and mid-range power. The engine has twin swirl combustion chambers for quick throttle response.

          So HP and torque numbers alone may not tell the whole story. The real world performance of these bikes as far as acceleration goes may not be as different as the power stats might lead one to believe.

          You say the YZF is less forgiving. Could you elaborate? It feels like a smaller lighter bike, and thus easier to handle for a newer rider. Under what circumstances is it less forgiving? I understand the Kat is heavier and longer, and consequently may be more stable on long tours. But forgiving implies that there is less risk for similar movements or actions. The Kat doesn't strike me as being capable of as abrupt and nimble moves as the YZF. Forgiving? It just won't let you do them in the first place.

          Other comments I'd make are that I think a Katana buyer is more likely to get a bigger discount from the $6,399 MSRP than is the YZF buyer. For a person with mechanical skills, or wanting to develope them, the Kat owner can probably get by with lower maintenance costs. The Kat has a center stand, while the YZF doesn't. Thus tire and chain replacements can be cheaper for the do it yourselfer. Also with the center stand, the Kat's suspension will age less during winter storage.

          As for styling, the YZF strikes me as pretty bland. The dolphin like styling of the Kat is a work of art. Non-bikers look at the Kat and see that it is something special. On the other hand, sportbike riders, especially Suzuki GSXr's, from what I read, are more critical of the bike. So if you are young, get the approval of your prospective fellow riders first, and have thicker skin if you will be riding around town on sportbike night. If you are an older guy, you are not going to care.

          Comment


          • #6
            EXCELLENT post Harrye....

            Comment


            • #7
              Most people who have had their Katana 600s dyno'ed turn in the mid 60s (I've seen as low as 63 and as high as 67).

              Holeshot shows a dyno run of a Kat.
              http://www.holeshot.com/dynocharts/d...600_2000.shtml

              Ivan shows a dyno run of a YZF600 with only a slip-on at 90.8 hp.
              http://www.ivansperformanceproducts.com/yzf600rdyno.htm

              The YZF makes more power everywhere, at all revs...

              I did just find that Motorcyclist found 88.5 hp and 45.7 lbs of torque out of their's. Of course, I can't imagine Motorcyclist properly breaking in the bike before throwing it on the dyno, and who knows what the weather was like or what their elevation was.

              The YZF has downdraft carbs and headers that's aren't the size of dry erase markers. Also, I'm certain that the motor is just plain more efficient. It's probably got more aggressive cams, too. The cylinders are ceramic coated to reduce friction, too.

              I said the YZF is less forgiving for a few reasons. One, it's got a good bit more power. It's got far stronger brakes. It's got a shorter wheelbase, and will turn in faster and alter a line faster than the Katana. It's got a lower center of gravity and less weight. It will turn more aggressively than a Kat. True, at parking lot speeds, it'd be easier to handle than the Katana. It's not twitchy or ill mannered like a lot of race replicas. All in all, I think it is an awesome second bike, and is a much safer bet as a first bike than a current 600 SS bike.
              I understand the Kat is heavier and longer, and consequently may be more stable on long tours. But forgiving implies that there is less risk for similar movements or actions. The Kat doesn't strike me as being capable of as abrupt and nimble moves as the YZF. Forgiving? It just won't let you do them in the first place.
              Exactly...

              Lower maintence costs are subjective. I'm fairly sure the valve check interval on the YZF is 16,000 miles. Compare that to the 4k valve check intervals of the Kat. With the Katana being oil cooled, it truly is a good idea to change the oil every 2 - 4k miles. With full syn, you can do oil changes every 5k on the YZF with no problem. 160/60 120/70 tires cost the same for either bike.

              The most substantial advantages that the YZF has over a Kat is its suspension and chassis. The YZF has cartridge forks which are fully adjustable and a fully adjustable shock. The Katana might as well be sitting on pogo sticks up front and a sponge in the rear. The suspensions are a world apart from the factory. The Deltabox frames from Yamaha, even the first gen, are legendary. They raised the bar at the time they were developed. Also, there is a good bit more ground clearance in the corners with the YZF.

              Styling is truly subjective. Three years ago I thought the Katanas were gorgeous bikes. My tastes have changed. I really don't like the way the 98+ models look at all now. Three years ago I thought naked bikes were ugly. Now I think they're gorgeous. So, I actually put styling WAY down at the bottom of the list of my priorities. I could really care less what someone else thinks about the bike I'm riding.
              -Steve

              Comment


              • #8
                There are a large number of significant differences between the two, the biggest of which revolve around the fact that the YFZ600R is water cooled.

                Water cooling acts a huge heat sink, permitting the engineers who design the system to use many techniques that are usually otherwise not available to them, including increasing combustion temperatures significantly through a variety of means (increased static compression ratios, increased RPM ranges of non-static peak compression ratios, higher RPM ceilings, increased timing advance, longer duration between spark event and exhaust valves opening). In the case of the Yamaha, the engine takes advantage of most of these possibilities compared to the Kat -- significantly higher combustion temps, higher compression ratios, higher RPM ceiling, longer stroke length. When combined with the lighter aluminum frame and construction (about 50lb wet-weight difference), you would think this would give the Yamaha a big advantage over the Kat.

                But hold on, there are some other differences that play into the Kat's favor as well:

                (A) The Kat is oil cooled. While this means less power in stock form, it also means that there are a number of "critical" components that can't fail -- you're not going to boil off the 2.08 quarts of coolant or water that the Thundercat carries, nor do you have to worry about water pumps, fans, etc.

                (B) The Kat has greatly superior aerodynamics. Although the Thundercat has the higher top-end speed, the trap times aren't radically different (11.52 sec @118.07 is frequently brandished about for the Yamaha).

                (C) The GVWR-margin is significantly higher on the Kat -- as a matter of fact, I haven't found a single bike on the market with a higher standard cargo load than the Katana and I've looked at quite a few (including the "standard" tourers, such as the ST1300, the GoldWing, the FJR1300, BMW's 1200GS). EDIT: I finally found one -- the BOSS HOG, which uses a V8 car engine -- tops the Kat's cargo+passenger load capabilities by about 100lbs.

                So what does that really boil down to? Basic differences in technology and design. The Thundercat is faster. The Katana makes the better long-distance hauler because of the superior aerodynamics, oil cooling and the high GVWR. If both went down in a scrape, the Kat will probably be the cheaper to fix (and be fixable) while the Thundercat will probably be toasted at the frame. The Thundercat is still the faster and more nimble ride

                Cheers
                =-= The CyberPoet
                Remember The CyberPoet

                Comment


                • #9
                  How do the aerodynamics of the body actually make the Kat a better touring rig? All that matters is wind protection for the rider, which the YZF is great at. It's actually got a wider windscreen, and effective wind protection may very well be better.

                  As far as going down and being toasted at the frame. That's just plain funny... Are you saying that every bike that has an aluminum frame is toast if it goes down? Certainly you don't believe that. As a matter of fact, most aluminum frames of today are actually STRONGER than a Katana's frame. Add to that the fact that if you have frame sliders, the YZFs were bolted to an engine mount. The Kat owner drilled a hole in his frame. So, if the bike goes down, I'd say that the Kat stands to fair worse. Plus, the Kat's bodywork is the stiffest, hardest plastic I've ever encountered on a motorcycle and is very prone to cracking if the bike hits the ground. The YZF's is soft and much more flexible. While both bike's plastics will scratch, the YZF's is far less likely to crack.

                  If oil cooling was superior, most bikes would still be oil cooled. Run the risk of a water pump or seal failing? Oh my, better not ride my Tuono today. What if the water pump fails? Umm, that would hardly be a concern of mine. Yamaha's fit and finish and build quality is generally a step above Suzuki's. I'm much more worried about the cam chain tensioner failing on my Gixxer than the water pump on my Tuono failing.

                  IMHO, it breaks down to this. The Katana is a great budget bike. Its OTD cost is very low, making it very attractive to someone who wants to enjoy this sport with as little out of pocket investment as possible. The Katana is a better beginner bike for anyone who can handle its weight.

                  The YZF costs more. However, you get a tremendous amount of benefits for the extra money over the Katana.
                  -Steve

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I think you're confusing my highlighting the few strengths of the Kat as me saying it is "radically superior" in some sense, when it's not; each is superior in certain uses, with the Yamaha being the better bike for most (and the differences are also reflected in the pricing).

                    * No, I don't believe that aluminum frames are inherently trashed on an "off", but I do believe that the Thundercat's frame is more prone to headstock bending than the Kat's based on the results of those I've seen go down. I'm not going to get into frame-slider vs. frame-slider concepts since the Kat shouldn't be wearing them during a high-speed off.

                    * I do believe the 98+ Kats tend to be less affected by severe side-winds due to the aerodynamics than the YFZ600R; I ride with several Thundercat riders and our path often goes over a local 4 mile long causeway that is subjected to high lateral winds if the weather is blowing hard (such as a few weeks back). I'm not being battered nearly as badly as they are.

                    Finally, if I am going to be on the road for several thousand miles, especially in the heat, not having water cooling is a big plus for me -- that much less to break down. Have I had a water pump fail on me on a motorcycle in the past? Yes. And I learned my lesson about replacing them on a maintenance schedule as a result. Fortunately, I was in town when the two that have failed on me went... I certainly wouldn't want it to happen to me halfway between San Antonio and El Paso on I-10 in the Texas hinterlands.

                    Cheers
                    =-= The CyberPoet
                    Remember The CyberPoet

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I want a 600R ! Somebody buy me one !
                      I am a fluffy lil cuddly lovable bunny , dammit !



                      Katrider's rally 2011 - md86

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by md86
                        I want a 600R ! Somebody buy me one !
                        NOW!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Is THAT how it works ? Okay then , somebody buy me one ....
                          NOW !!!!
                          I am a fluffy lil cuddly lovable bunny , dammit !



                          Katrider's rally 2011 - md86

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            You know, Kawasaki's "new" ZZR600 is better than both of them...
                            '97 YZF1000R, '98 & '02 Bandit 1200's, '72 XS-2, '97 CBR900RR Project, '85 700 Interceptor, '75 RD350

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                            • #15
                              "New" zzr6 ? That's the other bike I like . What's "new" about it that makes it so much better (not that I can afford a new bike anyway ) ?
                              I am a fluffy lil cuddly lovable bunny , dammit !



                              Katrider's rally 2011 - md86

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