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Classic Superbike: 1988 Bimota YB4 Race Bike for Sale

It’s fitting that the last couple of Bimota YB4s we’ve featured have been race bikes, since the YB4 was a competition machine first, and a road bike second. In fact, only a racing version was built at first, until World Superbike homologation rules required 200 roadgoing examples be built. The YB4 competed head-to-head with the best Japan could build, first in Formula 1, and later on in the new World Superbike series, an amazing feat for such a tiny manufacturer.

First produced in 1987, the YB4 was powered by Yamaha’s 749cc five-valve “Genesis” motor and six-speed gearbox, which it ironically used to compete against Yamaha’s OW01. Weight for the roadbike was 396lbs dry, and both versions used Bimota’s stiff, lightweight aluminum beam frame and swingarm, so handling was predictably sublime.

Before their untimely demise, Bimota had become a manufacturer of expensive toys for well-heeled collectors or the occasional race team maybe looking for something to differentiate themselves from all of those very competitive Kawasakis and BMWs. There’s nothing inherently wrong with recent Bimotas, but the Japanese Big Four and the Germans have caught up, and they didn’t provide the kind of competitive advantage that bikes like the YB4 offered to racers and road riders of the 1980s.

From the original eBay listing: 1988 Bimota YB4R for Sale

1988 Bimota YB4 Racing, ex-Steve Williams Team Fowlers Yamaha UK VIN: YB4*000027

4th overall in the 1988 World TT F1 (Superbike) Championship  – that year Fogarty won it, second Joey Dunlop, both on Honda RC30. This bike was also in the top ten results of TT IOM 1988 and 1989.

Rare opportunity to acquire a piece of the early Superbike era and of Bimota history. Bike is genuine, complete and working with the right patina, fitted with the correct carbs engine with magnesium sump.

Letter of verification by Dennis Trollope with the bike.

Parade, race and collect!

Bike is currently located in 33080 Roveredo in Piano, Italy but i can get them delivered all around the World at cost, no problem. I can supply US contacts for reference.

This example comes to us via a seller that should be familiar to RSBFS and CSBFS readers. I’ve never met him, but he obviously has great taste in motorcycles. There is very little time left on the auction, and bidding is up to just north of $5,600. Bimota values in general and pretty low right now, but this particular machine I’d hope would buck that trend: it’s got racing history and plenty of patina. It’s obviously a bit scruffy around the edges, but that’s pretty much par for the course with well-used racebikes.



  • 50% positive feedback?????

    • Yes, 50% feedback read why in the feedbacks. 2 buyers won an auction as they were jocking and because they had no money to buy the bikes then they sent a negative feedback! Ebay protects only the buyer, never the seller. This is the reality.
      I have sold MANY VERY important bikes (including 1 Britten) to customers diirectly in US and I can send you all the references to check about the bikes, the deal and about me.
      Easy to check.
      All the best to all

  • This would be one of the most stupid mistakes you could make. Get a poster of this beautiful beast if you really like it.

    • This bike has significance to the fans of the Bimota of whim I’m one as well as established racing history. It didn’t get to the top, but it also left behind much better heeled teams. If the price is right and you have means to properly display it, buying this bike makes all the sense in the world. Especially if you could occasionally track this wonderful machine.

      Excellent write up Tad. I’m glad that seeing all those Bimotas in Camirillio reinforced your enthusiasm in this great brand.

    • Seeing any car or bike in the flesh, the way it was obviously meant to be experienced, makes a huge difference. I’ve always loved the first 2/3 of the SB6R, but never really liked how the tail and exhausts looked in photos, but it looks much better in real life. Now I just need to figure out how I can buy one before they start to appreciate…

    • In a world of possible “most stupid mistakes” I’d think buying a Bimota racebike would rank very, very low… Why do you feel it’s a bad idea? Personally, it seems like a great idea!

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