To celebrate its 50th anniversary. Yamaha busted out the paint booth and the option sheet to create a limited run of hopped-up versions of their R1 literbike. The 2006 Yamaha R1 LE delivered the perfect birthday present to the storied brand, showing that Japanese brands were indeed capable of and interested in building special versions of their already potent road weapons. Just 500 LEs came to the states, wearing the black and yellow livery that made Kenny Roberts and the bikes famous in the 1970s, and bedecked with Ohlins suspension front and rear and a set of gold featherweight Marchesini rims.
Like a couple of the Ducatis we have posted recently, the owner of this R1 LE took its aspirations as a collector bike seriously and never rode it. At all. In its 12 years, it has racked up exactly zero miles. The only alteration from stock appears to be 500 cc GP World Champion Wayne Rainey's signature on the front numberplate. The seller offers very few details, but the pictures speak for themselves.
From the eBay listing:
New 2006 Yamaha R1 LE #428 of 500 sold by Yamaha. Always on display never ridden. It is New. Signed by Wayne Raney.
Please note we are an Ohio motorcycle dealer and are required to process the title into your name. We are also required to collect sales tax if you are an Ohio buyer and also buyers from AZ,CA,FL,IN,MA,MI and SC. Questions please call Al at 740-928-4454
The buy-it-now on this special, rare Yamaha is set at $17,500, sliding it in well below the price point for a similarly bedecked Italian machine. The R1 LEs may have flown under the radar, but to the right collector they are gold, and this one is a literal museum piece.