Discuss: Do 1000cc superbikes need traction control?

...or is it all in your wrist?


The 2012 Yamaha YZF-R1 joins the growing list of 1000cc superbikes with traction control, but do we need it?

Superbikes with traction control:

Aprilia RSV4 APRC SE

BMW S1000RR

Ducati 1198

MV Agusta F4 1000

Kawasaki ZX-10R

Clearly, it's a charge lead by European manufacturers, with the Japanese late to the party. Kawasaki's S-KTRC is the first traction control system used on a Japanese sportsbike and is arguably the most advanced; using a Bosch developed system, it collects data from multiple sensors over 200 times a second.

Yamaha are the second Japanese manufacturer to add TC to their top of the range superbike. It's thought that Suzuki's next GSX-R1000 will feature traction control but Honda appear to be keeping their cards close to their chest as far as traction control is concerned. This might strike you as being strange, seeing as Honda are keen to promote their safety-concious image and have introduced ABS versions of their CBR1000RR Fireblade and CBR600RR.

BMW's S1000RR produces around 182bhp at the rear wheel, the Kawasaki ZX-10R, 173bhp and Honda's Fireblade 166bhp.

Have we stepped over the point where we can no longer control the power, are we as bikers getting older and with that, not as fast to react to the power? Is traction control something you'd look for in your next superbike or would it put you off buying one?

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