Higher octane means higher combustion
Leaded gasoline had been available since the beginning of
time that I can remember. Around 1976 or so, the big push was on
for lower emissions, better economy and unleaded fuels.
Cars ran differently under these new blends. They would ping,
or knock, and experience engine run-on. (Engine continues to run with
key off). This was caused by hotter burning and increased cylinder
temperatures igniting mixture without spark telling it to.
Voila...they come out with higher octane fuel to reduce pre-ignition
knock, and our vehicle runs better, without running on by itself.
Of course the smartest thing they ever did was name it PREMIUM. It
has to be better, no?
The Vmax engine was born in 1985 and really hasn't changed in 1995 or
2005. It doesn't carry near the compression needed to require
premium fuel. Remember higher compression equals higher
volatility. Higher volatility needs combustion inhibitors to
prevent pre-ignition which is harmful to your engine.
I say tune your bike for 87 and go. Using premium gasoline when
it is not needed is throwing money out the exhaust pipe.
Now that doesn't say you can't take advantage of tuning your bike for
altitude, and using premium/mid/low to theoretically change your jetting
"on the fly".
120 Rwhp, Avg over 36 MPG two up, and I'm not a slow rider.