By Glenn FreemanThursday, November 8th 2007, 14:30 GMT
The American rode Honda's 2008 machine at this week's Valencia test, and he believes that the chassis is a vast improvement over this year's bike, which only won two races with Dani Pedrosa.
"I really like the chassis, which is more balanced than the old machine," said Hayden, who could only managed eighth in the standings this year after winning the world title in 2006.
"Not so much weight pitched to the front under braking and it wheelies less too," he added. "I'm pretty happy with how this first test has gone and we've definitely got a better base compared with this time last year."
But Hayden still feels the bike can be improved in several areas, including the engine department.
"We were focused on trying to get the engine to run a little smoother at top end, and we've still got some work to do on that front," he said.
"I was still a little faster on the old machine - by about half a second - so we need to try to close that gap when we get down to work this winter."