Back in April we noticed the Star Motorcycles website was being redirected to Yamaha’s website, and we broke news with an official response from Yamaha that its Star Motorcycles brand was being reabsorbed into Yamaha’s street lineup now split into four segments: Sport, Super Sport, Sport Heritage, and Cruiser.

Yamaha notes there is some crossover traffic in the latter two categories, with both camps appreciating customization, timelessness, authentic materials, engine character and social lifestyles. While aging Boomers and Gen Xers are moving to more comfortable and practical baggers, Gen Y is digging on lighter and simpler cafe racers and scramblers.

Yamaha’s most successful cruisers of late have been the Bolts, and Yamaha is bringing about further distinctions between the Bolt and Bolt R-spec. The R ($8,399) will maintain its current “sport” positioning, while the regular version ($7,999) will get reinforcements to its “timeless character,” which for 2017 means new wire-spoke wheels. Both Bolts get a nice upgrade with a new flangeless fuel tank (no ugly seams!) that holds an extra 1.2 liters. Also new for the 2017 Bolts, available in August, are “improved appearance wire guides.”

Look, ma! No seams!

Look, ma! No seams!

I can’t say much about the wire guides, as I was too busy checking out the new SCR950 to ask about them. While the Bolts belong in Yamaha’s cruiser stable, the same platform in the SCR is slotted into Yamaha’s new Sport Heritage line. Yep, the SCR950 is essentially a Bolt dressed in scrambler clothes.

2014 Star Bolt vs. 2013 Harley-Davidson 883 Iron

So, we’ve got the now-familiar 60-degree air-cooled V-Twin displacing 942cc, with its four valves per cylinder helping churn out about 49 horses to the rear wheel. Also familiar are the instrumentation, frame and suspension.

Any resemblance to a Yamaha XT500 is purely intentional. The SCR950 boasts the same 3.2-gallon seamless fuel tank as the other 2017 Bolts. The fork might look too raked out for a proper scrambler, but Yamaha test riders claim the SCR is surprisingly light on its feet, even compared to Triumph’s Scrambler. The aluminum bash plate pictured here is an optional accessory, of which there are about 30 available for the SCR.

Any resemblance to a Yamaha XT500 is purely intentional. The SCR950 boasts the same 3.2-gallon seamless fuel tank as the other 2017 Bolts. The fork might look too raked out for a proper scrambler, but Yamaha test riders claim the SCR is surprisingly light on its feet, even compared to Triumph’s Scrambler. The aluminum bash plate pictured here is an optional accessory, of which there are about 30 available for the SCR.

An important piece to turn a Bolt into a scrambler is the new subframe that allows a flat seating area for a variety of seating positions for riders of different sizes or for when clambering about while navigating off-road terrain. A tall and wide steel handlebar with crossbar can accommodate a standing position while riding.

The SCR’s saddle sits at 32.7 inches, which allows far more legroom than other Bolts, including the C-spec, from which the SCR get its footrests. There is a small storage area behind the faux number plate. The suspension is from the Bolt R-spec, including its fork with 4.7 inches of travel but with new tuning for this application and de rigeur rubber gaiters. Belt drive, a low muffler and remote-reservoir shocks with 2.8 inches of stroke snicker at any Baja intentions.

The SCR’s saddle sits at 32.7 inches, which allows far more legroom than other Bolts, including the C-spec, from which the SCR get its footrests. There is a small storage area behind the faux number plate. The suspension is from the Bolt R-spec, including its fork with 4.7 inches of travel but with new tuning for this application and de rigueur rubber gaiters. Belt drive, a low muffler and remote-reservoir shocks with 2.8 inches of stroke snicker at any Baja intentions.

Completing the transformation to scrambler is a pair of aluminum-rimmed wire-spoke wheels with large-block off-roady tires, a 100/90-19 up front and a 140/80-17 rear. It adds up to a 547-lb curb weight package available in Rapid Red or Charcoal Silver this July. Price negotiations start at $8,699.

060816-2017-yamaha-scr950-17SCR_RD_A8_0126_1-cropped

2017 Yamaha SCR950 Specifications
Engine Type 58-cubic-inch (942cc) air-cooled SOHC 4-stroke V-twin; 4 valves
Bore x Stroke 85.0mm x 83.0mm
Compression Ratio 9.0:1
Fuel Delivery Fuel injection
Ignition TCI Transistor Controlled Ignition
Transmission 5-speed; multiplate wet clutch
Final Drive Belt
Front Suspension Telescopic fork, 4.7-in travel
Rear Suspension Dual piggyback shocks, 2.8-in travel
Front Brakes Wave-type disc, 298mm
Rear Brakes Wave-type disc, 298mm
Front Tire 100/90-19
Rear Tire 140/80R17
L x W x H 88.6 in x 35.2 in x 45.9 in
Seat Height 32.7 in
Wheelbase 62.0 in
Rake (Caster Angle) 28.4°
Trail 5.1 in
Ground Clearance 5.5 in
Fuel Capacity 3.2 gal
Fuel Economy (Claimed) 51 mpg
Wet Weight (Claimed) 547 lb
Warranty 1 Year (Limited Factory Warranty)
Color Options Charcoal Silver; Rapid Red

Free Insurance Quote

Enter your ZIP code below to get a free insurance quote.

Yamaha Dealer Price Quote

Get price quotes for Yamaha from local motorcycle dealers.

Yamaha Communities

  • DickRuble

    I almost got excited by this story until I read the line before last. 547lbs… fawgetabawtit….. “The aluminum bash plate pictured here is an optional accessory, of which there are about 30 available for the SCR.”.. Soon all pictured bikes will have disclaimers: wheels, turn signals, mirrors, engine, lights, brakes, exhaust pictured here are optional accessories.

    • Old MOron

      Same here, 547 lb seems excessive. But I’m still excited.
      This bike represents a move from cruisers in the direction of standards.
      Can’t be a bad thing.

      • DickRuble

        The riding position seems decent… Still, it’s an air/oil cooled engine. Why is the bike this heavy? It should be around 450lbs full of liquids.

        • Brett Lewis

          Really though, should Yamaha’s 950cc cruiser weigh less than their 850cc FJ-09 (463 lbs)? Not that I would mind riding such a critter…

        • Old MOron

          Actually, this new Yammie weighs about the same as a Griso, and our MOronic editors have always spoken highly of the Italian bruiser. The Griso has sporty wheels and tires, high-end suspension and brakes, but still, this Scrambler looks to have decent ground clearance. Maybe it will be fun to ride. I’m looking forward to the MOronic evaluation and shootouts.

          • Born to Ride

            The Griso also has 40+ more horsepower, twice the brakes, twice the rear suspension travel, and far more muscular styling if that’s your thing. Comparing the two is rather silly. Weight is one thing, the bike is what it is. What I don’t understand is why they would fix up the riding position and ground clearance without changing the actual geometry of the chassis and putting real shocks on it. This bike misses the mark for me, it is 100% an exercise in styling rather than a new bike with a venerable engine.

          • Old MOron

            LOL I did not mean to put this on par with the Griso, but the Griso gives me reason to see things in a positive light. And if this is purely a styling exercise, I’m still happy. They styled it with ground clearance and decent ergos. They could’ve styled it with “stretching and slamming”. (puke) I would take this over an Octane/Scout any day.

          • spiff

            When I grow up, I will retire on a Griso.

      • Born to Ride

        It is a bad thing when OEMs half-ass it by slapping a new subframe and controls on a bobberesque cruiser, rather than giving it its own suspension/frame/identity. I understand that the name of the game is to do as much as you can with as little as possible, and adapting a motorcycle to fit as broad audience as possible by changing the shape, riding position, and features is the way to amortize your tooling investment. But look at Ducati, they have 2 friggin engines and have been running a 2 engine lineup for decades. Yet they manage to offer 6 distinct bikes with varying levels of features, displacement, purpose, and style. (edit: 3 engines now with the superquadro)

  • Mr. J

    any idea if the subframe is interchangeable with standard bolt??

    • Gabriel Owens

      Good idea.

    • http://erickrunyon.com/ erickrunyon

      Greg Hageman makes this subframe for the Bolt. Slso sells skid plate etc on eBay or on his site.

  • Martin Buck

    Love this bike, weird association with the DT250 for history’s sake only, this is not a trail bike (watch some fool ride a motocross on it to prove me wrong). Taller people need a decent seat height, and the higher footpegs (why racebike footpegs, not comfy rubber ones?) indicate better than Bolt cornering clearance. I like the red one.

  • HeDidn’tWeDid

    Looks like a great bike for running around Little Rock and surrounding backroads. Wonder if they will actually sell for the list price in other areas of the country?

  • Suzuki 650

    These are cool models that yamaha has been introducing, but I’d still like to see something more along the lines of the their dirt tracker concept as a street tracker. Light weight, and around 80 horsepower twin would be rad (especially with the yellow and black speed blocks).

  • Born to Ride

    2.8″ of rear travel is pathetic for a standard. Even more so since they are calling this cash grab a “Scrambler”.

    • Larry Kahn

      You’re right, looks like they landed too hard off a jump and bent the frame downtubes…

    • Daniel Benjamin

      Exactly.

    • TheMarvelous1310

      Dangit i…agree completely. You can’t really scramble without at least 4 inches of travel, even though there’s a fair amount of daylight underneath the frame.

  • Larry Kahn

    I know it’s a style thing, but this looks like a comfortable very usable real-world rider and a bit bigger fuel tank would be nice for range and could hide some of the sloppy mess near the steering head. I’m thinking something like the ’70’s XS750 triple tank would work and maintain lineage.

    • Robs

      God I loved those triples! My first bike was a 77 RD400 I bought in 78, and I really like the Yamaha styling from that era.

  • roger_that

    Styling is kind of attractive. Like the return to a flatter seat and a normal seat height. Give it 6″ of suspension travel and I might consider it.

  • Patriot159

    It looks like they couldn’t decide to go scrambler or flat track styling so kind of mixed it together. Don’t like the tank shape for this type of bike either, too cruiserish, but, I’m sure it will sell well though due to it’s ‘difference’.

  • SRMark

    At least you can stand to absorb some shock. But how would it have been to put a real suspension on the back? Idiots.

  • Bmwclay

    Harley will soon come out with their 883 Sportster Scrambler. 590 lbs, and 37 hp.

    • Norm

      Hey, I saw an episode of ‘Then came Bronson’ where he won a motocross race on his Sportster

      • Bmwclay

        Hey, I saw that episode! It was actually a 500 Husky with a Sportster tank!

        • Larry Kahn

          Actually they split between a Sprint and a CZ for off-road stuff. I have the DVD’s!
          “Well hang in there.”

          • Kenneth

            While I don’t recall a CZ, I did watch the show’s regular substitution of an Italian-made Harley 350 Sprint (they dared to show brief closeups of the engine!) for Bronson’s Sportster. ‘Seems like he was often in some kind of dirt-oriented race.

  • Luke

    screams for a Bonney comparo. I like the look of this bike, but I don’t think it’s scrambler as much as “standard.”

  • Ozzy Mick

    I like the look of it, altho purists (of which I am not) may point out that a scrambler should have its pipe alongside the base of the seat?
    Btw, I may have made this observation before, but I couldn’t help noticing that bike warranties in the States are only for a year. In Oz, the norm is 2 years.
    Does anyone have any idea why? Of course that’s a difficult one to answer, but I’d want to know if I was buying a new bike in the US. Some of us here are annoyed that the norm for most car warranties is 5 years, with one manufacturer offering 7 years! But that’s another story…

  • Wavshrdr

    This could have been SO MUCH better. The curb weight is a killer; 550! Better watch out for a Honda CTX in a drag race!

  • Greg H

    The Yamaha brand has history, heritage and respect. Why they would try to market away from that is beyond me, a complete mistake. Mistake number 2 was the name “Star”. That’s something your kid would name her teddy bear after putting it in a tutu and a tiara. Talk about misreading the American motorcyclist. Someone should have lost their job over this idiocy.

  • TheMarvelous1310

    Can you really do that, just shove dirt tires on a standard and call it a scrambler? I guess that’s all they are, but at least upgrade the rear shocks! What if somebody actually tried to scramble on this setup? THINK OF THE TRYHARDS!

    Harley-Davidson should make a cheaper Street 750 with dirt tires, add some flat track style and call it the XR750. Hell, it might outperform an actual XR, old as that engine is! Plus the Street is long overdue for some love from R&D.

    • mugwump

      Might be the only Harley I’d have an interest in.

  • Tumbles

    >implied off road ability, or at least the look.
    >2.8 inches of suspension travel.
    Sorry Yamaha, gotta fix that before I’m interested.

  • Gabriel Owens

    2.8 inches of rear travel is a deal breaker.

  • bomb00000

    Hold on, on what point would you say you just get a Triumph street twin? For the street twin weighs in 437lbs, better MPG (i wont believe that 60 MPG until someone proves it), it haves about 6 more horse power, liquid cooled.
    The stance between the SCR950 and the street twin is near identical and maybe the frame is almost the same but for sure the speedometer on the twin is allot better (as in its readable no matter wheres the sun.
    But anyway for about just one buck more the Triumph Street Twin seems to be a better bike!

  • SRMark

    Well I like this one quite a bit. Sure could use some longer travel shocks but at least the pegs will allow your legs to absorb some of the bump. But my face is plenty ugly to hide behind a full-face helmet so I won’t be going for the hipster look.