2018 Yamaha XSR700 Sport Heritage

Editor Score: 91.5%
Engine 19.0/20
Suspension/Handling 14.0/15
Transmission/Clutch 9.0/10
Brakes 8.5/10
Instruments/Controls4.5/5
Ergonomics/Comfort 9.0/10
Appearance/Quality 9.0/10
Desirability 9.0/10
Value 9.5/10
Overall Score91.5/100

Whoever said, “you can buy fashion but you can’t buy style” has obviously never seen or ridden Yamaha’s all new 2018 XSR700 Sport Heritage. While this statement usually pertains to clothes, I don’t think it’s far off the mark when it comes to Yamaha’s new middleweight. The threads you wear and motorcycles you ride don’t have a lot in common, but one thing they do share is that they both allow you to express yourself and make a statement. Just about anything retro is “cool”, or in fashion these days, but what the wearer (or rider in this case) does with it ultimately evokes their style. The XSR700 makes it easy to do so on both fronts. Allow me to explain…

Just to reiterate – retro is “in” right now. Call it what you want to call it, whether it be retro, vintage, classic or traditional, it’s all the same, and kids these days are into it. Take it from me, a 28-year-old, tattooed, hipster millennial – I should know what’s cool, right? Maybe not, but it’s what a large portion of my generation digs. Plus, it’s this younger demographic that manufacturers are targeting to help keep our industry alive, though anyone, regardless of age can look good on this bike.

What else is a hipster to do these days but ride their vintage (looking) bike from coffee shop to coffee shop? We gotta get our caffeine fix somehow, and why not pair it with the excitement of riding?

Everyone wants the look and style of an old motorcycle but could do without the difficult hurdles of its ownership – mainly the reliability, access to parts and the overall lack of performance (by today’s standards, anyhow). Yamaha has elegantly bridged this gap with the XSR700 Sport Heritage. Drawing influence from its classic “XS” series, Yamaha blends world-class engineering with timeless style and has created a machine for riders looking for an authentic and honest motorcycle that doesn’t sacrifice performance or leave you stranded on the side of the road.

The styling of many modern bikes today is edgy, with plenty of sharp angles and aggressive lines. The XSR has taken a different, more relaxed approach with the use of round components that include a circular multi-reflector headlight, LED tail and brake light as well as a compact LCD instrument gauge. The gauge displays all pertinent information that’s thoughtfully laid out and easily discernible at a quick glance. These round lines certainly harken back to the styling of the XS models of the ’70s – which is cool, I tell you!

Yamaha XSR700 Sport Heritage

A wide, easy to reach handlebar offers plenty of leverage and the compact, round gauge displays all the info you need with just a quick glance.

Yamaha XSR700 Sport Heritage

The round LED tail light atop the duckbill rear fender is bright and complements the bike’s styling nicely.

Just kidding, but what is cool is that Yamaha has engineered the XSR700 so that its owners can easily customize it to their liking. In fact, Yamaha encourages it. The gas tank has three covers (left, right and center), that are easily unbolted and can be painted any-which-way you want if the matte gray aluminum or raspberry metallic don’t tickle your fancy. There are also other raw aluminum covers and braces that can be painted or left bare – the bike will look good, either way. The rear portion of the subframe is removable to further aid and simplify customization. In addition, Yamaha has a whole slew of accessories specific to the XSR700 including everything from number plates to adventure saddlebags to truly make it your own.

Yamaha XSR700 Sport Heritage

The gas tank panels are easily removed so that you can paint and customize them anyway you want. So easy even a millennial can do it.

While looks and styling are obviously important factors when influencing and attracting potential buyers/riders, it’s the bike’s meat and potatoes that will ultimately determine its value. Nobody wants a bike that’s all show, no go. Hands down, my favorite part of the XSR700 is the motor. Why? It’s a torque monster. Yamaha claims 50 foot-pounds of torque from the 689cc liquid-cooled, parallel twin-cylinder DOHC engine, but given how happy it is to loft the front end, you’d think it had a bigger motor. Ripping first, second and even third gear wheelies out of almost every turn is as fun and easy as it sounds. Coming to a stop sign or red light isn’t even that bad because it means you get to feather the clutch and click through those gears all over again – it’s addictive.

Throwing the XSR into city corners is no problem even with all the potholes, cracks and railroad tracks. The 41mm fork and rear monocross shock handle the bumps with ease.

Yamaha designed this motor to “maximize riding excitement in the real world,” and they succeeded. The XSR700 has super usable power and is a pleasure to ride in and around town. Exciting as the motor may be, it’s never overwhelming and delivers linear power that keeps pulling all the way up through redline, which makes it no slouch in spirited jaunts through the twisties. There are two major benefits to this: the predictability and user-friendly nature of the motor lends itself well to less experienced riders in building their confidence but can provide plenty of thrill to faster riders, too.

Going fast is no fun if you can’t slow down though, right? Scrubbing the XSR700’s speed is a pair of 282mm floating discs with four-pot calipers in the front and a 245mm disc in the rear. ABS comes standard to prevent wheel lock under heavy deceleration and works well when triggered. One of my biggest ABS pet peeves is when it’s too eager to engage, but the XSR’s unit finds a nice balance without any disconcerting modulation at the lever. Kudos.

Spirited riding is certainly one of the XSR700’s strong points as it’s well suited to carving up the curves. If you look closely, you can see sparks from dragging the foot peg feelers.

Keeping the XSR700 composed is a non-adjustable 41mm telescopic fork and a link-type monocross rear shock with preload adjustability. Each delivers 5.1 inches of suspension travel and together are tuned to provide a balance of comfort and control ideal for the street. The bike floats over railroad tracks and manhole covers gently but stays firm and planted while leaned over through rougher, choppier pavement as well. You can push the XSR700 pretty darn deep into a turn, and it holds its arc nicely.

Yamaha designers and engineers did a bang-up job in creating a great all-arounder. Whether it be commuting, sporty riding or long hauls down the freeway, the XSR700 has comfortable ergonomics to do it all. Compared to its FZ-07 (now MT-07) brother, the XSR’s 29-inch wide bars are about 3 inches wider and just a tad closer to the rider. This offers an open and roomy cockpit with an upright seating position that provides the pilot with plenty of leverage to throw the bike in and out of turns but also comfort for longer rides.  The tank is recessed effectively where your thighs can comfortably squeeze the bike, which in turn makes it feel super thin and nimble as a result.

A skinny chassis and 410 lb weight make the bike flickable through the twisty stuff.

Adding to the XSR700’s flickable handling is Yamaha’s claimed 410-pound wet weight, which is certainly lighter than most other middleweight bikes in its class. The bike’s light weight paired with its 25-degree rake make it a corner slayer, however it’s also very stable at speeds north of 80. Most Southern California freeways have little rain grooves that like to steer the bike in whichever direction they please. This sensation can be unnerving and it intensifies with more speed, but the XSR700 goes where you point it without any sort of backtalk or ideas of its own.

A couple other comfort characteristics worthy of noting are the seat and the lack of vibration transmitted from the motor. The two-level, stitched saddle is soft in all the right places and positions you comfortably forward right up against the tank. My upper inner thighs thank you, Yamaha, as that’s usually where any sort of discomfort is focused. Paired with the engine’s “Crossplane Concept” 270-degree crank is a vibration-reducing counterbalancer that doesn’t leave your hands or feet tingling after a long haul.

Coffee shops and record stores are good and dandy, but the open country roads are where the XSR700 shines brightest.

All in all, the XSR700 Sport Heritage is a solid motorcycle, and it’s fun to ride. I get excited just thinking about it. This is perhaps its greatest strength because above all else, riding motorcycles is about having fun, and the XSR provides plenty of it. We look forward to putting more miles on the thing to further determine where it shines and where it may falter, but so far, our first impression is positive. No question. And as far as the saying “you can buy fashion but you can’t buy style” goes, you can pick one of these up for $8,499. Yamaha will provide the fashion, and you can provide the style as you wheelie off into the sunset, or to the next light, whichever comes first.

Wheelie pics and video coming soon!

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  • khc

    Unlike the MO reviews I’ve valued for so many years, this, to me, reads like it was written by someone looking to elicit an offer to join Yamaha’s marketing department.

    • Born to Ride

      Yeah I kinda stopped reading after he claimed that this 700cc, mildly tuned twin is a “torque monster” that rips 3rd gear wheelies on corner exit. I’ve ridden the FZ07, you have to try to torque up a first gear wheelie. Maybe you can clutch up a second gear wheelie at speed if you’re good. But a third gear wheelie? That’s like 60-70mph when you’re in the torque band… GTFO.

      • Gabriel Owens

        Hey…if theirs a will, then theirs a way.

        • Born to Ride

          I hate to be a Ruble, but it’s “there’s” man, don’t let autocorrect rule your life lol. And the only way I can see it happening is if you were
          WOT, cresting a hill with a massive drop off, and you weigh a buck thirty five.

    • Born to Ride

      Anybody that is genuinely interested in this bike and wants a level headed review that’s full of praise but grounded in reality should read Troy’s writeup on the donor bike found here.

      http://www.motorcycle.com/2015+Yamaha+FZ-07+First+Ride+Review

      Then come back here, look at the pictures, and decide if yamaha’s bolt-on “customizations” are worth the extra 20% on the msrp.

    • Tanner

      reviews from critical british bike mags have been equally gushy. Maybe, just maybe this is a great bike.

      • khc

        I’d imagine the gushier the reviews get, the easier it will be for a reviewer/publication to get a steady stream of new bikes from the manufacturers to test. They’re basically writing ad copy. Some reviewers (if not most) write lovingly about virtually every vehicle, whether car or bike, they test.

  • Born to Ride

    Yamaha needs to try harder with these bikes. I love the classic roadster look and personally I think the FZ07 is a nicer looking bike, especially with a bikini fairing. Kawasaki ate your lunch boys, now it’s time to hire some designers with aesthetic sense.

    • Gabriel Owens

      That radiator is hideous. Burn it, burn it with fire.

      • Born to Ride

        Just one of many things…

      • Relayer

        Got salt?

        • XVS650

          The truth burns sometimes.

    • DickRuble
      • Born to Ride

        Wow, that’d make one hell of a budgetary commuter bike. If it comes with the option for weather sealed hard bags, I’d go so far as to say potential versys usurper.

        • DickRuble

          There are several comparisons to the Versys and to the NC750x. It has more power and is 50lbs lighter than the Versys, but it has some suspension issues too.

          • Born to Ride

            Yeah I was thinking that the versys probably has much nicer suspension but weighs a bunch more. I’d take the yammer and give traxxion dynamics a calll

  • Old MOron

    “Nobody wants a bike that’s all show, no go.”
    Bwa-haha! Harley-Davidson.

    “Whoever said, ‘you can buy fashion but you can’t buy style’ has obviously never seen or ridden Yamaha’s all new 2018 XSR700 Sport Heritage.”

    Yes, and then a Z900RS parked next to it.

    • TC

      It’s an ugly bike, and yes, the Z900RS is what a retro should look like. I think the problem is corporate panderers within the Yamaha design team, who are afraid to speak up. I bet at least a few employees hated the looks of the bike. That plastic cover under the fake gas tank cover is particularly ugly.

    • BDan75

      It doesn’t look too bad with a rider in the saddle…but just sitting there on its own, I think it looks like a weird, jumbled mess with a bisected fuel tank plunked on top.

  • DickRuble

    I hope MO offers a good healthcare plan ’cause this guy needs eye transplants. From an aesthetic point of view this bike is a disaster. Like a hipster trying too hard to be stylish and ends up looking like a suburban mall hanger. Where did Yamaha source the tail light, alibaba?

    • Robotribe

      “Where did Yamaha source the tail light, alibaba? The small, round headlight clashes with the angular shapes of the tank.”

      Two words: Hot. Mess.

      One word: Confused.

      To add, I’ve always thought the mid-section of motor guts looked like someone had gutted it and lacquered all the plumbing parts back together pretending that we’re all supposed to not look at that area. It’s awful; like fairings taken off of a sport bike that’s meant to have the plastic shroud whose purpose it is to hide all that stuff. This looks like the team in the design dept. was just calling-it-in.

  • gjw1992

    If you really want retro or at least classic round head light style, the only new(er) bikes that do it are the cb1100s and especially the RE 650 twin Interceptor. Others do try too hard – even the wonderful looking z900rs has its monoshock tail pointing into space a mile from the back wheel to spoil the view.

    But this xsr700 has classic bits like the painted part of the tank and the round headlight, but is really modern. Just happens modern style looks awkward.

    Anyway, I reckon most here are well beyond the age range Yamaha have aimed this at …

    • roma258

      The Moto Guzzi V7 is a proper classic bike as well. Agreed on the styling with this one, very awkward.

  • Gabriel Owens

    A 91.5….wowzers.
    What about the three cheers and 3 jeers part. Burns and Duke always gives us 3 goods and 3 bads.

    • Born to Ride

      Evidently there was nothin wrong with it man. Didn’t you read the review?

      • Gabriel Owens

        The video reviews from the UK give this bike extremely high marks as well.

        • Born to Ride

          http://www.motorcycle.com/2015+Yamaha+FZ-07+First+Ride+Review

          Troy gave the donor bike an 87.5, and it’s 20% less money and mechanically identical. Read this review, then look at the pictures in this one if anyone is considering picking one up.

          • Gabriel Owens

            I am far to large of a human being for either of these bikes. Itll look like im butt flossing with a motorcycle.

  • AM

    Non sense! 18 MT-07 all the way for a grand less without even thinking if you are considering that bike.
    “If you look closely, you can see sparks from dragging the foot peg feelers.” Huh? Dragging feelers at that angle??? Seriously?

    • Born to Ride

      Trying to put a positive spin that the fact that those obscenely long feelers severely limit ground clearance. For reference, I am constantly annoyed by the lack of clearance on my multistrada, and this is what it looks like when the pegs are barely skimming the ground. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/a7c34a22bb9a51cf63a69d55cd6b714aa75c9e3de090f2a61fbcf489a84e629f.png

      • Jayy Cee

        Your pegs drag because your body position is ABSOLUTELY HORRIBLE! Foot out on the street, and mid corner?! Ha! Absolutely horrible. You could use half the amount of lean with proper body position.
        You talk bad about the FZ07 but couldn’t even use it to half its potential. Seriously, do a track day or something and learn how to ride a corner.

        • Born to Ride

          Try dragging a knee in jeans and see how that feels dude. The foot is off because my boots grind into the ground using a traditional riding position. I threw that pic up to show how much lean angle is available on a bike I consider lacking. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/681b3ecfbe974b05b318d8441eaf44999bdcb12b36b1b468ee758be910ed7364.jpg https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/a76ea7beaecd20be2cea9b2c8224709728cf9d285908fd794599ac8ac6f58a97.jpg

          Does that make you happier? Once again, knee not on the deck because riding jeans.

          • Jayy Cee

            I don’t wear jeans when I ride street because I’m not an idiot. Maybe invest in some actual riding boots as well?

            You still need to lower your upper body and get your head lower and closer to the mirror. Still way too much lean angle. And I’ve ridden the Dragon many times on a standard/naked motorcycle, don’t use the curves as an excuse.

          • Born to Ride

            Magic thing called denim riding pants. Sometimes when you go out for a ride, you don’t want to walk around like a power ranger when get to where you’re going. Same goes for the boots. Not going to wear my leathers and A-stars when I’m out for a Saturday ride. I’m sure people think you look like an idiot when you show up at the quaint mountain town in your race suit.

          • Jayy Cee

            In the second picture, your whole body is “crossed up” the very antithesis of good riding position. Dragging knee has nothing to do with good body position, especially on the street. Being “knee focused” shows how little you really know.

            I’m done coming back to look at your stupid excuses. Talk the advice and fix your body position. Also, I have pictures of me in leathers and my SV650 too. On the track, dragging knee. Oh man. Big whoop. Get over yourself and wear better gear.

          • Born to Ride

            If I was knee focused wouldn’t I be sticking it out there regardless of attire?

        • Born to Ride

          Also, i seriously doubt you can beat these guys around the track.
          http://images.mcn.bauercdn.com/upload/187096/images/5454458.jpeg
          Care to comment on their horrible body position?

          • Jayy Cee

            That’s a track, and those are Supermoto’s. Are you on either in your picture?? Didn’t think so.

            Let me post up a picture of some MotoGP guys and ask you the same. Pretty stupid comparison huh? Lets keep this about you bud.

          • DickRuble

            Yes, their bikes don’t have the low clearance your bike has. They can afford the lean angle, you cannot. If you shift your weight to the inside of the bike, towards the apex, you don’t have to lean the bike as much and you will still turn within the radius.

          • Born to Ride

            Et tu Bruté?

          • Born to Ride

            Here you go Ruble. This is all she’s got till boot and peg are on the deck using a traditional body position. I guess I could go full Marquez and try to get under the bar, but it’s really awkward with the dirtbike ergos that the Multi has.

            https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/8dccbad284831ac6fe8ba7b34a88101921c9c9b612523a7b9d3aac28da9a2331.jpg

          • DickRuble

            Yes, that’s better, though if you shifted further to the left , with same lean angle you would could take even tighter turns. However, in street riding these antics are just that.

          • Born to Ride

            The width of the bodywork belies how much I’m actually out of the saddle there, it’s quite exaggerated actually. And according to my riding buddy, I am quantifiably quicker with my foot out because I can use more lean angle. But there is something to be said about letting reasonably quick be good enough.

      • Goose

        Having owned a 1st gen. Multi I can tell you the lack of ground clearance, at least for the street, has more to do with your setup than the bike. Get your tools out and jack up the rear ride height adjuster. My bike and every one I’ve checked had this adjuster set as low as possible stock, I assume for the short of leg. That doesn’t seem to be a problem for you. You’ll get better steering and more cornering clearance.

        Then you won’t look like learned how to ride watching mile dirt track videos.

        • Born to Ride

          I appreciate the tip, and I’ve considered jacking up the rear to alleviate the issue, but I’m comfortably on the balls of my feet on both sides or flat footed on one side. I don’t really wanna be tip toeing out of parking spaces and climbing into a 34”+ saddle every day on my commuter bike. Besides, I have found that doing my best flat tracker impression has given me back that little bit of pace I had lost due to clearance and keeping up with the guys on their superbikes with molten knee pucks is no problem. Plus it’s FUN! And if I’m having fun I don’t care if people think my body positioning is funny. I laugh about it too. The other guy was just being a dick so I decided to respond with pics on my Monster.

          • Goose

            Mine was pretty tall by the time I sold it. I also had the forks pulled up as far as could and the ride height as high as my 34″ inseam would tolerate. Every time I tipped the bike more “stink bug” it turned better. YMMV.

          • Born to Ride

            Yeah right now the forks are pushed up about an inch through the triples so the rear end is pretty high relatively. If I raised the rear I’d definitely have to raise the front otherwise I’d get weave and headshake since she has just a *tiny* bit of twitch wide open in third gear on the edge of the tire. Wonderfully handling bike though.

          • Jayy Cee

            It’s not funny body position, its 100% unsafe. You could carry more speed, and use less lean angle, therefore scrap pegs less, if you actually got your upper body down, kiss the mirrors, keep your foot on the peg and make a proper rider triangle with your inside leg, while holding the tank with your outside leg. All you are making is excuses. Good body position is applicable TO EVERY BIKE, regardless of setup.

  • Gruf Rude

    Yamaha is building absolutely the ugliest bikes I have ever seen in 52 years of riding and this is the ugliest of the current lot. Sorry, MO, I realize these are not good times for the industry and you all are trying to be positive, but this is a really lame review on just about every level.

    • Born to Ride

      I think the 900 looks worse than the 700. But yeah, I mean, that’s splitting hairs.

    • Starmag

      I agree but this down right beautiful aesthetically compared to a FZ-10, which for me is the ugliest bike ever made. Remember when the engine was a aesthetic high point? Now, not so much.

      Is ugly the cost of light weight? If so, I’ll take heavier.

    • Goose

      Saw one in a Yamaha shop yesterday, it was parked away from the other bikes like they were afraid the ugly was contagious. It isn’t retro, it is just ugly.

    • RyYYZ

      It’s true. Just look at the FZ10. While there may be those who really like it, I think it’s safe to say that most consider it to be UG-LEE. They could have sold many more if they’d given it some decent styling.

  • Tanner

    where’s the pros and cons section??

  • Starmag

    Traditional MO reviews are usually a bit edgier and it does read a bit like an ad, but some of these comments read like Fight Club. I’m sure it’s a difficult balance to make both the MFG and the reader happy.

    • DickRuble

      How about their abstaining from praising a design, when there’s nothing to praise? Focus on performance. This write-up had bizarre statements about the power and no insightful information about performance/handling. If the manufacturers demand that compliments be part of the story, maybe skip the review or put a disclaimer at the end: “This manufacturer requires we blow smoke … you know where.”

  • Sentinel

    That big hunk of plastic in place of where the lower front part of the fuel tank should be is an eyesore that just kills the esthetics of the bike. Had they saw fit to get that part right, and also given it more fuel capacity, I would have been interested in it. But as is, it’s just too ugly and impractical for me.

  • XVS650

    You make a big deal out of how stylish you think this bike is. Are we looking at the same bike? To my eye it looks very industrial, with lots of pipes and hoses and boxy angles. It might be a great bike to ride, but IMHO it looks like a water pump on two wheels.

  • Missing components

    Honda, please take note. You can produce a beautiful bike without all the Tupperware.

    • Born to Ride

      Honda’s new roadster is a beautiful piece of industrial art, finished with brushed aluminum paneling and excess wiring and plumbing tucked away. This thing? Not so much…

  • Bmwclay

    Time to bring back the term UMJ again.

    • JustaTexan

      UJM

      • Bmwclay

        thanks

  • JustaTexan

    One thing I think is great, riders are starting to appreciate more versatile designs. A bike with more than one strictly focused discipline makes sense. On a bike like XSR you can commute, tour, sport ride, etc whatever.

  • mog

    Once more unto the breach.
    Yamaha – get a new industrial design team!
    If repeated enough, they will learn. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/786207b5d8ebc8804ee7e8d8aa2a3445aaddbbabc778b180cc987f478f7bc23f.png
    It is a magnet in a junkyard.

    • StripleStrom

      Perfect description. What a mess!

  • RyYYZ

    I’m curious why you would want to disable the rear ABS on a bike like this? For the average rider that’s the most likely brake to lock up and cause them problem. You would want to disable it because…? I mean, I can see it on a adventure or dual-purpose bike, where you might want to be able to lock up the rear tire, but I can’t think of too many times over the last 20 years of street riding that I’ve ever wanted to lock up the rear wheel deliberately.

    • Born to Ride

      It’s entirely possible that they are prepping the model for Tenere 700 modularity. Just be happy you even get ABS, the FZ07 ain’t got none.

    • Brent Jaswinski

      I wish you could disable the rear wheel ABS on any style motorcycle that’s equipped with it and I prefer the least amount of ABS engagement in the front (if you can set the level yourself). I’ve never owned a bike with ABS and have never thought I’d be better off with it. It’s a safety feature for less experienced riders, in my opinion. Personally, I have better control of a bike if I can lock up the rear. I don’t like the modulation at the pedal/lever, it disrupts the feeling/connection I have with the tires, even if they’re sliding. It probably has a lot to do with my off-road / motocross background, which lends itself to my aggressive riding style on the street…

  • michael32853hutson@yahoo.com

    i like this one-it’s the one i was hoping they’d come out with when i saw the FZ07(now MT-07)

  • w2e2b

    What I first notices was either very tarnished or rusty exhaust pipes. Not a good look either way.

  • StripleStrom

    I’m sure the author enjoyed the bike, but after that glowing review I’m going to have trouble taking anything he writes seriously.

    • Born to Ride

      I have faith that after seeing the response from the regulars on here, he’ll make sure to keep his next review level-headed. New writers need constructive criticism. I doubt anyone on here wants to see him go away, I liked his style, the overwhelming emphatic positivity of the piece was just too much for me. I’m sure the MO veteran staff will guide him.

      • StripleStrom

        Well said.

        • Born to Ride

          I remember being completely awestruck the first time I wacked the throttle wide open on my SV650. Like I had gone to plaid and my eyes were cemented in the back of my head. I had just turned 18 and the fastest thing I’d ever driven was my ‘91 Acura legend. Oh how the times change…

  • Butch Schultz

    A CF of a motorbike, if ever I saw one.

  • elgar

    Yes…it has ‘good bones’ via chassis and engine…BUT…it’s just too ‘fugly’. Shame.

  • John B.

    I’m trying to refrain from millennial bashing. I run circles around them at work, but that’s because my generation had/has screwed up values with too much emphasis on work.

    I’m nearly blind to aesthetics, and have no sense of cool. That said, I enjoyed this article because it is thorough and well written.

    As Winston Churchill said, “You have enemies [detractors]? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life.” In the Internet era, if you express an opinion, you will have detractors. That’s life.

    Just keep writing Brent.

  • Craig Hoffman

    The gas tank cladding thing is interesting. It allows for customization and eliminates the ugly seam.

    • Born to Ride

      Taking a page out of Ducati’s book. The gen 3 Monster had easy to change panels, and Ducati sold factory kits to flavor your bike up. My favorite was the metallic black with gold 1970s Ducati logos and pinstriping. If only that bike was less… rough…

  • Mad4TheCrest

    At the price quoted Yamaha will sell a bunch of these and they’ll be whizzing all over Angeles Crest and similar fun roads just like their FZ07 forebears. I am not in love with this particular take on retro styling, but I do believe it is time for manufacturers to realize that what they are calling ‘retro’ is in fact a modern style/taste and they should just make bikes look like that and give up on the angular origami look. Please.

    • Born to Ride

      Looks like Honda is the first to adopt this mentality with their new naked lineup. I’m sure the next iterations of the CB500f and CB650f are going to be very nice looking bikes.

  • Mahatma

    I think Yamaha has done many things right in the naked segment recently.

  • schizuki

    Yamaha designers look at ’70s XS650 for inspiration, break out their sketchbooks, and…
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/a6a65490812ed25866f05fa6a4ef064317e177523d560282020b7c8278a9dbe6.jpg

  • RyYYZ

    One thing I’ve noticed about the FZ-07, and this bike based on it, is that there doesn’t seem to be anywhere to mount rear stand spools. Can you get a centerstand for it? Or does one need to go out and buy a rear stand with the inferior and less secure pads for the swingarm to sit on? Why didn’t they include spool mounting holes on the swingarm?
    Or am I blind and they’re hiding somewhere I haven’t noticed?