072816-top-10-yamaha-sportbikes-00-f

It’s been a couple years since we posted our Top 10 Honda Sportbikes list. There always exists subjectivity in such a list, but since the Honda topic was generally well-received, revisiting the idea, this time showcasing Yamaha sportbikes, seemed apropos. Like the Honda list, we’re keeping this one limited to street-legal models available stateside (except one, sue us).

Like Honda, Yamaha owns a colorful history of important sporty motorcycles – more than a single Top 10 list can include. Narrowing down such a cornucopia of two-wheel performance is a difficult task, but we’re certain that if you feel we omitted a bike more deserving than one of the 10 selected here, you’ll certainly let us know in the comments section below.

  • ‘Mike Smith

    Why would a major company like Bridgestone bail on the premier motorcycling competition? That’s the article I would like to read.

  • john phyyt

    This yamaha tragic thanks you and sort of agrees. I would have put the first R1 at number one. .. Yamaha has a magic history in 2 stroke GP history and also off road excellence I would love an article on the mighty TZ’s etc . I believe that Yamaha has a more authentic racing heritage than those other expensive “Name” brands

    • spiff

      Yamaha definitely has a rich racing heritage.

  • spiff

    The FZR1000 was a great all round road bike, then the YZF1000, what about an FZR 400. As you can guess, I dig Yamaha. I am not in total agreement, but dig them all. I was going to call blasphemy until you mentioned the RZ

    • Mahatma

      I’d vote for that FZR 400

      • spiff

        I say bring it back as the YZF400R and the forced induction YZF400RR. :)

  • http://voidstar.com/ jbond

    OW01. Fogarty’s IOM TT record that stood for 7 years. 4 Suzuka 8 hours. Rymer, McElnea, Witham, Mackenzie won BSB championships on this and then the YZF750.

    Then there’s the TZR250 that was the first ever 100mph IoM production 250 ridden by Mat Oxley.

    Two other bikes deserve a mention. The original R6 which was when 600s properly came of age, not the FZR600. And my all time fav hooligan bike the TDR250. You’d be lucky to get 1000 miles out of a Stan Stephens stage 2 top end rebuild, but they were hilarious.

  • JMDonald

    I noticed some of the older bikes have vents or scoops. Are they functional or are fake scoops a recent design cue for Yamaha? I don’t alway ride Yamaha sport bikes but when I do I insist they have fake scoops on them. I am the most interesting motorcyclist in the world. I see a new marketing campaign in their future.

  • SRMark

    The RD400 was a very good bike when left in stock trim. Great for everyday commuting, outstanding on the weekend romps. It was reliable too. I sure miss mine.

  • Bob Dragich

    Including the GTS and not including the R6 seems a bit uninformed.

  • Jon Jones

    The FZ600 was a pretty sweet ride at the time.

  • 0verdose

    No R6?

  • Tinwoods

    Great list. Thanks!