A segment of our sport that’s seen plenty of attention recently is the “hyper-naked” segment, standard-styled motorcycles that offer more performance and edgier styling than your run-of-the-mill standard. Yamaha Motors USA made that designation official, giving its FZ-07, FZ-09 and FZ-10 models the “MT” moniker, as well as announcing some updates to its FZ…oops, MT-07 for 2018.
Matthew Murray was out enjoying a jaunt on his Yamaha FZ-10 down a Southern California canyon road when his ride ended up launching off a cliff and him tumbling an estimated 250 feet down a hill. The video shows Murray traveling about 60 mph as he approached a left-hand turn, then running wide and sailing off the cliff. He claims his steering locked up and caused him to go wide.
Yamaha has filed a trademark application in Europe for the name “Tracer GT,” suggesting a new touring model is on the way. The application was filed April 19 with the European Union Intellectual Property Office for use of the name for “motorcycles, scooters, mopeds, three-wheeled motorcycles, three-wheeled scooters, three-wheeled mopeds and parts and fittings for all the aforesaid goods.”
Each new naked demands of us another shootout. The catalyst this time around is Yamaha’s R1-powered FZ-10. Introduced in July as a 2017 model, the new FZ-10 stands as the only liter-size Japanese streetfighter offering enough performance and attitude to bring the fight to the currently dominant nakeds. Add to that a rare appearance by an EBR 1190SX, and two stalwarts of the class, Aprilia Tuono V4 1100RR and Triumph Speed Triple R, and we’ve the ingredients for a spicy streetfighter omelette.
Soon we’ll be assembling the combatants for our third naked bike shootout this year. Why another one? Because Yamaha’s new FZ-10 is forcing our hand. Our First Ride Review of the FZ-10 was published at the end of July, a mere week before our Naked Sports Six-Way Shootout hit the digital newsstand in early August. Prior to that, our 2016 Ultimate Streetfighter Shootout between the two reigning kings of the naked bike world – Aprilia and KTM – was published all the way back in April. Leaving the FZ-10 as ridden but not juxtaposed.
Actually the first minute or so of this vid is a great graphic presentation of the Yamaha “Crossplane” crankshaft it introduced in its 2009 R1. Crossplane is a cool marketing word for a four-cylinder crank that scatters its four pistons equidistantly around its 360 degrees – each one 90 degrees apart – instead of everybody else’s flat, or 180-degree crank, where two pistons are at top dead center while the other two are at bottom dead center.
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).
By now we’ll assume you’ve already read my First Ride Review of the 2017 Yamaha FZ-10, which means you already know I’m a fan of the bike. I give kudos to Yamaha for producing a motorcycle worthy of bringing the fight to the three class leaders of the super streetfighter class: the KTM 1290 Super Duke R, BMW S1000R, and Aprilia Tuono V4 1100.
In light of the new Yamaha FZ-10 I rode a few days ago, let’s travel back 10 years to the intro of the 10’s predecessor: the FZ1. It, too, was a more comfortable version of the built-for-the-track R1, but in stark contrast to the new FZ-10 it’s styling can only be considered bland by comparison. Styled more for the gentlemanly set, it’s a bit strange Gabe Ets-Hokin was the one who got to ride this bike at the intro (zing!). Nonetheless, the FZ1 holds a soft spot in many rider’s hearts for being more than just a naked R1 with a handlebar – it’s a comfortable long-distance machine that can also handle the bends. Here’s Gabe to tell you more.
One of the most hotly contested categories in motorcycling today, the liter-class streetfighter field has a contender from nearly every manufacturer out there. But if you’ve read the numerous streetfighter reviews posted on Motorcycle.com and other outlets, you’ll know that three models – super streetfighters, if you will – stand above the rest: the BMW S1000R, Aprilia Tuono V4 1100, and KTM Super Duke R.
When Yamaha made new-model announcements at its big EICMA show shindig last fall, MotoGP world champion Jorge Lorenzo rode onto the stage on the MT-10, an ultra-modern, anime-influenced streetfighter based on the seductive R1 supersport introduced the year prior. In the meantime, Yamaha has introduced the MT-10 to global markets while we have been left sitting on our hands waiting for the day when the American arm of the tuning-fork brand announces it will come to our shores.