RIDEFAST SEPTEMBER

foleyg

Let’s chat a bit about the 900’s.

Yamaha has a bike for most

tastes.

If you’re a typical street bike rider

and do most of your riding in the

real world, the Yamaha MT09-

engine is pretty spectacular for

all applications. In fact we have

often wondered why Yamaha has

not made an adventure machine

with this configuration. It just

makes sense.

The 900cc three-cylinder

Crossplane Crankshaft Concept

CP3 motor produces tons of

low-down torque and is a dream

to ride on the street. The motor

spins up quickly, and seamless

power is delivered all the way

to the limiter. It all happens so

efficiently that in the lower gears

it is easy to hit the rev-limiter

on a regular basis. There are no

flat-spots in the power delivery,

and low-down torque feels

exceptionally good. The MT09-’s

gearbox is generally very smooth,

clutch actuation is soft and gear

changes are smooth and precise.

The MT09- has three

riding modes. The default

STD (standard) mode is

complemented by A mode, for

increased throttle aggression.

B-mode has reduced power and

aggression, which is useful in

low-traction conditions such as

wet weather. Needless to say, this

lot stayed in A-mode for the day.

The MT09-’s electronics are

pretty simple and effective.

ABS is standard and cannot

be switched off or adjusted. In

contrast, the MT09-’s traction

control has two settings, plus off.

Level 1 has the least intrusion.

Level 2 is quite a bit more

intrusive and does come in at

even quite a modest pace.

The Brakes on these MT09-’s are

excellent. There is plenty of feel,

and even the slightly more porky

GT brakes in a hurry. Sometimes

you could feel the ABS pulsing a

little especially on loose surfaced

urban roads.

The KYB suspension offers a pretty

sporty, firm feel. No complaints in

that department! Let’s run through

the different derivatives:

Even though the bikes all have

the same engine and drivetrain,

they feel distinctly different. We’ll

try to explain it…

MT09

The naked MT09- is the hooligan

of the show – and quite frankly,

with that Yoshi pipe clearing the

roads ahead, is without a doubt the

most fun of the pack. Sadly, Sean

jumped on to this one first and we

literally needed to donner him with

a crowbar to give the other riders a

turn. It is just so quick, nimble and

fun to ride that you do not want to

climb off. Plenty fast too – and in

the right hands, you’ll be popping

wheelies all over the show at every

opportunity.

The chassis is very sporty, she

turns on a penny rails through the

corners like a GP bike and rockets

out with torque all the way from

the bottom until you can no longer

take the buffeting wind.

It’s an absolute head turner too.

At our stop for a lockdown burger,

we noticed more than a few peeps

sauntering over to leave drool

marks on the tank. If you are keen

on a sporty performer that is so

nippy and fun to ride, then this is

definitely one of the bikes that you

need to look at. It is, quite simply,

brilliant!

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