FrontRunners: Biker Chic

Powered by a massive 1700 cc V-4 engine and dressed by Hermès in buffalo leather, the 2011 Yamaha Hermès VMAX (www.yamaha-motor.com) could dominate the drag strip as well as the catwalk. The $33,385 one-off bike has black-and-chocolate-brown leather covering its seat, fuel tank, instrument nacelle, handgrips, and fenders, as well as a portion of the […]

Cross-Plane Technology Trickles Down to Yamaha’s R1

What’s in a firing order? In the case of the 2009 Yamaha R1’s power plant, trickle-down MotoGP technology and a vast transformation of engine character. The revision to the 2009 Yamaha R1’s mill looks simple on paper: Shift each piston’s position 90 degrees from the next so the engine fires in a 1-2-1 pulse. But […]

Best of the Best 2007: Touring & Adventure

Don’t be deceived by its color-coordinated saddlebags or upright riding position: The $15,599 Yamaha FJR1300AE (www.yamaha-motor.com) is a supersport bike trapped in the sharply styled body of a sport tourer. Yamaha has combined old-fashioned muscle with lightweight chassis construction to create a bike that is exceptionally responsive and begs for spirited riding. Standard antilock brakes […]

Motorcycles: Hot to Handle

Yamaha’s YZF-R1 rarely has disappointed since beginning its fast-paced life nearly a decade ago. It might seem surprising then that the 2007 edition, priced at $11,700, represents such an extensive overhaul of last year’s model. Nevertheless, Yamaha asserts that it is giving riders what they want. “When asked which they [would] prefer, R1 riders put […]

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