Yamaha Motor Corporation USA (Yamaha) is recalling certain model year 2009-2013 YZFR1 motorcycles manufactured October 2008 through August 2013 and 2012-2013 XTZ12 motorcycles

YamaharecallNHTSA022014Yamaha Motor Corporation USA (Yamaha) is recalling certain model year 2009-2013 YZFR1 motorcycles manufactured October 2008 through August 2013 and 2012-2013 XTZ12 motorcycles manufactured October 2011 through August 2013. In the affected motorcycles, use of the headlight may generate enough heat to cause the bulb connections to expand, resulting in arcing in the headlight bulb socket which could cause the socket to overheat, melt and cause the headlight to malfunction. A headlight failure reduces the rider’s ability to see clearly and the motorcycle’s visibility to oncoming traffic, increasing the risk of a crash. Yamaha will notify owners and dealers will replace the headlight socket, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin in February 2014. Owners may contact Yamaha at 1-800-962-7926. Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

You Won’t Believe Which Brand Received The Worst “Reliability” Rating

12-BMW-K1600GTL-0151Consumer Reports surveyed 4680 subscribers who are motorcycle owners about the reliability of their motorcycles.  Out of those who responded to the survey, BMW touring and dual sport owners reported more problems with their motorcycles than owners of other brands.

One in every three BMW owners (33%)  said they’ve had an issue with their motorcycle in the past year.  One in every 4 Harley-Davidson owner (25%) reported an issue with their motorcycle.

Honda CBR, and Kawasaki Ninja ZX-6R owners reported the least amount of problems.  The issues that were brought up the most by those who responded to the survey were problems with lights, switches, instrumentation, electrical or fuel systems.

Other brands such as  Kawasaki, Victory, Indian, Suzuki and Triumph were not ranked as the owners did not provide enough information as required by the survey.

Yamaha is recalling certain model year 2011 XC50A (Vino Classic) motorcycles

yamaha-vino-classicYamaha is recalling certain model year 2011 XC50A (Vino Classic) motorcycles manufactured from April 2011 through August 2011. Due to improper adhesion, the brake shoe linings may separate from the front and rear brake shoes. If the brake shoe linings separate, the brake performance could be reduced, increasing the risk of a crash. Yamaha will notify owners, and dealers will replace the front and rear brake shoes, free of charge. The recall is expected to begin in early October 2013. Owners may contact Yamaha at 1-800-962-7926. Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

Yamaha Recalls Zuma 125 Scooters

Yamaha recalls 8,700 scooters for fuel pump problems

Yamaha recalls 8,700 scooters for fuel pump problems

Yamaha is recalling certain model year 2009 YW125 (Zuma 125) scooters manufactured between July 2008 and April 2009 due to possible improper clearances in the internal fuel pump components. These improper clearances may cause an inadequate supply of fuel. The limited fuel supply could cause engine stalling, increasing the risk of a crash.  Yamaha will notify owners, and dealers will replace the fuel pump with a newly designed fuel pump. The recall is expected to begin February 19, 2013. Owners contact Yamaha at 1-800-962-7926. Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to www.safercar.gov.

The investigation was launched when owners began reporting to  NHTSA stalling while underway in hot weather. The fuel pump is consistently identified as the root cause. The pump is frequently on back order and the part number has been changed.

Report Receipt Date: FEB 04, 2013
NHTSA Campaign Number: 13V035000
Potential Number of Units Affected: 8,700

Honda and Yamaha Issue Recalls

Yamaha is recalling certain model year 2009-2012 XVS95/CT (V Star 950/V Star 950 Tourer) motorcycles, manufactured from October 2008 through August 2011, and model year 2007 XVS 1300/CT (V Star 1300/V Star Tourer) motorcycles, manufactured from August 2006 through March 2007. There may not be a proper seal between the fuel pipes for the fuel injectors and the fuel hose that connects them due to an improperly molded fuel hose.  Over time, pressurized fuel can begin leaking at the hose connection points, which could result in a fire hazard. YAMAHA will notify owners, and dealers will replace the fuel delivery pipe free of charge. The safety recall is expected to begin on or before NOVEMBER 11, 2011. Owners may contact YAMAHA AT 1-800-962-7926.  NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 11V533000

YAMAHA IS also recalling certain model year 2012 XTZ12B/BC (Super Tenere) motorcycles, manufactured from June 01, 2011, through August 31, 2011. During the assembly process, the fuel pump o-ring may have been installed incorrectly in its groove. If the tabs located around the inner circumference of the o-ring were not seated into the groove properly during pump installation, the o-ring sealing lip could be pinched and damaged, preventing proper sealing, and could allow fuel to leak from around the fuel pump mounted under the fuel tank.  Leaking fuel could pose a serious fire hazard.  YAMAHA DEALERS will replace the FUEL PUMP O-RING free of charge. NHTSA CAMPAIGN ID Number: 11V532000

HONDA is recalling certain model year 2010 NT700V motorcycles manufactured on Nov 26 or 27, 2009 for improper tire information label. The label (on the swingarm) may display incorrect tire size and air pressure specifications This recall affects 120 units.


Mecum to Auction Yamaha R1 for Charity at Monterey Event

MARENGO, Ill. – Mecum Auctions will sell a one-of-a-kind Yamaha YZF-R1 motorcycle at no reserve during their upcoming Mecum Monterey Auction, Aug. 18-20, 2011 at the Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel & Spa on the Del Monte Golf Course.

The R1 motorcycle will cross the Mecum auction block, Lot T190.1, on Thursday, Aug. 18 at 6pm PST.  Designated “auctioneers” for this bike are celebrity Jay Leno and three-time 500cc world champion motorcycle racer “King” Kenny Roberts. The special GYTR-equipped R1, ridden by “King” Kenny in several parade laps around the famed Mazda Raceway Laguna Seca circuit last weekend during, features a unique 50th anniversary red/white paint scheme and various genuine Yamaha custom performance accessories.

“The proceeds for this Yamaha R1 will go directly to Bailey’s Café, a fantastic school of the arts for kids in the Bronx,” said Jay Leno. “Once the bidding is over, I’m sure that the performance of this R1 will only be matched by that of the kids in this great school!”

“This is an outstanding addition to what has shaped up to be considered the greatest collection of motorcycles ever offered at auction, and to have both Kenny and Jay involved with helping the charity puts it over the top.” said Gavin Trippe, who heads up Mecum’s motorcycle division.

Mecum’s daytime Monterey Auction is open to buyers, sellers and spectators with free admission and convenient general parking.  Attendees can be part of the action while the auction broadcasts live on Mecum’s national TV show “Mecum Auto Auction: Muscle Cars & More” on Discovery Communications’ HD Theater.  For complete auction details or to consign a motorcycle today, visit www.Mecum.com or contact Gavin Trippe directly at gavin@mecum.com or 949.337.5307.

For more information on Bailey’s Café, visit www.baileyscafe.org

Mecum 2011 Monterey Auction
August 18-20, 2011
Hyatt Regency Monterey Hotel & Spa
1 Old Golf Course Road
Monterey, CA   93940
Preview: Gates open Thursday-Saturday at 8 a.m.
Auction: Auction begins Thursday- Saturday at 10 a.m.
Live TV Times: Thursday-Saturday 1-5 p.m.
(All times Pacific)

Yamaha Recalls 2011 FJR1300 Brake Switch


Vehicle Make / Model: Yamaha / FJR1300      Model Year(s): 2011

Manufacture: Yamaha Motor Corp., USA           Mfr’s Report Date: June 24, 2011

NHTSA Campaign ID Number: 11V340000      NHTSA Action Nmber: N/A

Component: Exterior Lighting: Brake Lights:Switch

Potential Number of Units Affected:260

Yamaha is recalling certain model year 201 FJR1300 motorcycles manufacuted from Jan. 2011 through April 2011. The brake light may not illuminate when the front brake lever is applied because the activating mechanism in the front brake switch can bind.

When th motorcycle operator applies only the brake, the brake light may not come on to alert other drivers, increasing the risk of a crash.

Yamaha dealers will install a new front brake switch free of charge. The safety recall is expected to begin during July 2011. Owners may contact Yamaha at 1-800-962-7926

Owners may also contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9152), or go to  HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV


Yamaha Recalls FJR1300 Electrical Wiring System

Vehicle Make /Model:  Yamaha/FJR1300                                                              Model Year(s): 2006-2009

Manufacturer: Yamaha Motor Corporation, USA                                                 Mfr’s Report Date: June 24, 2011

Component: Electrical System: Wiring

Potential Number of Units Affected: 9,850

Yamaha is recalling certain model year 2006-2009 FJR1300 motorcycles manufactured from Feb. 2006, through March 2009. The ground joint connector of the wire harness could overheat and become deformed, possibly causing an intermittent ground wire connection. If the electrical system is not properly grounded, the ignition system and/ or other electrical components could malfunction, which could cause the engine to stall.

If the motorcycle stalls while being ridden, there could be a crash resulting in injury or death.

Yamaha dealer will install an additional wire sub-lead or, if ground joint connector has already been damaged from overheating, dealer will install a new main wire harness. This service will be performed free of charge. The safety recall is expected to begin during July 2011. Owners may contact Yamaha at 1-800-962-7926

Owners may contact the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s Vehicle Safety Hotline at 1-888-327-4236 (TTY 1-800-424-9153), or go to  HTTP://WWW.SAFERCAR.GOV

2011 Star Stryker- Affordable Attitude

Sitting in the press meeting at the historic Driskol Hotel in Austin, Texas, preceding the first ride of the new Stryker 1300, there are familiar faces wearing Star shirts. Long-term employees and lifelong motorcyclists, I’m among designers, product planners, accessory specialists, road testers, media staff and more. A closely-knit team of highly qualified and dedicated people, all directly responsible for the way the new Stryker’s styling, character and how you can customize it to your own personal preference.

This is a machine built for the American riding public, designed, refined and styled after much time and effort spent interviewing current riders, cruiser and non-cruiser. Then long periods of time riding and evaluating and improving, until the motorcycle you see here is ready for sale. And just in case you think Yamaha slipped a bottle of Scotch in a goody bag before the introduction, take a quick look at Star’s sales figures. As the motorcycle company that sits second in number of units sold, and the company that is nipping away at Harley’s heels, it’s clearly this cohesive mix of home-based knowledge and talent, blended with Yamaha’s pursuit of excellence that is making the Star brand excel.

Just looking at the Stryker outside the Driskol on the morning of our ride confirmed all these feel good thoughts from the previous evening’s launch. The bike sits low, with a lean, muscular stance and has plenty of chrome and deep luster custom-look paint work. It has the chopper style with the wide bars, raked out front end and big rear tire, but swinging it up off the side stand, it thankfully doesn’t have the chopper feel. Bikes with extended front ends have the heaviest and least precise steering of any motorcycle produced, but not so the Stryker. The somewhat lazy rake and trail of 34 degrees and 109mm extend the wheelbase more than two inches longer than the V Star 1300 at 68.9 inches. Like its bigger brother, the Star Raider, it deals with it extremely well. Sure it’s not quite as sharp at speed on very twisty roads, but for the majority of riding situations it’s barely noticeable. The 21-inch front wheel allows the front end to become skittish on very rough pavement, and the somewhat basic suspension will send big bumps directly through to your vertebrae, but when ridden on smoother roads and at sensible speeds, the Stryker performs just fine.

Built on the V Star 1300 platform, a bike that’s been with us since it replaced the venerable V Star 1100 in 2007, there are a few changes to the over square 1304cc, 60 degree, V-twin engine for 2011. The Stryker engine gets a slightly higher lift camshaft and roller rocker arms for a little more power, and the ignition and fuel injection have been changed to work with a larger three-liter air box to complement these changes.

The 100mm pistons use a conservative 9.5:1 compression ratio and run in 83mm ceramic composite cylinder sleeves. The engineers have worked hard to give the engine character, but not at the expense of unnecessary vibration. A bike we think of as mid size, the Stryker has plenty of power from idle up to the 6600 rpm red line. It’s not going to rip your arms out of your sockets when you crank the throttle and put the 40mm Mikuni throttle bodies to work, but it certainly has some good, healthy grunt. I liked not having to down shift to overtake on the highway, and the bike’s ability to rumble along at low rpm and accelerate without any fuss if needed, can be credited to the excellent fuel injection.

With a weight wet of 646 pounds, the Stryker is no lightweight on paper, but it’s cleverly disguised the by the low 26.4 inch seat height and wide bars. Yamaha fully expects a third of it’s Stryker sales to come from female riders, so this is a good thing, as it will certainly be a confidence booster. The ability to put your feet flat on the floor, not needing to wrestle the bars to turn the wheel like a conventional chopper, will make life a lot more pleasant not only for the ladies, but for newer riders stepping up to their first full sized bike.

The chopper theme is certainly evident with the wide 210/40R 18-inch rear tire and 120/70 21-inch front, but the Yamaha team has done their homework with their tire choice. Where conventional choppers use a very skinny front tire, the wider one used on the Stryker calms things down and makes the bike steer a lot better while improving stability. While this set up is not my cup of tea, overall the combination does a much better job in all areas of road holding than I would have thought initially reading the press literature.

The Stryker comes with regular forward positioned foot pegs. The six-speed gearbox makes light work of shifting gears, and power is taken to the back wheel by a clean, quiet maintenance free belt drive system. A single disc brake is used up front, and this is a generic looking two-piston caliper lightly massaging a 320mm single disc. There is a one-piston caliper in the rear with a 310mm disc, and to stop in a hurry, you will need both of them in tandem, as they are somewhat modest in their performance.With a bike of this nature though, I would hope you wouldn’t be doing too much sport riding as the Stryker is about good looks, great feel and the custom cruiser lifestyle. The paint quality on the four-gallon gas tank is first class and is carried over on the fenders and side panels. Fenders are deliberately made of steel so they can easily be modified or repainted to your own choice once you start accessorizing. The stock pipes have a very custom look as delivered and certainly compliment the bike’s looks.  Star is always quick on the draw with their tag line, “We build it, you make it your own,” but this really is the perfect way to describe the accessory options available for the Stryker. Chatting with the man in charge of these accessories, Dave Pooler, I learned there are a plethora of items already available, sixty to be precise. You can choose from billet covers, performance air filter kits, custom seats and back rests. There are mounts for saddlebags and a choice of windshields for traveling, so whatever your taste, Yamaha dealers have you covered.

Riding the stock bike, there’s no windshield, so the view over the chrome handlebars is very clean. There is however a small, centrally mounted console with a conventional analogue speedometer that sits in the center of the bars. All the usual warning lights, neutral light, trip counter fuel gage etc are located in the panel, and all work as intended. Switchgear is plain and functional, and a pair of conventional chrome mirrors let you get a fairly good view of what’s behind. The relationship of the bars to the seat and the foot pegs make the riding position relaxed, and during our day in the Texas hill country it was certainly very comfortable.

At the time of purchase, you can choose from a chrome trim or a more mean looking blacked out package, and the base price of the new Stryker is $10,990 for the Raven and $11,240 for the Impact Blue or Reddish Copper version. It comes with Yamaha’s normal one-year factory warranty. Parking back at the Driskol at the end of the day, I had a chance to spend some time with the Yamaha guys and see their passion and enthusiasm for the tight, competent,  and fun middleweight custom Star Stryker. They have done it again.


Sedona on a Yamaha Super Tenere

By Neale Bayly. Photos by Tom Riles and Brian J Nelson.

“You motorcycle guys have got life figured out.”

I heard that while talking with a corporate executive the other day.  His short statement caught me by surprise.   He no longer rides a motorcycle but he looked at me, shook his head, and hurried off to the next thing important people do, leaving me lost for words.  That doesn’t happen often and I felt a tad awkward. Perhaps my talking about riding this new Yamaha Super Tenere  in the amazing countryside around Sedona, Arizona, wasn’t such a good idea? Especially when it has to rate as one of the single best motorcycle rides I have taken.

Arriving at the small airport outside of Prescott, Arizona, on a clear, cloudless day,  I was greeted by a line of brand new Yamaha Super Tenere motorcycles and an assortment of  my colleagues heading to the motorcycle press brief.  I joined them for the introduction which brought us all up to speed on the technical aspects of this exciting new motorcycle for Yamaha.

Then we then ate lunch, changed into our riding gear and hit the road for Sedona. Rolling along in the early afternoon sun, with warm air and wide horizons around me, I turned off the evaluation software in my brain and just rode. With a full day ahead to analyze the bike I settled in to enjoy this ride.  It was short and sweet, but it did involve a nice section of off road riding as the sun was sinking lowtoward the dusty horizon.

Arriving at our hotel I was excited for the day ahead of us.

The Tenere is a bike that has been around in Europe in one form or other for nearly 30 years, starting life as a 600cc single in 1983. As a penniless bum in those days riding an old XT500, it was a machine I lusted after for many years. At that time most of my world travels were done with a back pack and my thumb out, so I would often stand outside my local Yamaha dealer’s window at night when home, dreaming of riding one around the world someday. The bike evolved over the years and by 1989 had grown into the XTZ750, a twin cylinder machine that would go on to win six Paris/Dakar races. By then I had graduated to old, used bikes with old bags strapped on with bungee cords, and ridden from Florida to Alaska as well as around Australia, but home in the UK in the summer of ’89, it was like Déjà vu outside the same motorcycle shop.

Now, the bike that has been ridden and raced all over the world for more than a decade has grown up and come to America as the Super Tenere. It has a much bigger engine, displacing 1199cc, but the core of the machine remains the same, a comfortable, practical, on/off road, adventure traveling machine that can take you anywhere you want in the world, on just about any kind of road. It was actually released in Europe for 2010 and won’t be available in America until May 2011 as a 2012 model, but judging by the excitement generated in the media, its arrival here is long overdue. To purchase a new Super Tenere, Yamaha is taking $500 deposits until March of next year. The sooner you get on the list, the earlier you will have your bike, and Yamaha will only bring in limited numbers, so it could be a case of he who hesitates is lost here if you delay.

Large dual-purpose motorcycle sales only make up about six percent of all bikes sold in America. But over the last ten years this segment of the market has grown rapidly, and it’s actually the area least affected by the current economy. With so many motorcycles evolving into ever narrowing niches, the Super Tenere appears to have a lot more to offer. As the type of motorcycle that can serve a wide variety of different functions, from long distance touring to commuting, world traveling to weekend off road fun, the only question is does it live up to the hype?

Waking up to a perfect morning in Sedona, we saddled up early and rode up into the surroundingmountains. Pulling strongly and smoothly as we climbed, the biggest first impression is from the all-new 1199cc twin, which is so incredibly smooth. Featuring a unique 270 degree crank rotation, that allows both the 98 mm pistons to fire very closely together, the characteristics of the engine are more like a big single cylinder than a conventional twin, although there is none of the accompanying vibration thanks to a two-axis primary balancer. This sits in front of the engine and also drives the water pump. The water-cooled engine is very compact thanks to a dry sump, which allows the bike to use a narrow chassis, and the radiator is mounted sideways to take advantage of this. It’s producing around 108 horsepower spread nicely across the range, with plenty of low down pull and a good strong top end.

Lightweight magnesium cylinder heads house twin spark plugs, four-valves per cylinder and double overhead camshafts. A downdraft fuel injection system uses two 46mm throttle bodies with 12-hole injectors controlled by Yamaha’s YCC-T fly-by-wire system, which we first saw on the R6 sport bike back in ‘06. It’s hard to find fault these days with modern fueling systems, and the Super Tenere’s is no different. Providing predictable power delivery in every situation from picking our way over rocks and gravel in first gear, to running up to triple digit speeds on open sections of highway in sixth, it’s without fault. There is also a two position power mode setting similar to the system found on pure sport bikes these days, and this gives you the option of the “T” mode for touring and “S” mode for optimum performance. As you would expect, the “T” mode gives a more muted ride, andwill undoubtedly be useful in rainy or exceptionally slippery conditions. It can also be adjusted between these two modes on the fly if you need to, which is a nice feature.

As we ride into an ever more sophisticated world, it’s no surprise to learn the new Super Tenere comes with traction control. There are three choices here, with a button on the side of the gauges being depressed to turn the system off, or the choice of position one or two if you don’t disable it. In the least invasive setting, the rear tire will spin briefly before an amber light flashes on the dashboard, the traction control kicks in, and forward progress returns. In “TC2” you can let the wheel spin more to control the back end before it stops the spinning. I was actually very surprised how much grip the Bridgestone Battle wing tires gave before the rear tire would break loose, and for the dirt portions I preferred to turn the system off. The tubeless tires are a good street/dirt mix and come wrapped around spoke wheels. The front tire is an 110/80R-19 inch, the rear a 150/70R-17 inch, and the bike will come with these Bridgestone Battle wings or Metzeler Tourance EXPs.

About the only thing I wasn’t so positive about was the anti lock brakes, not that they don’t work well, but because officially there is no provision to turn them off. Having this ABS activated full time is not a problem during street riding, but in the dirt I prefer to be able to lock the rear if I want, especially on a heavier bike as the Tenere. It works extremely effectively on the road though, with minimum pulsing when it activates, and no sense of the bike freewheeling before it continues with the braking process.  This braking system itself is very good, with a pair of mono block four piston calipers working with 310mm floating wave rotors. There is a single piston caliper squeezing a 298mm disc in the rear, and the Yamaha uses a linked system that uses the front and rear together. This unified system is highly sophisticated and uses a pump under the seat that is operated when you use the front brake. Depending on how much weight you have on the bike, it will add the correct amount of rear brake pressure to settle the chassis. I liked the feel at the lever both on the road and in the dirt, and the linked brake certainly eliminates some of the fork dive under heavier braking on the street, a situation that can be a problem on a softly sprung machine with long travel suspension.

The inverted 43mm fork is fully adjustable for spring pre load, as well as rebound and compression damping. With a full 7.5 inches of travel, it is more off road focused, but this isn’t a problem as it makes for a more compliant ride on the street. The rear shock has the same amount of travel and a hydraulic pre load adjuster that doesn’t require tools. It has no provision for compression damping, but does allow you to adjust the rebound settings for more control. During our full test day, we rode through some fairly challenging dirt sections, and the suspension soaked up most of the bigger bumps if we kept the speeds on the sensible side. For more serious stuff or higher speeds, it’s going to be challenged as the bike tips the scales at 575 pounds with a full 6.1 gallons of fuel, and that’s a lot of weight to be throwing around in the dirt.

Rolling out onto a section of graded dirt road that ran through a peaceful, picturesque Coconino National Forest, I stopped thinking about the technical aspects of the Super Tenere and started absorbing the moment. With the majority of my group running a faster pace ahead, I found myself riding with Yamaha’s Kevin Foley in a more relaxed fashion. With the big twin purring effortlessly beneath me, and shafts of golden light bursting through the trees as we rode, it was the perfect application for the big Tenere. Floating over any bumps we encountered, I stood up and gripped the tank with my knees, let the bike go a little loose through the corners and tried to keep a  massive grin  inside my helmet. All the bigger, lighter, faster rhetoric had evaporated into the clear, crisp air as we engaged in the act of motorcycling. Exploring an exciting new landscape in the saddle of a comfortable, competent machine with a good friend by my side, there are few finer experiences to be savored on two wheels.  We had ridden here on a mixture of tarmac, rocks, gravel, and dirt, and the Super Tenere had handled it all with aplomb. In fact, I felt like loading up my tent, sleeping bag, a couple of weeks of gear, and not stopping, as the smell of pine trees permeated the air. Yamaha has created a bike to get out and ride, and one that is going to be equally at home on fire trails or asphalt, whether it’s for a day, a month or a year.

Back on the tarmac, I recognized the landscape, having ridden here a couple of times over the years, and we engaged in a spirited ride on the deserted highway. The adjustable windshield deflects a good portion of the high-speed breeze, and the riding position is all day comfortable. The well-padded seat is adjustable, with the tallest position putting you a full 34.3 inches from terra firma. A low seat option is available for $240 that takes this down to 31.9 inches for those with shorter legs. The saddle is fairly narrow, so even on the highest setting I found the bike easy to maneuver and confidence inspiring while stopping and posing the bike for pictures on the rocky mountain roads.

The cockpit is clean and tidy, with an attractive, easy to read instrument console. An analogue tachometer sits to the left of a digital speedometer with all the warning and information lights to the far left of the console. The digital display informs you which traction control setting the bike is in, as well as which power mode. There is also a power outlet just below it for any electrical gear you might want to plug in. Switchgear is elegantly simple, mirrors work just fine, and there is a four-way adjustable brake lever.

Writing a review about the Tenere without making some comparisons to the BMW GS1200 is difficult. Retailing at $13,900 compared to the $17,835 you would need to spend for a BMW with ABS, spoke wheels and traction control, the Yamaha is certainly an attractive proposition. I don’t think it’s as competent as the BMW when the going gets really rough off road, but in every other department it holds its own. BMW has done an awesome job creating a lifestyle around their GS models, and Yamaha doesn’t have this on their side yet. But with solid luggage, heated grips, engine guards, skid plates and headlight guards already available, the Super Tenere already has all you need to embark on your next round the world adventure.

Rolling back through Sedona, after a long and varied day in the saddle, I didn’t want the ride to end for so many reasons. The Super Tenere had taken me back to why I became a motorcyclist; the friends, the camaraderie and thrill of experiencing a new landscape from the saddle. It had seduced me into lusting for the open road and instilled me with a desire to find places to explore where the tarmac ends  (working on a trip to Labrador as I type). It just works so well for such a wide variety of applications and does so without the ego boast of being better, lighter or faster than another brand. Sure people will want to compare it to the BMW as I mentioned, but in my mind the Super Tenere is no competition at all. It’s just a welcome addition to the segment of the motorcycle market that’s got it right, and it definitely lives up to the hype.