Yamaha has a new adventure bike on the way, and it’s based on the one of the best and most economical naked sportbikes in production, the Yamaha FZ-07. 2017 is going to be a very interesting year for the adventure bike segment.
MCN.com was the first with spy shots of what they’re calling the MT-07 (the European designation for FZ-07) Tenere. The spy shots (you’ll have to go to them to see them) show a mid sized adventure bike, complete with long travel suspension and bigger, and spoked rims. No specs on those yet, but they look like an 18-inch rear and 21-inch front to me. This prototype also has a reworked swingarm, rear sub frame, new exhaust, and slightly different brakes than the FZ-07 it’s based on.
The FZ-07's parallel twin is quite a little gem in the motorcycle landscape. At 75 horsepower and 50 pound-feet of torque, the 689 cc parallel twin makes modest power but with an incredibly even and smooth delivery. Throw an aftermarket exhaust and new tune on it, and the motor wakes up nicely, both in power and sound.
The FZ-07 has a manufacturer listed wet weight of 397 pounds which is incredibly light, even for its segment. Obviously, an adventure model will be bigger and heavier, but to start with that as a platform is incredibly encouraging.
An FZ-07 based adventure bike won’t cut into the true enduro segment or steal sales from bikes like the KTM 690 Enduro R or Husqvarna 701 Enduro, but it will slot in nicely as an incredible dual sport/adventure option for people who don’t want or need anything as big as the Honda Africa Twin or the KTM/Ducati/BMW behemoths.
It’s also interesting because of the prices Yamaha has been able to offer on their latest bikes. The FZ-07 retails for a incredible $7,000, which means an adventure version could come in at under $10,000. Not that it’s a fair comparison, but the sport touring version of the FZ-09, the FJ-09, has an MSRP $2,300 higher than the FZ-09's $8,190 at $10,490.