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Used Motorcycles: Yamaha Thunderace buyers guide

By MCN -

 08 July 2009 17:23

Used price: £990 - £3,380
Engine: 20v transverse four, 5 gears
Power: 145bhp
Top speed: 165mph
Weight: 198kg   

The Yamaha Thunderace was originally meant to be a supersports machine, but these days it makes much more sense as a reasonably comfortable and extremely fast sports tourer. If you're a big lad after a big bike, the Yamaha is a great value option. 

The Thunderace's 1003cc 5v motor puts out 145bhp, making it good for 160mph. But the real beauty of the engine is the deliciously smooth spread of torque.   

Things have moved on a little since the Thunderace was born, but don't take it for a slouch. Suspension may be a little tired by now so it could be worth getting it looked at. But compared to more modern machinery, the Thunderace has a broad comfy seat, back-friendly riding position and decent fairing making it a good distance bike.

Since supersports machines have grown more and more focused as time has gone on, the slightly long in the tooth Thunderace is looking pretty plush these days. Decent pillion seat, luggage mounting points, good clocks and screen, plus awesome one-piece four-piston brakes also seen on the R1.  

Mechanically the Thunderace is sound, but bikes ridden through winter with little care tend to suffer. Check the brake calipers as these can seize, same goes for the EXUP exhaust valve. Find a good one though and the Thunderace is a used bargain.

MCN verdict

Handling

3/5

Engine

4/5

Reliability

3/5

Value

4/5

OVERALL

3/5

 

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