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Yamaha XT660Z TENERE Trail Motorbike Review

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MCN overall verdict rating is 3

The Yamaha XT660Z Tenere is a great value, superbly capable adventure bke with real off road capability. Global treks aren’t really on the cards as the Yamaha XT660Z Tenere’s vibey single cylinder engine makes hard work of pulling its 185kg dry weight. Useful touches such as the durable crash panels and front towing hoop put it in a class of it’s own.

Engine

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 3.5

The Yamaha XT660Z Tenere’s engine is used in a number of other machines (including the Aprilia Pagaso, MT-03, Derbi Mulhacen as well as the XT660 X and R models) complaints of a jerky throttle, stalling and mid rev hunting have been fixed on the Tenere. The engine accelerates cleanly from a closed throttle and pulls well (for a single) up to 70mph. Intrusive Vibes begin at 5000rpm.

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 3.5

Despite the relatively heavy weight and tall seat height the Yamaha XT660Z Tenere’s wide bars and good balance gives slow speed confidence. Like most motorcycles with off road abilities the forks dive harshly under braking and the rear squats under acceleration leading the bike wide out of turns. Off road the chassis will cope with all but the severest conditions.

Equipment

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 3.5

Durable ‘rally raid’ panels are fixed to vulnerable areas on the Yamaha XT660Z Tenere’s fuel tank and engine and are designed to prevent excessive damage in a fall. Small fairing is surprisingly effective even without the optional taller screen. Genuine, but expensive, Yamaha accessories such as metal panniers are available.

Yamaha XT660Z Tenere (2008-current)

Detail Value
New price £6,999
Dealer used prices
£3,810 (2008) - £6,950 (2014)
Private used prices
£3,430 (2008) - £6,250 (2014)
  View full used price info
Engine size 660 cc
Power 46 bhp
Top speed 120 mph
Insurance group 10 of 17
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 3 rating is 3.5
Engine rating is 3 rating is 3.5
Ride & Handling rating is 3 rating is 3.5
Equipment rating is 4 rating is 3.5
Quality & Reliability rating is 4 rating is 3.5
Value rating is 4 rating is 3.5

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 3.5

The Yamaha XT660Z Tenere’s engine is used across a wide range of machines and fuelling glitches aside, is a solid and dependable motor. Yamaha have obviously spent time on the detail of the Tenere and tried to make the bike as user repairable as the Euro 3 rules allow.

Value

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 3.5

The Yamaha XT660Z Tenere has an impressive blend of on and off road ability with some neat and well thought out design touches which makes it excellent value for money. If you steer clear of Yamaha’s expensive option list and source aftermarket parts it’s possible to have a genuine (if slower) alternative to BMW’s F650/800GS range for £1500 less. Find a Yamaha XT660Z Tenere for sale

Insurance

Insurance group: 10 of 17

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Model History

2008: Yamaha XT660Z Tenere launched.

Other Versions

None.

Specifications

Top speed 120 mph
1/4-mile acceleration secs
Max power 46 bhp
Max torque 43 ft-lb
Weight 183 kg
Seat height 895 mm
Fuel capacity 22 litres
Average fuel consumption 44 mpg
Tank range 200 miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group 10 of 17
Engine size 660 cc
Engine specification Liquid cooled 4V single cylinder, SOHC, five gears
Frame Tubular steel, semi-double cradle frame
Front suspension adjustment None
Rear suspension adjustment Preload only
Front brakes 298mm double disc twin piston calipers
Rear brake 245mm disc, single piston calipers
Front tyre size 90/90-21
Rear tyre size 130/80-17

See all Yamaha XT660Z TENERE motorcycles for sale

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8553 miles

£4,499

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XT660Z TENERE

7900 miles

£4,295

Yamaha
XT660Z TENERE

201 miles

£5,999

Yamaha
XT660Z TENERE

3838 miles

£5,199

Yamaha
XT660Z TENERE

34099 miles

£3,699

Owners' Overall Rating rating is 3.5(24 reviews)

  • its a cracker

    Anonymous

    Average rating rating is 4

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    Engine

    I got my Tenere just over a year ago and I have never regretted it its a cracker. I was contemplating packing the bikes in until on a visit to my local motorcycle shop where I was wheel kicking I was considering a BMW800GS nice bike good to go excellent infact but I then the shop owner persuaded me to take a Ten out for a spin I had nothing better to do so of I went. First couple of miles I thought what a bag of **** compared to the multi cylinder machine for one thing its a lot more evolving you cannot just put it into top gear and go. The first thing you notice is the vibration and it not exactly fast shall we say it gains speed and you had to be in the right gear or else she let you know that she was not a happy bunny. After 10 miles she started to grow on me and by the time I got back to the shop I had a smile from ear to ear and a deal was done Bye Bye tiger hello Tenere. I have been riding bike for some 35 years and I would say that in the last 5 years I only averaged about 300 to 400 miles a year. In the past year I have done nearly 6000 miles it would be a lot more given half a chance but other things get in the way. Running costs touring fully loaded up 70+mpg around town 55+mpg 100% reliable. On the other side of the coin is the cost new at £7000 that is a lot when put against other machines and I Don't think you will see many on the roads. do yourself a favour if you are looking for something a little different go for a decent spin on a big single and see what you think it may not light your candle but you may be surprised.

    02 November 2013

  • The reluctant Yamaha Tenere owner

    denislj

    Average rating rating is 2.5

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    I'm keeping a blog on my Ten: http://densten.wordpress.com. It's called 'The reluctant Yamaha Tenere owner'. Detailed analysis, problems and qualities can be found in it.

    28 November 2012

  • XT Tenere 660

    Gentlemanhooligan

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    This is a truly great bike. The screen could be a little higher but apart from that, brilliant. With a low price tag too. Motorway cruising at 80mph not a problem. But this bike is in it's element on the bumpy, imperfect, A roads of eastern Europe. If you want to explore the globe then this is your machine. Good sturdy ride with a great performing single cylinder motor.

    15 April 2011

  • It's gone

    decheman

    Average rating rating is 2

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    Engine

    The bike has failed to start one too many times, I am now trading it in for a honda. Had the bike for 16 months and now it won't start if the weather is a bit damp, it has been thoroughly checked over by Yamaha dealer and no fixable problem found, battery checked, plug replaced, new sensor in but no change. Very disappointed by this bike, bought it as a basic value all year round commuter bike and it just can't hack it and at the new price of £6,999 they are not even a budget bike. My advice is steer clear, to many faults with a bike that now has the new Triumph as its competition.

    02 February 2011

  • Still like it, don't trust it

    decheman

    Average rating rating is 3

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    Engine

    Have had the Tenere for 16 months now and covered 20,000 miles. I use it almost every day, even through snow this winter. When up and running I find as a work bike it is very very good as its running costs are low, rear tyre lasts about 7,000 miles and the front around 12,000 and I still get over 200 miles to a tank. I really like the fact that services are at every 6000, why other manufacturers aren't doing this I don't know. I am 6'2" and find the bike very comfortable, I often travel 180 miles + in one hit and I am not sore or uncomfortable. Engine still runs fine and while it is a bit more viby (is that a word?) than other bikes I have not noticed it as a problem. However the bike has had a lot of work done on it (fortunately all under warrenty) I have got through three cush drives, Wiring loom needed to be replaced, RAC have been called out 3 times as bike won't start, each time it has been checked over by Yamaha dealer and they can't find fault, but I am starting to lose confidence in it. Now the speedo has packed up. Yamaha panniers are pretty flimsy (especially considering the cost of them) and the metal pins that hold the lids on have all come out and I have replaced with screws. Over all I really want to like this bike, but as I bought it new and have kept it regularly serviced by Yamaha dealer, the fact that I now can't trust it to start and the electrics seem a bit iffy I am thinking of changing it for a Honda.

    26 January 2011

  • The REAL Ultimate Adventure Tourer?

    drztourer

    Average rating rating is 5

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    Spencer Conway has just returned from a 60,000km circumnavigation of Africa, visiting 32 coutries, taking a little over 286 days. He is the first man ever to do this solo. Months of preparation went into this trip and chosing the right bike was paramount to the success of the journey. The bike would have to be the ultimate in reliabilty and versatility, be rugged enough to cope with the worst terain on this earth loaded with luggage, yet comfortable enough to spend all day in the saddle. Which bike did he chose? A BMW GS? A KTM Adventure? A Ducati Mutistrada? NOPE! He chose a Yamaha XT660Z Tenere. Case closed.

    25 August 2010

  • Value For Money

    Rogerthat

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Engine

    What a great bike. Having just toured France on my R12S, I went to Keys Yamaha Worthing to get a new rear tyre for my XT660X, the every day hack. Keys made me an offer I couldn't refuse and interest free finance on the balance against a new black Tenere. The bike has just had first service, and I am loving it. At 6'2" tall, the height is great for me, engine is punchy and fun at speeds that wont shred your license, and the handling on Tourance tyres is excellent provided you plan for corners in advance. Good wind protection at motorway speeds, machine is v happy sitting at 70 all day, but is equally punchy and fun on the backroads. Well over 220 miles per tank, and frankly when I go to the garage now I jump on the Tenere before the R12S - it's juts easy and fun to ride. Twin discs are better than the XT660X single disk, but I may change the brake lines to Hel/Goodridge a little further down the road Will be touring Europe on this next year, going to get some Yamaha luggage for it and may even take the missus on the back. I have had many Yamahas and loved them all. Fizzie, FZR1000, YZF750, 2 x TDM850 and Fazer 1000. Of all the Fazer thou is probably the best all rounder, but the Tenere runs it pretty close and for single delivers astounding and relatively refined performance.

    31 July 2010

  • Err, let's get real people...

    Anonymous

    Average rating rating is 4

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    I have just bought an 11-month-old Tenere with 1600 miles on it, in mint condition for £3900! So if there were a 6-star rating for value I would have given it. I was worried about 2 things before I bought it...Its lack of chuckability compared to my old bike (DRZ400) and its lack of power (because of some reviews I'd read). I had NOTHING to worry about. It's suprisingly nimble and it's not underpowered in the slightest. I have a quick message for all the owners / testers who think it's slow and vibey...IT'S A 660cc SINGLE WITH 6000 MILE SERVICE INTERVALS ON A 183Kg BIKE!!! The bike doesn't pretend to be anything other than what it is: An exceptional value, go anywhere, ultra competent, amazing looking, medium-speed adventure tourer. If you want to go everywhere at licence-losing speeds or tour the world 2 up with luggage then spend a whole £2000! more and buy a BMW F800GS and leave the poor Tenere alone. There, the Tenere's honour is restored! Phew!

    03 May 2010

  • perfect bike for touring @ practical speed

    orangepekoe

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    If you're not speed-junky, if you want to ride at any road condition, and if you care about value for money (including running cost), this amazing bike will be the one of the best solution. Very confy engine (for a single), relaxed riding position(seat height is bit too high though..), good fuel consumption, reliable maneuverbility(off-road or dirt track rinding style is recommended I feel). Cheap running cost(Tyre, Oil, gas,,etc), good wind protection(not as much as R1200GS though,,). There is almost no stimulative performance at this bike, but full of enjoyment and relaxed long-time ride you will get. If you want stimulation or excitement, it would be better to get KTM, but if you want sustainable enjoyment, tenere would be the one of the best.

    19 April 2010

  • Dull

    wozzer

    Average rating rating is 2

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    Title says it all. I use it for a 40 mile commute. I've had it 6 months, put 5k on it, and I'm sick of the buffeting, the lack of power, the uncomfortable seat, the ultra pessimistic fuel gauge, the poor MPG, the tiresome engine, and above all it's dullness (if that's a word). Fine for desert racers (who don't want to win) but utterly pointless for the road. Sorry, speak as you find I was always told !

    25 March 2010

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svscratcha

svscratchasays

MCN july 08 tenere review

Hi does anybody have this review ( in full) that they could send/ e-mail/ post a link to, me as the preview on here only gives the first page. I would be very grateful , as I cant wait for my tenere to come so I am trying to lap up as many reviews as possible to pacify me.

Be good to here from anyone with this bike also to get an up to date view of it.

Tanks

07 February 2009 11:06

mac'o'bolton

User's Badge

mac'o'boltonsays

Owners reviews or readers reviews?

I'm all for a diversity of opinion and I respect that each opinion is as valid as the next BUT I think the idea of the 'owners reviews' is for owners to report their experiences which readers can compare against what's reported in the press. I feel this is particularly important here as the genuine owners seem to be giving drastically differing opinions to the reports by road testers. If people read reviews and report an opinion through ratings, this seems to me to be mixing important data up. For example; Tahir and doug 45 (whilst valid opinions and contributions) don't appear to be owners and have posted the lowest ratings for the bike...

17 September 2008 10:19

deejaybee

deejaybeesays

Engine life

I am not an automotive specialist, but I am an engineer and I find it hard to believe that there is a dirrect correlation between engine life and compression ratio as has been suggested. Especially a difference of 60000 miles. The compression ratio is one of the things that dictates how much air and fuel the engine can burn and therefore the power of the engine. It is true that a more highly tuned engine may be more highly stressed which could effect its life expectancy. However, the main aspect of serios engine wear will be related to the moving / rotating parts and how well these are designed and lubricated. If the compression did have a direct bearing on engine life surely this would men that a typical diesel engine would be virtually useless? As we all know this is not the case. In terms of modern engine design a 650cc engine developing 50-60bhp is far from cutting edge and I seriously doubt that a varation in compression ratio of 10-15% has any direct and significant impact on engine life. If anyone has any substantial technical proof to the contrary I would be interested to see this.

12 August 2008 10:40

Tahir

Tahirsays

unstopable

i'm an engineer and work on many technical engines so i'm so experienced on engines this engine has an Compression Ratio 10/1 its 11,3/1 in suzuki dl650 vstrom it means this engine has a life of more than 100.000 miles and 11,3 means it has 40,000 miles so yamaha has a really bullet proof engine only problem it must be lighter its 183 kg +22lt fuel=its over 200 kg and its far to be a off road machine its an perfect enduro with very good off road abilities and need to have a kick start too strench:bullet proof engine, very quality tranmission system, fuel consumption, very good buit quality weakness:it too high for short users,heavy for off road( but its lighter than its competitors) i dont know who decide this stars to this amazing bike

04 August 2008 00:20

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