YAMAHA FJR1300 (2001-2012) Review

Published: 23 November 2006

"With shaft drive, comprehensive fairing, hard luggage, massive tank capacity etc, it ticks plenty of boxes"

Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Riding

"With shaft drive, comprehensive fairing, hard luggage, massive tank capacity etc, it ticks plenty of boxes"

  • At a glance
  • 1298cc  -  143.5 bhp
  • 41 mpg  -  210 miles range
  • Medium seat height (805mm)

Overall Rating 5 out of 5

The Yamaha FJR1300 is the first from-the-ground-up touring bike the Japanese firm has built. With shaft drive, comprehensive fairing, bespoke hard luggage, massive tank capacity etc, this motorcycle ticks plenty of boxes. From 2006 on it has an automatic gearbox option (AS model) available too, as well as a restyled fairing, adjustable handlebar and seat. All of which means the Yamaha FJR1300 definitely adds up to travelling in style.

Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5

For its weight and size, the Yamaha FJR1300 handles well. You won't be dicing with Sprint ST riders on the roads of Provence, but the FJR1300's huge 48mm forks and compliant monoshock can be set up for semi-sporty riding if the mood takes you - the rear preload is adjustable via a jack up lever in a matter of seconds. Loads of pillion room too.

Engine 5 out of 5

The Yamaha FJR1300's has loads of power and the four cylinder engine makes 99 ft/lbs of torque at 7K revs too. That means grunt and plenty of it, more than enough to help two people, plus loads of kit, overtake safely on A roads. You'll probably get about 40-45mpg from the Yamaha FJR1300's smooth-running, and generally very reliable motor too.

Build Quality & Reliability 4 out of 5

There is a little bit of a question mark over the auto gearbox version of the Yamaha FJR1300 because it will take time and lots of miles to suss. But every detail on the A and AS models shows Yamaha are determined to produce a genuine class leading touring motorcycle, so it should prove a more durable, low maintenance machine for 60,000 miles of touring fun than many an oddball European rival.

Value & Running Costs 5 out of 5

The Yamaha FJR1300 represents loads of motorcycle for the money and ready to head to Spain straight from the showroom floor, unlike some rivals which need expensive additional luggage options. The key factor about the Yamaha FJR1300A is that it looks, feels and rides like it was designed specifically to waft two people in luxury for two weeks of motorcycling leisure. It delivers on all counts. Find a Yamaha FJR1300 for sale

Insurance group: 14 of 17 – compare motorcycle insurance quotes now.

Equipment 5 out of 5

Panniers were standard fitment on the Yamaha FJR1300 from 2006 onwards, and a small luggage rack, plus ABS braking is standard too. The AS auto version gets heated grips, plus it has adjustable handlebar, windscreen and seat heights as part of the 2006 makeover package. The Yamaha FJR1300 is undeniably a well equipped motorcycle and competes strongly with the cost of a fully kitted Beemer or Pan-Euro.

Owners' Reviews

18 owners have reviewed their YAMAHA FJR1300 (2001-2012) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.

We’re currently improving the way this section works, which means we’ve had to suspend the submission of new owners’ reviews for a short period. Please check back soon.

Summary of Owners' Reviews
Overall Rating 4.8 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4.5 out of 5
Engine 4.8 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 4.8 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 4.7 out of 5
Equipment 4.2 out of 5
5 out of 5

FJR1300

16 August 2013 by CharlieMarine

I have been biking for 19yrs and been through plenty of models. The FJR1300 I have owned for three days and out stripes anything else I have ridden. The ride is smooth, suspension perfect. The seated position is spot on. You can not get better for... Read more your money.

Overall Rating 5 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 5 out of 5
Equipment 4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Nice bike, but......

08 July 2011 by Anonymous

It's under-sprung and under-damped on standard settings. It wallows and the front end feels vague and remote. Increasing preload and damping at both ends will dial out the problem enough for solo use but, for regular 2-up touring I'd replace the fork... Read more springs, go for a heavier weight fork oil and change the rear shock. This, of course, should not be necessary on a high-end bike from any manufacturer. Given Yamaha's recent huge price hikes (now £14K+ RRP for a FJR1300) it's all the more unpalatable. Also, they are set to run lean out-of-the-crate, presumably to pass emissions tests. This leads to hesitation at small throttle openings and pulling away or crawling along in slow traffic needs much clutch slip and care to avoid stalling. Again, this can be dialled out by adjusting the CO settings for each cylinder via the onboard computer (06 models onwards. Dunno if you can on earlier models). How trick is that?!!!! I increased the CO on mine and it's now creamy smooth from idle to redline. I bought mine (58 plate) at 1 year old and with 3000 miles on the clock. I don't ride 2-up and I paid less than half of the RRP, so none of the suspension shortcomings really affect me. I just mention it here for the benefit of new prospective purchasers. Sort the suspension and richen the fuelling , though, any you'll be rewarded with a fantastic bike. I class myself as a fast-ish road rider and the bike takes it all in its stride. Engine is smooth, torquey and poweful. Build quality is very good and reliability seems ok, although I've only just reached 11000 miles. No issues yet, though. It's the first bike I've had where the front and rear tyres wear out together. Previously I always got 2 rears to one front. OE Metzelers (I think they were) lasted 5500 miles, Pirelli Angel ST's lasted 4500 miles and I'm currently on Bridgestone BT023's, which I love but I think they, too, will last only about 4500 miles. How people claim to get 9000 miles out of a tyre on a bike of this type I'll never know. IMHO they can't be riding it as it was intended by Mr Yamaha. Anyway, hope this epistle has been of use to someone. In summary, buy one, sort it and enjoy! Because it (and you) are worth it!

Overall Rating 4 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 3 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5
5 out of 5

Fab Bike

21 July 2010 by Glenrobert

Had my FJR over 2 years done loads of touring 2up and its been FAB And on a ride out it keeps up with the sporty boys ( 52 plate done 49k ) Love it Read more

Overall Rating 5 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 4 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 5 out of 5
Equipment 3 out of 5
4 out of 5

back home

26 June 2010 by joebarton

Just bought fjr after owning one back in 2002/2004,memories come flooding back,great ride long distance,good fuel consumption. after long ride get of relaxed(had a bmw 1100rt once, uncomfortable to high in saddle etc.) would recommend that owners... Read more look at uk fjr,s owners club for good offers on parts etc!. will b buying higher screen and winter hand gaurds (stops those winter wet digits on long runs) probalbly change to bt023s when exiting tyr,es wear out as i have always rated them all year round(all weather) summary good tourer with a sting its it.s tail

Overall Rating 4 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 4 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 4 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 4 out of 5
Equipment 4 out of 5
5 out of 5

It rocks, but needs a few mods

02 July 2009 by Anonymous

I've got the facelifted '07 AS model with the fingershifter and auto clutch. This works a treat and allows you to really chill out when riding in town. A foot gear lever is also there but it's so much effort after using the mountain-bike style... Read more shifter. The only slight downside to it is that you can't blip the throttle to scare the cars as you overtake and clutch-dump wheelie drag starts are not possible, although I've read power wheelies are possible, I've not tried 'em cos there aren't many spots on the roads where you can safely let this monster rip! Creature comforts include, electric screen, speed/temp sensitive heated grips, 12v socket, ABS linked brakes, locking cubby compartment, standard side panniers with the mounts nicely integrated into the tail section. The engine is really creamy low down for effortless legal speed cruising and turns ballistic after around 5000 rpm. Unfortunately there is a bit of noticeable vibration between 4000-4500, this must be due to the engine harmonics and does disappear outside this range, but this is a minor niggle. The motor does heat up a fair bit when trundling along at low speed, but dual fans kick in when this happens. Fuel economy really depends how you ride it, I've managed mid 60's going granny style and mid 30's when on super high speed cruising. Mostly I get 45-50 mpg. The standard low rpm fuelling is ATROCIOUS however and this bike really needs to be dynojetted, this is especially the case with the auto-clutch version as you can't increase revs and modulate using the clutch at low speed. Fit a PC-III, dyno it and it's totally peachy. Handling-wise - much better than my old Bandit 600, nice low centre of gravity and although no sportsbike really easy to lean into sweeping bends. Steering lock not bad but it's pretty damn heavy to push, you really do forget how heavy it is when you're on it, as it feels quite nimble even at low speed. Braking is effortless and smooth. It's also physically smaller/lower than the other tourers e.g. honda/bmw and suits shorter bods like me: 30" leg. Also looks way better than those whales too, especially with the panniers off, it looks like a sports bike on steroids. Handlebars adjust but not really enough to make a difference. Also should really come with crash protectors as standard on a 12k bike! Overall the FJR is a really superb bike, doesn't feel unwieldy in the city, can blitz across the country in comfort and fun to throw into the bends along the way. It could do with a few minor improvements however: 1) The fuelling, easy to sort but costly. 2) Standard screen noisy at speed, get earplugs 3) tyre valves really tricky to access, could do with remote pressure monitoring 4) Have to remove panels to check brake and clutch fluid. 5) standard exhaust rather quiet, this is no hooligan bike. 6) Panniers are sturdy and good quality but awkward shape inside with limited capacity. yam topbox massive on the outside, tiny on the inside (only one helmet). 7) the plod use 'em, which steals cred. 8) shaftcase/swingarm doesn't look very trick next to BMW/kwak etc but easy to keep clean and no rubber to perish, i'm really nit-picking now.

Overall Rating 5 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 5 out of 5
Equipment 4 out of 5
5 out of 5

best touring bike

27 March 2009 by bikerlock

nearly 3 years ive had this bike,never missed a beat.i ride it in all wethers.good two up 250 miles to the tank its on 40,000 miles. comfy, fill up carry on,i had honda st better then that.just mind the pegs when pushing it hard, Read more

Overall Rating 5 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 4 out of 5
Equipment 4 out of 5
5 out of 5

Superb all round

09 November 2008 by stephen01

Well I have owned my bike a couple of months now and it just seems to get better. Averaging 50mpg and most of that at legal speed limits? No prblems to date apart from a low idle speed when first picked it up resulting in a couple of stalls and... Read more notchy gearchange. Turned up the idle speed to just over 1000rpm no further problems. Excellent finnish on paint and metal work. This is my 17th bike and so far the best. I have tried BMW 1200GT & S (FJR competitor) but the FJR seems a lot smoother and have better build quality.

Overall Rating 5 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 5 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5
4 out of 5

Good tourer

18 September 2008 by Mjollnir

These bikes are often reffered to as uncomfortable over longer distances, I have had no such problem. Can easily do a tank range in the saddle, and still comfortable enough for more, what more could you ask for. The only down side is it is an inline... Read more four cylinder, but hey you can't have everything.

Overall Rating 4 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 5 out of 5
Engine 3 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 4 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 3 out of 5
Equipment 4 out of 5
4 out of 5

Does exactly what it says on the tin!

23 September 2007 by grb

Moved the the FJR from a Fazer 1000. Wife reports this is much better for pilions, and we have covered many more miles together as a result. Top box and panniers are easy to remove, and make a great difference to handling once removed. Downsides -... Read more Can be fiddly to fit extra's such as GPS and autocom, as electrical connections difficult to access, also the rear shock is not the greatest after 10,000 miles. Overall, it does exactly what it says on the tin, great for munching miles, but quick enough to still embarrass my mates on solo runs. I'm really happy with it.

Overall Rating 4 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 4 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 5 out of 5
Equipment 4 out of 5
5 out of 5

Mick T.

19 September 2007 by mick7280

Best engine i have ever had, totally reliable and very good tank range. Read more

Overall Rating 5 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5
Engine 5 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 5 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 5 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5
Read all 18 owners' reviews in full

Facts & Figures

Model info
Year introduced 2001
Year discontinued 2012
Original price £13,499
Warranty term (when new) Two year unlimited mileage
Running costs
Insurance group 14 of 17
Annual road tax £80
Annual service cost -
Performance
Max power 143.5 bhp
Max torque 99 ft-lb
Top speed 154 mph
1/4-mile acceleration 11.6 secs
Average fuel consumption 41 mpg
Tank range 210 miles
Specification
Engine size 1298cc
Engine type 16v transverse four, 5 gears
Frame type Aluminium diamond
Fuel capacity 25 litres
Seat height 805mm
Bike weight 264kg
Front suspension Preload, rebound
Rear suspension Preload, rebound
Front brake Twin 320mm discs
Rear brake Single 282mm disc
Front tyre size 120/70 x 17
Rear tyre size 180/55 x 17

History & Versions

Model history

2001: Yamaha FJR1300A launched.
2006: Reworked Yamaha FJR1300A and AS models appear; new fairing, wider range of screen adjustment, plus adjustable seat and handlebar height. Luggage now standard, not optional extra, plus AS model has heated grips as standard fitment too.

Other versions

Yamaha FJR1300AS: Same as standard model but with semi automatic gearbox, button operated on handlebars, or via gear lever [£16,499]

Photo Gallery

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  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Top view
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Riding
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Riding
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Engine
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Instruments
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Riding
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Instruments
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Top view
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Riding
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Riding
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Engine
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Instruments
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Yamaha FJR1300 motorcycle review - Side view
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