YAMAHA YBR125 (2005-on) Review

Published: 24 November 2006

"Gentle, easy going and practical, it'll see you through your test"

Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review - Riding

"Gentle, easy going and practical, it'll see you through your test"

Overall Rating 4 out of 5

Not the most stylish kid on the block but, as budget, basic learners go, the Yamaha YBR125 offers pretty good value for money. Gentle, easy going and practical, it’ll see you through your test and, if you want, beyond. The Yamaha YBR125 is best as a city ride, there’s enough poke to wind you through rush hour traffic and the handling’s not bad either.

 

Ride Quality & Brakes 4 out of 5

The Yamaha YBR125’s very light and boasts surprisingly good handling. Nothing too mad: it’s just forgiving and easy to practice your cornering on. The suspension’s basic but effective while the Yamaha YBR125's brakes are good, especially at the front. It even sounds pretty fruity.  There’s kick, as well as electric, start.

Engine 4 out of 5

The Yamaha YBR125's air-cooled four stroke is pretty nippy, with enough power to propel you around town or along easy A roads at a fairly decent pace. The Yamaha YBR125's top whack’s around 70mph but cruising at 55mph is infinitely more comfortable. Smooth fuel injection helps you along and there’s a choke (under the tank, unfortunately) for those cold starts.

Build Quality & Reliability 3 out of 5

The Yamaha YBR125 is build-to-a-budget and, to an extent, it shows. Owners talk of dodgy indicator wiring and occasionally sticky gearboxes but, overall, they seem happy, especially when the Yamaha YBR125 costs so little to buy. The engine’s solid, proven and reliable.

Insurance, running costs & value 4 out of 5

Cheap to buy, very cheap to insure and fuel consumption’s astonishing. Things rarely go wrong with Yamaha YBR125s but, if they do, parts are inexpensive and easy to find plus the Yamaha YBR125 is simple to work on yourself, saving even more money. Up against the likes of Honda’s legendary CG125 (which is the same price). Find a Yamaha YBR125 for sale

Insurance group: 4 of 17 – compare motorcycle insurance quotes now.

Equipment 4 out of 5

Analogue clocks and a fuel gauge make up the Yamaha YBR125's basic but useful dash; there’s a centrestand, luggage rack and a grabrail for pillions. The seat on the Yamaha YBR125 is pretty comfy, even over distance, but the mirror stalks are a bit short for decent rear vision. Cast alloy wheels look smart and there’s an aftermarket screen available from Yamaha for when the elements get too much.

Owners' Reviews

34 owners have reviewed their YAMAHA YBR125 (2005-on) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.

Review your YAMAHA YBR125 (2005-on)
Summary of Owners' Reviews
Overall Rating 4.0 out of 5
Ride Quality & Brakes 4.0 out of 5
Engine 3.7 out of 5
Build Quality & Reliability 3.9 out of 5
Value & Running Costs 4.5 out of 5
Equipment 3.7 out of 5
4 out of 5

Cheap commuter does well on a short run

28 January 2017 by Rich A

Unless this is your first bike, performance is almost non existent. It is however a perfect short range commuter that is cheap to run. Read more

Ride Quality & Brakes
2 out of 5
Its a 125 commuter bike! 40-50 miles and I have a numb bum. I bought this for a 10 mile commute into town where it spends the rest of the day outside. For this its perfect. If you want comfort pass your test and get a bigger bike. It doesn't even register on the same scale as my Honda ST1100!
Engine
3 out of 5
Remember its a 125 and its ok. Its the first fuel injected version so throttle response is jerky. Its happiest going no faster than 50mph. 60mph is pushing it. I'd stay off 70mph roads as any hill or headwind could reduce the speed down to 40mph. Not fun! Regularly get 100+mpg and the tank will take you over 250 miles if you're gentle. It starts on the button and immediately idles without hesitation.
Build Quality & Reliability
4 out of 5
Quality is quite poor. The finish is cheap and will corrode quickly in the winter. Exhausts rot but there are SS ones available at £200 plus. Apart from exhausts all other parts are cheap and easy to swap. The front sprocket cover screws tends to seize to the alternator cover. Freeing these on 2 bikes snapped the mount on the alternator cover.
Value & Running Costs
5 out of 5
DIY. 1ltr oil change every 600 miles (strainer, no filter). Air filter and spark plug yearly.
Equipment
3 out of 5
A candle gives off more light than the headlight. Fortunately my roads are suitably lit. I have added LED strips on the forks to make me stand out more. Michelin Pilot sporty are the tyres to use. They last well give reasonable grip for a couple of rich tea biscuits. Added mirror extenders as I've been likened to Hagrid when astride this beast.
Buying experience

Bought privately for £800 with 12000 miles on the clock. I also bought a second as a spare.

5 out of 5

The only bike that I never want to sell

11 August 2016 by Kieron Wheeler

Fido (named for the last 3 digits of the registration; FDO) is the only bike that I never want to sell. She had 30,000 miles on the clock when I bought her for £825. I've, since, added 10,000 miles to that and she's running fine. She's fantastic fun... Read more on twisty roads and can hold her own against most 125cc bikes, the YZF-R and CBR included, there is no better feeling than overtaking that one cocky bugger on his CBR who was laughing at you all day for having the "slow bike". All in all, I'd say that the YBR is a fantastic all rounder and is almost certainly better than almost any other 125 available now. I've used Fido in all weathers and I have to say; not once have I wanted more grip, I have had times when I've wished for a little more power and another gear, often when using A roads and dual carriageways but generally Fido keeps up with traffic well.

Ride Quality & Brakes
5 out of 5
Good ride quality, have had some pain during journeys due to injuries from my crash but other than that absolutely perfect. The brakes are better than those on most other small bikes but the rear brake does need care as the design means that the pads and shoes can wear at one end, meaning that it can be metal on metal quite quickly. The brakes and suspension are both more than adequate for the tasks and allow the rider to have a bit of fun along twisty roads.
Engine
5 out of 5
Runs perfectly even after 40,000 miles. Has a good amount of power although, in the real world, you'll struggle to pass 55mph but it's enough. Smooth power delivery and a very forgiving throttle make the YBR a pleasant bike to ride and if you want to, the YBR is surprisingly fast along twisting back roads (if ridden properly), as many overly cocky showoffs have discovered to their misfortune, and I have kept up with bikes such as 750cc sport bikes albeit with some difficulty.
Build Quality & Reliability
5 out of 5
Had a slight problem, caused by the previous owner, the main crank bearing was ruined and took the camshaft and oil pump with it. £250 an all was fine. Very well built, I locked the back wheel up (I had only been on a geared bike for a week) and crashed into a barrier at 30mph, I broke a rib (despite my protective gear) the heat shield at the back of the exhaust turned on the screw. That was all the damage done. The only problem is the headlight bulb, which can blow on bumpy roads, however easily fixed with a halogen bulb replacement. Parts for the bike can be expensive though and costs can quickly add up, especially if you are buying genuine Yamaha parts. The adjustor bolts for chain tensioning can pull out of the brackets although this problem can be prevented by tightening the chain properly and taking care of the chain and sprockets. As with most bikes, pay attention to the front forks as they are expensive to replace (around £100 per stanchion, not including anything else) and can become pitted quite quickly.
Value & Running Costs
5 out of 5
Every spring I get the whole bike checked thorougly (just before I start riding properly) and then get the brakes, tyres, suspension, chain and sprockets checked just before winter. If I didn't do this then the costs would be fuel, oil and tax.
Equipment
5 out of 5
Everything you need. No fancy computers, no ABS, no traction control. Just you and the bike. The one piece of equipment I do have is a luggage rack, although I am looking to buy a small wind screen. The YBR is a bike made for teaching learners how to ride bikes properly and it benefits from the lack of assistance systems.
4 out of 5

Dorothy yes I named her Dorothy....

01 December 2015 by socks

well what can I say about the Ybr 125, well its not the fastest and its not the best looking, but wow what a bike. I bought mine in 2010 and in the hopes it would see me through my test, well 5 years later, the old girls still going strong, 30,000... Read more miles later, I will explain more below.

Ride Quality & Brakes
5 out of 5
the seat is good over long distances, went on a few trips from York to Scarborough on it no aching back, also the bike is very forgiving in the corners
Engine
5 out of 5
I have to give Dorothy (the bike yes I named her Dorothy) a five star for this section, I have abused it so much, hardly checked the oil, changed it about 3 times in the five years I have had it! never changed the air filter and road her through every thing the British weather could chuck at me, and it never missed a beat!
Build Quality & Reliability
5 out of 5
yamaha what more can I say, if you need something that's fun and reliable then the ybr is for you
Value & Running Costs
5 out of 5
mpg is very good around 300 miles to a full tank, parts are cheep or second hand are even cheaper, also on ebay you can get an after market screen for around £45 keeps the wind of you. also another point i have to make is do not get a cheep make of sprocket and chain set, it will eat them and stretch it so bad, value for money got for a tad more and get a decent one, lasts so much longer!
Equipment
4 out of 5
its a 125 what more do you want, 1 fuel gauge check 2 rev counter check 3 lights check 4 horn check 5 centre stand and side stand double check, that's all you need, its going to get you for point A to point B
Buying experience

dealer £1300

5 out of 5

My first Bike- YBR125

21 August 2015 by YBRMark

Brilliant first bike. I bought mine brand new (3 miles on the clock), and have put 14k+ on there in under 2 years. Its comfy, reliable and cheap to own. The only downside to this is that it's a small engine (124cc), and I'm a big bloke, so... Read more not quite as nippy on open roads as I want.

Ride Quality & Brakes
4 out of 5
I've grown into this bike (and probably grown out of it to be honest), and love it. The brakes stop me every time (and a few times that I've needed to really stomp on the back it's stopped me without throwing me!). The seat is comfy, and doesn't hurt even after a 350mile round trip. I ride about 20 miles each way to work, through traffic and on A roads, and it's great for that, but used to do a 45-50 mile blast each way, and never suffered, even in the cold and wet!
Engine
4 out of 5
For what it is, the YBR125 is brilliant. The engine is responsive, not too much vibration and easy to maintain.
Build Quality & Reliability
5 out of 5
only 2 breakdowns have been totally my fault- I over tightened the clutch cable and it snapped (easy to replace, and it was my first ever "tinkering" with a bike), and the chain snapped after a winter of abuse from me. Nothing wrong mechanically at all. It starts first time every time, and leaves me smiling when I get off.
Value & Running Costs
5 out of 5
Well over due for a service, but they are cheap- about £50 if there's no work, up to £90 if it's a major fault. Never had either so far!
Equipment
3 out of 5
This bike comes with no equipment. But it's not supposed to. It's a first bike to give you a flavor of riding. It's not a tourer or an adventure bike. It has everything it needs, and nothing it doesn't.
Buying experience

I bought this from HGB in Ruislip, and would go back there for any bike in the future. The guys know what they are talking about and were happy to advise and give me tips.

4 out of 5

Super little bike

12 July 2014 by mrjaybee

Bought my 07 black fuel injected version recently. Also have a GSXR750 and was looking for a little workhorse to see me through commuting and generally getting from a to b which the ybr does well. Unlike so many of the more modern 125's it doesnt... Read more pretend to be anything it isnt. I can see the appeal of the YZF's for the younger folk but as now headin for 50 that isnt a priority. It isnt going to win any beauty contests or drag strip duels but hey it was never designed too. The little motor starts on the button everytime, pulls along happily and if any of of my prev 6 Yamahas are anything to go by then shouldnt be issues with reliability. The rear tyre width does make me smile and at the same time harks me back to my old '76 Fizzy. Smashin little thing, great economy and on the plus side it doesnt come with a Honda badge attached.. recommended

Ride Quality & Brakes
4 out of 5
-
Engine
4 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

very good value and fin

02 June 2014 by Valko

Very good value for money bought 56 plate with broken signals a dent on the tank and broken clutch lever for £600. 30 minutes and spending about 50 pounds later I've got it fixed including the upgrade of the head lamp with better one. I am 6 foot and... Read more six and a half stones and have to say it is a little low for me. However it handles perfectly and the ride and the sound are big fun. Cheap and reliable plus on A road is a real joy to ride. The engine is stretching itself over 60 mph. And I like the classic look as well. It is a fair bike not pretending to be something else.

Ride Quality & Brakes
5 out of 5
-
Engine
4 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

Great learner bike

17 January 2014 by Anonymous45

The YBR is a great learner or commuter bike. Handling is comfortable and forgiving, great for learning. Really nippy at low speeds and will ride comfortably on a straight road at 65-70 MPH. It's also a lot of fun to ride, because of its ease and... Read more smoothness. Have personally gotten ~127 MPG myself, so great on fuel efficiency. Had a problem with the fuel pump last summer (manufacturing fault - wont start on hot days / under the sun) but replaced the pump with an aftermarket part for around £30 and has worked perfectly ever since! Stock headlight is quite dim, but it's a simple job to replace the stock bulb with a equivalent wattage (35/35w) halogen or xenon bulb which is much brighter, and costs £5. Great value for money, you won't be disappointed!

Ride Quality & Brakes
5 out of 5
-
Engine
4 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

super bike

02 November 2013 by yam125er

After cbt i purchased an 06 ybr to learn on, used regular and was impressed by everything. Totally reliable, great fun, very cheap to run and easy to ride. Have now passed test and got a 600, but refuse to part with my ybr. Highly recommend. Read more

Ride Quality & Brakes
5 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
-
5 out of 5

Great first bike!

11 August 2013 by Anonymous45

Brilliant first choice, great condition second hand one can be picked up for under £1200 if you look hard enough. Very reliable, great handling and cornering, recommend Michelin Pilot Sporty tires or similar for better grip and stability. Highly... Read more recommend for any learner or A1 licence holder.

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

Nippy runabout

06 June 2013 by Morgan86

My third bike and 2nd 125, nippy around town and out on the big roads, bit of a sticky neutral gear( can be false sometimes),great value and really forgiving. not as much pull as a twin 125 like a Honda varadero but once up to speed pulls well. Read more

Ride Quality & Brakes
4 out of 5
-
Engine
4 out of 5
-
Build Quality & Reliability
4 out of 5
-
Value & Running Costs
5 out of 5
-
Equipment
3 out of 5
-
Read all 34 owners' reviews in full

Facts & Figures

Model info
Year introduced 2005
Year discontinued -
New price £2,599
Used price £1,000 to £2,700
Warranty term Two year unlimited mileage
Running costs
Insurance group 4 of 17
Annual road tax £18
Annual service cost £100
Performance
Max power 10 bhp
Max torque 7 ft-lb
Top speed 70 mph
1/4-mile acceleration 19 secs
Average fuel consumption 90 mpg
Tank range 240 miles
Specification
Engine size 124cc
Engine type 2v single cylinder, 5 gears
Frame type Steel diamond
Fuel capacity 12 litres
Seat height 760mm
Bike weight 113kg
Front suspension None
Rear suspension Preload
Front brake 245mm disc
Rear brake Drum
Front tyre size 2.75 x 18
Rear tyre size 90/90 x 18

History & Versions

Model history

2005: Yamaha YBR125 launched. No changes since.

 

Other versions

None.

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  • Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review - Riding
  • Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review - Riding
  • Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review - Instruments
  • Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review - Instruments
  • Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review - Engine
  • Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review - Side view
  • Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review - Brakes
  • Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review - Engine
  • Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review - Rear view
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  • Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review
  • Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review - Riding
  • Yamaha YBR125 motorcycle review - Riding
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