We’ve just returned from a full day’s riding aboard Yamaha’s new TMAX, in particular their DX model – which will cost a fairly pricy £10,699. We’re in Cape Town and have had the opportunity to try everything from fast city commuting, to mountain passes and even some light touring. To me it feels like the new, lighter, T-Max has grown up.
Yamaha’s big scooter has always been the sportiest of the bunch, and a favourite on the continent by some margin, but now the TMAX has matured. It’s 9kg lighter than before, and Yamaha have moved the weight further forward in the new chassis, revised the steering head angle, given it new suspension and a new swingarm, too. It’s still sporty, and I’d estimate that it’s the sportiest of the big scooter world – but now it has improved luxuries, like heated grips and heated seat; you can even personalise the heat settings in the new menu.
There’s also a new dash, cruise control, larger electric screen, keyless ignition, power modes, central locking, and usefully you can get two open face crash helmets under the larger and more comfortable seat. ABS and excellent traction control – which can be switched off – keep the wheels in line of not should the mood take you on slippery streets.
The 2017 TMAX feels more civilised than previous incarnations, and is more on a par with BMW’s maxi-scooter range like – their C650GT, which starts at £9999.
At the start of our ride I have to admit to thinking that anyone who spends over £10,000 on a scooter must be mad, but having spent a day on the TMAX I’m starting to think there are a huge amount of riders who’d actually be better off on the TMAX than many other two-wheelers. In many ways it makes perfect sense: lazy automatic touring in safety, but still sporty (more so than before), and with unrivalled practicality.
Read the full test in the March 8 issue of MCN.
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