YAMAHA MT-09 TRACER (2015 - 2018) Review
At a glance
|Owners' reliability rating:|
|Annual servicing cost:||£210|
Overall ratingNext up: Ride & brakes
This is a seriously good bike at a seriously great price. We already knew the MT-09 platform had shades of greatness.
With that stonking triple’s fuelling ironed out it’s status is confirmed: it’s both immensely versatile and thrillingly invigorating. The chassis, now the fork settings have been tweaked, is without criticism.
The Tracer now adds to that with decent range and comfort, excellent all-round ability and impressive spec and sheen – without hurting that value at all.
It’s great fun, characterful, useful and a bike for all reasons. It was because of this that it became a leading contender for 2015 Bike of the Year.
Ride quality & brakesNext up: Engine
Criticism of the stock MT-09’s slightly soft forks has been addressed by increasing both the front and rear preload and damping rates on the new Tracer. As a result, the chassis just gets on with it.
The ride is stable and plush enough; the steering sharper and lighter than most and even when pushing pretty hard through the snaking switchbacks and swervery in the mountains above Marbella, the suspension and brakes were never found wanting.
It will wheelie until the cows come home
In other words, if you wanna behave like a pillock, the Tracer will wheelie until the cows come home – it retains all the fun and zest of the base MT-09. If you wanna take your partner and a week’s worth of gear to St Tropez – AND have fun through the twisties on the way down – it’ll do that with ease too.
And, come to think of it, if you want to just have a damn good, fun, truly all round motorcycle, the Tracer’s probably got virtually everyone beat.
EngineNext up: Reliability
The compact and impressive ‘C3’ triple is essentially identical to that of the base Yamaha MT-09 introduced earlier this year but with slightly revised and updated mapping to the different mode settings.
As before, three modes are selectable: ‘Std’ (which has been softened off slightly compared to the MT-09 for this sport-touring application), a sportier ‘A’ mode (also improved, after original complaints, for the 2015 MT-09s) and a 95bhp ‘B’ or rain mode.
You can change riding modes on the move
You can switch between all on the move with the throttle is closed.‘Std’ is fine, 90 per cent of the time: a class-leading 115 horses and, better still, an utterly linear, meaty, addictive drive from 3000rpm all the way up to around 10 or 11.
From 5000rpm the exhaust note changes, churning into that distinctive three cylinder wail that addicts and excites. If it rains, knock it into 95bhp ‘B’. And if you really want to thrash and scrape, ‘A’ mode adds a little sharpness to the response and meat to the midrange, enough to to have you snapping at the heels of all but the fastest super nakeds. Boy, I love triples.
Reliability & build qualityNext up: Value
This is an affordably-priced machine – but it certainly doesn’t appear ‘cheap’. The fairing is cleverly comprised of lots of different ‘modules’ (rather than flat panels) and incorporates a variety of different, finishes.
Screen is manually adjustable through 30mm via two tightening knobs inside the fairing (although it can’t be done on the move) plus there are adventure bike-style hand guards. It’s a well-specced, well-finished machine.
Value vs rivalsNext up: Equipment
The MT-09 Tracer will cost, if you hadn’t already heard, when first available in UK dealers not much over £8K.
To put that in some kind of context, that’s over two grand less than Honda’s similarly-targetted new VFR800X Crossrunner, over £1500 less than Kawasaki's updated Versys 1000 and 1850 squids under Suzuki’s fairly prosaic V-Strom 1000. And the new Yamaha is probably faster, more fun and more versatile than all of ‘em, too.
A new, stylish fairing and adjustable screen gives the MT weather protection to match most up to 1000cc and a wholly new, adjustable saddle and rear sub frame to match, transforms it into a genuine two-up machine.
A bigger tank and uprated equipment, including a new, posher dash and a centre stand, gives the Tracer the kind of long distance ability and class any credible sports-tourer demands.
|Engine type||12v transverse triple, 6 gears|
|Frame type||Aluminium diamond|
|Fuel capacity||18 litres|
|Front suspension||41mm USD forks adjustable for preload and rebound damping|
|Rear suspension||Single rear shock adjustable for preload and rebound damping|
|Front brake||2 x 298mm discs with four-piston monobloc radial calipers.|
|Rear brake||245mm single disc with single-piston caliper.|
|Front tyre size||120/70 x 17|
|Rear tyre size||180/55 x 17|
Mpg, costs & insurance
|Average fuel consumption||42 mpg|
|Annual road tax||£96|
|Annual service cost||£210|
|Used price||£5,300 - £7,000|
14 of 17
How much to insure?
|Warranty term||Two years unlimited mileage|
Top speed & performance
|Max power||115 bhp|
|Max torque||64.5 ft-lb|
|Top speed||145 mph|
|1/4 mile acceleration||-|
|Tank range||166 miles|
Model history & versions
2015: Model introduced
MT-09: Basic roadster version launched in 2014
MT-09 Street Rally: Supermoto bodykitted version launched late 2014
MT-09 Sport Tracker: Flatracker bodykitted version launched late 2014
Other Yamaha MT family models
- Yamaha MT-125 review (2014-on)
- Yamaha MT-01 review
- Yamaha MT-03 review (2006-2016)
- Yamaha MT-03 review (2016-on)
- Yamaha MT-07 review (2014-2018)
- Yamaha MT-07 review (2018-on)
- Yamaha MT-09 review (2013-on)
- Yamaha MT-09 SR review (2014-on)
- Yamaha MT-09 SP review (2018-on)
- Yamaha MT-10 review (2016-on)
- Yamaha MT-10 SP review (2017-on)
Owners' reviews for the YAMAHA MT-09 TRACER (2015 - 2018)
38 owners have reviewed their YAMAHA MT-09 TRACER (2015 - 2018) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.
Summary of owners' reviews
|Ride quality & brakes:|
|Reliability & build quality:|
|Value vs rivals:|
|Annual servicing cost:||£210|
Version: 2019 tracer
Great torque and rid ability, quick shifter, cruise control, fuel economy. I have recommended the bike to many people as I really enjoy it! I find the mirrors to be in the wrong position and the Dunlop tyre wear quicker than any bike of this size! The front tyre was on the wear indicators in 2750 miles.
I know that my bike is due for a recall for need brake light switch but not happy dealing with the inconvenience of the local dealer!
It would be a greater bike if it had a turbo! The engine is responsive and goes very well as well as being Economical and reliable!
I have had the engine management light come on twice! The first time it was engine management and the second was a speed sensor fault! The dealer would not even give me a fix date for the first fault so I purchased my own code reader for Yamaha!
Service cost at the dealer are over priced and not fully completed so I buy genuine part and service it my self!
Hand shields are rudimentary and not very effective and so benefit from additional knuckle guards. The bike need a proper rear mud guard or hugger as well as a cover to keep road dirt out of the rear damper. I would like to see both headlight have dipped beam!
Buying experience: I purchase all my bike by my own choice and so have compared the Suzuki and Kawasaki I found the Yamaha tracer 900gt was the best choice for my needs. I road test an MT10 and found it a great fun bike but heavy on fuel and less relaxing to ride as well as feeling unstable at 140mph. I then tested the MT09 and fell in love with engine characteristics them looked at the tracer which preferred so that was the bike for me
Annual servicing cost: £350
Engine best Screen worst.
Seat is uncomfortable, suspension is rediculously bad. Replace the rear shock absorber ASAP. Forks just about ok after months of trial & error. Screen noise horrendous above 35mph, tried four other screen all no good.
Valve check & service at 24000 milesvery expensive. ie £750.00
OE Equipment works well. OE tyres were disgusting. Michelin Road Pilot5 are brilliant and transform the bike giving absolute confidence they are remarkable nothing previously on any bike over the last 55 years has been so outstanding.
Buying experience: Dealer. Bought new at recommended retail price.
Annual servicing cost: £200
Best feature engine, great all round practicability. Would liked more rider aids, cruise control etc. Deffo recommend if friend wanted a sports/tourer. .
Bike at its best any time, any where, any condition. Need a bigger fuel tank, easy for ten hours riding.
Power delivery in all situations perfect. Throttle a little snatchy until you get used to it.
Quality outstanding value. No problems to report.
Parts and accessories good value for money
Favourite standard feature heated grips and centre stand. Recommend quick shift, speedo healer (7.9% out), auxiliary lights, smart turn system essential, hard panniers from 2020 model.
Buying experience: Dealer CMC Chesterfield Advertised at nearly £7,000 Paid £6,400
Annual servicing cost: £250
Best feature engine Worst feature throttle Definitely recomend
At its best munching the miles away on any routes, loaded up, on track. A very versatile machine. Never want to stop.
Engine is totally perfect.
Very low compared to the performance
Centre stand Very useful. Recomend a quick shifter retro fitting. Avoid cheep tyres, recommend P5’s.
Buying experience: Dealer. £7,728 advertised £7,400 paid
Truly terrible bike in every sense of the word, It still baffles me how highly this bike scores for being such a bad overall package. I’ve been riding bikes for a lot of years and have owned everything from naked street bikes to sports bikes and adventure bikes and never have I been so disappointed in a motorcycle as I am with the Tracer, in-fact I’d go as far to say it’s the worst bike I’ve owned to date. Advertised as an all rounder however to me it’s a jack of all trades master of none, it does a lot of things, unfortunately non of them very well at all. The most uncomfortable bike I’ve ever ridden, bad on fuel and over all just not a pleasant bike to ride at all. Choppy handling from the budget suspension, corrosion that is beyond belief and a general cheapness makes this bike for me an absolute disaster.
Unsure if it’s just my proportions but I just can’t get comfortable on this bike at all. The bars are too wide, the seats too uncomfortable and the foot pegs are just in the wrong position completely for long distance touring. The bike wallows and lurches round corners and at times the front doesn’t even feel connected to the rest of the bike.
Sounds ok but far too bad on fuel.
If I could give this bike a true score for quality and reliability it would be into negative figures. Where to start! Corrosion for one, even a well looked after bike will fall apart with rust, everything from the bolts to the brackets age long before their time. The entire rear frame is rotten and every bracket looks as though it’s fallen off a WW2 tank rather than a low mileage 5 year old bike. The oil cooler which sits right behind the front wheel gets so badly pitted it will eventually start leaking coolant which is what happened on mine which resulted in me having to buy a new one from Yamaha at a cost of almost £600 for the part alone. The paint is so thin even taking the bike cover off and on was enough to wear the paint right through. I really didn’t think it was possible to make a new bike in this day and age as badly as Yamaha have done. Yes it’s a very cheap bike but it’s also extremely poorly made and badly designed. If I’d known how badly my bike was going to deteriorate In such a short space of time I would have never considered one. Terrible!
So far in the year and a half of ownership I’ve spend over £2,000 just to stop the bike falling apart with corrosion. Every bracket had to be removed to have the rust shot blasted off and re painted. It’s spent more time in my garage in bits than actually being ridden. What surprises me more than anything is the fuel this bike goes through, think litre sports bike consumption rather than a small triple engine. Don’t expect this to be a sensible tourer as you’ll have to tow an oil refinery behind you with its glutton for fuel.
Useless screen, hand guards are flimsy and not much use.
Buying experience: Bought from a dealer and it wasn’t a good experience. Soon as the money was exchanged the dealer washed his hands of both the bike and me.
Annual servicing cost: £125
Good all rounder, as long as you accept its limitations
I found the brakes are good when considering price etc, but unfortunately the suspension leaves a lot to be desired... you have an amazing engine, probably the best 800cc out there but the suspension when you push the bike hard is a shame. Bike wobbles a bit which was disconcerting during a trackday.
Nuff said. The best part of the bike, exhilarating and fun at all levels. Really enjoyed the engine in every way, especially when commuting.
Nothing broke down and all working as it should, especially the sweet engine. However, it’s built to a great price hence as I expected, you have to look after it well to keep furry nuts etc away.
Very reasonable and typical Yamaha reliability. Mechanic said easy bike to work on.
Very good to be fair, with riding modes ABS Traction Control already on the bike. I was also lucky to have an Akrapovic exhaust which I loved. Add heated grips and a slightly taller screen, then voila you have an all rounder for all year no matter how cold it gets.
Love the MT09 Tracer 900 such an easy bike to ride compared to my old 1250 Bandit!! Low centre of gravity handles great and a good handful of power when I need it.
Ride is great very easy to predict brakes are superb
Best engine I’ve riden and I’ve had a few smooth great power delivery I couldn’t ask for more
Nothing failed so far
Great 45+mpg around town and even better when out on a run
Everything is on this bike I could possibly want traction control ABS and rider modes. I have the factory heated grips which are superb in the winter.
Annual servicing cost: £80
When two up, it becomes top heavy and the back steps out more when corning when two up. Becomes front end light when pushing down the main roads like dual carriage ways and motorways. Fun short wheel base and great solo back road fun.
Around 90 min ride time with an aftermarket comfort seat fitted. Dislike that the bike has a weight carry limit, so need to choose between pillion or panniers or top box not all three at once. Can become top heavy when loaded up.
Perky, typical characteristics.
A couple of bolts falling out from the side fairings some where on the roads.
Self servicing is fairly easy.
Mitchellin Road five tyres. Innovv k2 camera system.
Buying experience: Premier bike (ktm dealer) Oxford, got the bike for the price advertised.
Annual servicing cost: £160
Would recommend one, not as well rounded or as comfortable as the Tiger 800 but the Yamaha makes up for it! Try A mode with the traction switched off, this combined with a short wheelbase = FUN Worst feature is the screen but to be honest it wasn't as bad as the Tiger 800 I tried, I'm tall so it's on its lowest setting and I wear good earplugs. Bars are wide on the early model so can be difficult filtering past SUVs.
Suspension is budget but setting rider sag and playing around with the damping settings improves really things, front fork springs are too soft, but cheap fix. Seat is firm and takes a bit of getting useful but is supportive once you get used to it. Capable of big miles with a comfy riding position and good on fuel. Tractable and powerful engine provides touring or sports bike type fun. Brakes are unremarkable but do the job well.
Superb road bike engine, I would never go back to a four cylinder machine.
Build quality is good and no reliability issues after 13k from new. Difficult to clean with all the little body panels but I prefer riding bikes to cleaning them.
Once out of warranty I do my own servicing which is ok but time consuming removing panels.
Heated grips were a worthwhile addition.
Buying experience: End of season bargain from Fowlers of Bristol. Superb value, a new bike for £7.5k what's not to like. A two year old Tiger 800 was the same price!
I bought my MT-09 Tracer last year and to be honest have not thought a great deal of it so far. The finish of the bike is the worst I've ever seen on any bike I've ever owned, extremely cheap and nasty finish to the entire bike. Every single bracket and fastener on the bike is corroded beyond belief and currently I'm in the middle of stripping the bike down to the bare bones to remove every rusty bracket to have powder coated, definitely not what I thought I'd have to be doing on a bike of this age. Coming from a BMW adventure bike the bike feels cheap and not very well put together. In my opinion the bike doesn't really know what it's meant to be, it's advertised as being an all rounder however it's not sporty enough to be classed as a sports tourer and too uncomfortable and impracticable to be a long distance touring bike. I bought the bike without test riding it and bought it based on the hype however I would say the only good thing is the engine and the cheap price, although as the saying going goes "buy cheap, buy twice" To sum up, don't believe the hype, yes these bikes are cheap but cheap for a reason!
One of the area's which the bike shines is the ride quality and brakes, although being quite a big bike the weight disappears as soon as you pull away and the bikes brakes never feel like they are lacking. If really pushing hard the suspension will start to show itself up but this isn't the sort of bike to be going on track days. The A mode I feel is a complete waste of time as it makes the bikes throttle far too snatchy and impossible to control smoothly. All of the above however is overshadowed by the seat and riding position, the standard seat is beyond painful the riding position for a touring bike feels extremely unnatural due to it being essentially an MT09 and the foot pegs being in the wrong place for all day riding comfort. I bought the low seat which was even worse than the standard seat so had to fork out more to get the standard seat modified to make it more comfortable. Another thing worth mentioning is the height, not a bike for anyone shorter than around 5' 9"
The engine is the best part of the bike, the induction roar and the way it delivers the power is addictive. if it wasn't for this engine the bike would have been a huge flop.
Corrosion! The rust on this bike is beyond belief, entirely my fault for not looking over the bike properly before buying. First off is the rear shock, Yamaha know this is a problem however never recognised it as a factory recall, the bike was fitted with a poor quality shock which rotted quickly. Every single bracket on the bike is completely rusted including the actual rear frame section of the bike. This is my first Yamaha so have no idea if this is common for the finish of their bikes, it will certainly also be my last Yamaha.
Coming from a bike which could do 200 miles on a full tank, fuel consumption was quite a shock. With the bike being advertised as a middle weight sports tourer, it turns out that it's hopeless at long distance touring which is what I bought the bike for. It claims around 160 miles range however even driving like an absolute saint I've seen no where near this figure. The fuel light will be flashing at around 135 miles of very fugal riding, with spirited riding I've managed to empty the tank in around 85 miles. For long distance touring you are realistically looking for a petrol station every 100 miles.
The bike came with the standard Yamaha semi rigid panniers which aren't great but acceptable for commuting or a long weekend away. The riding modes are useful to an extent however as previously mentioned A mode is essentially a useless gimmick. The Screen as many people say is hopeless and a bit of an after thought as is the hand guards which offer very little protection.
Buying experience: Last bike I'll be buying from Shirlaws in Aberdeen. I stupidly paid the asking price of £5,899 with the bike having only having covered around 6,000 miles with one very careless owner. IMO, Shirlaws should be ashamed of selling a bike in such terrible condition, but again my fault for not looking at it more closely. They saw me coming a mile off!
Annual servicing cost: £120
Best feature reliability Worst feature clocks a bit tricky to master Would recommend this bike to anyone
Does everything you need can tour all day long
Using the different engine modes is great fun put it into A mode when you want some fun transforms the bike into a missile
Easy to ride, punchy engine and very comfortable
Ultra reliable only outlay is servicing
Buying experience: Dealer from new £8250
Annual servicing cost: £128
Superb all round bike, good for everything. The only thing wrong is that the seat is a little uncomfortable on long runs
All good since day one.
The riding position is comfortable. Controls all easy to use however I keep getting the rider modes mixed up.
Buying experience: Purchased from CMC Yamaha Main dealer Overall experience was good however got one of the registration letters wrong on some paperwork.
I love this bike. Yes I found the same old problems that most experience; uncomfortable seat - replaced with a Sargent, Badly set-up suspension - softened the rebound, poor wind protaction - fitted MRA screen. Now the bike is awsome; light, agile, fast and loads of fun all day long and a great tourer. So don't be put off by reports regarding comfort and poor suspension as they are an easy fix. Having owned a BMW GS, I find this bike is much better once you have adjusted your brain to accept lower CC. I would have given it 5 out of 5 if it was perfect straight from the factory.
Once I had replaced the standard seat with a Sargent seat and the screen for an MRA I can go from one fuel stop to the next without a break, which is 150-180 miles. Brakes are adequate, I have had better but no complaints. Would have scored 5 out of 5 if comfort was better as standard
Great engine at fast or slow speeds. Very sporty performance.
No problems with build quality or reliability. All good for a bike in this price range.
Amazed by the MPG on long runs
Equipment is fine, maybe not up to the standard of some adventure tourers (what do you expect at this price) but OK for me.
Buying experience: Bought mine from a dealer with only 620 miles on it at £1700 less than the new price. Great value for a middle weight tourer, and much more fun that the larger tourers.
Annual servicing cost: £175
Good value but it’s not built like a Honda or a Duke. Rattled developed after 18 months.
Out of the box it’s average. Have the bike set up for you and it becomes good. Update the suspension and it's even better.
Peach of an engine. The CP3 motor is the best feature of the bike.
Insurance costs are tasty.
You get good stuff for your money.
Annual servicing cost: £200
The best feature is the engine and the worst is the screen. I fitted an aftermarket screen which is much better. Overall it is a great all rounder at a great price.
Ride quality is good and brakes are very good.
Brilliant engine, great torque, revs and sound.
I'm impressed with the build quality and no corrosion at all, although majority of miles have been dry so far. No breakdowns or part failures either.
Would recommend the optional heated grips, they work very well. Reviews suggest the OEM tyres are not the best but they seem fine so far, will probably try another type suggested by the reviews when the current tyres need replacing so I can test what the difference is.
Makes everything else feel old and heavy
Suspension better on 2017 than previous
Absolutely reliable. One owner on forum has done 146000. !
I ride it hard sometimes, but still get about 45mpg
Accessory socket for sat nav, 3 riding modes, 2 traction control, ABS and slipper assist clutch. Sorted
Buying experience: Dealers are hit and miss.
Annual servicing cost: £1,000
The motorcycle appears good at a glance but it is not good upon closer inspection. The parts rust very quickly even when pampered. The brakes literally locked on my brand new Tracer a month into owning it. The bike periodically sputters and acts weirdly. Take it to dealer and they can find no fault. This is a brand new machine and it is a total let-down. The throttle is very snatchy and never runs smoothly. I guess Yamaha only knows two throttle positions, closed and open. This is my first brand-new bike and I am very let-down. I regret buying a Tracer.
Throttle is garbage. Hunts for rpm all the time. Never rides steady. It blows!
Is very fast.
Brand new brakes stuck. Parts rusting on brand new bike even when taken care of properly.
Too many repairs on a brand new bike.
The quality is very plastic.
Buying experience: My dealer is wonderful. The bike is garbage.
Annual servicing cost: £100
I had a standard MT-09 before this but wanted more tank range and some weather protection so bought the Tracer. Since I bought it in May I've done nearly 5k and enjoyed all of them, whether touring or scratching. You can thrash it like a two stroke when you want to play racers or it's just as happy short shifting and dawdling along when touring, an absolutely beautiful engine. For me it had a few minor issues as standard. The screen created a lot of noise regardless of which helmet Inwas wearing somI changed to a Puig touring screen and it's now great. The seat was a bit firm so had it fitted with memory foam and it's good for 500 mile days now. Most of these are issues that lots of bikes suffer from as standard so can't understand a lot of the poor reviews. For the price the bike is a bargain.
Standard suspension on the early bikes like mine is not great on rough roads, same as the early MT-09's. The new ones seem to be very good so they've obviously listened to complaints. My bike came with Andreani fork cartridges and Ohlins shock so is pretty good now it's all set up properly. Brakes are excellent and even the back one works well.
Star of the show, really can do anything and sounds a treat when being revved hard.
Overall the bike is well built and finished. There's odd little things like cheap badges on the fairing side panels that let it down slightly but minor stuff really. Reliability has been 100%, nothings come loose, broken or fallen off. More than can be said for my mates BMW S1000XR that's been recovered twice so far and cost double what the Tracer did.
I do all my own servicing and everything is fairly easy to access on the Tracer and parts are cheap enough. Tyres and chain seem to be lasting well and excellent on fuel consumption averaging 58 to the gallon.
Pretty well equipped as standard. Nice dash with plenty of info even if the full gauge is a crap design showing full until you've done about 110 miles then drops to half full.
Buying experience: Bought privately
The Tracer 900 does it all, with style: Take it for an easy stroll around town, or head across the continent to hunt for twisting roads. The engine is pure fun, with plenty of power from low to high, and the triple engine's sound is plain addictive (more so with the Akrapovic exhaust). The only thing you cannot expect from this bike is that it is a market leader in every section.
(Very) wide handlebars, a twitchy but tameable throttle, neutral yet active sitting position. It takes a while to get fully acquainted and at ease on the Tracer, but once you do, it's all confidence. I've taken it to the track and to twisty roads, where the engine really sings, it's then that you feel it's an adaptation from the MT09. The seat is quite hard, which counters the "sinking in" feeling, but after 2-3 hours, you'll want to take a break for sure.
I'm most definitely not alone in saying this is probably one of the funnest engines on the market. The triple cylinder handles it all, with loads of torque and a huge range, and 115bhp, you won't mind making a detour now and then.
After 17.000km, I have yet to come across any sort of downfall. I must admit I'm quite a maintenance nut, so I leave little room for error.
Nothing particular to report. Yamaha isn't too expensive, so expect no surprises.
The standard Dunlop tires are so-so, I'd recommend getting a set which suits your style from the get-go. I went with the Akrapovic exhaust which Yamaha offers, and I'm still grinning a lot when above 7000 rpm or when downshifting.
I expected a bit more. I bought early 2015 bike in a stupid silver colour with blue wheels, blue forks and violet(!) rear shock spring. Someone in Japan was probably on drugs to think this is attractive or pretty. I stripped the bike down and resprayed it. This actually revealed how cheap feeling certain parts of the machine are, but it mainly relates to bodywork. Mechanicals and electrics are solid and cleverly designed. After the first two longer trips in the UK I wondered why it was 'Bike of the year 2015' - suspension is soft, slow constant speed is not smooth, seat is too hard, screen doesn't work very well, handlebars are too wide, fuel gauge has no logic, original tyres are rubbish. In summer all your controls and every bodywork gap is full of insects - half fairing doesn't protect any of that and isn't easy to clean (not sleek). On the other hand its engine is fantastic, riding position is great, resprayed bike looks good and you can push hard or go touring or both.
Brakes are very good. No doubt. But suspension is a bit to soft. It has awful whine sound in 6th gear around 55mph where you use it the most. Maintaining speed around 25-30mph is not smooth and it somehow judders. On the other hand it is very light, flickable, stable fully loaded two up as well as solo. Because I ride my motorcycle two up TC steps in very often. Especially two up Traction Control is very brutal as it cuts engine off under smooth but hard acceleration and in combination with soft suspension it unsettles the bike and pillion bashes into me from behind.
Engine is pretty much perfect!
Bodywork is a bit flimsy but rest of the bike is well put together. There are gaps between fairing and headlight which are filling with insects and dust.
It is seriously very good on petrol. Bike was designed to do a lot of things without being too expensive and it works.
Again I'm asking why! Why the hell someone decided that there will be only one bar in fuel gauge for the first half of a tank??!! Until you reach half a tank you don't know if you are still full or 3/4 or close to 1/2 tank. This is especially annoying when you ride with friends and you all want to start with full tank. This is also annoying when you wish to avoid fuelling on motorway and plan your stops. That bloody gauge shows average and current fuel consumption but doesn't show how many miles remain to empty tank - very useful feature on touring bikes with fuel range of only 170 miles. You can turn your traction control off but when you stop for petrol or a fag it comes back on again. Screen and half fairing doesn't provide much protection. Handlebars are very wide and have extra 2" on each side past your grips - makes it very difficult to filter through traffic. LED headlights are great, central stand is very handy.
Buying experience: Test drive from West London Yamaha was not so great because I could only follow their apprentice on less powerful motorcycle around town for 30 minutes and had to wait for seller's attention for 25 minutes. They were short of staff.
Annual servicing cost: £160
Looks good, performs terribly. Tries to be a jack of all trades, master of none. Read all the reviews and did the test ride. The short swingarm flattered and deceived. Poor sports bike, awful tourer. Awful screen.
Appalling suspension, too hard on bumps, too wallowy, verging on dangerous on fast sweepers. Brakes ok.
Pretends to be fast, but isn't once you get past the light front end. A 675 would be quicker and better in most situations.
Some furry nuts after a short time, chrome decals would catch on a cloth and try to rip off on the fairing, cheap and tacky.
Cheap on fuel.
Besides the USB port, there is none.
Buying experience: Bill Smith's was eager to sell, but not keen to take it back on a trade three months later for an explorer. I took it to France and then was sick of it by then. Ended up going elsewhere, won't be back to Bill.
Annual servicing cost: £160
I could not recommend this bike to anyone unless they want a budget commuter. As an all rounder in succeeding at only one thing, being poor at everything. I thought it would be a sporty bike and a capable tourer, it was far from either. The rubbish, verging on dangerous suspension and the awful tank range saw to that. The fuelling was absolutely horrendous. I had an '05 R1 and '14 explorer before.
Appalling suspension, brakes ok. Large fast sweepers.... very big wobbles. Not a bike for a back box for sure. Suspension was the worst I've experienced on a bike, either solid and jarring over bumps or squishy and unstable over fast stuff. My 2002 TDM was better.
Pretends to be quick, but isn't really.
Rusty bolts after first spin, but in general not bad. The shiny metallic decals on the fairing were very cheap and would snag on polishing cloths if you weren't careful, pulling away from the plastic. Very cheap and nasty.
Only made the first service before I couldn't take anymore. Got 51 mpg average but the small tank and very silly fuel indicator meant you had to refill every 90 miles or so. There is plenty of room for a bigger tank and they didn't even address it on the GT model, pity.
You have to buy everything. Very basic bike as standard. OE tyres are not good. Wind protection was terrible and overtaking lorries required more care than it should.
Buying experience: B.S. in Chester had no interest in taking the bike back as a trade so I went further afield. Quick enough to take your money, but not too quick to help you out when you find out the bike is not what you wanted. Needless to say, won't be back there again either. After a trip to France and refuelling at every stop: I got home and traded it for a '17 explorer. Bye for now yamaha, call me when you find your mojo again.
Annual servicing cost: £200
Can you have a more fun, versatile machine for less?
The suspension isn't the best but the thing cost me £7k virtually new, so what do you expect. Perfectly acceptable and absolutely fine.
Now this is the gem of the bike. Work the CP3 engine hard and enjoy. Consider getting the map flashed to smooth out the low revs and release the real quality of that tripple that the Eurocrats have hidden behind emissions stupidity. Go to Simon at S-Tec in Newbury. Quality service
Screen won't stay locked but other than that, all is well after 2 years and 5k miles.
Has everything you need from toasty hand warmers (which work really well) through to a great dash with all the info you could want
Buying experience: Good from main Yam dealer
This bike wants to run free and fast all the time... the triple literally chirps at you when you don't. It's comfortable upright seated position allows you to cruise for long periods of time. It looks great and has all the amenities you expect on a much more expensive bike. I used to think of it as a "poor man's BMW", but it deserves a lot more credit than that. This triple will never let you feel bored...
It rides great. It's not great at anything specifically, but it's really really good at just about everything. It's light and nimble for curvy roads. It's comfortable for long hauls (could use a more padded seat). It's torquey in every RPM range for quick passing on the highway or off the line. There is some room for improvement in the brakes if you're an aggressive rider.
Can I rate it 10 out of 5? This engine is insane in every range. I'd probably kill myself if I had any more power. Why buy bikes with huge heavy engines when you can get so much performance in this small triple package?
So far so good.
The bike as a whole is a great value for the performance and features. I think most of us that bought it were intrigued by the price tag as we looked at other comparable bikes that had been on the market longer with great reputations like the Versys, and V-Strom.
I love the standard 12v outlet for charging phones etc... Obviously ABS is great to have. I like the Yamaha bags that clip right on to the bike and the bottom mounts for them blend right into the passenger pegs, so you can ditch the bags and the bike still looks clean; no wire frame brackets hanging off the sides. The bags are basic in design, and hold almost as much as small carry-on suitcase. I just wish the bags were color-matched or had some kind of design on the sides other than plain matte black.
Buying experience: I bought from a dealer. I wanted the red, and they had just sold the floor model I had been eyeballing for 3 months. They found another one out of state and shipped it in and assembled it for me in a few days.
My best bike ever, 40 years of biking
The chain ought to be "530" to match the engies pover. My chain broke during a long and fast ride on autobahn
Centerstand and gripheat is perfect, but the original panniers are not sufficient enough for long range travel.
Buying experience: The panniers and rack vas offered for half price.
Brilliant engine, very responsive with great torque all the way through the rev range. Let down by stock suspension, front fork springs too soft and rear shock too stiff with not enough adjustment. Had mine fitted with the basic Ohlins kit consisting of fork springs and oil and rear shock, kit cost £500 and £100 to fit. I've never ridden with aftermarket suspension so I didn't really know what to expect, the transformation is incredible. It is ultra stable at high speed now where it wasn't before and stability under braking has massively improved and the cornering is incredible, i can get this thing around corners with more confidence than my GSXR gives me.
Brakes really are very good indeed, change the front fork springs to stop the bike diving under braking and they feel twice as powerful. Stock screen actually works well for me but I changed to a Puig short screen and this is perfect for summer use. Wear ear plugs and use whatever screen you want, can't understand why people don't wear them and then complain about the wind noise caused by the screen!
Torque, economy and overall performance is perfect, 'A' mode is a lot of fun on the move but around town 'standard' is the mode to use.
Build quality is very good overall.
You can easily get over 200 miles out of a tank of petrol before it hits the reserve, I average 62 miles to the gallon and I don't hang about, you don't need to race through the rev range because of the amount of torque available from very low down.
It's all good, fit Yamaha heated grips for the winter they are the best I've used and all controllable through the instrumentation.
Buying experience: Crescent Yamaha, simply brilliant service.
Annual servicing cost: £160
This is a fantastic bike which is let down by appalling suspension. Yamaha refuse to acknowledge this and their customer services are dreadful. One very disappointed owner who will not buy Yamaha again on the strength of that alone.
Suspension appalling and not fit for purpose. Bike should not be sold with such poor suspension. it doesn't matter where you set the limited adjustment, the bike crashes and jars over bumps. Brakes are adequate. Seat is uncomfortable after 20 miles on a run.
Excellent engine with power everywhere and excellent economy.
Overall construction seems good for the price bar the suspension which is dreadful. Optional heated grips look good on paper but useless in practice as whilst you can barely feel the heat in the left grip, the right ends up almost too hot to touch.
Good on fuel.
Comprehensive dash with fuel computer which offers integration of optional heated grips etc. Power mode switch is brilliant. Standard tyres not great. Did I mention suspension...?
Buying experience: Dealer was excellent overall. Yamaha appalling.
Annual servicing cost: £179
Comfortable all-rounder. Poor throttle map. My right wrist hurts - due to constant heavy grip of throttle.
Great seat, very comfortable. Stock windscreen too small.
Great sound, eager engine.
Had to call out RAC due to flat battery a month after purchase.
Figure due to astronomical first service cost.
Fully specced LCD display. It comes with a main stand!
Buying experience: Great price from Fowlers in Bristol, knowledgable staff, high priced first service.
Best feature the size to power ratio. The screen is useless, I upgraded to a Givi and far better wind protection.
Downsized from a Triumph Tiger 1050. The Tracer puts out the same power in a smaller bike and I find it easier to manage. My wife also says that it comfier as a pillion.
One or two fastners are rusting
Looked at a Tiger 800, but this is cheaper, and got better trade in, the difference was about £1100. Economical to run.
Annual servicing cost: £125
Superb bike, really love it, brilliant engine, great comfort and value for money. Has the worst standard screen imaginable though, awful buffeting, easily sorted with an aftermarket screen. I am on my third aftermarket, the only one that really works is the Puig touring screen with the wind deflector thingy at the top.
For a bike at this price, its excellent, I have done 450 miles in a day, stopping only for food and fuel, really comfortable, relaxed riding position, Does about 180 miles on a tank if ridden normally, a bit less if you're acting the maggot. Handles really well, no bother if you want to go scratching and will wheelie all day if you want. Its a bit flighty at speed, but I quite like that now that Im used to it.
The engine is the best thing about the bike, bags of torque and great fun.
7000 miles done so far, including 3,000 in the Alps, it still looks and rides like new.
Fantastic bike with an equally fantastic price, so far have done two European trips and i cannot fault this bike. I cannot really find any faults that are not so petty that i would not bother to mention them.
Again I cannot fault either the ride quality, or brakes I do ride the bike with spirit on occasions, plus in comfort mode when touring and this bike has never failed to keep me smiling.
Great engine, but I am greedy when it comes to power, and I would always like some more. But I really cannot fault this beauty it really is not lacking in the real world.
I still cannot see how they can build such a high quality bike at this price. So far no signs of any corrosion, but I do not store the bike outside.
This bikes rates up there with the best I have ever owned, just completed a boys road trip to the south of France ant the Pyrenees over 2700 miles bike was excellent comfortable great fuel consumption but most of all Excellent fun with oodles of power on tap and really great through the twists and turns. Extremely recommended (in fact one mate chopped in his Triumph Tiger when we got back)
Honest I really cannot find anything that disappoints with this bike only time will tell if things change but up to now no problems. During the last trip we normally stopped to top up at around 200 miles just about right before a bit of numb bum
I gave 5 out of 5 and I stick by that, Excellent engine with great power delivery.
cannot believe than can make them for the Money great build quality really solid and feels you with confidence.
Again cannot really find any faults in the equipment, I have the semi hard panniers really easy to put on and take off and I find them big enough but I do travel lightly but they really do suit me
Best features for me are, digital dash, superb led lights, centre stand and the one and only thing I will be changing is the standard screen. I am a stocky chap and I think the touring type option would be better deflecting the wind off me.
For me the Tracer is a really comfy bike, the riding position is good giving the rider a very good view of what's ahead and for me gives me great confidence to really ride this bike. The brakes are really impressive to. Can't wait to try this bike two up.
Great engine with a great sound. The different modes available to the rider really do make a difference and with plenty of torque and power available there's no need to down shift you can just roll the throttle on and the Tracer just goes and goes.
This Tracer of mine is only 5 months old and covered just 1500 miles, so obviously there are no signs of corrosion and as yet it hasn't broken down or let me down.
With servicing intervals being every 6000 and the big engine valve service being at 24000 for me this is great as I would generally only cover 2000-2500 a year. So for me each year I will be taking it to the supplying dealer for an anual service until the due mileage services need to be done.
My favourite feature of the Tracer for me is the digital dash display. It's display carries so much information for the rider. It's very clear and easy to read with buttons at your fingertips to access other menus and I love the message it displays when you switch off " see you next time"
Buying experience: I purchased mine from a dealer, the price was a tad over the listed price but it has got a nearly £1000 Akrapovic exhaust fitted to it. Sounds awesome highly recommend this.
Annual servicing cost: £206
Jack of all Trades
Have comfort seats fitted and no problems so far
Best of both worlds from a powerful triple
Still too new to fault yet
every 6k service intervals shorter than opposition
I have full Akrapovic and Yamaha spot lights, Yamaha comfort seats, Gilles levers, a Shad rack and 50 litre back box.
Buying experience: Got this racing blue version from a Yamaha dealer with all the accessories already on it with only 250 miles on it, so not even run in or a month old at £8499 but traded in my old 2003 VFR and paid 6399 for basically a new bike.
Annual servicing cost: £120
Fantastic bike !!!
Sound as a pound
Cheep as chips
Buying experience: Good
Annual servicing cost: £200
I commute on my MT-09 TRACER from near Guildford into the City of London, it has great weather resistance behind what is a fairly small screen and well thought out body work. It travels up the A3 very solidly even in a reasonable wind. Once into London the light weight, torquey and brilliant triple enable me to manoevre quickly and safely, shortening my journey time across London.
No problems to report. Build quality seems great to me.
Buying experience: Woking Yamaha, very good service
It looks great, It performs brilliantly and makes me smile a lot. The only negative I can find with this bike is the wind noise created from either stock screen option.
You get what you pay for. I only got my licence 14 months ago, so I can only compare to what I've experienced in that time. Comapred to a K8 Bandit the brakes are magnificent and it's as light as a feather. The seat can start to feel a bit uncomfortable after a couple of hours. Suspension is ok. Love the upright ride position.
I just love it. Torque all over the place. No need to carefully select gears like I did on my Bandit. It just goes like stink regardless of gear. Confidence inspiring for overtaking. Didn't think there was much difference in the throttle modes, but I do notice it being a bit snatchy in town or when filtering in A-mode. B-mode is a bit...laggy. But I suppose that's what it's meant to be like. Considering an Akrapovic exhaust to beef up the sound.
Had the bike for nearly 3 months and no issues. I had the throttle stick for a while, but that was down to a poorly-fitted set of heated grips. Not going to blame the bike for that.
I obsessed over the MPG rate when I was running the bike in..."Woo-hoo 80mpg!" But as soon as I was safe to crack it open...who cares about mpg rates?!
The display is comprehensive. Nice knowing what gear you are in. 12v power output is great for attaching a satnav or charging my phone. I think the hand guards are a bit pointless, but I like how they look. Traction control has confidently kept the front end on the road a few times. Standard ABS has also kicked in now and again. To both of these: Thanks for keeping me safe and telling me I'm an idiot. Like I said...the stock screens are rubbish. I took the tall screen as an option and it was hopeless. Was really effective at creating turbulence even at low speed. The standard one does nothing, so I bought a powerbronze touring screen which is a big improvement
Buying experience: Took a couple of months for my panniers to arrive, but the guys at Alan Duffus in Kirkcaldy always treat me well. Good discount on an Akrapovic is most welcome.
Love it - love it - Never thought I would depart from the in-line four but the triple is fun. Howling sound track and effortless 1st & 2nd gear wheelies. The electronics package is brilliant for me as I'm not a natural bikist I have to work at it and still learning my limits. Roomy, comfortable great seating position with outstanding slow, tight-space manoeuvring abilities. There's a poor camber mini roundabout in Aviemore that I've never been comfortable on - till now. Delighted with looks ( very objective). The LED headlights are very good. The fuelling is not an issue a little snatchy at low speed but you can quickly ride to accommodate it.
Quality parts - adjustable suspension but I'm far to scared to touch anything yet as I don't understand any of it - Would seek out professional help with that when I'm ready - Brakes are outstanding and it stops and doesn't give any concern - The ABS is a great safety net in the Highlands of Scotland with crazy four legged Ninja deer
Love the triple - smooth with a little vibration at 6000rpm but nothing uncomfortable - blinding pick up - linear, predictable power delivery with a top end rush - cracking sound track - The stock exhaust is a bit conservative for my taste but its brand new so I'm a little reluctant to fit an alternative system yet but It's on the diary
Only had it two months so reliability is unproven but NO problems yet - The build quality is excellent - Feels like solid quality parts NO rattily bits.
Unknown at this point but I'm getting 50-60 MPG - I'm still experimenting with all the settings and the engine - addicted to the triple howl
Great electronics package - Some say there's little difference between the power modes but I disagree I like the 'B' mode for wet weather I feel it helps - The clock set-up is just the dogs, excellent clear display with lots of information ( disappointed there's no fuel range information though) - The gear indicator is handy - The seating and luggage layout is practical and comfortable with adjustable riders seat at 6'3" I set it up to max first thing - The LED lighting is very good the headlights are SUPER bright and white clever stuff - The small fairing and hand guards are very clever indeed giving excellent protection I don't know how that works.
Buying experience: Yamaha dealer Aberdeen - No brainer at £8149 - The guys have always looked after me and made me feel valued