YAMAHA TENERE 700 (2019 - on) Review

At a glance

Owners' reliability rating: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Power: 72 bhp
Seat height: Tall (34.6 in / 880 mm)
Weight: Medium (452 lbs / 205 kg)

Prices

New £8,699
Used £8,200 - £8,700

Overall rating

Next up: Ride & brakes
4 out of 5 (4/5)

We’ve waited a long time for the arrival of the all new Yamaha Tenere 700, but in it’s first two day test in Spain it lived up to expectations, and continued to do so when we took it around the MCN250 test route in October 2019.

Instead of following in the foot steps of the majority of manufacturers in the adventure bike class where engine size weight and electronics have continued to increase, the Tenere comes at things from a different angle with a dry weight of 187kg (205kg wet), 74bhp and no electronic aids apart from ABS which can be switched off for off-road use.

Powered by the MT-07 engine it has 74bhp and is a fun and engaging ride with an impressive spread of power that works well both on and off-road.

It may be a relatively simple bike, but it has clearly been well thought through, giving a package that is truly useable. It’s impressive engine, chassis and suspension negate the need for complicated electronics and rider aids. It is also very competitively priced, be it on a PCP or bought outright.

Buy tickets to the 2020 Carole Nash MCN London Motorcycle Show here

Ride quality & brakes

Next up: Engine
4 out of 5 (4/5)

The KYB 43mm upside down forks give 210mm of travel and have compression and rebound damping. At the rear there is a Sachs shock with 200mm travel.

The initial impression from the front is that they are soft, but once into the stroke they are well supported giving good feedback on road. Off road it as that initial softness that inspires confidence and gives good grip.

Brakes are Brembo and they offer good power while retaining excellent feel. The initial squeeze is soft braking power, a trait that shows the off-road focus of the bike where fine control is needed for loose, dusty, low grip trails.

But the power is there and even when riding hard on road it was only necessary to use one finger on the brake. The rear is the same giving good levels of control even when wearing bulky motocross boots.

In fact, it's worth noting that on the MCN250 in October 2019, we awarded the Tenere 700 the win when compared with the two other Yamahas on test - the MT-07 and Tracer 700 - as a road bike, completely disregarding its off-road talent.

Engine

Next up: Reliability
5 out of 5 (5/5)

The 689cc parallel twin motor comes from the acclaimed Yamaha MT-07 which was introduced back in 2014. It may only have 74bhp but it delivers everything is has in a fun, easy and engaging way.

There is no vibration through the handel bars and the range of power and torque is impressive allowing you to let the revs drop to as low as 2500rpm and still pull completely cleany and smoothly.

There is more than enough power to make brisk progress on any public highway especially if you rely on the torque (50 ft-lb) and character of the motor and learn to use higher gears than you would initially expect.

The way the power is delivered in conjunction to the chassis and suspension means the bike generates an impressive amount of mechanical grip and in turn gives the rider good feedback as to what the rear wheel is doing.

Reliability & build quality

Next up: Value
4 out of 5 (4/5)

From an engine point of view it’s proven and reliable technology as it shares the same motor as the MT-07. It has high quality suspension and Brembo brakes and as a package has been a long time coming so expect benchmark Japanese build quality and reliability.

Value vs rivals

Next up: Equipment
4 out of 5 (4/5)

Priced at £8399 if ordered before the end of July 2019 or £8699 there after it is extremely competitively priced in the adventure bike class. While there are reasons why it is cheaper in terms of spec and equipment levels, it still offers excellent value for money.

In October 2019 MCN took the Tenere around the infamous MCN250 test route alongside fellow Yamahas, the MT-07 and the Tracer 700. The Tenere had the best fuel economy, returning 54.5mpg, and once the 16-litre tank was factored in, also accounting for the highest range of the three, at 191 miles.

At time of publication, you could get a Tenere 700 for £99 a month on a PCP deal over 36 months.

Equipment

3 out of 5 (3/5)

Given that it is priced at £8699, which is over £3k cheaper than a KTM 790 Adventure R compromises have been made to achieve this price point. While the hardware is high quality, there are no electronic aids on the Tenere – so no different maps, traction control, quick shifter or auto blipper. The dash is basic, one colour and hard to read in dust or direct sunlight.

The switches on the Tenere are fairly similar to Yamaha has been using since the '90s, but it all works well.

Specs

Engine size 689cc
Engine type Liquid-cooled, four-stroke, 4V, parallel twin
Frame type Steel backbone, double cradle
Fuel capacity 16 litres
Seat height 880mm
Bike weight 205kg
Front suspension KYB 43mm upside down, 210mm travel
Rear suspension Sachs rear monoshock, 200mm travel
Front brake 282mm twin-disc
Rear brake Single 245mm disc
Front tyre size 90/90 x 21
Rear tyre size 150/70 x 18

Mpg, costs & insurance

Average fuel consumption -
Annual road tax £93
Annual service cost -
New price £8,699
Used price £8,200 - £8,700
Insurance group 10 of 17
How much to insure?
Warranty term 2

Top speed & performance

Max power 72 bhp
Max torque 50 ft-lb
Top speed -
1/4 mile acceleration -
Tank range -

Model history & versions

Model history

Although the T7 is a new model for 2019, it can trace its DNA all the way back to the 1976 Yamaha XT500 enduro bike. Yamaha’s thumpers became world renowned for their off-road performance and durability.
The first Yamaha to carry the Ténéré badge was the 1983 XT600Z, followed by the XT750 Super Ténéré and the XTZ660 Ténéré.
The latest bike uses the MT-07 parallel-twin engine as the centre piece of a simple off-roader to try and capture the spirit of these previous models.

Other versions

Only version, launched in 2019.

MCN Long term test reports

How does the dirt-loving Yamaha Ténéré 700 handle tedious M-roads?

How does the dirt-loving Yamaha Ténéré 700 handle tedious M-roads?

Like many riders, I’m not generally a fan of motorways. All the best bits about riding happen off the beaten track, as far as I’m concerned; whether that’s an exquisite black ribbon of twisty A-road, a challenging rollercoaster of undulating B-road or a serene playground of little-known green lanes.

Read the latest report

Owners' reviews for the YAMAHA TENERE 700 (2019 - on)

2 owners have reviewed their YAMAHA TENERE 700 (2019 - 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 TENERE 700 (2019 - on)

Summary of owners' reviews

Overall rating: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Ride quality & brakes: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Engine: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Reliability & build quality: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Value vs rivals: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Equipment: 4.5 out of 5 (4.5/5)
5 out of 5 Ten out of ten for the Tenere
07 July 2020 by Gary Stanbridge

Year: 2019

Having owned two XT660Zs previously and ridden them extensively, including Moroccan deserts and north American wildernesses, the new 'XT' is a revelation. I waited three years for this bike and whilst it is still early days I have been impressed. The engine, riding position, steering and simplicity made it the perfect adventure tool. Get one, and get new life!

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5

Great all-rounder. Apart from a few short jaunts out I've only had one 500 mile journey on the bike and one decent off-road experience. The bike shone during both these experiences. Comfortable cruising on the hard stuff, great fun on the twisties and soooo comfortable and confident on the pegs. I have a 95mm rear spring fitted (I intend to carry luggage) up from 70Nm. When carrying a pillion the bike was rock solid.

Engine 5 out of 5

The engine is a peach! Flexible, responsive, smooth and sufficiently powerful.

Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5

Too early to give a truly informed comment but no issues so far. My bike has been given the ACF50 treatment and a neoprene sock fitted over the heavier rear spring to reduce corrosion risk.

Value vs rivals 5 out of 5

Too early to say, given the bike has only had the one oil change. Given the simplicity of the bike I expect to do all the servicing myself, and I don't expect this to be involved. This is one of the reasons I go for 'simple' bikes. Its a big plus in my eyes.

Equipment 4 out of 5

I may be in the minority here, but I like 'minimal'. I want a motorbike to ride, not a mobile computer game. Perhaps I'm as simple as the bike but for me this style of bike is what motorcycling is all about. The equipment changes I would make are, 1.Fit a DIN socket, rather than a cigarette socket. Better still, fit a DIN socket (or two) and a USB socket. 2. Fit a 4mm sump guard as standard (one that protects the water pump and lower rear linkages)

Buying experience: I managed to get a bike at the pre-order price after the end of July when another customer decided they didn't want it, so no complaints here!

5 out of 5 XT7 can't get better than that
18 April 2020 by Paul Knight

Year: 2019

Easy forgiving ride, for an adventure bike it handles surprisingly well on road, and instills confidence. Tall seat height means good visibility, and road presence. Nice, not too Powerful engine, but gets to motorway speeds without problems.

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5

Good amount of brake progression, not to sharp, not up to sports bikes, but that's not what this is about. Good comfort, but quite tall in the saddle, any one with less than a 31 Inc inside leg may struggle, untill you get used to it .

Engine 5 out of 5

Nippy, gets along the road at a good pace , and keeps up with bigger more powerful bikes on the Twisties.

Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5

Typicall Yamaha build quality, and well thought out ergonomics.

Value vs rivals 5 out of 5
Equipment 5 out of 5

Got just what you need, no frills or bells, but that means less to go wrong, and do people really use every rider aid that some much more expensive bikes come with?

Buying experience: Bought from dealer £8495 paid as advertised , which included full tank of fuel and delivery to my door.

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