YAMAHA TRACER 900GT (2018 - on) Review
- A brilliant sports tourer
- Suspension is main highlight over standard Tracer
- Very well equipped bike
At a glance
|Owners' reliability rating:|
|Annual servicing cost:||£160|
Overall ratingNext up: Ride & brakes
This is the 2018 Yamaha Tracer 900GT. While heated grips are nice and a TFT dash is visually pleasing when compared to the stock bike’s LCD display, it is the suspension that really sets the GT aside as it addresses the standard Tracer 900’s main fault.
The extra composure and improved ride quality it delivers gives the GT the impression of being a more refined product, a sensation further enhanced by its improved specification. If you own a Tracer 900, and love it, the GT is a significant leap forward in terms of ride, quality and specification and is worth upgrading to.
During 2018 MCN's Alison Silcox ran a Yamaha Tracer 900GT as a long-term test bike for a year. Find out what we learned here.
#MCNFLEET18 what an epic four days. Office Manager @AliSilcoxMCN has been on a solo 1375 mile adventure through the Alps to Venice and the @YMUKofficial #TRACER900GT hasn't missed a beat.....you'll find her in a bar for the next four days. 😎😎 pic.twitter.com/GO3GxtTNeB— Motor Cycle News (@MCNnews) July 14, 2018
Once you've read this review, our long-term test and our owners' reviews, you may want to join a community to meet likeminded owners. We suggest the Yamaha MT09/Tracer Facebook group.
Ride quality & brakesNext up: Engine
The upgraded KYB suspension supports the bike better, removing the majority of the soggy sensation you get on the stock model with enough adjustment left to fine-tune any remaining wobble out. You notice the difference the most through low speed bends where the standard bike’s forks dive under brakes before bouncing back up when you release the stoppers, causing the rear to squat and the bike to run wide, a sensation that is far less evident on the GT. The new seat is lovely and comfortable and the updated riding position relaxed, but the stock screen is still crap…
EngineNext up: Reliability
The Tracer 900GT has the same motor as the MT-09, which is no bad thing at all. Packed full of grunt, the 847cc triple has a good throttle response as well as a bit of spirit should you wish to open it up and let it rev. You get a slipper clutch as standard and the GT version even adds a quickshifter, which is nice and slick in its operation. The engine is the MT range’s main selling point and it still delivers in this sports tourer.
Reliability & build qualityNext up: Value
The Tracer may be built down to a budget, but that hasn’t shown itself up in build quality and owners report the old model is well finished and reliable. There should be no gremlins to worry about aside from a few corroded fasteners if the bike is used in winter and not cared for with anti-corrosion spray.
We've currently got eight Yamaha Tracer 900GT owners' reviews on the site, with an overall score of 4 out of 5 stars. The main negative points are a hard seat and lack of a decent screen for touring, but these are easily remedied by aftermarket parts.
Value vs rivalsNext up: Equipment
The Tracer has always represented great value for money and the GT version continues this theme. You get a stack of extras for very little more than the stock bike and aside from lacking cornering ABS/TC, there isn’t much missing in its spec sheet. Well, aside from a screen that works!
For £1400 more than the stock Tracer 900, the GT gains fully adjustable forks, a shock with a remote preload adjuster, colour-matched panniers, a full colour dash, heated grips, cruise control and a quickshifter. And that’s on top of the two-stage traction control, ABS and three power modes that the stock bike comes with as well as its new for 2018 adjustable screen, inbuilt pannier mounts and centre stand. That’s not bad at all for £10,792.
|Engine type||Liquid-cooled, 12v, inline triple|
|Fuel capacity||18 litres|
|Front suspension||41mm, KYB forks fully-adjustable|
|Rear suspension||Single KYB rear shock, adjustable rebound and a remote pre-load adjuster|
|Front brake||2 x 298mm discs with four-piston radial caliper. ABS|
|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||51 mpg|
|Annual road tax||£96|
|Annual service cost||£160|
|Used price||£7,700 - £10,500|
How much to insure?
Top speed & performance
|Max power||113 bhp|
|Max torque||64.6 ft-lb|
|Top speed||135 mph|
|1/4 mile acceleration||-|
|Tank range||200 miles|
Model history & versions
MCN Long term test reports
MCN Fleet: It's the final countdown...for the Yamaha Tracer 900GT
Update 15: Retracing My Steps It’s been a fun-filled ten months and life won’t be the same now I’ve said goodbye to the Yamaha Tracer 900GT. With my longest solo tour to date, and weekends away with family and friends, I’ve been bitten by the touring bug and clocked up nearly 10,000 miles in the pro…
Owners' reviews for the YAMAHA TRACER 900GT (2018 - on)
10 owners have reviewed their YAMAHA TRACER 900GT (2018 - 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.
Summary of owners' reviews
|Ride quality & brakes:|
|Reliability & build quality:|
|Value vs rivals:|
|Annual servicing cost:||£160|
Nothings perfect, screen is a waste of plastic, seat not good enough for a GT. Engine is a peach, sounds good on the standard exhaust. Price for 1st service (£165) is outrageous.
Seat let’s it down ride quality wise
Probably the best engine ever, sounds good and goes good, pretty good on fuel
Fasteners furring already despite no winter use
It costs less to have my car serviced
Screen is useless, No fuel to empty gauge is woeful for a GT. Seat not very comfortable Panniers a bit small Quick shifter wasted on me, I can do clutches changes easily
Buying experience: Dealer was KD’s in Accrington they were ok , however there was a shortage on the panniers that took months to sort.
Annual servicing cost: £250
Best very comfortable in the saddle still sporty when you ned it to beworst screen noise is atrocious
Buying experience: dealer was powerbiking in High Wycombe, great service and fair trade in on my old bike.
Annual servicing cost: £125
Engine is stunning - do you really need more than 115bhp? Brakes good, seat good, screen good for my height. Partner loves the luggage and I love that I can take it off and have some real fun on my own. I've had 30 bikes and can say as a true all rounder this is pretty much it. Fun, exciting and sensible all in one package
Very comfortable all round especially 2 up, but also still retains that 'sporty side' to keep you entertained.
What a gem - smooth, grunty, tuneful and economical - what more do you want. Tend to keep it std mode as A mode is a bit instant for my liking.
No issues at all as yet (5000 mls), still looks like new but it is kept in a garage and looked after well.
Only the one service so far - no issues with price or service level.
Fully loaded as standard - cruise control, heated grips, led lights, TFT screen, centre stand, remote adjuster on suspension. I will try some different tyres as I'm not a Dunlop fan but they are still going strong after 4k. Only extra ive put on are a rad guard and side stand extender.
Buying experience: Dealer purchase, good PX price (MT07) and and a bit of tweaking for a deal and I was happy.
Seat comfort lets it down along with the finish on the inside of the exhaust end pipe.
Handling and braking are both good but a question mark about the O.E. tyre choice.
A peach of an engine.
Centre stands cross piece is rusting and the exhaust end pipe is tarnished on the side closest to the frame.
Can't remember the exact cost but it didn't seem any worse or better than other manufacturers.
Heated grips and quick shifter, how have I ever done without these.
Buying experience: Dealer brand new, no deals available so list price but a decent part exchange price given.
Annual servicing cost: £150
Almost there but lacks features warranting 5 stars. The best bits: + Engine - smooth and has plenty of mid-range and will pull from 30mph in 4th + Gearbox - 6 speed is friendly and smooth with confident gear shifts. 6th could do with being further away from 5th though + MPG - fairly good range for the 18 litres, but I am not getting near the 65-70mpg some people report. The range of the tank is around 180 - 190 miles normally. + Breaks - (with ABS) are confident and responsive. Emergency stops and rolling break tests prove there is nothing these cannot handle. + Riding position - sensible and and comfortable. Offers good visibility, confidence on the bars and comfort to last all day. + TFT screen - loads of informations and a doddle to use + Cruise control - Works from 30mph+ in 4th gear upwards. A great feature and for chewing up the roads or managing speed around urban areas it's super. The improvements: - Screen - only look at the reviews, it's laughable. I replaced mine with a Puig and it works wonders now - Heated grips - the tree settings are, "on, but you won't notice", "on, but you still won't really notice", "you're hands are on fire". - Quick shifter - you have to be in the right rev range and the shifter has to be in a good mood to work properly. I find it's notchy at time and sometimes doesn't even work. Not to be used from 1st to 2nd or 2nd to 3rd. Only upshifts too. - Ride height - too tall for me "out of the box" with my little 32" legs. Although lowering comes in around £70 for the suspension link and labour, it should be a free option. - Cruise control - the functionality of it is primitive and operates like this junk in a Toyota. One press up (or down) does not change the speed by a 1mph, but anything from 1 or 2 or 3 or 50 mph. It's based purely on the length of time you hold the button on for, which means the accuracy of the cruise setting is not precise.
Yamaha know how to set-up a good set of breaks and they haven't disappointed here. Also, put a decent set of tyres on it at the soonest opportunity. Mine came with Dunlop SportMax on it and ride was transformed when I put Michelin Pilot Road 5s on.
Smooth and purrs. The burble out of the standard exhaust is nice too.
Everything else works as expected.
Not much to service. Pretty economy for a bike this size. A bit hungry on the chain lube and fitting an automatic chain lube requires additional engineering that doesn't come as standard with the current kits on the market due to the shape of the rear.
As mentioned, the quick shifter, the primitive cruise control and screen need improving. Would also have benefited from the suspension being electronically managed. I am not convinced the three rider modes are needed. Leave it in standard, as it's perfectly fine, gives you the responsiveness you need with the balance of speed, power and efficiency. There is no need for a "sports" mode on this style of bike. If I want sport, I'll ride the actual sportsbike in my garage. This goes for the three stage traction control too... waste of time. The bike is designed for munching the miles in comfort and safely, so you'll never turn traction off.
Buying experience: Great... my local Yamaha dealer are spot on.
Annual servicing cost: £120
The only thing I hate about my GT is the side stand, when trying to put it down I always get caught up on the foot peg which is quite annoying.
Brakes are good but I feel need to be a bit more powerful & suspension set up from factory is spot on for me. Quite a lot of vibration through foot pegs when in high revs I:e above 7000rpm. I did buy the comfort seats which are firm but supportive & as for pillion my wife says it’s more comfortable the the gsx1400 it’s replaced. We managed 300 miles in one day with no real aches & pains.
Love it, plenty of get up & go when you need it & that’s just in standard mode, mode A is a bit too snatchy for my liking & when giving it a fist full it just wants to wheelie everywhere. Mode B is good in the rain.
So far so good as I’ve only done 1500 miles.
Yamaha claims mid 50’s to the gallon but I’ve been getting mid 60’s but not really given it the beans yet but saying that I’ve not been hanging about.
Never had cruise control & now I would never be without it, such a great thing to have on motorway journeys. Quick shifter is brilliant & is a lot smoother if you change in higher revs. TFT screen is good but could be a little bigger. Bought the top box for helmets as they won’t fit in the panniers but the wife like to have a top box on anyway so was a good purchase.
Buying experience: List price was £10,649 but with all the extras ended up being £11,200. Got it on Yamaha’s 8.5% PCP deal.
Tracer is a good handling comfortable bike. I had a Honda VFR 1200 and also have a Triumph Street Triple R and the Tracer has proved to be almost as much fun as the Triumph, but more comfortable on poor surfaced roads. I have now done 900 miles on mine and still delighted with it. Engine is great and I haven't found it lacking in go, 62 mpg, so 200-mile plus range is easy. Screen is rubbish and has been changed. The seat could be better as could the control wheel for the screen but that's a minor point. If you need to travel at 120+mph then it's probably not the bike for you, but if you're looking for a comfortable good handling bike for British roads then give it a go
Cruise control and quick shifter have proved to be a great feature I thought I would never need.
Slow, badly made to a low budget. Uncomfortable dull and just plain boring.
Brakes are ok but not up to a Triumph Tiger 1050. Ride is ok, a bit choppy and doesn’t inspire much confidence, the Tiger is a lot better.
Dull, unresponsive, and grumbly. A dog compared to my '99 Fazer
Poor almost laughable design in places. The seat adjustment in particular is a complete joke. Plastics are cheap and poorly finished. Critical components seated behind the front wheel are right in the firing line and are impossible to clean.
Good on fuel consuption. Explains why the bike has little power to offer.
Cruise control is a great feature. Full colour screen dashboard is a leg up on the rather basic tiger dashboard. Quick-shifter works although i can change quicker with a standard box.
The bike is great! Very good comfort, the engine really delivers and passengers love their sitting position. I highly recommend this bike. You get so much for the money.
I think it's the best for city driving because it's so easy to manoeuvre, it's also great for curvy roads and you can easily keep a high speed on the highway.
The engine is amazing. You got power at any gear all the time.
I think it's well built. I have had BMWs and this bike is almost as good. It's very close.
Cruise control and heated grips.
Buying experience: From a dealer. I got a bit of money off.
Version: Standard Tracer 900GT May 2018
Annual servicing cost: £130
Better Suspension fixes the big fault I had with my 2015 model. On Smooth roads "standard" settings are a great improvement and very stable. Cruise control for average speed cameras is most welcome. The lack of standard large screen and comfort seat are a bit mean on a "GT". I still recommend trying one this is my second Tracer.
Still a good all-rounder. I bought it to commute and tour in the UK. The suspension is much improved over the 2015 model, no soft front causing wallowing and a bit of a weave some reported. The suspension settings in the manual (MTT850D) now make sense. NB The MCN settings for the 2015 model are a good commuter compromise on the old model. The new sculpted standard seat for me becomes a pain after 50 miles. I can't move around and find a comfortable position, its not flat like the old one.
Best bit of the bike: It's flexible, never falters and it's not as thirsty as bigger models. Sounds nice too.
It's better detailed than the 2015 model overall. Quality is as good as old one but it's new so time will tell. Some electrical connectors under the seat seem open backed so you can see the crimps, don't jet wash the gap bellow the main seat is my take.
Good on fuel on A & B roads. 69mpg
Cruise control is the best bit for me along with the new suspension. It should come with the larger screen (which I have now fitted) to reduce the noise, and the comfort seat, which is on order as after 50 miles, I was very uncomfortable. On the 2015 model, I could do 175 miles and get off no aches or pains. GT? Fitting a chain lubricator is tricky but using the pannier bracket and a 25mm wide aluminium strip it's possible to fit TUTORO one.
Buying experience: Easy, no issues, very good, Dealer traded in my 2015 model.