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Yamaha MT-09 first ride!

Published: 29 August 2013

Yamaha's eagerly awaited new three-cylinder roadster is currently being put through its paces by MCN Senior Road Tester Michael Neeves. Here are his first impressions:

"We're here at the world launch of the new £6799, three-cylinder, 847cc Yamaha MT-09 in Croatia.

"On paper the new Yamaha is an exciting prospect. Weighing just 188kg (171kg dry), it's light and that brand new engine produces 113bhp and 65ftlb of torque.

"Yes, you've guessed it: it's Yamaha's take on the hugely successful Triumph Street Triple. Unsurprisingly, it even makes the same noise  when you fire it up - a strange sound for something with Yamaha written on the tank.

"It's a lovely machine to ride - easy and in no way intimidating. The three-cylinder engine is a peach, offering lots of low down grunt, a strong midrange and a grin-inducing top end.

"It's comfy, controllable, handles and brakes well. It's as happy around town as it is pulling easy wheelies and skidding up to roundabouts. The perfect bike for the experienced and newbies.

"But, the ride-by-wire throttle isn't perfect. I'm having to constantly toggle between the three modes to get a smooth response around town and enough power on the open road. The throttle is far too aggressive most of the time.

"Although it corners well, the front end is vague and doesn't give you confidence in the corners, unless you carry a lot of brake on the way in, which isn't ideal. It feels too high and hard.

"Read my full review and how I think it compares to the Triumph Street Triple in MCN on Wednesday."

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