New Yamaha MT-10 SP raises the bar: Latest Ohlins suspension leads changes to Japan’s top super naked

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Following Yamaha’s recent unveiling of a virtually all-new MT-10 super naked with six extra bhp, refreshed styling, improved brakes and new TFT dash, comes this even higher spec SP version.

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And, as the first production bike equipped with the latest semi-active suspension system from Ohlins plus other updates, the new SP looks set to not only stretch its lead over its Japanese rivals but also take on the very best from Europe, such as the Aprilia Tuono, KTM Super Duke, Ducati Streetfighter and Triumph Speed Triple.

The ‘SP’ version of the MT, first introduced in 2017 a year after the standard bike and distinguished by its semi-active Ohlins and TFT dash, has long been considered the best Japanese ‘super naked’, even though it was starting to show its age.

2022 Yamaha MT-10 SP Öhlins rear shock

For 2022 that’s been addressed, mostly via a raft of engine, styling and spec changes to the standard bike with the SP version now going further still.

The biggest upgrade is to its Ohlins suspension. Already semi-active, this ‘next generation’ version uses ‘spool valve damping technology’ to give a greater range of damping adjustment and higher degree of response.

There are now three selectable semi-active modes – A-1, A-2 and A-3, equating to Sport, Sport-touring and Touring – whereby the system automatically constantly adjusts rebound and compression damping. While there’s also three manual mode equivalents, M-1, M-2 and M-3.

2022 Yamaha MT-10 SP tank

Yamaha claims the system is the highest chassis technology ever fitted to a production motorcycle, more advanced even than its current R1M superbike

The 2022 SP also gets a new, three-piece belly pan to help protect the oil cooler and, with, R1M-inspired graphics, give a more distinctive, race-bred look.

While, along with the new MT-10’s now radial brake master cylinder, the SP also gets braided hoses for heightened braking feel.

The new SP is expected to arrive mid-2022. Prices have yet to be announced.

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Phil West

By Phil West

MCN Contributor and bike tester.