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Yamaha MT-07 featured 2

Yamaha MT-07: Meet Japan’s Edgiest Naked Bike in the Market

The Story behind the Yamaha MT-07

The introduction of the Yamaha MT-07 (initially FZ 07 in the US) is relatively recent. The design and first production model came to life only some years ago in 2014. By 2015, the motorcycle had already arrived in the US. It is, by all means, a naked bike and it is very road-ready for being powerful and light like few others.

The reception at the time it came out was unanimously great. The Yamaha MT-07 harvested five-stars reviews and praising comments all over the world. Yamaha USA pointed out that the Yamaha FZ-07 (US version of the MT-07) was on the peak as the number-one selling bike in 2017. From June 2014 (release date) to December 2017, the Yamaha MT-07 sold more than 15,000 units.

The challenge for all the incarnations to come after that was to improve an excellent bike by listening to the users and applying the few things they were asking to be changed. The result of the esthetical redesign, as well as the minor technical tweaks, was, according to experts, an even better bike.

Yamaha MT-07 2018

The challenge that Yamaha had to overcome when thinking about the 2018 incarnation of the MT-07 was how to make a great bike better. According to most specialised media, it was five stars out of five stars bike in 2015. What they did was to change the story behind the bike, bring it to the present. For this, they gave the ride a more menacing look and also did some minor tweaks in terms of suspension and brakes. Let´s take a look at what´s new for the 2018 Yamaha MT-07:

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Overall Look

The overall look of the Yamaha MT-07 got some minor, aesthetic changes that make a significant difference. For example, the blackened parts like the handlebars, footpegs, radiator, holders, among some other. These might seem as small details but make for the overall look of a menacing bike.


In the 2018 model, Yamaha modified the back as well as the front light. They are bright LEDs and can improve your riding experience on dark roads. Also, a side note is the tank cover that, along with the lights, resembles bigger sisters MT-09 and MT-10. Also, the air scoops are blackened and add some resemblance to the bigger bikes of the MT line matching the tank cover.


The seat in the Yamaha MT-07 2018 suffered a modification and is now more prominent, which helps in many ways to having a more comfortable ride. The rear part of the seat reaches further to the back while the front part of it wraps the fuel tank better. The passenger seat is a little bigger too, to accommodate the second person for the ride better. The seat improvement is not only esthetical, but it also is a functional enhancement, since it provides an improved grip when riding more aggressively. Not that it was a flaw on the previous model, but now it feels better.


This is, perhaps, the department that got the major tweaking for 2018. The suspension rebound damping is now adjustable in the back and adds to the original spring preload adjustability it used to have. Also, the suspension rates have been revised and stiffen. These improved ratios transformed a stable bike into a very stable bike. For experienced riders, the more you push it on the upper range, the more it responds.


The most significant change in terms of the braking system is that now ABS is standard in all the models, which is a great addition, especially for those who are inexperienced riders and want to drive safely. Braking the bike is flawless in virtually every situation.

Yamaha MT-07 Test

This is the fun part, at least for me, that I am so lucky as to put a leg over the seat and try this motorcycle. But let´s start from the beginning, the looks. This bike looks exactly as staring straight into the future. That being said, the whole segment of naked bikes is taking over the spot where the sports bikes used to rule. I don’t want to get deviated from the main subject: the looks of the MT-07 are breathtaking. It looks as if it was Neo’s bike while fighting at a Matrix sequel. The matte black along with the golden or red rims make it a piece of technology that you want to jump on and ride. That is precisely what I did.

Riding position

The first impression of the riding position is that you are comfortable. It is not as lean-forward as you would expect from a bike as spicy as this; it is upright and comfy. I started the engine and slowly rolled over to the pavement to start the test. Let me tell you for starters that the low-end torque you get from this machine is not to be overlooked at all. It will pull you forward as a much bigger bike but with the comfort of a naked motorcycle weighing 403lb.

Stopped along with cars and heavy traffic in the intersections I could see people looking at the bike. It is a catcher for the eye. When the light turned to green, though, all they could see was my tail light as I was coming out way before they did every time. What I did not like was that the clutch lever was not adjustable. I am a small-handed man and had to make an effort to reach it, which put me out of focus on how great the ride was.

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In the dense city traffic, I decided to go for the open road and try the new suspension rates by pushing the bike a little. It felt way more stable and firm than any other naked bike I rode before. The Yamaha MT-07 2018 can be suitable for experienced riders like me and also for those starting out. The riding is so smooth that it is almost natural. ABS is now standard, which helps a lot, especially as you take curves at speed. That is precisely the effect the Yamaha MT-07 has on you, and it gives you the confidence to push the limits. For the beginners, the low to mid-range of the torque has plenty of pull to have lots of fun. For the experienced riders, the top end is also high for having fun while pushing the bike.

I have to make an extra note for the controls since they are great for one-glance understanding. You get a gear indicator, fuel gauge and an indicator labelled ECO that shows that you are saving fuel (and going too slow). Finally, the Michelin Pilot Road 3s that my testing model had were flawless. These are tires that belong to high-end motorcycles with a very different price tag than the one the MT has. The Yamaha MT-07 2018 is an excellent bike for all purposes, and it is entirely understandable why it is the number one selling naked bike for Yamaha in the world. If you push it, it responds and also has lots of entry-model delights for less-experienced riders.

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Yamaha MT-07 Specs

Yamaha MT-07 specification is a bang for the buck!

  • Engine – 4-stroke, 689cc, DOHC, liquid-cooled with 8 valves
  • Fuel Delivery – Fuel injection
  • Transmission – Wet multi-plate clutch, 6-speed transmission
  • Final Drive – Chain
  • Suspension – (Front) 41mm telescopic fork (Rear) Adjustable preload and rebound single damping shock
  • Brakes – (Front) ABS Dual 282mm hydraulic disc (Rear) ABS 245mm single hydraulic disc
  • Tires – (Front) 120/70ZR17 (Rear) 180/55ZR17
  • Seat Height – 31.7 in
  • Wheelbase – 55.1 in
  • Fuel Capacity – 3.7 gal
  • Suggested Fuel Economy – 58 mpg
  • Wet Weight – 403 lb

Yamaha MT-07 Tracer

The Yamaha MT-07 Tracer is the touring version of a naked bike. It is a very likely thing to happen that a big company like Yamaha turns its best-selling bike into something else. And make it another best-seller. The Yamaha MT-07 Tracer is taller, more robust and looks like a touring bike. For starters, you get the twin headlights you would get from any touring motorcycle. Also, the panniers come standard in the MT 07 and are very handy with their locks and waterproof covers.

Also, the bike has an adjustable windscreen that is very suitable for long rides and the open road. All of us who have been riding long distances know that the encapsulation efficiency of a windshield is more than welcome. The bike comes with ABS on both wheels, but Yamaha was smart enough to have them set at different sensitivities. While the front one is smooth, the back one is very sensitive (especially helpful for beginners). Like the Yamaha MT-07, the Tracer also has the Michelin Pilot Road, just that in this case they are 4s. This decision helps the overall grip of the bike.

The combination of the 655cc-LAMS (with legal restrictions), the modified chassis and the Dual ABS make this a great touring bike.

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Yamaha MT-07 Price

The price of the Yamaha MT-07 2018 is of $7,599. It is only $100 more expensive than the previous year model and has some very attractive additions. The ABS brake being stock, the revised ratios in the suspension department and the looks are worth more than that. This bike comes with features of a more expensive motorcycle with a lower price tag.


The Yamaha MT-07 2018 is the successful completion of a hard task by Yamaha. They set out to improve a best-seller without losing any of its main features or boosting the price to the sky. They did it right, and the result is a great vehicle that can perform flawlessly in almost any situation. The Yamaha MT-07 touring version, which is the Tracer is another great bike that is ready for the open road.

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We would love to know what your impression on the Yamaha MT 07 is; do you think they improved the original? Feel free to share this post on social media and your favourite riders´ forum; we would love to hear your opinion.

Happy riding!

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