DESIGNED to appeal to the touring bike market, the 2019 Yamaha MT-07 Tracer is a super light, fun and nimble ride. As an added bonus, it’s a great crossover LAMS approved motorcycle, with a distinctly modern feel.
Featuring an aggressive wasp appearance, the MT-07 Tracer is built to suit a long distance role, with 130mm of travel in front and 142mm in the rear. It begs the question about whether it’s any good off road, and in short, yes it is.
Even in its tested format using the Michelin Pilot Road tyre, it did the job on grass and fire trail surfaces. It handled perfectly, even in ruts and deviations. Put on a set of enduro trail tyres and you’d have yourself a tourer/adventurer that can take you almost anywhere.
At its heart beats a 4 valve twin cylinder with a 270 degree crank, with uneven firing, which provides a strong feeling of acceleration. The lightweight Yamaha (cross plane engine) is 655cc and delivers instant throttle response strong low to mid- range torque.
It produces approximately 52HP (just under 39kW) of power and 57Nm of torque. Don’t let the fact that it’s ‘only a twin’ deter you from exploring it further, or that the bike ‘only has 52bhp’.
The other benefit of this neat twin is the fuel economy with a 17-litre capacity you can easily go 300-350km on a tank, depending on your riding style, and this makes for very cheap motoring.
This bike holds its own and would make a very comfortable daily rider. It actually feels more powerful than the figures suggest. The Tracer comes with a six speed gearbox and shifts through the range very smoothly.
There is plenty of torque and it is always on tap right through the gears. The bike comes with traction control which you can switch off, however the moment the rear slips ever so slightly from heavy throttle application it will automatically turn back on.
Yamaha have utilised their lightweight alloy Diamond frame, and weighing in at 196kg (wet) makes the bike very agile, which means cornering is a breeze, and in fact it is very forgiving.
If you over shoot mid corner you can adjust without having a heart stopping moment. The ride is comfortable and firm given the front forks are not adjustable. You can pre-load on the rear though, and despite limited input, the suspension this package works perfectly.
The Tracer handles really well and it only takes a few minutes before you are totally comfortable with its performance and handling. Ergonomically, it has an upright riding position and it feels as if you are sitting quite high, despite an 835mm seat height.
It is comfortable for the average height rider and the seat cups your butt nicely. If you’re a taller rider then you may find it a little cramped. It’s comfortable with two up as well, and you don’t really notice your pillion on board.
The note from the twin and standard exhaust actually sounds great, as you would expect, with a rumble right through the rev range. It has an LED electronic dash which shows a speed, revs, gear position and fuel gauge, trip meter and fuel consumption.
The 2019 Yamaha Tracer 700 also has knuckle guards above the indicators which do a great job of deflecting the wind off your hands. The stopping power is strong and predictable thanks to the 280mm dual front rotors and the 245mm single at the rear.
The MT-07 comes with ABS to assist when things get a little heavy. Soft side panniers come standard and include all the brackets. The inside of these is hard so there is protection for your items.
With the new model expected in mid-2020 it’s very possible you might pick up the Tracer 700 for a better price, then you could add things like tyres, exhaust pipe and a GPS, and begin cruising the highways, back roads and off road.
The 2019 Yamaha MT-07 Tracer is available in Radical Red, Yamaha Blue and Tech Black, with black 10-spoke alloy wheels. It comes standard with black bars and chrome exhaust outlet. Yamaha offers a 2-year unlimited kilometre warranty.
Prices start from $12,290 plus on road costs.
Our test bike was provided by Yamaha Australia. To find out more about the 2019 Yamaha MT-07 Tracer, contact your local Yamaha dealer. Pictures courtesy of Mushroom Owl Photography.