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Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

Yamaha 2001 TT-R225: MD Ride Review

I am a novice trail rider and, for some time now, have been looking for a dirt bike that would accommodate my height, strength and riding abilities. At 5’3″, and with my experience level, most of the dirt bikes that I’ve ridden have been too tall, too heavy, or the powerband was too abrubt (or some combination thereof).

Yamaha’s TT-R225 was a bike I looked forward to riding, because I felt that it would give me all the things I had been searching for in a dirt bike — with the added bonus of an electric start.

I took the TT-R225 out for some trail riding, and had the following impressions. The electric start was great! I’ve been left behind on a few outings because I failed to get my bike kick started (they always come back for me, though), so pushing a button and having the bike come to life was a terrific addition to my riding experience. The bike was the perfect height for me. The TT-R225 carries its weight well (259 pounds dry weight). Past experience has taught me that the test of a bike’s weight is when I either crash and have to pick up the bike, or get into a precarious situation going up a hill or through a corner and get off balance. I didn’t have any crashes (or near crashes) while riding the TT-R225, so I didn’t put the bike to the “test”, but the balance and feel of the bike were good, and I immediately felt comfortable and in control on this bike. The brakes are very good — with a front disc brake for those needed “power” (or panic??) stops, you get the action you need when you need it. The suspension was comfortable and soaked up the bumps well.

The powerband is smooth and unintimidating. Although I had a lot of fun riding this bike, I feel the “need for speed” that comes with more riding experience might not be accommodated without making some modifications (less restrictive pipe, airbox and revised jetting). We did make some minor adjustments to the bike (taking the baffle out of the bike and removing the airbox cover, and then putting the baffle back in and leaving the airbox cover off), which did give the bike a bit of a power boost.

Is the mellow power output of the TT-R225 a negative? No, not for the market Yamaha is targeting with this bike. The TT-R225 has a smooth and even power delivery that gives a beginner or casual rider a lot of confidence to get out and mix it up with his or her family and friends who are riding bigger and faster bikes. This is not the bike, however, for the beginner rider who wants, or expects, to quickly progress to faster, more aggressive trail riding.

In my opinion, the TT-R225 is a good, all-around trail bike which gives new or casual riders the tool to develop the confidence and skills needed to get into the sport of motorcycling.

The MSRP is $2,999. Here is a link to the Yamaha site and the specifications for the TT-R225.