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Yamaha Introduces MT-07: Lightweight, Affordable 689cc Twin

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More news from Milan includes the Yamaha MT-07, a 689cc parallel twin that weighs only 394 pounds (wet, with a full tank of gas). At this point it appears to be a European model, not coming to the US.

Following the FZ-09 that we enjoyed so much, the MT-07 (will there eventually be a U.S. model FZ-07?) offers the same sort of uncluttered, basic riding goodness. By comparison, it makes more power and torque (on paper, at least) than the healthy Kawasaki Ninja 650, but it has a curb weight 66 pounds lighter.

Here are all the details from Yamaha:

Exciting, accessible and affordable

The affordable new MT-07 is going to introduce newly qualified riders to everything that is best about real motorcycling – and it’s also ready to remind those more experienced riders what they’ve been missing for all these years.

Our designers have focused on the things that really matter to riders. So they developed an economical 689cc inline 2-cylinder engine that produces more riding excitement per cc thanks to its deep and linear torque at low to mid speeds.

And for instant controllability and easy handling we’ve equipped this accessible new naked bike with one of the lightest, slimmest and most agile chassis designs in the class.

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All-new 689cc inline 2-cylinder engine

What gives the new MT-07 such a special character is its all-new 689cc inline 2-cylinder engine which has been developed using Yamaha’s ‘crossplane philosophy’. With an uneven firing interval, the 270-degree crank gives a strong feeling of acceleration and great traction, and the deep linear torque ensures outstanding performance.

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Light and slim tubular backbone frame

For easy manoeuvrability and remarkable agility, the new MT-07 runs with a light and slim steel backbone-type frame that utilizes the new engine as a stressed member. Combined with its compact wheelbase and plush suspension systems, this strong and light chassis gives a responsive and engaging ride.

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Engineered for optimum riding enjoyment

This exciting new addition to the MT range has been designed to deliver high levels of riding enjoyment together with a feeling of instant controllability. Chassis dimensions and weight distribution have been carefully set to maximize the enjoyment felt during acceleration and give the rider a connected feel with the motorcycle.

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Responsive performance with affordability and economy

With its all-new liquid-cooled engine, lightweight backbone frame and cutting edge style, the MT-07 is a remarkably versatile naked bike that succeeds in combining responsive performance with an affordable price and outstanding fuel economy – making it an ideal motorcycle for both newer and returning riders.

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Mass-forward design and sculpted body

The new MT-07 is characterized by its mass-forward design that emphasizes its athletic build and creates an immediate feeling of power. The slim fuel tank accentuates the bike’s compact looks and offers excellent knee grip – while the lightweight air scoops and aluminium side covers give the MT a sporty and purposeful image.

Characteristic MT-styling features

With its angular mirrors, LED tail light and mass-forward body design, there’s no mistaking the MT-07′s resemblance to the bigger 850cc 3-cylinder MT-09. Other family features include the lightweight cast aluminium 10-spoke wheels as well as the Z-shape formed by the air intake-style scoops and the exhaust down pipes.

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Engine

Engine type liquid-cooled
Displacement 689 cm³
Bore x stroke 80.0 mm x 68.6 mm
Compression ratio 11.5 : 1
Maximum power 55.0 kW (74.8PS) @ 9,000 rpm
Maximum Torque 68.0 Nm (6.9 kg-m) @ 6,500 rpm
Lubrication system Wet sump
Carburettor Fuel Injection
Clutch Type Wet
Ignition system TCI
Starter system Electric
Transmission system Constant Mesh
Final transmission Chain

Chassis

Frame Diamond
Front suspension system Telescopic forks
Front travel 130 mm
Caster Angle 24º
Trail 90 mm
Rear suspension system Swingarm
Rear Travel 130 mm
Front brake Hydraulic dual disc, Ø 282 mm
Rear brake Hydraulic single disc, Ø 245 mm
Front tyre 120/70 ZR 17M/C(58W) (Tubeless)
Rear tyre 180/55 ZR 17M/C(73W) (Tubeless)

Dimensions

Overall length 2,085 mm
Overall width 745 mm
Overall height 1,090 mm
Seat height 805 mm
Wheel base 1,400 mm
Minimum ground clearance 140 mm
Wet weight (including full oil  and fuel tank) 179 kg / ABS 182 kg
Fuel tank capacity 14 L
Oil tank capacity 3.0 L

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120 Comments

  1. Tom says:

    It occThe MT-07 looks to be an excellent offering from Yamaha. It is comparable to Honda’s NC700X, Kawasaki’s Versys, and Suzuki’s SFV650. The Suzuki is a V-twin, whereas the others are parallel twins, but when you compare the MT-07 to the Honda NC700X, the similarities are so strong as to make you wonder if they are really the same bike. The engines are remarkably similar. They both use a 270-degree crank, and they both use the same approach to engine balancing. If the specs that are available are correct, the cylinders in the Yamaha are a bit oversquare, whereas in the Honda they are a bit undersquare. This means that the torque peak likely occurs at higher rpm for the Yamaha as compared to the Honda, and that, consequently, peak power will be stronger in the Yamaha, whereas low-rpm, off-the-line performance will likely be noticeably stronger in the Honda. Honda’s global web site has some good information about this engine, much of which applies equally to the Yamaha. (http://world.honda.com/Global-700cc-engine/Tech-details/index.html)

    The MT-07 fits squarely into the “standard” category, whereas the NC700X has dual-sport aspirations. Honda also makes the NC700 in a standard configuration, the NC700S, which you can buy in Canada and elsewhere, but not in the USA. The only significant difference is likely the slighter shorter handlebar reach you get with the NC700X, as compared to either the NC700S or the Yamaha MT-07. The MT-07 is also about 50 lbs lighter than the NC700X, and while that isn’t a huge difference, it is enough of a difference to matter.

    For me, however, the bike I like better is the recently-introduced Yamaha FZ-09, which was announced earlier this year, and ridden by Motorcycle Daily a couple of months ago (http://www.motorcycledaily.com/2013/09/yamaha-2014-fz-09-md-first-ride/). The FZ-09 weighs only about 25 lbs more than the MT-07, but there is an enormous difference in engine performance. The FZ-09 uses an in-line triple, which means that it is comparable to a boxer twin in terms of engine vibration, but it also uses a balance shaft. Come next spring, I think that I’ll be taking a test ride on the FZ-09.urs to me that the MT-07 is an excellent offering from Yamaha.

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    • Dave says:

      Re: “but when you compare the MT-07 to the Honda NC700X, the similarities are so strong as to make you wonder if they are really the same bike.”

      They may have traveled similar paths but the Honda’s engine could not be more different in character if it were electric- it is basically 1/2 of a Honda Fit’s engine. It’s redline is ~6,500rpm, peak power is in the order of 30hp less. Very different.

      I agree that this compares very favorably with the Suzuki but in Kawasaki’s case, I’d pair it with the ER-6n naked bike. What I find so appealing in the Yamaha is that it’s engine was configured to behave like a V-twin but with a parallel’s simplicity. I on;y wish they’d bring it to the US.

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      • Tom says:

        Yes, the Yamaha and Honda parallel twin engines are distinct in character. I pointed that out very plainly, and even explained the reason why: the bore/stroke ratio is dissimilar.

        As for your claim that the engine that Honda uses in the NT700 is just one-half of the engine in the Honda Fit, I am curious as to why you think that. It is obvious to me that this not true. For starters, the displacement is not one-half of the displacement of the Fit engine, and the bore/stroke is not the same for the two engines. I would have been surprised to learn that the Fit engine uses a crossplane crankshaft, and after searching the web for any mention of that, I found none. Assuming that the Fit uses the conventional sort of flat, 180-degree crankshaft whereby pistons 2 and 3 move in unison and in opposition to pistons 1 and 4 (which move in unison), it is manifest that the type of engine balancing used in the NT700 would not make any sense at all in the Fit. Additionally, the engine in the Fit has other technology that the NT700 does not have, which is with two spark plugs per cylinder and independent firing of those two plugs. All in all, it mystifies me that anyone would conclude that the NT700 engine is one-half of the FIT engine. I just don’t see how anyone who had taken just a few minutes to research that hypothesis would have failed to reject almost immediately.

        And, with regards to this statement: “What I find so appealing in the Yamaha is that it’s engine was configured to behave like a V-twin but with a parallel’s simplicity.”, it seems curious to me that you find this appealing in the Yamaha but not in the Honda, since they both use the same 270-degree crank, and the exact same approach to balancing. Moreover, the similarities with the 90-degree V-twin are essentially limited to having similar firing intervals. They have the same firing intervals because the two pistons are offset in phase by 90 degrees, the same as with the 90-degree V-twin. The firing intervals are 270-450 for the 90-degree V-twin, and likewise for the Honda NT700 and the Yamaha MT-07. The firing intervals are similar, which lends a similar character, but the similarity in character is limited by the fact that engine balance is not at all the same, i.e., not the same for the 90-degree V-twin as it is for the two parallel-twins that use the 90-degree crank.

        I find myself compelled to suggest that you go back and actually read what I wrote, and then follow the link that I provided to the Honda World site and study the first two pages that deal with timing intervals and engine balance, and then re-evaluate the question of whether the Yamaha MT-07 engine is similar to a 90-degree V-twin in any way that does not apply just the same to the Honda engine, and then go read something about the Fit, and reconsider whether it is appropriate to characterize the engine in the NT700 as just one-half of the Fit engine. Your purpose seems to have been to refute any strong similarity between the Yamaha MT-07 engine and the Honda NT700 engine, and to replace that with a similarity between the NT700 engine and the Honda Fit engine. This just does not jive with reality. The similarities between the NT700 engine and the engine that Honda uses in the Fit are superficial, whereas the engine that MT-07 engine and the NT700 engine show very obvious, very meaningful similarity, in the sense that they share a 90-degree crank and along with that the same timing intervals, and share also the exact same approach to engine balancing.

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        • Jeremy in TX says:

          The engine in the Honda NC700 is based on the Japanese market Fit.

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        • Dave says:

          Re: “whereas the engine that MT-07 engine and the NT700 engine show very obvious, very meaningful similarity, in the sense that they share a 90-degree crank and along with that the same timing intervals, and share also the exact same approach to engine balancing”

          Wow, you really didn’t need to type all of that because in the end I am still right. Maybe you should read my comment again. It is much simpler and to the point.The two engine’s output and characters are still completely different, regardless of any mechanical similarities they share, as is just about everything else about them. A motorcycle is far more than just its engine.

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        • Randy says:

          “Compelled to suggest”? “Meaningful similarity”????? “The firing intervals are similar, which lends a similar character, but the similarity in character is limited by the fact that engine balance is not at all the same, i.e., not the same for the 90-degree V-twin as it is for the two parallel-twins that use the 90-degree crank” !!!!!

          Ding! Ding! Ding! You win!

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    • Jay says:

      The MT-07 is a whopping 75lbs lighter than the NC700X. It’s 35lbs lighter than the CB500x. I don’t know how Honda manages to make their Thai-made machines so heavy.

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      • Tom says:

        You made me have to go again and check whether the difference in weight, between the MT-07 and the NC700X, is about 50 lbs as I thought, or more like 75 lbs as you suggest. You are correct. Any when you consider that these are not really big motorcycles, 75 lbs is a significant difference. I also noticed, though, that Honda only quotes one weight in the specs, even though there are two versions of the NC700X, one with a DCT setup and also ABS, the other sans both. I doubt if the 472 lbs that they quote in their specs is for the heavier bike, but it is possible. If it is for the lighter of the two versions, the heavier version probably weighs over 500 lbs. For me, the extra weight alone is reason enough to not want that type of clutch and shift control in a motorcycle. I would however consider the lighter version with a conventional transmission, but not if it weighs 75 lbs more, and it would be nice to have the option of ABS without the DCT.

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  2. Bob says:

    Yamaha, please. Take my money!

    Bob

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