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Yamaha FJ-09 is Coming (even to the U.S.!) … And It Should Be A Big Hit



To say we liked the Yamaha FZ-09 Triple is an understatement (despite some suspension and fueling issues – ed.). You just won’t find a better power-to-dollar value in any other motorcycle on the market. That’s not enough for some of our readers, who expect comfort, luggage capacity and wind protection for dollar-store pricing.

Well, here you go. Recent design filings in the European Union reveal this Yamaha motorcycle, which appears to be based on the frame, motor and swingarm of the FZ-09, known in Europe and other markets as the MT-09. Key differences are a larger tank, longer subframe with a larger saddle and a small fairing with a large (and adjustable?) windscreen.

The design filing offers no info other than the shape, but that gives us plenty of info. It looks like the frame, swingarm and exhaust are all the same, so you can expect this motorcycle to feature the neutral and responsive handling of the FZ-09. As far as performance, I’d expect the motor to be a bit neutered on top for more low and midrange torque, as well as have smoother fueling and maybe even better fuel economy. That combined with what should be at least a 4.5-gallon tank should yield impressive and practical range figures.

Expect the bike to have a full array of touring accessories and comfort/convenience features. I was impressed by the equipment of the revised Super Tenere I rode this year—durable hard luggage, cruise control, comprehensive and intuitive trip computer, all-day saddle—so I hope this Mini Tenere offers a similar array of touring-related features, except in a package that makes almost as much power, a lot less weight and a price tag under $10,000.


Almost sounds too good to come to the States, eh? Well, buck up: a California Air Resources Board filing has approved an 847cc on-road motorcycle named the FJ-09 for sale in the Golden State as a 2015 model. Yamaha has also trademarked the term ‘FJ-09’ with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. The ‘FJ’ moniker is confusing, as that usually designates a Yamaha sport-tourer, not a quasi-adventure bike like the one in the renderings.

Expect things to be hot in the Yamaha booths at motorcycle shows this fall—we’ll get this FJ-09, as well as a 300cc R-3 sportbike and maybe even a new R-1. Stay tuned.


  1. skybullet says:

    Riders buying “Adventure” bikes really don’t need 1000cc plus, 500 lb plus, off road poser machines. 9 out of 10 of us buy them to ride on the pavement because they have comfortable ergos, will haul bags, usually have better than average suspension and don’t have expensive body panels.
    If the FJ-09 looks like this and has the suggested improvements it will be close to perfect for what most of us like in an Adventure bike without the weight and price of the present offerings. Where do I sign?

  2. Al says:

    With longer travel suspensions as it seems to be, the FJ09 will be a nice middle weight sport/adventure touring bike here in Québec (Canada) with its poor road condition… At the same time, it will bring some competition to the new Honda VFR800, the BMW F800GT and the Ducati HyperStrada 821 for way less money…

  3. Geep says:

    Just give me a baby FJR….a small sport tourer, not a small sport adventurer….I see more S/A on the highways than on the back roads!

  4. Mars says:

    it looks like a regular bike that they pulled-up on the front and rear ends for old guys so they dont have to lean over as much.

  5. spokexx says:

    Im glad im old enough and have owned many bikes to judge a motorcycle not on superficial terms (style, color, etc) but for how it seems to work by the whole package. Lightweight, quick handling, plenty of power, luggage for long trips (either by Yamaha or Givi), comfortable riding position and a back seat that seems comfortable for a passenger on a few hours of riding. This new FJ is making my ’06 Vstrom nervous in the garage.

  6. red says:

    “The ‘FJ’ moniker is confusing, as that usually designates a Yamaha sport-tourer, not a quasi-adventure bike like the one in the renderings.”

    FJ prefix fits well from what I see. What in that picture indicates quasi-adventure bike? It looks 100% sport-tour to me.

    • Sam Jones says:

      You’re correct, Red…if the FJ09 is shod with a 17″ front wheel, it’s a sport-touring rig for sure. If it shows up with a 19″ front hoop (and it should), then it’s got some off-road capability…Ducati’s Multi Strada would be just that much better with a 19″ front wheel.

  7. Bob L. says:

    Too much going on here. It surely doesn’t look like an FJ that I am familiar with. I’m sure it will be a pleasure to ride but I couldn’t stand looking at it! And yes, looks still matter to some of us. Give me and FJR-09….smooth, clean styling, good passenger ergos and hard bags, otherwise, the Honda VFR will be my next ride.

  8. takehikes says:

    I was on the east side of the Sierras this last weekend and each motel had adventure-ish bikes parked in them along with many others including some truly hideous baggers. Over and over I walked right past the a-bikes to anything, really anything other than them….ugly, overdone, anything but an offroader (not one of them had anything but bugs stuck to them) just zero appeal in any way. You can have style and function you know. Glad Yamaha is trying something anything but really does this “thing” really inspire in any way?

  9. Wigs says:

    ADV blah blah blah. This, like so many of branded “ADV” motorcycles is built for the road. The FJ-09 will make a fantastic, lightweight UJM/tourer. Based on the now famous FZ-09 but with some upper wind protection and saddle bag mounts. The after market will fill in with rear racks, windshields and suspension upgrades. Kudos to Yamaha, if you need bigger get the bloated FJR.

  10. Benjamin says:

    I don’t wanna be an asshole but the European Union (EU) and Europe is not the same thing. And no, Paris is not “the capital” of Europe either 😉

    On topic: It’s a nice bike!

  11. Charlie says:

    Hopefully it won’t have a matt finish dull gray as these pictures appear to be.Please Yamaha: give us a choice of regular finish colors!

    • Curly says:

      Don’t worry, what you’ve seen are just colors images that have been converted to grayscale for the patent application. They’ll probably have two or more color choices when the bikes arrive.

      • fivespeed302 says:

        Since the FZ-09 comes in white/black, red/black, or black/purple, I’d bet those are your color choices for the new bike.

  12. Al says:

    I’m sure it will sell well here in Canada as a mid-size Sport Touring bike. In fact, it will become the VFR’s killer as it will sell for less $$$ and will offer the same kind of riding/ergo… We’ll see…

  13. Tommy see says:

    Young riders are going to Rev N Rip older riders will buy the V-Strom to Tork N Truck

  14. ze says:

    Great substitute of the TDM900. Lighter, more powerful and better forks. For me could be a perfect bike.

  15. Tom says:

    And rumors of the demise of the light sport-touring class have been greatly exaggerated.

  16. todder says:

    Based on price I don’t think it will be too long before people try to figure out how to retro fit touring bits onto stock fz09. Also hope the fj one comes with Cruise Control.

    Next step make a dirt worthy bike based off the fz07!

  17. Red Merle says:

    I was genuinely wondering which Triumph Yamaha would be cloning next. As it turns out, it would appear to be the Tiger 800 Roadie.

    The obvious next step would be the spoked wheeled “XC” version, I guess.

  18. Skif says:

    I think Yamaha missed out on a great opportunity here. If they had just chromed the large fake air scoops the bike would have been all time hideous.

    • Starmag says:

      Think of it as a riding incentive. You’ll feel free to engage in more risky riding behavior because you won’t be as worried about wadding up your shiny new toy when it’s styling from the factory can be described as “pre-crashed”.

  19. Jay Bird says:

    Ok Yamaha , here goes! Longer wheel base for a less choppy ride, better seat for longer rides, larger front fender to protect that sweet engine. Keep the price down ! Then fill up the containers and ship to the Americas and we gonna buy.

  20. Kagato says:

    This scoot does make a Versys look better. Maybe it’s just not photogenic. I have seen bikes myself that do not look good in images but look pretty good in person. I sure would like to see Yamaha make a Trident knock-off using their triple.

  21. Mike says:

    Count me in as one of the few or the only one here that wants a bike that is two up comfortable and roomy, yet is also competent for solo sport rides.

    The ongoing trend in prior Adv Tour bikes had the comfy part covered with long suspensions, large rider and passenger seats, roomy top cases the passenger could use as a backrest, lower foot pegs and ample space between the rider and passenger and of course good wind protection ………..all sadly missing on sport bike based Adv Tour variants like the FJ-09.

    I really like the FJ-09, but lets call it what it really is…….a sport bike with handlebars, hand protectors and a stupid looking fairing without a beak.

    • Curly says:

      Again, who said that Yamaha says this is an Adventure bike? They haven’t that I know of and it isn’t. It’s an FJ-09 not an XTZ850. I think they could have gotten away with calling it a TDM but FJ is about as good based on their past models. This is a mid sized Sport Tourer not an ADV bike. Let’s hope they build an XTZ for you but this ain’t it.

      • Mike says:

        Good points indeed……….but do we agree with what I actually said………..(one word added)

        FJ-09 = a sport bike with handlebars, hand protectors and a stupid looking fairing/windscreen without a beak.

    • VLJ says:

      “Count me in as one of the few or the only one here that wants a bike that is two up comfortable and roomy, yet is also competent for solo sport rides.”

      Every VFR Rider Who Ever Added Heli-Bars

      P.S. – Come on, Honda, this ain’t rocket science!

    • Norm G. says:

      re: “Count me in as one of the few or the only one here that wants a bike that is two up comfortable and roomy, yet is also competent for solo sport rides.”

      your local BMW dealer says they’ve got a 12GS with your name on it.

      “she may not look it, but she’s got it where it counts” – Han Solo

      • Mike says:

        Thanks Norm for the comments.

        You are right the BMS12GS certainly is “two up comfortable and roomy, yet is also competent for solo sport rides” …that …..and far more. My son had one and I was able to put quite a few miles on it. I liked it alot, so did my wife.

        We went for a leftover 2002 Caponord back in 2004 which fit my wife a weeee bit better and it cost 10k less. We went for it vs GS because of the Adv Tour long suspension and my wifes bad back might make any motorcycle riding not an option so why spend the extra $ for a GS…….two years and one operation later her back was perfect!!! On our Capo I some econo handling fixes, sport tires, used $35 Ducati mufflers, full Givi three bag set…….more minor stuff and ended up with this in solo mode on the straights and a bike that was never last home on the solo sport rides no matter what latest/greatest bikes others on the ride had.

        All that was a long time ago as motorcycle technology goes as you know and time did not wait for me to go from old then to way old now…….the FJ-09 is just not tempting for the reasons stated which Yamaha could have had on this bike and appealed to those of us that two up riding in important, but I like it and hope it sells well here. Maybe a variant in the future would be perfect for us.

    • peter harris says:

      V- strom calling.

      • Sam Jones says:

        Amen, Peter. The “Wee-Strom” 650 with updated Gladius motor and even the new 1000 are both equipped with 19″ front wheel and, I think, represent the best bang-for-the-buck in ALL of motorcycling IF you plan any off-roading at all. I can’t believe the number of (primarily) 650’s I see at BMW rallies.

  22. Teddy says:

    Hey Yamaha; make bikes for where we want to go, not for what you think we want to look like.

  23. ApriliaRST says:

    >>The design filing offers no info other than the shape<<

    I expect the shape shown in the illustrations is nearly completely wrong. The real bike will look more FJR-ish rather than dual sport-ish. IMO, the FZ-09 would make an absolutely great ST so long as the drive chain is enclosed enough that it can be ridden in the rain without washing off the lube.

    I expect the hoped-for dual sport will use the engine from the FZ-07. I have confidence in Yamaha to get this right. BTW, I had my first glimpse of an FZ-07 yesterday and might buy one if the passenger foot pegs were a few inches lower, or if Yamaha were to sell a kit to do the same. In any case, it was a very nicely put together motorcycle.

    • Robert Paulson says:

      These aren’t just illustrations; these are the actual patent documents filed with the OHIM.

      “Expect” all you’d like, but this is the bike we’ll be seeing very soon.

      • ApriliaRST says:

        You are right; this is the bike we will see soon at dealers.

        Bikes like this one and the new Aprilia Capo represent the new sport-touring section. Truthfully, sitting upright is easier and better overall unless you like riding at extra-legal speeds.

    • xlayn says:

      Come on, passenger pegs are not that much mess (or deal breaker) to replace… get the rest of the bike right is

      • ApriliaRST says:

        Lowering passenger pegs is easy, but hard to make look decent and not overwhelm the mounting points with extra leverage.

        But the real situation is that I want a bike that comes with tires, geometry and wheel sizes for riding sketchy unpaved roads. A 70/30 road dirt mix is about right for me. Like some others, I have to consider garage space as well.

  24. MGNorge says:

    I’m rather unsure of what to think. As always, a view in person will tell. Not looking for a bike at the moment so this doesn’t ignite anything in me.
    One thing though, I’d sure like to see bikes, all bikes, get away from the dark motif. I like color and I like shiny. Last year went looking for slightly wider wheels for my HD truck that’s used for towing. From all vendors most that was available are black or gray wheels. Where’s the color, where’s the shiny?

    • Max says:

      It ain’t too purdy and I do hope it comes in a color a little more appealing, but it does look like a lot of fun. Throw some soft bags over it and take that lovely triple’s song everywhere its light little body will roll. It’s proportioned properly for comfotable all day stints regardless of where that might be.

  25. garjo says:

    It doesn’t have a rack.Horrible looking screen/styling.

  26. PN says:

    Good concept but the looks are not appeaaling.

  27. Mark says:

    Can’t wait to hear more about it and hopefully take a test ride.
    My Tiger 1050 is starting to get some miles and I am looking. I really want some dirt (dirt Roads, not single track) worthiness, which for me means 19″ front wheel and at least 7″ of travel.

    This bike doesn’t have that so I will remain patient

    • Mike says:

      If you are looking for any of the new slightly modified sport bike Adv Tour variants to appeal to you more than your Tiger 1050…….I am thinking you just might have a long, long wait that beyond any of our patience time limits

    • edioe says:

      No need for a 19″ front tire. One of the motorcycle rags, I can’t remember which one, tested all the “AD” bike off road along with some other non-AD bikes and the consensus was one of the non-AD bikes was better on dirt than all the AD bikes, including the that pig heavy BMW. I know, I know… sounds like I’m whistling dixie because I can’t remember which bike it was, I’m sure if you google hard enough you can find it. I just don’t remember which road bike it was.