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Where is Yamaha Going With Its “Faster Sons” Project?

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Video screen grab representing Shinya Kimura riding on the back of his father’s Yamaha XS650.

Yamaha has been promoting “Yard Built” bikes, essentially customized versions of its air-cooled models, such as the XJR1300 and SR400, but now it has an apparently new direction that focuses on retro style incorporated into more modern machines.

The first of these is the “Faster Son” built by Japanese customizer Shinya Kimura, based on a production FZ-07 (called the MT-07 in Europe). The following videos focus on Shinya and the Faster Son’s concept. It looks like Yamaha may have a production bike derived from this theme soon. Give us your thoughts below.

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“Yard Built” XJR1300 from the customizer Numbnut Motorcycles.

 

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Shinya Kimura’s Faster Son based on the Yamaha FZ-07.

 

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“Yard Built” Yamaha SR400 CS_05 Zen by custom bike builder it roCkS!bikes.

 

34 Comments

  1. Andrew says:

    Frankly, my favourite bike here was the original XS650 in the first picture.

    • Curly says:

      Agree on that. The best looking thing in the video is the F-100 Super Sabre. I can appreciate Kimura’s metal work but I don’t like the shapes he comes up with. I’ll wait to see what the real designers at GKDI come up with this fall.

    • Tank says:

      They vibrate too much.

  2. Artem_T says:

    That is not “Mad Max”

  3. Don says:

    When was the last time you saw a factory exhaust system (anywhere)as beautiful as the one on that XJR1300? Those velocity stacks? It only exists for a wealthy few – or in pictures now.

  4. Notarollingroadblock says:

    A worthy thread hijack: Check out what Biaggi did twice today to the WSBK regulars after having not raced for 2-1/2 years!

  5. Neil says:

    Cool machines. It’s about the art of creating them and then looking at and talking about them as much as anything else. I am only riding a Honda CB500F right now because I like the simplicty of the mid sized two cylinder motor and its power characteristics. That SR400 looks like a great dirt bike. The Faster Son FZ07 is cool too. Just getting on the open road and letting it fly. When you think about where his shop is, it makes sense. There are plenty of open roads outside of town there in the valley. My issue with the big motors and weight is trying to suspend them properly. Weight requires beefy suspension. It looks like that FJR custom has it done right. A Faster Sons FZ07 would be a nice little cafe racer and I think it could sell well. That XS650 is really neat.

  6. Hot Dog says:

    The FZ-07 engine is getting a lot of attention these days. Please Yamaha, don’t make a mini Tenere’ cuz I’ve been known to do irrational purchases.

    • xLaYN says:

      Dear Mr. HD:
      Please be so kind of completing your comment by selecting the option that makes the following statement the most appropriate on your mind:
      it’s irrational (to buy) because a “mini Tenere”
      a) it’s not a good package
      b) not enough bragging rights
      c) would be an amazing machine and you for sure one day without prior warning will leave to a life of adventure on the perfect adventure bike
      d) you already have a lot of nice bikes and that one will not add anything to your “stable”
      e) mud it’s not allowed on your local starbucks
      f) x,y and z are correct

      • Hot Dog says:

        A) How do you know, it’s not built yet?
        B) Who cares what others think? I don’t, you must.
        C) I have a perfect adventure bike -12′ DL650- just not narrow minded enough to not wonder what if.
        D) Tell me, in your little pea brain, what’s enough bikes in one’s stable?
        E) Never been to a Starbucks but apparently you have and know how to pose.

        I don’t ride with groups, don’t wear colors/costumes, don’t stay in motels, use a trailer for my icehouse and I like to ride as much gravel as possible.

        Tell me Mr.xLN, don’t you wonder what would be the best design for certain uses? Do you know what it’s like to ride the Schaffer Trail by Moab on a Gold Wing? How about ride to Alaska and back in 8 days? Do you know what it’s like to wear a Langlitz until it doesn’t fit (oink oink)? I know them all, and I’ll never quit wondering or riding. Best wishes, my friend.

        • xLaYN says:

          that was meant to be a joke 😛 I don’t doubt you have way more experience than I do and no I don’t know many of the things you asked for.
          sure the engine has got a lot of attention because it’s a nice package and the bike where it’s fitted has a good price, nice power delivery and it’s lighter than similar bikes.
          “in your little pea brain” sigh…

        • xLaYN says:

          “in your little pea brain” on a second tough as I find this response kinda rude, maybe you took something in my post personal, that was not the intention, I’ll try to be more explicit as ideas can get lost on written form.

          • Hot Dog says:

            I stepped out of bounds and for that I apologize. I was having a Dr. Jekle Mr. Hyde moment. Sorry.

  7. Ed says:

    Beautifull.The XJR more so than the others but still if I had to have FZ that’s how I would want it to look.The SR is useless to me with no lights.Yes I’m old and most modern motorcycles are too pointy and plasticy looking for my taste.

  8. YellowDuck says:

    Ha ha ha! Pirelli Phantoms. They (re)invented those for the original Ducati Sport Classics in 2006. Most of us couldn’t get them off fast enough. I didn’t know you could still buy them.

    • Curly says:

      I had many good rides on Phantoms back in the 80s when they were newish. At least Kimura didn’t use Firestone Deluxe Champions!

  9. Tank says:

    I’ve always wanted to see a modern 900 Eliminator.

  10. John says:

    Do not like.

  11. GT08 says:

    Hey Yamaha, just bring here your XJR 1300, we will buy ! Same with Kawasaki ZRX. I know they will not sale ton of this beautiful machine. But bring it here one year of two, make it disponible.

    Being a Kawasaki guy, i’l take one green ZRX. And do the same for the Yamaha and Honda guy to. I like competition !

    For Suzuki, why not a silver 1987 Katana replica with the po-up headlight ! And keep all these machine inline four. I dont like the new fugly bike out there now.

    • Mark Pearson says:

      My beef with 1000+ cc sporting standards and retro Superbike replicas is they get so freaking heavy. I’d jump all over a 636 ’82 GPZ 750 replica. Something relatively light with race-replica suspension and brakes but looks the business and has a realistic sporting riding position. A bike you can ride to bike night during the week and either cruise or go to a track day on weekends.

      • skortch says:

        Absolutely agree! I’d love to see a new GPZ replica, but preferably in the ’82 750 or ’81 550 vein. I’ve owned both of those – the 550 is one of my all-time favorite bikes. A 636 engine would be ideal.

        The only problem with the ZRX 1200 was the weight. As much as I appreciate that bike, every time I come close to picking one up I end up with something +/- 100 lbs lighter… The looks and engine are sensational, though.

        • grumpy8521 says:

          The weight on the ZRX can be a blessing on longer rides. My 2004 tends to be very settled in the corners on the bumpy roads here in Maine. It may not be as fast to transition between lean angles, but the 85 lb-ft of torque more than make up for that. I love my ZRX! If they brought the DAEG ZRX over from Asia, I would have to have one.

  12. azi says:

    I guess the younger generation will always look for inspiration from generations past, especially if the present doesn’t offer reason for optimism.

    Cafe racers and bobbers weren’t retro in their heyday – they were the R1Ms and Gixxers of their time; cutting edge and tuned to the max. Also born of during time of post-war economic boom, optimism, and more-or-less secure employment in Western style economies (arguably with policies that were, in hindsight, unsustainable).

    These modern cafe racer interpretations are beautiful objects, but the sociologist/anthropologist part of my brain can’t help but consider their existence as a sign of a deeper cynicism in contemporary youth culture – a constructed nostalgic mythology, that things were always better in the past compared with what’s on offer in the present.

    • Pacer says:

      Huh, interesting view. Is this the first time in history (the last 30 years) that society has tried to relive the past? Could marketing/advertising be a culprit? The fashion industry is probably one. This cannot be the first time youth has had a pessimistic view. What has been their past coping mechanisms? I know this is site is about motorcyles, and don’t need to examine this here, but it does make me think.

    • Jeremy in TX says:

      Is it pessimism, a bleak perspective on the current state of affairs and the future to come? I can’t know for sure, but I don’t think that is the case. I think many people just like to connect with the past. I didn’t grow up with Nortons or the Wright Brothers airplane or Egyptian chariots, but seeing those machines definitely evokes something in me I can’t really explain. Someone my age can only imagine the time of cafe racers, rockers and mods, etc., and there is something special about having to construct a world in your mind to make it part of your experience.

  13. Mark Pearson says:

    I don’t know the correct terminology to use but since owning my first SV650 I’ve always thought there is market for a factory custom sporting bike. Yes you can upgrade forks, shocks and brakes by scavenging and grafting parts from other bikes but it can get time consuming real quick if you have a full-time job and there are always frustrating compromises.

    I read somewhere that Suzuki deliberately choked back on the GSX-S because they want a definite demarcation between it and the GSX-R. I think that’s missing an opportunity. So what if, for example, guys on SV’s and GSX-S’s are running circles around GSX-R’s as long as the parts they buy are from Suzuki? Why shouldn’t you be able to easily convert your bike between classic, naked and race themes?

    • Pacer says:

      I agree that neutering a model to artificially bolster another is foolish. The Buick Grand National was killed because of the Corvette’s shortcomings. It was inevitable that the Corvette would have to improve, but they still killed the GNX. Which was/is a cooler car is subjective, but I know which brings a higher price now. What if GM had pursued the GNX concept? A more comfortable, everyday performance minded vehicle. Corvette/GSXR vs GNX/GSXS. Thank goodness KTM doesn’t subscribe to this mentality.

    • Blackcayman says:

      the “choking” and “neutering” is about $$$$ (the cost of the components)NOT about artificial lines of demarcation.

      • Dave says:

        Re: “the “choking” and “neutering” is about $$$$ (the cost of the components)NOT about artificial lines of demarcation.”

        Not true. This practice is everywhere. Dorna pulled back on WSBK rules to cust cost but make no mistake, it was also done to guarantee MotoGP was perceived as the peak of performance.

        The moto makers are well aware that among the customers still buying, most are still reading the spec sheet. If anything is faster without giving up performance significantly in another area (weight, handling – I’m looking @ you, Hyabusa), the GSXR brand loses share quickly. Regardless of sales figures, superbikes continue to be a racing, brand and marketing battle ground that drive brand impression all the way down to scooter sales.

      • Jeremy in TX says:

        From what I read, they didn’t change material spec like switching from titanium rods to steel or anything like that. They just changed tuning. Different cams, smaller throttle bodies and reshaped ports. Any savings would be immaterial, maybe even non-existent when you account for the re-engineering costs.

  14. John A. Kuzmenko says:

    That styling on the FZ-07 ain’t for me.
    I say put a big round or rectangular headlamp on it and leave the rest alone.