We are still getting to know our Yamaha FZ-10. You can see our report from the press launch here with all of the technical details and specifications. Our first report on our long-term test unit is here.
As delivered to us, the suspension on the FZ-10 was too stiff for street riding. In particular, the fork lacked compliance, and has been the focus of our attention.
Fortunately, Yamaha has put high quality suspension components on this bike, which react predictably to the clickers. Both the fork and the shock are fully adjustable, i.e., stepped compression, rebound and spring preload adjustability are available. Compression and rebound are adjusted with an Allen wrench and, together with somewhat awkward placement of the adjustment interface, it is difficult to accurately count the clicks from full stiff. As we further dial in the suspension, we will report back with recommended street settings.
The FZ-10 has an extremely stiff chassis. The more we ride it, the more we realize this is a superbike with comfortable ergos. That is something many riders were looking for 10 years ago, and we finally have them available in the market, including this R1 derivative.
The changes Yamaha has made to the engine have significantly increased midrange power. Combined with the angry sound from the crossplane-crank motor (we love the intake noise), rolling on the throttle hard provides a real adrenaline rush.
One benefit of the crossplane-crank is a connected feel between the throttle and the rear contact patch. The FZ-10 has this, which increases the sense of control. Good feedback is also derived from the excellent Bridgestone S20 tires.
Nevertheless, this is a bike that rewards a precise, skilled pilot. Given the immense power, stiff chassis and suspension, the FZ-10 has a broad performance envelope. We will explore that more in Part 3.
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