– Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

  • February 9, 2015
  • Dirck Edge
  • Brian J. Nelson

2015 Star Bolt C-Spec: MD First Ride



Gabe tested the all-new Star Bolt when it was introduced last year.  Designed as an air-cooled bobber with belt drive and styling reminiscent of Harley’s 883 Iron, Star aimed to one-up H-D in terms of performance and handling, for roughly the same price.  Indeed, the Star Bolt can be viewed as something more than a Harley clone, because riding it establishes a unique personality. Gabe was impressed. When Star announced a new variation, the 2015 Bolt C-Spec, I had to sample it for myself.

The Bolt C-Spec shares all of its fundamentals with the original Bolt, which you can read about if you follow the link to Gabe’s riding impression. The engine is derived from the V Star 950, a much heavier bike, and it impressed me way back in 2008 when I sampled that model. For an air-cooled 60° v-twin, it packs some decent punch thanks to four-valve heads and a relatively high compression ratio (considering the air cooling) of 9-to-1. Add in roller rocker arms, forged pistons and a slightly oversquare bore/stroke ratio (85 mm x 83 mm), and you have the recipe for class leading performance.>

Indeed, if you happen to see a dyno chart comparing the Bolt against Harley’s 883, both the torque and horsepower curves of the Bolt ride comfortably above those of the Harley virtually everywhere from idle to redline. Add in the fact that the Bolt is roughly 40 pounds lighter, and you have a decided mis-match when it comes to acceleration on the street.

It isn’t just engine power that distinguishes the Bolt from the Harley competitor, as the Bolt features additional suspension travel, both front and rear.  While the Iron 883 makes due with 3.6″ of fork travel and a mere 1.6″ of shock travel, the Star has 4.7″ and 2.8″, respectively. Granted 2.8″ isn’t much, but we found it surprisingly well damped (more about that later).

So what makes the C-Spec different from the standard Bolt? The C-Spec represents a Café racer version with the appropriate ergonomic changes, including dramatically re-positioned foot pegs (roughly 6″ back and 1.25″ higher), clip-on handlebars and a re-positioned instrument gauge. The new seat is still a low 30.1″ off the ground, but looks decidedly sportier with its removable cowl.


In keeping with the sportier nature of the C-Spec, Star increased the ride height (in part, by lengthening both the fork and the shock, although they have the same travel as the standard Bolt), to allow the C-Spec to reach a 37° bank angle (verses 33° on the standard Bolt). As you can see in the photos, you can put the C-Spec pretty far over on its side, allowing the rider to carry higher corner speeds.

We began our ride at the press launch with a trip through city streets in and around Long Beach, California. The first thing that struck me about the Bolt C-Spec was the relatively comfortable handlebar position. The whole “clip-on” concept had me expecting an uncomfortable crouch and forward reach, but the bars on the C-Spec are actually quite a bit higher and closer than traditional clip-ons. The seat-to-peg distance is not very generous, but after riding the Bolt C-Spec all day, I didn’t note any particular comfort issues. The seat itself was surprisingly comfortable and well shaped.

This is a fun bike to ride through the City. The engine pulls smoothly, but smartly right from idle. The four-valve heads allow the motor to breathe relatively well on top, so the powerband is wider than one would expect from a typical narrow angle, v-twin.

Vibration is always a concern when a v-twin features an angle below 72°, or so, and the Bolt C-Spec offers up its share of vibration. The mirrors are usable through the early mid-range, but blur out considerably as you reach the higher ranges of the tach.

Considering the target market and the fundamental design, vibration is pretty well controlled. It is certainly more “pleasant” than “bothersome”, and relatively tall gearing allows freeway speeds in the lower mid-range, before things get too buzzy.

Suspension performance was surprisingly good given the limited travel available, particularly from the shock. I weigh just north of 200 pounds with riding gear on, and I do not recall bottoming the rear shock one time in the roughly 100 mile test ride, despite some bumpy, choppy pavement encountered on some of the older roads. I was pleasantly surprised.

Given the short travel suspension, damping is very well dialed in. Cruisers often wallow, or bounce out of shape, when pushed at even a moderate pace, but the Bolt C-Spec chassis and suspension kept everything well under control.

This leads to one of my criticisms of the Bolt C-Spec, because I feel the chassis and suspension deserve a bit more rubber, particularly the front tire. Star stuck with the relatively narrow 100/90 x 19″ tire found on the standard Bolt, presumably because it looks a bit better. The C-Spec, however, particularly with its added ground clearance, could greatly benefit from the increased traction and feedback offered by a 110/80 x 19″ front tire. I will ask Star if they tried to fit this size tire on the C-Spec and report back (Ed. Note – After inquiry, Star has indicated that, after testing, the tire sizes selected for the Bolt C-Spec were chosen because they offered the best balance).

As it stands, if you push the C-Spec hard through the corners with the lean angle available, the stock tire just isn’t wide enough to provide the purchase we expect. The rear sticks just fine, and we can’t complain about the Michelin Commander II tires chosen by Star for this model.

We actually had a pretty good opportunity to test the brakes.  They include a single front 298 mm rotor, and two-piston caliper, and similarly sized rear rotor squeezed by a single-piston caliper. As can happen at these events, stop light-to-stop light drag races broke out on occasion, and the Bolt C-Spec can be hauled down very quickly with good control.  No complaints.


The five-speed transmission shifted smoothly and confidently during our ride, and clutch pull is easy with predictable engagement.

Star actually considers the Triumph Thruxton Café racer to be a primary competitor of the Bolt C-Spec, pointing out that the C-Spec has a 2″ lower seat and an $800 lower MSRP here in the United States ($8,690 versus $9,499). We aren’t so sure about the claim that the C-Spec offers a more powerful engine compared to the Thruxton, despite a displacement advantage, and would reserve judgment on that topic until the two bikes are placed on a dyno back-to-back.

What we are sure about is the fact that Star has created a compelling value in the 2015 Bolt C-Spec. The two paint finishes available at the U.S. MSRP of $8,690 include the Envy Green we rode for photos at the press launch, as well as the Liquid Silver featured in the static photo above.  At just 542 pounds wet, with a short 61.8″ wheelbase, the Bolt C-Spec is quick and nimble … providing a grin inducing experience on the street and the highway. It also features styling attractive to a large audience — evidenced by the excellent sales results Star has witnessed since releasing the original Bolt last year. We suspect this new version of the Bolt will be just as successful. Take a look at Star’s web site for additional details and specifications.




  1. oldjohn1951 says:

    Saw the bike at last week’s Chicago Motorcycle Show; nice bike, seat height at 30″ just fine. At 64, those handlebars don’t work for me. Give me the standard bars. And c’mon Yamaha……you guys can do a whole lot better with the paint schemes available.

  2. MikeG says:

    Needs a bigger tank seam, perhaps about 3/4 inch or so….then it would be cool.

  3. mickey says:

    Just returned from Yamaha. They had a green C spec on the floor. I said the paint was butt ugly. Going to have to back pedal just a bit. In person the green paint is real nice. Kind of sparkly. Bet it’s pretty out in the sun.

    Still didn’t care for the bent frame tubes though lol

    Not related to this they also had an FJ09 on the floor that they put the red FJR bags on and it looks much better with the matching bags rather than the flat black ones.

  4. Andy1300 says:

    That tank seam just makes the bike look cheap, get it fixed Yamaha…

    • todd says:

      How does it make it look cheap? If you understood the enormous cost it takes to tool up for a steel gas tank you would appreciate the amount of effort they put into it. Now, a plastic gas tank without seams is really cheap to me and I see those on all sorts of expensive bikes.

      • beasty says:

        What I like about the seams is that you can dress it up with some of that nifty chrome door edge moulding.

    • Norm G. says:

      re: “That tank seam just makes the bike look cheap”

      well it is cheap. (Texas Jeremy voice)

  5. oldridertom says:

    I’m liking it. Who would have thought a cruiser with low bars could work? It seems to work just fine. I think it looks kind of tough. And that seamed fuel tank pays homage to a lot of Yamahas that came before. I wonder if it would interchange with my TW200’s tank?

  6. Ronbob says:

    The standard Bolt was pretty much the same as my 883 Super Low. That bike handled fairly low, except for the 3′ wide and too low pegs. I like the lump and the frame has a sort of classic look. I’ve liked that basic motor in all of the Viragos I have owned, and the styling is much more attractive to me than anything Yamaha has had it in since 1981.

  7. Provologna says:

    It’s interesting how much the silver one reminds me of my purchased new silver 1981 Yamaha XV920RH “Euro” model, enclosed chain drive, 8″ round headlight. IIRC wet weights about identical, but the “R” model fuel tank held about 5 gallons.

    The R ripped high 12 quarters, terminal speed about 100mph, got decent fuel mileage, was comfortable, little vibration, etc, etc. NOS price was around $1299 IIRC. Except for the starter engagement mechanism it was bulletproof.

    I bet in any performance contest, especially…everything, but especially especially handling/cornering, the R would rip this Bolt a new one.

    As someone who is 6-3, I tire of low seat height being marketed as such high virtue.

    • Patrick D says:

      ‘As someone who is 6-3, I tire of low seat height being marketed as such high virtue.’

      Well, get you!

      It’s information which is of use to potential buyers. In your case, it might mark it out as being unsuitable.

    • Curly says:

      With just a little tweaking the XV920RH wasn’t bad on the track either. Our team had a stock class win at a 2 hour endurance race at Road Atlanta on one in 1981. All we did to it was strip off the signals, install a K&N air filter, add some preload to the forks, dial up the rear shock damping and install some decent race compound Dunlops. A sweet and underrated bike for its day. The starter? Well that did require some work but even it could be made to work with some measure of reliability.

    • Ronbob says:

      I mostly agree, except I am 5’9″. In today’s USA market this one might sell, unlike the all around better ’81 Euro.

    • nickst4 says:

      The ’81 XV920 was almost equivalent to the TR1 we got in Europe, though the TR was 1000cc and had a better starter setup. I reckon the motor is one of the nicest looking vee’s, and it hangs from the spine without wonky frame tubes in front, just like a Vincent. Why couldn’t Yamaha have copied that for the Bolt? I have a decent TR1 and must admit it isn’t the slickest bike, despite its advanced tech for the time. Very handsome though!

      Nick, UK

      • Curly says:

        Exactly right. The TR1 was the bike we should have gotten in the States but for some reason they left off the nice bendix type starter that later Viragos got. The TR1 by the way was actually 980cc. Dropping the XV1000 cylinders onto the 920 bottom end did the same thing.

  8. todd says:

    Dirck, do you really think going from a 100mm tire to a 110 will make a difference? Did you feel the tire slipping? I’ve ridden quite a few bikes with a 110, 100, 90 or even narrower front tire hard enough to keep up with or surpass others on modern bikes with wider tires. I’ve often found the limitations of one’s abilities come into play much, much sooner than the limitations of the bike or tires. Then there are people like my friend who worked for Honda R&D, he would blow by everyone riding a clapped out Xt600 with Chinese knobbies – doing a wheelie – through a turn!

    • Dirck Edge says:

      I don’t doubt a superior rider can out-ride others despite being on inferior equipment. The Bolt C-Spec handles fine, but a skilled, aggressive rider, which may not describe everyone who would buy this bike, might benefit from a wider front tire. I did not lose traction during the test, but a particular decreasing radius turn we took several times for photography purposes made me question whether I had enough rubber up front to tighten my line. Frankly, I liked the bike enough I would like to try a wider front tire. There are even 120/70-19 tires available these days for adventure bikes that have a strong street orientation. The C-Spec is the sporty Bolt with increased lean angle available … more rubber wouldn’t hurt IMO.

      • Hot Dog says:

        A decreasing radius not only causes one to tighten their line but it’s also directly proportional to tightening ones sphincter.

    • Lenz says:

      An old speedway mate of mine had the numbers around 75% rider and 25% bike but still spent major workshop time trying to win races in the workshop instead of focussing on being superfit with minimal bodyweight. I tend to think its about the experience a bike provides for the rider and how close to the envelope the rider can push rather than fuel tank seams.

  9. WSHart says:

    Imitation of life.

  10. Joe says:

    Hang the front cylinder from the top. Those skinny frame down tubes are horrible looking. If they went away – 1000% better looking.

    • Klaus says:

      I agree – that frame screams cruiser; clip-ons and rearsets do not a cafe racer make.

      Generally I like the idea but not the way it was done. Back to the drawing board!

      • Auphliam says:

        “…clip-ons and rearsets do not a cafe racer make”

        Um, actually I think it does LOL Isn’t that where the whole genre started? Adding clip-ons and rear-sets to everyday bikes?

        • Klaus says:

          It worked in many cases, especially older british singles and parallel twins, but not in this case, IMO.
          At first glance it looks like a cruiser with its buckhorn bar missing.
          A standard with a sext quarter fairing would have been more believable.

  11. North of Missoula says:

    I have been waiting for 35 years for Japanese manufacturers to stop imitating Harley Davidsons. I thought it was just a dirty fad.

    If they are going to imitate the V-twin I would rather see them making knock-off Ducatis or KTMs

    Where is their dignity?

    • Gordon Haight says:


    • mickey says:

      Ducati and KTM knock offs don’t or wouldn’t sell. Harley knock offs do, at least in the USA. Always been that way. For mfg’s it’s all about selling units, not necessarily building cool motorcycles.

      • Jeremy in TX says:

        I am not so sure about that. The SV650 was clearly aimed at the little Ducati Monsters when it came out, and that bike found many buyers for a long time. If Honda puts that 1000cc True Adventure into production, we’ll see how a Japanese KTM sells. There just haven’t been many efforts by the Japanese to attack KTM or Ducati head on, probably because they see those respective manufacturers niches as too small to bother with. But I think the SV650 proved that a well executed project can turn a niche market into something else entirely.

        • mickey says:

          Jeremy actually the Suzuki Gladius resembled the Ducati Monster the most with it’s trellis frame, ( and SV 650 motor) but it didn’t sell worth beans

          Honda makes a 250 for the Japanese domestic market that is really a monster knock off, but we don’ t get them

          • Jeremy in TX says:

            The original SV with the welded tube frame was a good shot at the Monsters of the time I think. By the time the Gladius came out, the SV650 had become something much more than an imitation, it became its own brand. I think the Gladius was a loser not because it failed to properly imitate a Monster but because it failed to properly imitate an SV650. That is my take on it anyway. I certainly could be wrong.

          • Klaus says:

            I’ve owned a couple of the carbed little VTRs (grey-imports, I live in Thailand) and I loved them! With the right exhaust this bike sounds great and it’s tons of fun to wind it up, go to redline through several gears and still be somewhat close to the legal speed limits. No fun to do that with a big bike in first gear , at least not around here. 🙂

    • Jeremy in TX says:

      Like Mickey said, that Harley “look” is just kind of expected here. It is what the marketing types call a “defined market”. There are just certain rules that you have to play by to be in the game, and that is one of them. I can’t really think of any cruiser model that has been successful without that look.

      That said, the Japanese manufacturers do tend to usually have one bike in the lineup that breaks the HD cruiser mold and stays a little truer to the manufacturer’s identity, such as the Valkyrie or VMax. And I’d bet Honda still sells 10 Shadows for every 1 Valkyrie.

    • Dino says:

      Like some of the other replies here, the manufactures copy whatever they can get the most out of…
      Why not copy a style of bike that sells hundreds of thousands, rather than copy a style of bike that sells tens of thousands…

      I personally would like copies of the Ducati or KTMs as well, as they suit me better. But I can understand why they try to copy Harley, as that is a bigger slice-o-pie…

  12. Martin B says:

    If Yamaha would only sump up with the Sakura they taunted us with a while ago.

    That was a beautiful motorcycle, something the C-Spec doesn’t quite manage to be. But the concept is good.

    A proper motorcycle, not a Harley wanna be.

    A lot of people are going to enjoy this one.

    • Modsquad says:

      I’ve been waiting for years for Yamaha to put the Sakura into production. God, my nipples are getting hard just typing this. What a gorgeous bike.

  13. mechanicuss says:

    Clean. To-the-point. Not bad; appeals to me.

  14. Kent says:

    That’s a decent looking bike, and a nice change from a cruiser.

    How tall is the rider in the picture? His knee angle makes me hurt!

  15. Notarollingroadblock says:

    Needs a 9 inch headlight.

  16. stinkywheels says:

    I like this! I’m a fan of café style, always have been. I’ve owned an XLCR, Buells, BMW CS. Spoke wheels would make tire selection better, eventually, after you see if it can stick with current sizes. Some good longer shocks would help in my case. I really liked the XR Harley, but the gas tank was a joke, I hope this one holds some gas.

    • Jeremy in TX says:

      ” I hope this one holds some gas.”

      They give you a whopping 3.2 gallons.

      • stinkywheels says:

        Am I the only guy that wants to go 175 miles between gas stations while twisting a bikes tail? There’ve been so many neat bikes I won’t own with little gas tanks. That’s a part that can’t be modified without a lot of money spent. Kept me off the FZ09, VTR, KTM 690, Ducati Sport Classics right off the top of my head.

        • Jeremy in TX says:

          Well, there are two of us at least. I really wanted a Monster 1100 a few years ago, but the pathetic range made it a no-go. I also passed on the FZ-09 because of fuel capacity. The Ducati Scrambler tugs at my heart strings, but now I’ve learned it has a 3.5 gallon tank. So unless it gets 60mpg at 75mph, I likely won’t get that bike either.

          I hate, hate having to stop for gas. When I am in the zone, I don’t want to have to worry about fuel stops or have some route planned around gas stations.

          • mickey says:

            I will say it’s a much bigger deal in some areas of the country than other. When my wife and I tour west of the Mississippi gas capacity is a concern. East of the Mississippi not so much other than in the U.P. Of Michigan. My wife and I toured Utah and Arizona on a Triumph Bonneville and felt very fortunate not to have had to push the bike, but it was C L O S E one time, and another time going from Washington to Oregon I passed a sign that said next gas 175 miles and turned around and went back to the last station and filled up. My bike held 7.7 gallons and I had over 1/2 tank but I wasn’t taking any chances in case that station was closed.

          • Jeremy in TX says:

            Out west, fuel range can definitely be an issue. And the lack of traffic and cell service can make it a really major issue if you are not prepared. I’ve ridden in Colorado, Utah and Nevada quite a bit, and some of my favorite routes out there require a 200 mile range, and even that will have you sucking fumes as you pull into the gas station in some cases.

            East of the Mississippi as you said has plenty of gas stations. However, having to stop that often for fuel is a real annoyance to me. Some guys like to pull over every 90 minutes or so to stretch or whatever and don’t mind one bit. I am not like that. I want to ride!

          • stinkywheels says:

            That says it all. When you’re in the zone. It’s not about where the gas stations are, it’s when you wanna stop to fill up. A small tanked bike is like traveling with a small bladdered passenger,”We gotta stop,,AGAIN,,, so soon!”.

  17. Scruby says:

    I test rode a Bolt when they first came out.As I left the dealers parking lot,I swerved back and forth a few times,to get gravel off the tires,and to get a feel for the steering.Well,holy crap,the right footpeg bracket scrapped,hard and loud.What the hell!!!Nice low end power,brakes were OK,and it steered well,but no way would I buy a bike with such limited cornering clearance.

    • Dirck Edge says:

      The C-Spec increases ground clearance and lean angle significantly versus the standard Bolt

    • Provologna says:

      Your post reminds of me of days long past. In the 70s, most Japanese bikes of the UJM variety severely lacked ground clearance, especially bikes like Honda’s 2V 750s. Honda released the CB400 Hawk mid-late 70s, with toy-ish kind of styling. Brakes were not so bad, but motor performance and handling were superb. Cornering clearance wise, I think Cycle Magazine posted that only their most aggressive riders barely touched down anything hard to pavement! They remarked how weird it was that such a tame looking UJM had amongst the best cornering clearance of any bike tested of that era.

  18. Norm G. says:

    whoa, they put Lorenzo on the Yama-Bolt for a lil’ “action photography” in that first pic…! 🙂

    oh wait…

  19. Jeremy in TX says:

    I would have preferred to see a real effort at a café racer or scrambler-styled bike, but I can’t blame Yamaha for tweaking one of their best sellers to appeal to even more customers.

  20. Chris says:

    At least Yamaha is listening to there customers and is not only giving people a choice of different spec. star model’s but makes something for everyone! Harley ‘s only bike that actually handled and stopped and engine wise worked pretty well was the XR 1200- XR 1200X and of course they stopped making them because the so called faithful would not give them a second look .They are a good bike (I own one) among many other bikes .and it is the only sportster worth the name. (new Harley CEO are you listening?

  21. DaddyKoolJim says:

    542 pounds is nimble? A pre-2004 solid mount Sportster with decent shocks and fork cartridge, a cam, exhaust, and some Sun rims will blow the doors off of one of these Stars both on the street and at the track and can easily be made to weigh a lot closer to 400 pounds too.

    Try getting parts for these Stars in the future. The Harley will have spare parts available for just about forever.

    • Chris says:

      I have friends who ride Harleys, and access to spare parts is cetainly important to them.

    • Selecter says:

      So all you have to do with a pre-solid mount Sportster to get it to outrun this bike is to rebuild the forks, tear down the engine, and add a whole new set of wheels? Awesome!

      • beasty says:

        Nope. Just buy a 1200S. With the exception of the wheels, all that stuff was done at the factory. And they can be had for $4000 or less(roughly the resale value of the above Bolt right after it leaves the showroom). And it’s solid mount, not pre-solid mount. Pre-solid mounts don’t exist, unless you can find a rare mag-lev hover mount. Jus’ sayin’.

    • Fred M. says:

      You wrote: “542 pounds is nimble?”

      Obviously so, since the reviewer actually rode the bike and has the experience to evaluate its performance. You, on the other hand, came here to bash a bike that you’ve never ridden simply because someone said that it’s better than the competing Harley model, the 883 Iron.

      And, yes, it is nimble when compared to the 883 Iron. The Bolt C-spec has much better suspension, much lower weight, a better chassis, and a far better rider position for performance riding.

      You wrote: “A pre-2004 solid mount Sportster with decent shocks and fork cartridge, a cam, exhaust, and some Sun rims will blow the doors off of one of these Stars both on the street and at the track and can easily be made to weigh a lot closer to 400 pounds too.”

      Someone buying a Bolt C-Spec isn’t looking for a project bike that’s been out of warranty for over a decade. He’s looking for a brand new, ready-to-ride bike with a full factory warranty.

      Your paper tiger Sportster starts out with a 27% displacement advantage and then you mandate changing the cam and exhaust. You’re putting expensive new rims on it. You’re putting aftermarket shocks and an expensive cartridge fork upgrade. And you’re ignoring the fact that the end result will still be an ill-handling, loud (no, that’s not a good thing), paint-shaker.

      If you want to argue that, then take it out on a track and run it against my stock 1203cc air-cooled Buell XB12Ss. The Buell will eat that Harley for lunch and spit it back out. So if you’re arguing about getting the best performing air-cooled pushrod V-twin for the street and track, the Harley completely sucks.

    • Tim says:

      If I was in the market for a mid-size V-Twin (a non-sport bike V-Twin), even though it is a little over $2,000 more, I would ante up the money and go with the Indian Scout. They look much better and you are much less likely to grow out of one. By the time you make the mods you’re talking about, you could have a Scout. You can also buy a Harley Forty-Eight for roughly the same money as the Scout, and that’s a great looking bike as well. I tend to like liquid cooled, higher HP engines (I know that’s blasphemy to the Harley faithful but there is no substitute for horsepower.)

      Or, if you’re really looking for a value and are in to air cooled V-Twins, a quick search shows that you can still find a brand new 2009 Yamaha Road Star for $7,999 (original MSRP was around $12,400). That’s 1670 cc for those keeping track and enough torque (107 lb-ft) to pull a plow. Granted, not everyone wants a heavy cruiser and that’s really not even a similar bike to this C class Bolt, with full cruiser features but the Road Star is a well made tank of a bike. Or, how about a brand new 2008 V Star 1300 for $5,999? There are incredible bargains out there on older (but brand new bikes) that never sold.

      Personally, for the money we’re talking about for this Bolt C type, I’d say forget it and buy a new FZ-09. That bike really represents value for the money.

    • Kent says:

      Than new Audi?

      Get a Fox body Mustang, add wheels, hi compression pistons, do some head work and full exhaust system, change the suspension and add a blower. It’ll blow the doors off that Audi.

      Or just buy what you want, rather than a decade old project bike.

      There’s nothing wrong with projects, but comparing a new bike to a massive project with a fictional weight isn’t the point here.

  22. Starmag says:

    That oddest of hybrids, the cafe chopper. Given current trends these will probably sell well but I still don’t get it. Silly lack of wheel travel. Apparently one isn’t cool unless one’s kidneys and passenger take a beating. Sort of a Suspension Inquisition. The apparent mindset being ” see? I’m tough, I can take it”. At least it isn’t “styled” like something only a mother preying mantis could love.

    I’m actually surprised the Japanese haven’t come up with a creative engineering solution for the dreaded tank seam, (especially for bikes that are sold as much for their style as their ride).

    • mickey says:

      I’m actually surprised that so many people get torqued over the tank seam. I don’t even notice them. I just walked out to the garage to see if my CB 1100 had one. Yep. Never even noticed. Doesn’t make a hoot of difference to me.

      On this bike, I’m more visually upset at the crooked down tubes on the frame and the butt ugly paint job.

      • Hot Dog says:

        I don’t like the frame tubes either. I do think that the lump of a engine is good looking and I really like the fork gators.

      • Norm G. says:

        dare I say some people may even LIKE the seams as a visual feature. a historian or collector would WANT them there citing that the tank is “period correct” and a match for the vehicle. car world knows what this is.

      • Tim says:

        I never noticed tank seams until a friend pointed them out. Now I can’t not notice them, no matter how hard I try. Dang him. Sometimes it is good to be oblivious.

        • Norm G. says:

          re: “Sometimes it is good to be oblivious.”

          lemme help, the phrase you’re looking for is…

          “ignorance is bliss, knowledge is responsibility.”

          (note, YES the phrase does reads slightly different now, but that’s only because I’ve updated it for the 21st Century.)

    • Jeremy in TX says:

      “I’m actually surprised the Japanese haven’t come up with a creative engineering solution for the dreaded tank seam”

      They do have a solution: it’s called money, and most people just don’t care enough about the seam to justify implementing that solution. 🙂

  23. Stella says:

    How hard can it be to make a bike that is better than a Sportster?

  24. tonifumi says:

    I would love this bike if it came with proper handlebars instead of clip-ons.
    This would make a great standard.
    Ant that speedo??? Is Yamaha trying to annoy us?

    • Ryan says:

      just get the regular bolt..

    • MGNorge says:

      If I loved this bike and everything to do with it and was to buy one, I’d strike a deal with the dealer to install the bars I wanted before taking delivery. An annoyance perhaps, but I’ve found dealers willing to do quite a bit to make a sale. I’m not saying at no cost but at some negotiable price pleasing to both parties.

      • Norm G. says:

        re: “I’d strike a deal with the dealer to install the bars I wanted before taking delivery.”

        see, Norgey gets it.

        re: “An annoyance perhaps”

        not an annoyance, an “excuse”.

        according to SEMA, the aftermarket is a $33.4 Billion Dollar industry (with a B). that’s just one (1) years revenue and an increase of 19.7% since 2009.

        that is a STAGGERING amount. I contend it did NOT get to this as a result of “consumer disinterest” (so called) as some try to sucker others into believing. people want their handlebars, just as much as they “want their MTV”.

        re: “I’m not saying at no cost but at some negotiable price pleasing to both parties.”

        the negotiation begins and ends at LIST.

        • MGNorge says:

          Actually Norm, depending what I was wanting and what was involved, I’ve had the good fortune that most dealers are willing to move down from “List” in order to make me happy. If I don’t push them too hard on the price of the bike the more they see room to take care of the incidentals. Same thing with car buying and even more so.

  25. Andy1300 says:

    Yamaha still needs to get rid of that ugly tank seam,,,

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