The Yamaha XSR900 belongs to the neoretro series of the Japanese manufacturer, which is accompanied by the Faster Sons philosophy. I don’t fully understand it, but while riding I had the impression that the motorcycle was shouting to me: faster son!
The slogan “Faster Sons” probably means that new motorcycles in the old style are much better (and faster!) Continuators of the ideas of their ancestors. If so, it’s hard to disagree with this statement. The Yamaha XSR900 is quite a brutal bike and you have to like that character. If it hits our liking, it will turn out that it has a lot of advantages. The two biggest ones are looks and engine.
The rest is also fine, but these two features will probably decide on the purchase. At the beginning, I myself complained about the front lamp and its handle, which resemble a combination of a rubber toilet plunger with elements of metal blocks that I remember from my childhood in the People’s Republic of Poland. I laboriously twisted various vehicles from punched flat bars with screws, and the triangular mounting of the XSR900 lamp resembles them.
Fortunately, the whole motorcycle, including this element, looks amazing in real life, especially in blue and with gold accessories. The Yamaha XSR900 is a very neat neo-retro model. The most distinctive elements are the Deltabox frame and low mirrors placed widely at the ends of the handlebars. Apparently, a lot of people complain about the strange sofa, but my butt likes it, and I have no particular objections to the original shape with a hump.
In the silhouette of the Yamaha XSR900 you can find a lot of unusual shapes
There is also a muffler unusually hidden entirely under the engine, which looks strange, but we will quickly appreciate the resulting advantages. The exhaust does not protrude from any side, so it does not heat the legs and thanks to this, the motorcycle can be hidden under the cover immediately after the ride.
A small but very nice and modern TFT screen is placed in front of the wide steering wheel. A legible display makes it easy to set numerous driving parameters, which we have at our disposal thanks to equipping the Yamaha XSR900 with an IMU inertial module. It’s about the ability to adjust: engine mode, traction control level, front wheel lift and rear skid.
There are few setting levels, in most cases only three. Contrary to appearances, this is good, because finding the optimal configuration takes little time. It is a pity that the fuel gauge does not have its permanent place, but occupies one of the configurable fields of the on-board computer on the display.
The Yamaha XSR900 has a very fiery heart
A lot has already been written about the Yamaha CP3 engine around the world on the occasion of the review of the twin Yamaha MT-09 and other models. Three-cylinder in-line engine with a capacity of 890 cm3 is one of the best engines with a similar capacity. It has 119 hp and develops a torque of 93 Nm. It is a dynamic and great-sounding engine that has high torque, but does not lose power with rpm.
Thanks to it and the relatively low weight (193 kg “wet”), the XSR900 accelerates very rapidly, to the point that in the first three gears I had the impression that it was trying to tear my hands out of the joints. In addition, most of the time I had the impression that the engine was fighting with the swingarm to lift the front wheel up. Yamaha XSR900 This is not equipment for people who like a quiet, relaxing ride.
The riding position is sportier than on a typical naked bike. It rides with a slightly bent silhouette, which I like. The ergonomics of operating the on-board instruments is fine, except for a few small things. For example, the switch between traction control level selection and riding modes, which is in such a place that it should be used for flashing high beams. The multifunctional knob on the right side of the cockpit is also terribly imprecise. As a result, changing the settings requires a lot of patience from the motorcyclist and a long stop at a red light.
The Yamaha XSR900 has a few flaws, but it makes up for it in character
After a week spent with Yamaha, I have the impression that it would be an excellent city bike, full of character, if not for some minor but annoying flaws. For example, glamorous, but impractical mirrors that significantly expand the silhouette. They are large, do not vibrate and show very well what is happening behind us, but it is because of them that it is difficult to squeeze between cars in traffic jams.
Then there is the clutch, which works not very precisely, it is difficult to feel the moment of its engagement, in addition it happens with the handle almost fully straightened. This makes it difficult to start off, maneuver and drive slowly in traffic jams. I don’t want to make a drama out of it because you can get used to how it works, but it’s not as intuitive as most bikes.
Fortunately, this is much easier to get used to. There is even a tiny indicator of its operating modes (up/down) on the TFT screen, but the Yamaha driver rarely has time to look at it, because he is usually busy accelerating or braking equally effectively or trying to hit the road.