Kev Raymond is out in France to put Yamaha’s latest version of its much loved MT-09 through its paces. Here’s his very brief first impressions after a day in the saddle.

WORLD LAUNCH: First impressions of Yamaha's new MT-09 for 2021

“The MT range has been a huge success for Yamaha – they’ve sold over a quarter of a million of them so far in Europe alone – and the MT-09 is the backbone of the range. So this is an important new model, and first impressions are good. The engine’s heavily revised for Euro 5 compliance, and Yamaha have worked hard to get the power delivery a bit more useable and less snatchy than it has been in the past – an extra 42cc courtesy of a 3mm longer stroke help in that respect – but happily  it’s lost none of its snarling, growly edge.”

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“Even with the new anti-wheelie system, a good handful in first sees the front wheel reach for the sky, and powering hard out of second and third gear bends, the front tyre’s always skittering a few centimetres above the tarmac, the electronics keeping it all in check but letting enough of the fun stuff through to slap a big grin over your chops.”

WORLD LAUNCH: First impressions of Yamaha's new MT-09 for 2021

“And if that’s not enough, you can always turn it all off in the easily accessible sub-menus on the new 3.5in TFT screen. The suspension’s improved, the steering is effortless smooth and the brakes are easily up to the job (although the rear ABS is a bit over-eager). So far, so good. Full story later.”

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For the full, unabridged launch report, be sure to keep your eyes peeled for the May issue of MoreBikes newspaper – available in all good bike dealers or on your computer, tablet or smartphone at the click of a button.

Ross Mowbray

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