Yamaha Tracer 700
The answer is the new Tracer 700, and its reason for being is to extend the basic 07’s appeal beyond that of merely commuting. Out there, beyond the cities, lies a whole world of motorcycling enjoyment, but while us grizzled veterans may be well familiar with the joys of motorcycle touring, it’s perhaps not top of mind for the younger brigade. The Tracer 700 is set to change all that, and the good news is, this motorcycle actually suits all age groups, LAMS or not. It’s light, has plenty of power (in line with the LAMS restrictions), handles extremely
well, and comes with virtually everything you’ll need out on the open road; manually-adjustable windshield, hand guards (with built-in turn indicators), even semi-soft panniers. I recently rode a new Tracer 700 from Sydney to the Hunter Valley via the Putty Road, in the pouring rain, and thoroughly enjoyed it. You could ride this bike from Sydney to Adelaide with nothing more than a slightly numb bum. The panniers are made from a flexible plastic material with a zipper fastening, and while not huge, hold a fair amount of gear. The passenger seat is adequate without being plush, and there’s a handy grab rail for her/him on the back. This engine, which in 694cc form also powers the MT-07HO and the retro styled XSR700, is a 4 valve parallel twin with a 270º crank, giving an uneven firing order and plenty of torque. The Tracer 700 version, which is sold only in LAMS form in Australia, puts out 54ps (thanks to intake restrictions) while the bigger versions claim 74. The Tracer has a 50mm longer swinging arm than the MT-07, giving less twitchy handling, and at just 196kg fully fuelled and oiled, is the lightest in its class. To cope with dodgy roads encountered in touring, both front and rear ends sport 130mm of travel, and with twin 285mm ABS brakes, stopping power is superb. The standard Tracer 700 can be tricked up with a range of over 40 genuine Yamaha accessories that include fog lamps, engine protectors, heated grips, a taller screen, a heated seat and many more. Although primarily designed for the young, the young-at-heart will find the Tracer 700 is an immensely practical and thoroughly capable motorcycle.
LEFT Stoppers are perfectly matched to the Tracer’s performance.
ABOVE ‘Soft’ panniers have a zipper fastening. BELOW Parallel twin engine is a stressed unit in the tubular/pressed frame.
One of the test fleet tricked up with genuine Yamaha accessories to create a real dualpurpose tourer.