Yamaha’s se­ri­ous begin­ner

The MT-125 was in­tro­duced in 2014, adding a ‘new-rider’ bike to the hugely suc­cess­ful MT range. The bike is un­changed since launch.

Motorcycle Monthly - - Used Bike Guide - Words and pic­tures: Bob Pick­ett

Give me some spec

A steel Deltabox frame houses a 124cc, four-stroke sin­gle is ca­pa­ble of a re­puted 87mph top speed, puts out 14.7lb-ft of power at 9,000rpm with max­i­mum torque of 9.1lb-ft. At just 138kg this is one light bike, giv­ing the 292mm front disc and 230mm rear lit­tle work to do to bring it to a halt. At 810mm it is tall for the class, feel­ing more like a ‘big’ bike. What’s it like to ride? As I said above, the MT-125 has a ‘big’, ‘grown-up’ feel about it. Whereas a lot of 125cc learner bikes are just plain small, the baby MT feels com­pact. Any­one step­ping from this onto some­thing like an MT-07, SV650 or Z650 won’t feel in­tim­i­dated by the di­men­sions. The 810mm seat is quite tall in this arena, I was able to get booted feet down flat by squish­ing closer to the tank. It is some­thing for smaller rid­ers to bear in mind.

The 100/80-17 pro­file front and 130/70-17 pro­file rear give the MT-125 a sta­bil­ity miss­ing in a lot of smaller bikes. Out on the road it has a nice feel to the han­dling. It shares an al­most iden­ti­cal rake and trail to it’s 700cc larger si­b­ling, giv­ing a sim­i­lar feel when turn­ing in. It’s an easy bike to tip over, but it feels sta­ble, giv­ing con­fi­dence quickly that it will hold po­si­tion.

I liked the en­gine a lot. Okay there is noth­ing hap­pen­ing to be­gin with, but get it mov­ing and it’s a brisk ride. Hum­ming along at 40-ish in third was en­joy­able and it was able to pick up pace eas­ily enough, though over­takes have to be planned.

The brakes don’t have a lot of work to do with a light bike like this, but they’ll bring you to a halt well enough, though there is puls­ing through the bars when giv­ing a firm squeeze.

What else? Typ­i­cally light Yamaha clutch, box is pos­i­tive. Mir­rors are good, giv­ing loads of feed­back. And talk­ing feed­back, what a neat lit­tle dash; at a glance ease of ac­cess to in­for­ma­tion. And I re­ally like the ‘Info’ switch on the right-hand con­trols that al­lows you to tog­gle through the dash op­tions. Talk­ing con­trols, the ones on the MT-125 frankly em­bar­rass the ‘Lego’ ones on the larger bikes in the MT fam­ily.

As long as your legs are long enough, if you’re start­ing out give the MT-125 se­ri­ous con­sid­er­a­tion. What nick is it in?

A small chip out of the tank’s paint­work and a cou­ple more on the tail spoil an oth­er­wise tidy lit­tle bike. What’s it worth?

The dealer wants £3499 For a 2017 model with 2183 miles clocked. Our dealer search found there are a lot out there, rang­ing from a 2014 bike for £2295 with 4516 miles clocked to a 2018 model with 1031 miles logged for £4299.

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