The factory special
Yamaha MT-10 Touring
Last year, after Yamaha announced there’d be no Tracer version of their stonking, R1-derived MT-10, MCN decided to load one with official touring accessories and take it on a trip to the Nurburgring with a Kawasaki ZZ-R1400, BMW K1600 GTL, Aprilia Caponord, 1200 Rally and KTM 1290 Super Duke GT. It cleaned up.
That must’ve got a few cogs whirring at Yamaha because new for this year is that very bike, not a Tracer 1000, but the MT-10 Touring Edition.
With its R1 superbike-derived 158bhp, 998cc crossplane crank motor, fully adjustable suspension, electronic rider aids, comfy seat and decent wind protection, it’s become an instant rival to the S1000XR in the sports adventure class. But it’s a whole heap cheaper to buy outright, or on PCP, and even comes with soft panniers included in the price.
Some may be put off by the amount of performance there is on tap, the way you can hang the front wheel in the Scottish breeze for an eternity, the wailing fury of the crossplane engine, or the way the R1 chassis demolishes corners with poise and confidence. But its genius is the way it morphs into a smooth, composed, comfortable long distance compan- ion. It doesn’t suffer vibrations, won’t give you knee, back or wrist ache and in its standard throttle mode has lovely fuelling.
Only its appetite for unleaded lets it down. It’s the worst on fuel here and with just a 17-litre fuel tank the reserve light comes on at anything from 120 to 140-miles. That’s still a good couple of hours riding between fill-ups, but hardcore mile-munchers will find it a nuisance.
Let down only by its fuel economy, the MT-10 is otherwise the complete package