It's near to impossible to escape the constant appraisal you hear about Yamaha’s highly sought after Master Torque series. Known for their street friendly, low end torque, distinctive bodywork and affordable price tag, it's hard to fault a series as refined as this one. Well over the past week, I’ve taken the liberty in testing out a used 2016 Yamaha MT-07LA (LAMS), arguably the series highest selling model, to see if the hype was justified. Little did I know… I was in for a world of two-wheeled fun.
Jumping on the bike, you are first greeted by a LCD instrument display, which has a rather impressive graphic dynamic when powering on the bike. The dash is wide and clearly displays all the necessary information, such as RPM’s, clock, a handy fuel gauge and a gear indicator (just to name a few). Hands down the addition of a gear indicator was a personal highlight, and I wish more manufacturers realise just how helpful they are for beginners. Other features on the dash that can be toggled are the trip metre, bike mileage and the engine temperature. I’d recommend always leaving the engine temperature setting as default, as it's useful to know when the bike is appropriately warmed up to ride.
Check out the available Yamaha MT-07LA Stock!
Seating height is pretty standard for a middleweight naked sports bike, sitting at 805mm high. For reference, I stand at 180cm tall and can flat foot the bike with ease. If you are on the shorter side, the option of lowering the bike is available. This particular MT-07LA has had a few modifications done to it, the firstly most notably the ProTaper handlebars. If owners are wanting to really change up the feel of their bike without breaking the bank, changing out your handlebars is a great way to do it! They completely change the handling of the bike, and the ergonomics of the ride. These ProTaper bars aim to replicate a dirt bike feel - slightly wider and lower gripping position. This allows for a more aggressive riding ability and handles completely differently around corners. Don’t get me wrong, the stock handlebars are comfortable and very capable, so this is a personal preference modification.
Riding around town is an absolute blast. The 655cc 4 stroke parallel twin engine provides plenty of usable low end torque, allowing for quick and thrilling acceleration off the line. These torque power plants are what makes the Master Torque line-up so appealing. Pair the punchy motor with a lightweight, agility chassis, and it's a guaranteed recipe for some memorable moments. Best to watch that front wheel, because it does have a tendency of wanting to come off the ground regularly. You can truly open up the throttle in lower gears, and still maintain within street speed limits. Yet don’t be fooled, the bike can hit impressive speeds, with a top speed of just over 200kms per hour.
How does it perform in the mountains? After taking it for a burn up Brisbane's iconic mountain playgrounds, Mt Nebo/ Glorious, the bike feels stable and planted through every turn. Even with the factory tyres on, the bike grips firmly with the tarmac. Leaning the bike over is effortless and takes a lot of pressure off the rider. You may not be scraping too many knee pads, yet the lean angle is admittedly more than I expected. Due to the upright position of the handlebars, comfortable seat and mid positioned foot pegs, I felt comfortable sitting on the bike for hours on end. Sore wrists were never an issue and my back was never strained.
Overall, after a week of zipping around the urban streets and riding local mountain roads, it’s truly a very capable machine. Fuel economy is reasonable (depending how you ride it). As you could probably tell, the MT series, especially the MT-07LA has a lot of aftermarket accessories available to add on. From windscreens to reservoir covers, you can really go to town with how you would like to build this weapon of a machine. The bike is forgiving, yet packs a punch when forced. If you are after a LAMS approved, fun and affordable bike that will easily keep you entertained throughout the restricted years of your license, I highly recommend jumping on one of these.
With the latest 2021 models recently hitting Australian dealerships, there’s never been a better time to come in-store for a test ride of a new MT-07 today. You will not be disappointed.
FIND YOUR LOCAL TEAMMOTO & MCAS YAMAHA DEALER TO ENQUIRE TODAY
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