A huge update for 2021 for the mighty Yamaha MT-09 was revealed overnight, with everything from engine to chassis, electronics and styling updated...

Yamaha Motor Australia has reinforced its dominance in the Hyper Naked category here in OZ with the launch of the new MT-09. Lighter, more powerful, more technologically advanced in every area, the new MT-09 is sure to be as good as it looks… From Yamaha

2021 Yamaha MT-09 Highlights

  • New 889cc inline 3-cylinder 4-valve DOHC liquid-cooled EU5 engine
  • More power at all engine speeds
  • 7% increase in maximum torque at lower rpm
  • 4PS increase in maximum power
  • New 2.3kg lighter CF die-cast aluminium Deltabox chassis
  • Lower 189kg wet weight – 4kg reduction and the lightest in 900cc naked class
  • Shorter wheelbase for more dynamic handling
  • New lightweight aluminium swingarm
  • Bare and beautiful coverless new generation MT styling
  • Premium quality throughout, with Crystal Graphite frame finish
  • Full LED lighting with Y-shape brand signature icon front and rear
  • New Quick Shift System with up and downshift functions
  • Refined A&S clutch
  • Light and compact new 6-axis IMU
  • Lean-sensitive rider aids: TCS, SCS and LIF with three intervention modes ABS and Brake Control
  • system (BC)
  • D-MODE switchable engine running modes
  • New ultra-light Spin Forged 17-inch 10-spoke wheels
  • Larger 180/70-17 rear tyre with 120/70-17 front tyre
  • Fully adjustable KYB 41mm USD forks with revised settings
  • Adjustable KYB rear shock with revised settings
  • Full colour 3.5-inch TFT instruments with remote handlebar switch
  • Radial front master cylinder, 298mm dual front discs


New 889cc CP3 engine: More capacity, power, torque, feedback, control… and fun
A key factor in the runaway success of the MT-09 is the exciting performance of its CP3 three-cylinder crossplane technology engine. After eight years of providing the most exciting and rewarding riding experience, the time has come for a new design that delivers higher levels of power and torque.

To achieve a more torquey and agile feel the 2021 EU5-compliant engine has been completely redesigned and reduced in weight. Virtually every major component is new, including pistons, connecting rods, camshafts, and crankcases, and despite its larger capacity and higher power output, the 2021 powerplant – including the new exhaust – is 1700g lighter than the current design.

The engine is larger capacity now at 889cc and completely redesigned internally for Euro5 compliance.

Engine capacity is enlarged to 889cc by increasing the bore size by 3mm, and the extra 42cc boosts maximum horsepower by 4PS to 119PS at 10,000rpm. However, the most significant improvement is the increased torque output. Maximum torque on the new engine is 93Nm, and peak torque is achieved at only 7000rpm – a full 1500rpm lower down the rev scale.

Higher levels of linear torque at lower engine speeds increase the real-world performance of the new MT-09 by enabling the rider to fully access available power at everyday riding speeds. The new big-torque 889cc engine makes a real difference – and together with its new up and down Quick Shift System, the 2021 MT-09 is the main contender for top honours in the 900cc Hyper Naked category.

New fuel delivery system: Strong torque and power with increased economy
One of the key design features on the new 889cc engine is the completely new fuel delivery system. While the current MT-09 features its fuel injectors attached directly to the cylinder-head, on the all-new model the fuel injectors are mounted to the throttle valve side, and fuel is injected onto the back of the intake valve heads.


This system gives better fuel atomisation and reduces the adhesion of fuel to the intake port walls. This new system produces outstanding combustion efficiency and contributes towards the new model’s 9% increase in fuel efficiency.

The fuel injectors are mounted to the throttle valve side, and fuel is injected onto the back of the intake valve heads.

The fuel injectors are mounted to the throttle valve side, and fuel is injected onto the back of the intake valve heads.

New APSG ride-by-wire throttle: Lower weight, excellent feel
The Yamaha Chip Controlled Throttle (YCC-T) is upgraded for 2021 with the addition of a new Accelerator Position Sensor Grip (APSG). Similar to the unit featured on the YZF-R1 and R1M, and equipped with model-specific friction and throttle opening settings, this lightweight ride-by-wire system replaces the previous model’s pulley set-up to give excellent feel and reliability.

New intake and exhaust systems: Enhanced sense of torque and acceleration
The all-new 889cc engine is equipped with a redesigned high-efficiency air intake system and a newly designed exhaust to enhance the sense of acceleration and torque. Newly designed stainless steel header pipes each have a different curvature to create an excellent pulse effect, and with tail pipes exiting on both the left and right sides, the rider feels the intoxicating roar in full stereo mode.

Featuring a new design incorporating left/right symmetrical tail pipes, the lightweight exhaust system is 1400g lighter than previous and has been specifically tuned to create an enhanced feeling of torque when the rider is accelerating from a stop or powering out of a low-speed corner.

As engine speed increases the intake sound becomes more dominant and heightens the feeling of acceleration. The new intake system is specifically designed to further enhance the MT-09’s torque-rich riding sensation. This has been achieved by equipping the high-efficiency air cleaner box with an all-new three duct layout, with each duct featuring a different cross-section and length.

Optimised transmission and uprated A&S clutch: Smoother and easier
To match the 2021 model’s increased engine performance the transmission has been optimised by slightly raising the ratios on first and second gears. Plus a new shift fork is fitted for improved gear shifts. To handle the increased torque, the A&S clutch uses a new material for its friction plates, and the cam angle is changed for a lighter pull at the lever, together with gentler chassis behaviour when downshifting.

Die-cast aluminium Deltabox chassis: Lighter, stronger, more agile
The 2021 MT-09 has been improved in every area – headlined by an all-new lightweight CF die-cast aluminium Deltabox chassis that has been developed in unison with the larger capacity 889cc high-torque engine.

Yamaha’s CF technology has enabled the thinnest wall section on any Yamaha die-cast frame ever. Featuring larger twin beams that run directly from the steering head assembly through to the swingarm pivot to give optimal strength, the newly-designed aluminium frame, subframe and swingarm are 2.3kg lighter than the previous chassis, making a significant contribution towards the increased agility of the 2021 MT-09.

All-new Deltabox frame featuring larger twin beams that run directly from the steering head assembly through to the swingarm pivot to give optimal strength.

All-new Deltabox frame featuring larger twin beams that run directly from the steering head assembly through to the swingarm pivot to give optimal strength.

For enhanced handling characteristics, the frame’s longitudinal, lateral, and torsional rigidity balance has been refined, with a 50% increase in lateral rigidity providing high levels of straight-line stability.

To match the more compact frame and shorter front forks the head pipe position is lowered by 30mm, giving an increased feeling of front-end grip when cornering, together with improved levels of rider feedback. Handling agility is also enhanced with a new CF die-cast aluminium sub-frame that is 1.5kg lighter than the previous model’s steel design.

High-rigidity swingarm: Lower weight, better stability
Compared to the current design which has a banana shaped right section, the new 250g lighter aluminium swingarm has a much straighter right side for a more symmetrical appearance that complements the next generation body design. To achieve better stability when cornering and also riding in a straight line, the 2021 swingarm pivot is mounted between the frame structure, rather than the pivots being mounted on the outside of the frame as before. This new swingarm design reduces unsprung weight, and complements the revised rigidity balance of the new frame.

Minimalist coverless design
To express the outstanding handling performance of the all-new MT-09, Yamaha has introduced a coverless design where all unnecessary bodywork is removed to give a dynamic and agile new look from every angle. The compact front fender and minimalist headlamp nacelle are the only other pieces of bodywork on this muscular naked chassis, highlighting the beautifully styled chassis and giving the bike a strong, purposeful and mechanically pure look, all of which is accentuated by the new Crystal Graphite frame colour.

The slimline seat and pointed tail – along with the total absence of sidepanels and other unnecessary additions – serve to emphasise the stripped down good looks. The all new MT-09’s compact and athletic character is underpinned by weighing in at just 189kg wet – 4kg less than the current model and less than its closest competitor in the 900cc naked class.

Flexible riding position: Accommodating all riders
The riding position was designed to accommodate riders of varying physiques, providing the feeling of being one with the machine.

6-axis IMU: R-Series Supersport technology for ultimate performance
The new MT-09 is the first Yamaha Hyper Naked model to be equipped with a high-tech 6-axis IMU, one of the most sophisticated pieces of electronics in the industry. Developed from the system used on the YZF-R1 since 2015, the 6-axis IMU on the new MT-09 is 50 per cent smaller and 40 per cent lighter thanks to a thorough review of the sensor layout.

Constantly measuring acceleration, pitch, roll and yaw, the 6-axis IMU is able to send data in real-time to the ECU which controls the electronic rider aids. The class-leading array of rider aids includes lean sensitive Traction Control System (TCS), Slide Control System (SCS) as well as a front wheel lift control system (LIF) and Brake Control system (BC).

Lean-sensitive rider aids: Total controllability in all conditions
By monitoring the speed difference between the front and rear wheels, the lean sensitive TCS helps to optimise the drive force of the rear tyre during acceleration. Developed from the system that has proved to be so popular with YZF-R1 riders, the SCS adjusts power when a rear wheel slide is predicted, allowing the rider to focus on their riding.

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Similarly, the LIF enables the rider to concentrate on the road ahead by adjusting engine output to control front wheel lift and smooth out machine behaviour when pulling away and accelerating. The fourth electronic rider aid is the BC that works with the ABS and independently controls and modulates the front and rear brake pressure, helping to prevent wheel lock-up during hard braking when riding upright as well as when banking.

Three TCS modes: Intervention levels to suit every rider
The TCS has three switchable modes, and each mode integrates three of the rider support systems, meaning that the intervention levels are all changed at once in Modes 1 and 2. Mode 1 delivers moderate intervention, while Mode 2 gives strong intervention and Mode M enables the rider to select manual settings.

By preventing wheel lock-ups and slides, as well as wheel spin and wheelies, these electronic aids reduce the workload of the rider, allowing full concentration on the road ahead.

3.5-inch full colour TFT instruments: Modern, clear and precise
The new 3.5-inch TFT full colour display shows clear and precise data. Its lightweight construction and mid-sized layout has been chosen to blend seamlessly with the new LED headlight assembly and maintain the compact and agile feeling from the rider’s viewpoint.

The bar-type tachometer changes colour as rpm rise and falls, and the display includes a clock, gearshift indicator, water and air temperature and more. The new display is linked with the 6-axis IMU, and riders can switch between displays and also select their preferred mode for the electronic aids via a handlebar-mounted switch.

LED projector lighting: Compact, powerful and pure MT design
Compact, powerful and modern, the MT-09’s new headlight design is pure MT with next generation looks. The full LED headlight assembly features a single central bifunctional projector headlight with multiple LEDs that provide a broad, even and powerful beam with soft edges for both low and high beam.

Twin LED position lights present a bold new face for the MT-09, and they project a signature Y-shape icon to give the bike a predatory stare that represents the future direction of MT design. The theme is continued at the rear, where the lightweight LED taillight projects a Y-shape illumination.

Quick Shift System: Fast and smooth upshifing with new downshift function
For ultimate acceleration the MT-09 gets a Quick Shift System (QSS) that ensures seamless and clutchless full-throttle upshifts and smooth downshifts. Together with the A&S clutch, this electronic aid transforms the riding experience and enables the rider to optimise the increased torque levels for more thrilling acceleration as well as higher levels of chassis stability and control when downshifting.

10-spoke Spin Forged wheels: Yamaha’s lightest ever
Yamaha’s exclusive spin forging technology involves the cast wheels being heated up and spun at high speed while pressure is applied to the rims to reduce their thickness to just 2mm, while retaining their immense strength. Any weight saving gives an immediate performance advantage, and this is particularly true when it comes to unsprung weight, where even the smallest reduction makes a big contribution towards improved handling, steering and suspension performance.

The new Spin Forged front and rear wheels are 700g lighter than previously, and this gives a decrease in the gyroscopic moment of inertia of the wheels – with a significant 11% decrease at the rear wheel making a big contribution to the new model’s agile handling character.

Fully adjustable front suspension: Premium specification KYB system
Featuring 41mm tubes that give smooth suspension action and maintain their high levels of flex resistance even under the heaviest braking, the new lightweight high specification KYB front forks are fully adjustable for preload, compression and rebound damping.

The new forks run with revised factory settings that match the character of the compact new higher rigidity frame and reduce the tendency to pitch. The rear suspension linkage design has been changed and the new KYB rear shock is set up to suit the all-new chassis with reduced unsprung weight.

Front brake with radial master cylinder: Linear power, total controllability
Every major part of the new MT-09 has been redesigned and uprated for 2021, and to match the higher engine performance and more dynamic chassis character, this high-tech Hyper Naked is only the second Yamaha model to be equipped with this YZF-R1-type front braking system.

Featuring a Nissin radial master cylinder in which the piston moves in a direction that’s parallel to the brake lever travel, this Supersport-class technology gives a more linear supply of hydraulic pressure to the dual front disc brakes for excellent controllability.

The new MT-09 will be available in three colours: Storm Fluo, Icon Blue and Tech Black. Deliveries to Australian Yamaha dealers will commence from Feb 2021. Price is not yet confirmed. 

You can read our MT-09 reviews and see our videos here.

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