BikeReview.com.au looks at the MT-07 Tracers touring and pillion capabilities and compares the claimed to real horsepower and torque figures! Words: Kris Hodgson Images: David Hodgson

If you’ve been following progress on our Long Term Yamaha MT-07 Tracer, you’ll know that we took the bike to Sydney Dyno, checked out the stock power and torque figure, and installed a DNA Airfilter and Stage 2 Airbox Lid, with strong performance gains, keeping in mind this is a LAMS compliant machine!

You can find the power and torque comparison below, but with more time in the saddle on the MT-07 Tracer, we’ve now got a pillion review, as well as a better idea about how the bike handles 500km or longer days, particularly from a comfort and fuel economy perspective.

On the open road the MT-07 Tracer is everything you'd expect, comfortable, well damped, a little restrained compared to a sportsbike, but still offering good strong performance.

On the open road the MT-07 Tracer is everything you’d expect, comfortable, well damped, a little restrained compared to a sportsbike, but still offering good strong performance.

First up the MT-07 Tracer is a great long distance performer, a couple of days of 500km in the saddle were handled with ease. Obviously this isn’t quite as extreme as a 800km day, but it’s still a great point of comparison. The seat and ergonomics remained comfortable, and it’s probably the most relaxed and comfortable I’ve felt jumping off a bike after these types of kilometres. Adding in the city sections that’s about six hours in the saddle, with two breaks.

That’s pretty impressive if you ask me, as usually after that much time the aches start to creep in, or just the discomfort of being in the same position for so long becomes an issue. The 17L tank also becomes a noticeable boon, when coupled with the bike’s relatively low fuel consumption. At one point I did 250km+ and thought I had better fill up, only to find I only needed 11L. That’s pretty good for spirited riding, and was certainly less than I expected at the bowser.

I also found general rider fatigue to be very low riding the Tracer, it’s an easy performer with an easy going nature and handling. Being able to be relaxed even through the faster twisties or longer highway sections really assists in staying focused and alert. Only the clunkiness of the gearbox really contradicts this.

One area that I find really lacking, riding more, is the left switchblock. The horn button is tiny and actually past the indicators switch on the far (inside) side of the switchblock. I can’t actually reach it at all while riding normally, and need to totally change how I’m holding the grips to be able to. It means it’s not something you can use to warn other road users that you’re there, or if they are doing something dangerous, and with many people driving in zombie mode I prefer to have it easily accessible.

Even if I’m avoiding another road user doing something stupid (not relying on them to correct their mistake) I think it’s smart to give them a toot at times so they realise they just cut you off or did something dangerous. Hopefully it’ll make them think twice and not do the same to someone else!

Saddlebags are easily removable with the key, although they needed a bit of jiggling as these hadn't been removed before. A little WD40 on the spools and wiping them down makes it easier.

Saddlebags are easily removable with the key, although they needed a bit of jiggling as these hadn’t been removed before. A little WD40 on the spools and wiping them down makes it easier.

We’ve also taken the saddlebags off the bike for the first time, with the bags locking in place at one point, but attaching onto three ‘spools’. It was a bit of work to get the bags off, as they hadn’t been removed before, and they needed a good jiggle to get them free. A little WD40 on the spools which are attached to the mounting frame and the bags now come on and off easily! Probably a good area to give a clean and a little bit of WD40 or lube on when you’re washing or detailing the bike, especially if you aren’t frequently removing the bags.

If you did want to remove the saddlebag frame/mounting system it’s relatively easy as well, and something you can definitely do at home with just a couple of tools. An extra set of hands would help but not be necessary!

Sam our pillion reviewer with the Yamaha MT-07 Tracer

Sam our pillion reviewer with the Yamaha MT-07 Tracer

Yamaha MT-07 Pillion Review

When reviewing a bike from the pillion perspective there are three measures that I keep in mind: comfort, control and confidence. The MT-07 Tracer delivers exceptionally well against all three.

In terms of comfort, the seat is soft, wide and flat and the pillion footpegs are low. This is all great for longer legs as its feels like you’re lounging, rather than perched with your knees at the height of your shoulders. It also means you’re almost level with the rider, which is great for avoiding wind chill on those cold morning rides.

That said, I have a small issue hoping on and off the Tracer. At the moment the bike has the two standard saddle bags that can make it difficult to find the pillion pegs, and make it so much further to swing my leg over. It can be a gamble finding the ‘pegs and extra caution getting onto the bike is required.

The saddlebags can make it harder to get onto the Tracer as a pillion, however they aren't in the way once on board. The grab rails do offer a good point to hang onto however.

The saddlebags can make it harder to get onto the Tracer as a pillion, however they aren’t in the way once on board. The grab rails do offer a good point to hang onto however.

Once on the bike though I have complete control over my body position. The pegs are at the right height for bracing, as is the pillion grip rail on the rear of the bike – not too far back that it turns your shoulders. It feels easy to keep balanced and control weight transfer when braking and accelerating.

The suspension is also soft enough that the ride remains smooth – when the rider is riding normally! – and you don’t get that kickback out of the rear which is so common on sportier machines, even over speed bumps. There’s no crazy dive on the brakes, or need to brace against the tank when coming to a stop, with holding the rider or grab rail comfortable and easy.

As a pillion I’ve always felt its most important to feel confident on the bike – confident you’re not going to fall off. The non-slip seat delivers to this need most effectively. My body doesn’t shift, and I don’t feel like I’ll slide off the back from the acceleration.

Overall the Tracer is an excellent pillion experience; highly recommendable for touring and longer rides.

Horsepower and torque are surprisingly close to the claimed figures, which may be because the machine is LAMS compliant. The addition of a DNA Airfilter and Stage 2 Airbox Lid certainly helped though!

Horsepower and torque are surprisingly close to the claimed figures, which may be because the machine is LAMS compliant. The addition of a DNA Airfilter and Stage 2 Airbox Lid certainly helped though!

2017 Yamaha MT-07 Tracer Horsepower and Torque

For those interested in the claimed figures, versus stock figures, versus DNA Airfilter and Stage 2 Airbox Lid here they are, keeping in mind that claimed figures are normally at the crank (unless otherwise noted), so you’ll basically always be seeing a difference between that figure, and the rear wheel figure. Also keep in mind we’re basing this on the official MT-07 power and torque figures.

CLAIMED POWER: 52.1hp@8000rpm
CLAIMED TORQUE: 42.5ft-lbs@4000rpm

STOCK POWER: 49.2hp@7850rpm
STOCK TORQUE: 41.77ft-lbs@4000rpm

POWER with DNA AIRFILTER: 49.77hp@7500rpm
TORQUE with DNA AIRFILTER: 43.25ft-lbs@4250rpm

The greatest gains were in the mid-range with a almost a 2.5hp and ft-lbs of torque gain at 5000rpm. You can check out the full write-up here: DNA Airfilter added to our Lt MT-07 Tracer – Dyno Tested, or just the Sydney Dyno chart image here (opens in new window).

A little off-road duties in the sand for the MT-07 Tracer!

A little off-road duties in the sand for the MT-07 Tracer!

Yamaha Genuine Accessories

There’s a huge range of accessories already available for the Yamaha MT-07 Tracer so we’ll be looking to see what we can fit to the bike in the near future. In the bling department you’ve got items like billet levers, LED blinkers, lower cowl, rearsets and frame plugs, while the Akrapovic exhaust options are the performance options.

There’s also some nifty options if you’re really into your touring, with a taller screen, heated ‘grips, a comfort seat, or even a heated comfort seat!

Genuine Yamaha MT-07 Tracer accessories available from you YShop or your local Yamaha dealer.

Genuine Yamaha MT-07 Tracer accessories available from you YShop or your local Yamaha dealer.

You can check out what else we’ve done on our MT-07 Tracer by clicking here.

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