Gear and consumption display on board, rev counter difficult to read.
These brakes would also look good on athletes, unusual fork-leg design.
Long elbows that increase torque, unpainted radiator.
Pretty swing arm with eye-catching axle guide and simple dropout.
The welding work on the frame is carried out appropriately.
An analog tachometer still has its charm today.
Simple floating caliper brakes with moderate bite, but finely regulating ABS.
In search of maximum length, the elbows wind in front of the engine.
The tubular construction of the swing arm is eye-catching, the simple chain tensioner is not.
The shift lever sits directly on the shaft, adjustment is only possible roughly.
These two go along with everything, from the lively country road chase to a relaxed sightseeing trip. Great companion for every day.
Yamaha MT-07 and Kawasaki ER-6n in comparison test
Star ensemble of the middle class
The Kawasaki ER-6n has become the star of the middle class in its nine-year career. Now the Yamaha MT-07 with its newly developed twin and competitive price wants to dispute this position.
E.s rains like buckets. For hours. The Croatian motorway, which is supposed to bring us from Zagreb through the Velebit Mountains to the Adriatic coast, disappears in the spray. Only through a tunnel, then we have the mountains behind us and soon reached the coast. The display panel above the motorway shows 2.5 degrees. Dave the photographer’s face speaks volumes. But the light comes at the end of the tunnel. Sunshine welcomes us, 14.5 degrees reports the information board above the expressway. The madness. Sometimes you just need a little luck.
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Yamaha MT-07 and Kawasaki ER-6n in comparison test
Star ensemble of the middle class
Yamaha MT-07 and the Kawasaki ER-6n lashed out in our van, but a bit of patience is still required, the serpentine road that winds down to the sea is powdered with thick white veils of salt. Remnants of the violent onset of winter a few days ago. Once at the bottom, however, there are empty swept, handy streets waiting.
Hearty growling versus sonorous roaring
The long-awaited first exchange of blows between the Kawasaki ER-6n, an absolute bestseller in the middle class since its introduction in 2005, and the brand new Yamaha MT-07, which wants to stir up the middle class in the wake of its brilliant sister MT-09, can begin.
Outwardly, the two are close together. Row twins, the manifold routed on the right side with the front silencer under the engine. In addition, non-adjustable 41 mm telescopic forks, steel frames and swing arms with directly linked spring struts that can only be adjusted in preload. The ingredients are similar. And yet the differences are much greater, which you can already sense when you sit down.
The Kawasaki ER-6n embeds its pilot integrated into the machine, the high-mounted pegs especially fold the legs of tall pilots. The Yamaha MT-07 rider stays at the same height, but sits much more upright and relaxed, with a more open knee angle and closer to the handlebars. More on than in a motorcycle. Then the pressure on the starter. The Kawasaki growls to itself. The Yamaha twin goes to work with a full and sonorous roar.
Yamaha MT-07 in the HP driving report
That knocks the PS tester off his stool
Yamaha MT-07 in the driving report
So easy. So controllable.
Shift work on the Kawasaki ER-6n a little smoother
Dave urges, he wants to use the remaining sunny hours, curve left, curve right, curve for two. Everything again from the other side. Thanks, Dave. Can we now The coastal road is waiting. At this time of the year, the road winds its way along the sea in grandiose curves. The seemingly endless game with changing angles is made for both of them. Loose handling and sufficient power make swinging along the coast a pleasure. In contrast to its big sister MT-09, the load changes of the Yamaha MT-07 are pleasantly dampened. The Kawasaki ER-6n even accelerates a little more gently. The switching work is also a little smoother. But otherwise the Kawa does not have much to inherit in the engine chapter.
The 690 cm³ Yamaha twin cleanly implements gas commands from as little as 2000 rpm. With the Kawasaki ER-6n it can be a few hundred revolutions more for smooth propulsion. From 3000 rpm the Yamaha MT-07 comes alive, and from 4000 rpm there is real pressure in the boiler. Between four and eight thousand it is there immediately. Turns loosely and lightly upwards and pulls forward forcefully and evenly. Only from 9500 rpm does the vigor ebb a little. The Yamaha unit runs surprisingly quietly, the mass balancing seems to be very successful. Slight vibrations are only really noticeable from 5000 rpm. Thanks to the great elasticity, it doesn’t matter if you missed a downshift in the heat of the moment; the MT can be moved comfortably in a lazy manner.
The 650 cm³ Kawasaki two-cylinder is carved from robust wood. Depending on the speed range, it tingles in the handlebars, rests or seat. Significantly shorter-stroke than its Yamaha counterpart, it does not work so energetically in the first half of the rev range. It should be six, better seven thousand revolutions to follow the Yamaha. Then the Kawa drive train really develops fire, underlay its awakening temperament with imposing suction pipes. And yet it always looks more strenuous than the Yamaha MT-07, which, especially in the lower gears, with its relaxed and powerful high-revving twin of the Kawa doesn’t give the Kawa the slightest chance. Always well-muffled rumbling from the exhaust stub.
Yamaha MT-07 turns in easier, works out more willing
The Kawasaki ER-6n works with a crank pin offset of 180 degrees, which provides the typical robust twin soundscape. The Yamaha technicians, on the other hand, chose a crank pin offset of 270 degrees, which brings the in-line engine acoustically close to a 90-degree V2. An all-round successful good mood engine.
The sun disappears behind the island of Pag. Time to look for accommodation. The Yamaha headlights provide the brighter, whiter light. With a hard cut-off line. But in return, its high beam cuts the much stronger path into the darkness. There is a small hotel right by the sea. End of working day. The next morning it continues. Both of them master the cold start without any problems, the Kawasaki ER-6n with higher idle, the Yamaha MT-07 with a somewhat restrained throttle response for the first few meters. The green swings effortlessly from curve to curve, can be easily guided around the bends, great!
But the Yamaha MT-07 turns in a bit easier, leans even more readily into deeper slopes, can be thrown nimbly from left to right. Motorcycling can be so easy. With which the Yamaha confirms once again that wider tires do not necessarily have to be accompanied by a loss of handiness. She rolls on the back of a 180, while the Kawa leaves it at a 160. Speaking of tires. Both Yamaha and Kawasaki do not drive the cheap number here, but donate Michelin Pilot Road 3 and Dunlop Roadsmart II rubbers that work splendidly. The MT-07 owes its handling advantage to its lower weight. Yamaha promises a slim 179 kilograms with a full tank. A calibrated scale was unfortunately not available. So that has to be checked later at home.
Yamaha MT-07 more sensitive in an inclined position
The Kawasaki ER-6n weighs significantly more at 208 kilograms, which it hides in an excellent way. But without a fight this is not defeated in the chassis chapter. Despite all its handiness, it is perhaps not as curvy as the Yamaha MT-07, but draws its arcs with stoic composure, and thanks to the tautly coordinated spring elements, it appears full and down to earth. And the moment of erection is not an issue at all for them. It stays even more consistently on track than the Yamaha when it comes to applying the brake. This shows itself to be more open-minded towards changing lean angles, but also more sensitive and receptive to steering impulses in a large lean angle, which shows a bit of its relationship to the MT-09.
The Yamaha MT-07 is basically well equipped for the very sporty pace, a nimble sharpening iron with uncomplicated handling. Only the rather long (but unscrewable) fear nipples on the pegs contact unsportingly early. And the bends that have been tackled with dedication show the suspension elements, which are particularly soft at the rear. Driven quickly over bumps, the rear bobs up and down almost unmolested by the damping and tramples the rear wheel over washboard-like bumps. But there is never any real unrest in the chassis, you enjoy the feeling of having everything under control. Especially since the spring elements respond well and carefully iron scars in the asphalt smooth. Which is why you can shoo the MT-07 around the corner in a pretty relaxed and cheeky way.
Brake in front of the flock of sheep!
The more tightly tuned spring elements of the ER-6n give the Kawa more stability, especially in fast corners, and good feedback from the roadway, on which the high-mounted notches only scratch when they are sloping considerably. Even then the Kawasaki pulls its course calmly and steadily. But the spring elements respond very insensitively. And above all, the shock absorber, tuned with ample rebound, reacts stubbornly to heels and asphalt wrinkles, which significantly reduces comfort. Especially since the thinner seat pad shows more hardness than that of the Yamaha MT-07. A passenger on the Kawasaki will always find the more comfortable place thanks to the wider seat, more relaxed knee angle and decent handles.
A flock of sheep crosses the road around a bend, emergency braking. The floating caliper brakes of the Kawasaki ER-6n act bluntly and lack a clear pressure point, but are supported by a finely regulated Bosch ABS. Despite the relatively small 282 mm discs (Kawasaki: 300 mm), the four-piston fixed calipers of the Yamaha MT-07 grip more courageously, can be dosed more finely and even less experienced users do not frighten with too biting use. Incidentally, the test machine did not have ABS. That should be available shortly.
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All second-hand offers: Kawasaki ER-6n
Both can be content with four liters
First take a sip on the shock. Refueling break. In order to get the last three quarters of a liter into the tank of the Yamaha MT-07, patience is required. The fuel drum of the Kawasaki ER-6n is easier to fill. Cruising along the coast, mainly done in sixth gear, can both be rewarded with just four liters. You cant complain. Driven across the country with the knout, the injection nozzles quickly atomize 4.8 (Yamaha) and 5.2 (Kawasaki) liters. But even that is okay.
Like the processing of the two. The Kawa pleases with its neatly painted pipe structures for the swing arm and frame as well as the stainless steel exhaust. The Yamaha MT-07 also knows how to please. The beautifully made steel swing arm is optically based on the aluminum constructions of more expensive athletes, plus the eye-catching axle mounts or four-piston fixed caliper brakes. Nevertheless, here and there the dictation of the red pencil cannot be misunderstood. In the case of the cooler left raw, the frame welds or the side frame plates, which act as if they were used to mount the swing arm, but ultimately only function as panels. But that doesn’t really spoil the high quality appearance. And that at the competitive price of 5495 euros, with ABS 5995 euros. A bargain. The Kawa has again been left behind with 6495 euros.
The day and the test are drawing to a close. The machines disappear into the van, after work, off to the expressway. When the tunnel releases us again in the direction of Zagreb, the highway is wet, the sign indicates a damp five degrees. Lucky. Yamaha certainly doesn’t need luck with the MT-07. She has what it takes to be a middle-class star.
Data and measured values
|Kawasaki ER-6n||Yamaha MT-07|
|design type||Two-cylinder four-stroke-
|injection||Ø 38 mm||Ø 38 mm|
Oil bath clutch
Oil bath clutch
|Bore x stroke||83.0 x 60.0 mm||80.0 x 68.6 mm|
|Displacement||649 cc||690 cc|
|compression||10.8: 1||11.5: 1|
|power||53.0 kW (72 PS)
at 8500 rpm
|55.0 kW (75 PS)
at 9000 rpm
|Torque||64 Nm at 7000 rpm||68 Nm at 6500 rpm|
Ø 41 mm
Ø 41 mm
|Brakes front / rear||Ø 300/220 mm||Ø 282/245 mm|
|bikes||3.50 x 17; 4.50 x 17||3.50 x 17; 5.50 x 17|
|tires||120/70 ZR 17;
160/60 ZR 17
|120/70 ZR 17;
180/55 ZR 17
|Tires||Dunlop Roadsmart II “J”||Michelin Pilot Road 3|
|DIMENSIONS + WEIGHTS|
|wheelbase||1410 mm||1400 mm|
|Steering head angle||65.0 degrees||65.5 degrees|
|trailing||110 mm||90 mm|
|Front / rear suspension travel||125/130 mm||130/130 mm|
|Seat height||790 mm||805 mm|
|Weight with a full tank||208 kg¹||179 kg|
|Payload||198 kg -1||k. A..|
|Tank capacity / reserve||16.0 liters||14.0 liters|
|Service intervals||6000 km||10,000 km|
|price||6495 euros||5495 euros (without ABS)|
|Additional costs||180 euros||180 euros|
|Top speed *||200 km / h||207 km / h|
|Consumption country road / 100 km||4.1 liters||4.0 liters|
|Reach country road||390 km||350 km|
* Manufacturer information; ¹MOTORWHEEL measurements
The performance measurement of the two machines was not carried out on our commonly used test bench, but on a Dynojet test bench at Harley-Tuner Janbo (www.janbo.hr) in Croatia. Therefore please do not put the maximum values on the gold scale.
However, it is much more interesting to compare the two curves with one another. And they pretty much reflect what you feel when driving: the torque curve of the larger-displacement Yamaha MT-07 surpasses that of the Kawasaki ER-6n practically from the spot, swings up to a considerable plateau at 3000 rpm, from which the MT-07 generates its great pulling power. The smaller Kawasaki develops its temperament from 6000 rpm, but cannot outperform the Yamaha in any area.
Hats off, Yamaha, another successful litter after the MT-09. On the chassis side, the Yamaha MT-07 looks even more harmonious than its big sister. She is sociable, comfortable, without airs. The engine has excellent manners. Is lively, powerful, cultivated. And the price has been calculated extremely hard.
The Kawasaki is still a personable and honest motorcycle. But she cannot deny her age. The engine tries hard, only lively at higher speeds. Retouching of the brakes and spring elements would be appropriate.
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