Yamaha Tracer 700 in the top test

Yamaha Tracer 700 in the top test

Corn thing

Harvest preparation at Yamaha: The bustling market darling MT-07 should mature with a shovel of long-distance suitability as the Yamaha Tracer 700 into the ultimate entry-level all-rounder. Ear to whom ear is due? The top test separates the wheat from the chaff.

AT.Heavy-duty tractors with a thrust of six hundred pounds, 200-horsepower grenades, full of control electronics right up to the tank cap, and retro, retro, retro – these are the topics the motorcycle world is currently about. But what about the (lower) middle? What about bread-and-butter machines, straightforward, simple bikes made from real grist and grain? It may be that the public eye goes to motorcycles of other caliber. But in reality it is still the middle-graders who buy and drive, in reality out on the street, as the registration statistics show. And for a good reason.

Yamaha Tracer 700 in the top test

Corn thing

Yamaha have had the thickest potatoes in the field for some time. MT-09 and MT-07 are known to go to the harvest festival like Pils beer. The little 07 stayed at number two on the hit list for months, where the 09 stayed for a long time before. And its touring offshoot, the Tracer 900, now drives out of the showrooms more often than its naked sister. So it is crystal clear that Yamaha is ordering the field completely and is now also providing the MT-07 with a half-clad touring version. The child goes by the name of the Yamaha Tracer 700, with 200 hp, control electronics and retro, has nothing to do with it and still has what it takes to create a real stir.

The entry-level all-rounder from Yamaha

In the eyes of many, the 07 is the most balanced MT and the Tracer the better 09. And so the Yamaha Tracer 700 is preparing to become the best, roundest MT of all and to roll up the market as a stylish entry-level all-rounder. In any case, it shouldn’t be due to a lack of attractiveness, because as with the Tracer 900, the Yamaha designers have also shown a lucky hand with the Tracy 700.

The little one clearly shows that she belongs to the unquestionably elegant large stable sister. Where its sleek edges reflect the sleek character of the great three-cylinder, the Tracer 700 rounds these lines somewhat and thus gives an indication of the more pleasant, sociable character of its crossplane twin. You could call it honest technical aesthetics. Or a bit spiteful: among the other inexpensive all-rounders, the Yamaha Tracer 700 looks like a fox in a goose stable.

At its core MT-07?

Once again, the engineers use the modular and common parts principle to make the single-naked MT-07 suitable for long journeys. Frame (slightly modified), engine (identical in construction, but with Euro 4), chassis, the essential components are essentially MT-07. More rear frame and swing arm (plus 50 millimeters, aluminum instead of steel) provide more space, more tank (17 instead of 14 liters) means a greater range, and the adjustable windshield should allow you to enjoy this in one piece. Tea seat test on the Yamaha Tracer 700 already reveals that the changes in ergonomics are very beneficial.

You sit higher, at 830 millimeters (instead of 810), which thanks to the beautifully narrow waist are still considered moderate. Much higher and a lot closer to the pilot, the handlebar of the Yamaha Tracer 700, which is wider than the MT-07, but rather narrow in comparison to the class, falls almost automatically into the hand. The seating position was more central, less over the rear wheel than with the naked sister. For the author, who measures 1.73 meters on good days, the upright, comfortable ergonomics deserve the predicate "almost ideal" thanks to the pleasantly open knee angle. Even more extensive drivers confirm that there is sufficient space.

Always relaxed and never stressed

So far, so good, let’s go threshing. The starter engages, the two-cylinder of the Yamaha Tracer 700 immediately pulsates discreetly, the clutch slips briefly, and with the first turn of the wheel, the beautiful MT-07 feeling of well-being is present, which comes primarily from the creamy 689 cubic crossplane twin. "It can be driven lazily, hangs wonderfully gently on the gas, reacts perfectly to gas commands and, if necessary, turns furiously up to higher speeds. If this twin were human, one would say: He is always relaxed, never appears stressed and is extremely resilient and powerful."

This is how it could be read in the top test of the MT-07 at the beginning of 2014, and so it can remain unchanged for the Tracer 700. The sister, which is still homologated according to Euro 3, lacks one or two horsepower and Newton meters in the middle, and the unit has twelve extra kilos in the Tracer (still comparatively lightweight at 196 kilos). Nevertheless, one has to say: These 75 HP motorize remarkably well. Even with the Euro 4 update, the crossplane twin remains the benchmark in its class and a grin-maker. The clutch of the Yamaha Tracer 700 runs smoothly, the transmission shifts solidly.

Adjustment of the rebound stage would be desirable

However, the chassis of the MT-07 never received such high praise. It drives wonderfully manageable and agile, "bicycle-like" if you will, but with soft suspension and particularly underdamped at the rear, rather gummy in faster corners. It is good and important that Yamaha has achieved a significant improvement with the chassis modifications. The extension of the swing arm and, accordingly, the wheelbase by 50 millimeters brings a lot of calm away from the spot. Length runs, you know. A modified deflection with more progression along with an adjusted spring rate makes the rear of the Yamaha Tracer 700 stand higher and thus ensures significantly increased reserves.

Where the MT-07 sinks in deeply, hangs on the ropes with the pillion passenger and then stumbles like the servant after too much black-burnt fabric, the Yamaha Trace 700 is still nicely centered in the spring travel even when loaded. If you add a significantly more saturated damping, especially in the rebound stage, and a more homogeneous vehicle balance, the Tracer irons the MT-07 comprehensively in terms of driving behavior. Much less pumping and rocking, more driving stability, accuracy and serenity, ultimately fun. However: Even if the front fork is subjectively a bit softer (and at the same time underdamped) due to the changed balance, the crisp hindquarters is not necessarily conducive to comfort. Fast impacts are not processed very cleanly. And at least an adjustment option for the rebound stage at the rear would be desirable.

Spotless processing, equipment neat

Apart from the rear preload, the chassis lacks any adjustment options in contrast to the equally cheap competition. One of the very few obvious concessions to the dictates of the red pen. Apart from that, the Yamaha Tracer 700 skilfully disguises the cost pressure. All surfaces (with the exception of the unpainted cooler) look appealing, the workmanship is flawless, the equipment is neat. So more ear than stinginess, here there is really motorcycle for the money. The advantages of the modular system or the common parts strategy are particularly evident with the brake.

The same four-piston fixed calipers work at the front as they used to be found in the YZF-R1, and they also decelerate wonderfully on 282-millimeter discs. The crispest pressure point, sucking-licking dosing, strong bite – this is how you build a good mid-range brake. However, the rustic Yamaha ABS clearly tarnishes the idea of ​​the stopper. The control intervention is rough, with hard pulsing in the lever. If the conditions remain the same, the system produces a high stoppie when braking for the first time, which, depending on the driver’s stature and load condition, causes fear of rollover, only to irritate the next attempt by opening the brake for a long time . Perhaps the most measurable downside of the Yamaha Tracer 700.

Most complete, roundest of all MTs?

What was otherwise noticeable results primarily from the concept of the Tracer as a very sporty compact all-rounder and is therefore less of a criticism than a factual description of the special vehicle alignment. For example, the windshield of the rather filigree windshield surpasses the non-existent MT-07 by worlds, but the competitors want and can do more with larger windshields. However, it is still sufficient for fixed motorway stretches, even if the adjustment option is more cosmetic and the spoiler edge creates loud turbulence. The passenger comfort can be assessed according to the same principle: much, much more than with the MT-07 and therefore absolutely suitable for day trips, but not on the level of a V-Strom 650, for example. 171 kilos is simply far too little. So be careful when the sergeant checks that the permissible total weight is being adhered to. The little tracer finally makes good ground at the pump. Thanks to the fuel supply, which has increased by three to 17 liters, and a stingy highway consumption of 3.7 liters, the theoretical range is a generous 459 kilometers. That is at and above travel enduro level.

The Tracer 700 can be viewed either as a compact speedster suitable for touring or as a very sporty, lightweight all-rounder. Either way, it will sow a lot of wind in the competent, but so far rather bland-looking lower middle class. As with the three-cylinder 09, the same applies here without restriction: The Tracer is the better MT. And because the 07 is indeed the best medium MT, the Yamaha Tracer 700 can actually be considered the most complete, roundest of all MTs at an affordable price. Will this bring Yamaha the harvest? Ear-serviceable. Is there a comparison test in the next issue? Grain thing!

Technical data Yamaha Tracer 700

Compare MT-07 and Tracer 700

Photos: Yamaha

Stable nurses, with one trick: many things are the same, important things are different.

Once again the motto is: "The modular system makes it possible." With comparatively manageable changes, the minimalist MT-07 becomes the touring variant Tracer 700. However, far more than a half-shell was necessary.

The principle is not new. For a long time, manufacturers have been using as many identical parts as possible in order to reduce costs or increase added value for the customer when converting from naked to all-rounder (or vice versa). Wheels, frame (slightly modified), engine (with Euro 4 update), brakes – everything was taken over almost one-to-one.

However, the diagram reveals a major change: The 50 millimeter longer swing arm allows the wheelbase of the Yamaha Tracer 700 to grow accordingly. This brings calm to the chassis and, in conjunction with the modified shock absorber, is extremely beneficial to the driving behavior. The rest is simple: more fairing and windshield, higher handlebars, more tank, longer seat (further forward!). That creates touring competence and a lot of utility.

Features of the Yamaha Tracer 700

More: Oil level check – The amount and condition of the engine lubricant can be checked at a glance thanks to the practical sight glass.

More: First tires – especially when it comes to cheap motorcycles, it’s always a cause of annoyance. The Yamaha Tracer 700 shines here with the very good-natured Michelin Pilot Road 4. An ideal choice.

Minus: Fall part – The pseudo handguards lack stability, at best they keep the wind off. More than questionable whether they will survive an accident.

Minus: On-board computer – the cockpit is clear and informative, but it is far away and very difficult to operate while driving.

MOTORCYCLE conclusion


The Tracer 700 can be viewed either as a compact speedster suitable for touring or as a very sporty, lightweight all-rounder.

Nobody needs more motorcycle – this is the only way to sum up the Yamaha Tracer 700. Even after long pondering, we can’t think of a motorcycle for around 8,000 euros that serves everyday and long-distance suitability with so much fresh sportiness and still looks so outrageously pleasing. The engine is a creamy cake beyond the class, and thanks to intelligent changes, the environment now also fits.

Offers for the Yamaha Tracer 700

Used Yamaha Tracer 700 in Germany

So that the price doesn’t deter you from purchasing this first-class motorcycle, you should take a look at the used motorcycle market. There you can find the Yamaha Tracer 700 in top condition at affordable prices: Used Yamaha Tracer 700 in Germany

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