It’s hard to believe these days that Yamaha was ever hard up, but around 2010 the brand had gotten a reputation of being a bit bland. Yamaha’s response was a triumph of motorcycling: when they were done, they had one of the best reviewed engines (and bikes) of 2014 and beyond. Yamaha’s head designer called it a “roaster motard”. We knew it as the FZ-09, and everyone else in the world knew it as the MT-09. Yamaha has since rebranded it MT the world over.
The MT-09 is the middle child in the MT series. On either side of it are the MT-07 and the MT-10. Both are fantastic bikes with fantastic engines, but the 09, like me, is the odd middle child. When I say odd, I of course mean the number of cylinders it has: three. Yamaha hadn’t produced a three-cylinder engine since 1981 in the XS750 and XS850. Troy Siahaan of Motorcycle.com has a great Yamaha Triple retrospective that you can check out here.
The 847cc liquid cooled triple released in the 2014 MT-09 easily won over the press. With 115 hp and 65 ft-lbs of torque available all the way through the rev range, it did more than win the press over, it moved the bar for affordable sport bikes. The 847 triple was so successful, it started being used all over Yamaha’s line including the XSR900, the Tracer 900, and most recently the insane Niken three wheeled machine. The MT-09 has gone on to improve over the years since its release. Yamaha has listened to customers and fixed the fueling which was said to be too twitchy, and the suspension which was reported as too soft. All these are small complaints. The MT-09 has changed the game, in the best way.
This North American branded 2016 FZ-09 is a garage kept, and the seller is reporting that it hasn’t ever seen a drop of rain. It has barely been broken in with 1,975 miles on it and has a few upgrades that are not listed. From the picture it looks like it has a fender eliminator and a windscreen. It’s an excellent example of an excellent bike, and a bike that happens to be on my short list of next new bikes.
Find this 2016 Yamaha FZ(MT)-09 in Mesa Arizona for $6,800 here on Craigslist.