Jeff Pamer: I’ve been patiently waiting to do a write up on one of these. This bike, more than any other in the past couple of years has had me visiting dealers. Unlike most of the retro classic bikes on the market, the XSR leans more heavily on the side of modern than classic. That doesn’t mean that it doesn’t have its roots firmly planted in Yamaha heritage. The bike is heavily influenced by Yamaha’s XS line that that began with the release of the XS650 in 1969. Interestingly, the design of the XS650 was not even originally Yamaha’s. They got the design with they acquired the Showa Corporation in 1960.
The XSR900 is a fitting nod to the XS650 in that it’s not really a new bike at all. It’s essentially an MT-09 in different clothes. The XSR does step away from the MT in a couple of ways. When the XSR was released in 2016, it came with a lot more kit than the FZ-09 came with (note the confusing FZ/MT name change). The XSR came with traction control, slipper clutch, adjustable suspension, and front forks that were completely redesigned for the XSR. One of the big similarities between the two bikes is the 847cc triple that powers both bikes. This engine is a darling of the industry. The riding position is slightly different as well, the XSR being a little more upright with wider bars. Yamaha markets the XSR as a highly customizable bike with Yamaha parts or aftermarket items.
This 2017 XSR with 2,200 miles on the clock is a good example of how the platform lends itself to customization. The seller has a list of modifications on the post, including a factory seat cowl, aftermarket seat, fender eliminator, and Woodcraft handlebar just to name a few. The bike also comes with an extended warranty that lasts until August 2021.
Find this 2017 Yamaha XSR900 in Queens, New York for $6,800 here on Craigslist.