Torque About Town Yamaha MT-09 ABS | Bike Tests | Latest Tests
We last took a look at Yamaha’s MT-09 in our 2014 Motorcycle of The Year (AMCN Vol 64 No 11) and
the consensus was that this is a great value-for-money bike with lots of low-down grunt to satisfy the inner hooligan.
The main drawback though, was its jerky ride-by-wire fuelling. If you weren’t riding it like you stole it you had to put up with a sensitive response from a closed throttle. Putting it into its more reserved B-mode helped alleviate the snatchiness but takes away what the MT-09 is about – monster torque.
It seems the people at Yamaha listened and for 2015 the revised MT-09 has a much smoother throttle response in each of the modes. The standard mode is for general riding and shenanigans, A-mode has an almost instant throttle response and gives you all the character the MT-09’s 847cc triple can deliver, and then there’s B-mode which has a more relaxed power output, great for use in the wet and in stop-start traffic.
The twin radial four-pot calipers and 298mm floating discs always had plenty of stopping power with a decent bite. Now you have the option of ABS and for an extra $500, why wouldn’t you opt in? Especially if you’re an everyday rider – it gives you a little extra peace of mind, should the unexpected happen. And in case you’re wondering, no, you can’t switch the ABS off.
The MT-09 is one of the most fun middleweights you can ride straight off the showroom floor
The MT-09 is still as agile as ever, weighing in at 185.75kg wet (191kg wet for the ABS model) thanks to Yamaha’s engineers perfecting the metallurgy needed for a CF (Controlled Filling) die-cast aluminium frame, swingarm and lightweight 10-spoke alloy wheels.
Its wide handlebars will have you throwing the bike in and out of corners like a motard, but the suspension is still on the soft side, so you will get a bit of rear-end squat under hard acceleration.
For most riders the standard suspension set-up will be fine for daily tasks and weekend blats. But for those that want to spend a bit more money on their MT-09, there’s plenty of suspension options out there to get it up to race spec if that’s what you’re after.
The 2015 model also has the same 14L tank which will get you around 290kms with a mix of freeway and spirited riding. For $11,799 the MT-09 ABS is one of the most fun middleweights you can ride straight off the showroom floor; if the price isn’t enough to entice you, just wait till you roll on the throttle and experience the joy of a threesome of cylinders.