Yamaha Motors announced some mild improvements to its FZ-07 middleweight “hyper-naked” motorcycle, including an all-new name. Meet the Yamaha MT-07, restyled and upgraded for 2018. Changes include new bodywork, suspension tweaks, and more. The MT moniker – Masters of Torque, don’t cha know – goes along with Yamaha’s “Dark Side of Japan” marketing campaign to highlight the edgy nature of the 07 and its bigger bros, the MT-09 and MT-10.
The MT-07’s USA pricetag – including ABS, now standard for 2018 – is $100 more than the 2017’s $7,499 MSRP, but there are plenty of improvements for that Benjy. The bodywork is redone, including a new tank cover to mimic the MT-09’s air scoops, a smaller tail light, a re-done front fender and blacked-out components, because Dark Side of Japan and all that. There’s also a new seat, which should be a little roomier for larger riders.
We like the MT, née FZ-07, every time we ride it, but we’ve had complaints about the soft, underdamped suspension. For 2018, the MT-07 gets “sportier” – I assume that means firmer and more dive resistant – spring rates and damping settings in front, along with a rear shock with rebound adjustment as well as spring preload.
Sounds like a good package of improvements to match the revised MT-09 and new-for-2017 MT-10. We’re looking forward to our first ride.