Yamaha FZ-09 Forum banner

1 - 20 of 34 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
957 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello, my name is Sean, I am 33, and I am from Pittsburgh, PA. I have been riding since 2008. My first bike was a Suzuki SV650. When I bought it, I was obese at 335 lbs. Learning to ride became even more difficult as a result. I made it a point to lose weight and after 5 years I got down to 200 lbs. I decided to try to reward myself by trading my SV650 in for a supersport. I got a 2006 Kawasaki ZX6R in May of this year. It was a decision I learned to regret because I found out after a few months of ownership that a supersport simply is not what I want in a motorcycle. The situations in which you can take advantage of their handling and power are too situational, and while I did do one track day in it which I enjoyed, I don't want something that is only good for the track since I like to commute. Basically, I want something that is a next logical step up from my old SV650 that has more of everything it had going for it, and doesn't have its shortcomings (most notably god awful suspension for anything other than commuting). Basically, I want something that is a nimble, naked bike with gobs of torque that is equally at home doing urban commuting, tearing up mountain roads, and doing the occasional track day, preferably without completely replacing the shocks/forks.

I made this account here because a friend is willing to take my Kawi off my hands so that I can get something more in line with what I want, and the FZ09 looks like it could be that bike. I am comparing it to possibly the KTM Duke 690 and Triumph Street Triple. So, FZ09 owners, based on your experience, is the FZ09 along the lines of what I would be looking for? Or should I look elsewhere? Thanks in advance! =)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
Sean, first of all, congrats on your weight loss, that is a huge accomplishment! To answer your question, I have had my FZ-09 since the end of September and I absolutely love it. My last bike was an FZ1 and in my opinion the FZ-09 pulls just as hard. I am 5'11, 195 pounds, and this bike just takes off when you turn the throttle. I have cycled through several bikes, including an R6, trying to find that balance between performance and ergonomics, and the FZ-09 delivers more than any other bike I have ridden. I think the FZ-09 fits every one of the characteristics you mention in your post, in my opinion it sounds like the exact bike you are looking for! It's a super sport bike that is actually comfortable to ride all day long. You will be just as happy commuting as you will burning through twisties on the weekend. I really don't think you could go wrong with the FZ-09.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
957 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Sean, first of all, congrats on your weight loss, that is a huge accomplishment! To answer your question, I have had my FZ-09 since the end of September and I absolutely love it. My last bike was an FZ1 and in my opinion the FZ-09 pulls just as hard. I am 5'11, 195 pounds, and this bike just takes off when you turn the throttle. I have cycled through several bikes, including an R6, trying to find that balance between performance and ergonomics, and the FZ-09 delivers more than any other bike I have ridden. I think the FZ-09 fits every one of the characteristics you mention in your post, in my opinion it sounds like the exact bike you are looking for! It's a super sport bike that is actually comfortable to ride all day long. You will be just as happy commuting as you will burning through twisties on the weekend. I really don't think you could go wrong with the FZ-09.
Thanks. How is the suspension on it for more aggressive riding? I've read on some reviews that's its weak point.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
611 Posts
Welcome!

You hit the nail on the head. Lot of posts about what the adjustments get you or don't lol and one of our members, stoltec moto, is working on some suspension stuff.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk - now Free
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
957 Posts
Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Thanks all! So I have the bikes I am considering narrowed down to the FZ-09 and the KTM 690 Duke. I want a nimble, torquey, sporty naked bike that will be seeing double duty as both an urban commuter and a weekend mountain road warrior that will be ridden hard whenever the road gives me the opportunity. The occasional track day is also not out of the question. Out of all of the bikes currently on the market nothing else (outside of exotic Italians) looks like it would offer what I want. I am trying to do as much research as I can to find out as much about these models as possible. I will be buying sometime during the winter season to get the best deal possible and my local dealer happens to be a Yamaha/KTM dealer.

I like to avoid freeways whenever possible, so freeway/interstate performance is probably the least of my concerns (although I do plan on taking the OCCASIONAL trip across state lines so it's not COMPLETELY unimportant)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
663 Posts
Hey Sean. Watch the video under the thread world's funniest ride report. It's also posted under MT-09 going 137 mph. It's actually quite accurate, and offers a 30 minute view of the bike in action.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
957 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Hey Sean. Watch the video under the thread world's funniest ride report. It's also posted under MT-09 going 137 mph. It's actually quite accurate, and offers a 30 minute view of the bike in action.
I watched that video (I saw there are multiple posts on here linking it) and it definitely does add a lot of info to my arsenal but it doesn't address the one nagging question I have been asking myself:

The main reason I got rid of the SV650 in the first place is because, while it had a beautiful engine, the stock suspension needed a complete overhaul (replaced shock, rebuilt front forks) to be ridden in an aggressive manner by a more experienced rider. Because reviews I've read indicate that the suspension is the FZ-09's real weak point, I'm wondering if it's as bad as it was on the SV650 (needing virtually every bit replaced essentially to be capable of aggressive riding).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
957 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
I just got off the phone with a sales rep from a local dealer that stocks both KTM and Yamaha, so I know they would have nothing to gain from telling me one is better than the other when it isn't true since they'd be getting a sale either way. He said that the Yamaha FZ09 is basically the only bike on the market that would suit my needs that doesn't cost upwards of 10k and isn't made by a European brand known for questionable reliability, and that the Duke doesn't quite cut the mustard for my intended purposes and is more or less a toy. So basically it's pretty much set in stone at this point that it's gonna be the FZ-09 =)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
619 Posts
I just got off the phone with a sales rep from a local dealer that stocks both KTM and Yamaha, so I know they would have nothing to gain from telling me one is better than the other when it isn't true since they'd be getting a sale either way. He said that the Yamaha FZ09 is basically the only bike on the market that would suit my needs that doesn't cost upwards of 10k and isn't made by a European brand known for questionable reliability, and that the Duke doesn't quite cut the mustard for my intended purposes and is more or less a toy. So basically it's pretty much set in stone at this point that it's gonna be the FZ-09 =)
I think your dealer is giving you the straight dope. I was choosing between the 690 Duke and the Husqvarna TR 650 Strada this spring. little more apples to apples comparison, because they're both singles. The duke puts out more horsepower, but from reviews I found (esp. this one)
I picked the Husky
I think a lot of tests downplayed the KTM's vibration and that would annoy the hell out of me. From what you've described about your riding habits, I would imagine the Yamaha would be a better choice. I think Yamaha has a much better reputation for reliability and less-expensive maintenance than KTM also.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
957 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
I've never owned a bike with switchable power modes before. Can anyone give me a straight dope on the differences between the 3 power modes? I've read magazine comparisons but I'd rather hear it from someone "real" if that makes sense.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
957 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
Okay, not TOO happy about this, but I can wait I guess...

I spoke with two local dealerships who said they have no plans of getting any in until the Spring. The fall and winter seasons are especially slow and the focus is mainly to sell off what they already have on the showroom floor during this time. They will order one upon request, but that means being subject to whatever price they name and not being able to haggle with them even a little bit.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
957 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Wow. Sure you didn't walk into a Harley dealer by mistake?
Yup. I called two local Yamaha dealerships. One is a location nearby to my house that is a relatively small dealership, and the other is a large major powersports dealership out on the edge of the county. They both fed me the same line (not exact word for word but close to it). Something along the lines of "We typically don't request any new models during this time of year because sales are slow and we focus more on liquidating showroom stock in preparation for the Spring, when sales pick up again. However if you are interested in one, we can place an order for you." And I know what placing an order means. It means being bent over a barrel price-wise and having absolutely NO room to negotiate.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
957 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
I wonder if going to the dealership in person helps, shows that you are serious etc.
I hope so but I don't see how it would in this situation. In any case, it looks like I'm stuck waiting for the Spring to see a FZ-09 in the metal rather than a leftover '13 FZ8. That is, if I want any room to negotiate over pricing.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
611 Posts
I've never owned a bike with switchable power modes before. Can anyone give me a straight dope on the differences between the 3 power modes? I've read magazine comparisons but I'd rather hear it from someone "real" if that makes sense.
A mode = Aww yeah!
B mode = boring
Std mode = 1 minute into your ride and you realize you haven't put it into A mode yet.

j/k


The bike defaults to STD. It only affects the throttle. You will most likely keep it in this mode MOST of the time. A mode is more responsive and B mode is less responsive.

In all honesty, A mode is fine until you hit some bumpy ground and then it can get a little exciting. I don't have exact numbers, but A and B are like 20-ish% on either side of STD. I normally toggle between A and STD. When I am in town, I will keep it in a higher gear to help with the responsiveness, but in all honesty, I still forget now and then and do the FZ09 jerky jerk now and then. No one else notices but me..They are too busy going "God [email protected], that's a sick bike", lol.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
957 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
A mode = Aww yeah!
B mode = boring
Std mode = 1 minute into your ride and you realize you haven't put it into A mode yet.

j/k


The bike defaults to STD. It only affects the throttle. You will most likely keep it in this mode MOST of the time. A mode is more responsive and B mode is less responsive.

In all honesty, A mode is fine until you hit some bumpy ground and then it can get a little exciting. I don't have exact numbers, but A and B are like 20-ish% on either side of STD.
So as long as you're on a road that isn't all torn up you're gonna wanna keep it in A, pretty much? Good to know.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
595 Posts
I would say you may find the suspension a bit on the soft side, but at my great age (58) and weight 220, it's OK by me.
The damping is a bit weak - I had to turn the rebound screw in full on the back to control wallowing and the screw in front is 1/2 turn from closed to slow the rebound.
Did you check out the Triumph Tiger 800? I don't know why they keep comparing the 675 street triple, when they should be looking at the tiger.

Looks like you may not get one till spring anyway. Prices should be coming down by then anyway
 

·
Vendor
Joined
·
3,297 Posts
A mode = Aww yeah!
B mode = boring
Std mode = 1 minute into your ride and you realize you haven't put it into A mode yet.

j/k


The bike defaults to STD. It only affects the throttle. You will most likely keep it in this mode MOST of the time. A mode is more responsive and B mode is less responsive.

In all honesty, A mode is fine until you hit some bumpy ground and then it can get a little exciting. I don't have exact numbers, but A and B are like 20-ish% on either side of STD. I normally toggle between A and STD. When I am in town, I will keep it in a higher gear to help with the responsiveness, but in all honesty, I still forget now and then and do the FZ09 jerky jerk now and then. No one else notices but me..They are too busy going "God [email protected], that's a sick bike", lol.
He pretty much hit the nail on the head with the modes. Personally, I think A mode is an absolute riot and the only reason I don't use it ALL the time is when I forget that the bike defaults into STD at start-up. That said, the opinions you read on the 'jerkiness' will be all over the place for one reason alone: you're getting input from a LOT of DIFFERENT riders that are coming off of all sorts of bikes. If you're coming off of a lesser powered bike, or something without as much torque, then A mode will feel 'touchy'. If you're used to a bike with tremendous torque and great throttle response, you've likely already developed a smooth approach to the throttle. This is not a rag on anyone or their skill. Merely that A mode is essentially a 'fast twist throttle' on an already quick revving engine. It takes some getting used to...but be smooth, loosen up on the bars/grips, and you'll smile from ear to ear!

I would say you may find the suspension a bit on the soft side, but at my great age (58) and weight 220, it's OK by me.
The damping is a bit weak - I had to turn the rebound screw in full on the back to control wallowing and the screw in front is 1/2 turn from closed to slow the rebound.
Did you check out the Triumph Tiger 800? I don't know why they keep comparing the 675 street triple, when they should be looking at the tiger.

Looks like you may not get one till spring anyway. Prices should be coming down by then anyway
This bike is a lot closer to a Street Triple than a Tiger 800. Although the 09 makes more power than the 675, the bike's character is in line with the ST3 more than the Tiger...in terms of weight, dimensions, tire sizes, power delivery, price, and intent. The 800 is an ADV bike (albeit a very good one).

Now regarding the comment about comparing this to your SV650's suspension. I'd rate this as slightly better, but not much. This bike will be great for some riders, and not for others; only you can say which side you're on. You can have a lot of fun with this bike bone stock - but there is a lot of potential locked away in those budget suspenders. The SV is a great bike (had two of em), but at the end of the day, you're still on a ~70 hp bike. Stock, the 09's engine and brakes are leaps and bounds better. The suspension is really the only 'fly in the ointment'. And as alluded to, that fly is being promptly removed...
 
1 - 20 of 34 Posts
Top