2019 Yamaha Tracer 900 GT Sport Tourer Review: More Tourer Than Sport

OVERVIEW

The Yamaha Tracer 900 replaces the FJ-09 in Yamaha’s lineup of sport touring bikes. Yamaha has updated the bike 2019 model year and mad available in both a standard version and as the Yamaha Tracer 900 GT – a premium, tour-ready GT bike.

The 847cc triple motor was introduced on the 2014 FZ-09 with a Crossplane Concept Crankshaft. In 2015, it was joined by the FJ-09, a more practical and user-friendly sport touring ride, built around the same potent engine. To simplify its model choices in the global marketplace, Yamaha opted to rename the FZ-09 as the MT-09 and to call the FJ-09 the Tracer 900.

In terms of its visual magnetism, the Tracer 900 GT showcases new bodywork all around. There’s a reshaped headlight assembly, slimmer hand guards and new “triangular pyramid” fairing panels that improve airflow. The basic body (fenders and tank) color is Raven metallic, while the new fairing panels are sprayed Silver metallic with Yamaha’s circular tuning fork logo and Black and Neon Blue Graphics. The overall flavor is that of a sport bike with touring attributes and pleasing ergonomics. The centrally-positioned TFT display is a tad small, but it is highly legible in varied light conditions. The upright seating position remains with centrally located rider pegs and plenty of legroom for ensured comfort, though they are in close proximity to the passenger pegs.

The base price is set at $12,999. Fully loaded, with only the $375, the destination charge tacked on, bringing the final count and amount to $13,374.

TOURING GEAR

The Tracer 900 GT model comes ready to hit the highways, byways and backroads. They’re equipped with standard 22.0-liter hard, locking saddlebags that are easily removed (using the ignition key), and a reshaped, larger hand-adjustable windscreen, enhanced suspension with a fully-adjustable fork and linked shock adjustable for rebound and preload. An extended swingarm (lengthened 2.4-inches) improves straight-line stability and corner exiting without affecting the light, agile steering. There’s also cruise control, a clutchless quickshifter, a 12-volt electrical outlet, a full-color TFT display, heated grips and handguards.

Seats for both the rider and passenger have been reshaped and are thicker, with the adjustable height of the seat increased somewhat to a range of 33.5/34.1 inches. Footpeg brackets and grab handles feature a new design. Handlebars are narrower and are within a comfortable reach.

PERFORMANCE

Propulsion is courtesy of an 847cc liquid-cooled inline three-cylinder engine. The engine is rated at 105 horsepower, with 60 lb-ft of torque. Energy is geared to the rear wheel via the final drive’s O-Ring chain through a compact 6-speed transmission with multiplate assist and slipper clutch.

The Tracer 900 GT rolls on Dunlop SportMaxx D222 tires mounted on five-spoke Neon Blue alloy wheels. Reining in the powerful sport tourer are 298 mm hydraulic discs in the front and a 245 mm disc in the rear.

Suspension components consist of 41mm fully-adjustable gold anodized inverted forks, with 5.4-inches of travel up front. Out back, there’s a single shock swingarm with 5.6 inches of travel.

Drive modes

The 2019 Yamaha Tracer 900 GT serves up a customizable menu for a variety of riding scenarios utilizing Yamaha’s exclusive ride-by-wire Chip Controlled Throttle (YCC-T). That system was derived from MotoGP technology, and powers the Tracer’s rider aids. That includes D-Mode adjustable throttle response, the integrated multi-mode Traction Control System (TCS), cruise control and quick shifter feature.

The Drive mode switch allows choosing the Standard Mode, which is for various riding conditions. Mode “A” delivers sportier engine response in low to mid-speed range. Mode “B” that is a little less crisp compared to STD” – It’s meant for riding scenarios requiring really sensitive throttle operation. Modifying the selection is possible on the fly.

Low speed balance and control are remarkable, with canyon carving capability added for good measure, keeping in mind that the pegs are long and thereby prone to scraping. The quick-shift feature allows upshifting without the clutch at speeds of at least 12 mph or with the engine at 2300 rpm or more, and only when accelerating. This can make riding more enjoyable when the shift switch, which is located just above the shift pedal is turned on.

TFLOFFROAD’S TAKE

The Tracer has both a side stand and a center stand. Vertically challenged riders may encounter some difficulty in throwing a leg over to mount. The hard saddlebags are somewhat elevated. The directional signals are not self-cancelling, but there is a gear indicator in the TFT along with most other functions such as indicator and warning lights.

If you have the choice of one bike, the 2019 Yamaha Tracer 900 GT sport tourer should be a serious contender on your list. It’s highly versatile, being well suited to daily commuting, short fun jaunts or longer road trips. It’s quick, well balanced, comfortable, really good-looking and affordable.

SPECIFICATIONS: 2019 Yamaha Tracer 900 GT Sport Tourer

On Sale: Now
Base MSRP: $12,999
Price as Tested:
$13,374
Engine: 847cc, 12-valve inline three-cylinder with Transistor Controlled Ignition.
Horsepower: 105 hp
Torque: 60 lb-ft
Transmission: 6-speed multi-plate assist and slipper clutch
Suspension: Front: 41mm inverted forks, fully adjustable with 5.4 inches of travel

Rear: Single shock, adjustable preload (with remote adjuster) and rebound damping, with 5.6 inches of travel

Brakes: Front: Dual 298 mm hydraulic discs w/ ABS

Rear: 245 mm hydraulic disc w/ ABS

Tires: Front: Dunlop SportMaxx D222- 120/70 ZR17 MC

Rear: Dunlop SportMaxx D222 180/55 ZR17MC

Fuel capacity: 4.8 gallons

Dimensions:

Wheelbase: 59.1 inches
Length: 85.0 inches
Seat height: 33.5 – 34.1 inches
Rake (Caster): 24.0 degrees
Trail: 65.1 inches
Ground Clearance: 5.3 inches – maximum
Curb Weight: 474 pounds