Yamaha FZ-6S

23 Apr 2015 | Author: | Comments Off on Yamaha FZ-6S
Yamaha FZ 6S

Trevor Hedge

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Fire breathing superbike, lightweight commuter, scooter, dirtbike, it doesn’t matter. Two wheel fun gets delivered in all sorts of ways and the smile when you take your helmet off rarely changes no matter what your ride. Sometimes though a bike proves a whole lot more fun than you imagine and the FZ-6S is the type of mount that pleasantly surprises.

Versatile and sporty commuter style motorcycles need three things on their side. Great balance, manageable weight and sensible gearing. Yamaha’s FZ-6S delivers on all three criteria and would make a much more suitable first step in to middle and large capacity motorcycling than a full monty sportsbike for many riders.

After managing a consistent 225km/h at the end of Phillip Island’s main straight every lap I was curious to see if a better run onto the straight, combined with some talent and much later entry into turn, one would bring much improvement. In the quest of scientific research I sent Superbike legend Kevin Magee out to see what he could do. The Foxtel presenter only improved on that mark by 6km/h. That result clearly demonstrated that the gearing on the FZ-6S is spot on.

The speed range across the six ratios gives the machine plenty of pep around town while also allowing the YZF-R6 sourced engine to spin freely up to 14,000rpm in top.

Cruising at 110km/h sees the 600cc mile turning 6000rpm. That sounds like a lot but the FZ-6S is really just purring along at those rpm and never feels as though it is working hard. The Yamaha is much more comfortable at highway speeds than Triumph’s Street Triple.

The brakes are impressive. The front takes a decent squeeze for maximum braking effect but this poses no problems and can actually prove an advantage for inexperienced riders when grip is an issue. The rear brake is outstanding in both power and feel.

ABS is unfortunately not available.

The suspension is up to all but the most aggressive riding. The rear damping can go away a little when really having a red hot go but stay smooth and a decent pace can be generated at track days. All but perhaps the quickest 10 or 20 per cent of riders would find the machine more capable than them when the going gets hot.

Commuting with a pillion would pose no problems but getting serious in the hills with a passenger might be a bit too much to ask of the rear shock.

I backed up my track experience with 1250 road kilometres astride the FZ-6S and the smile rarely left my dial throughout.

The riding position is a great balance between comfort and sport. Sit high and relaxed in the seat, or get your head over the inside bar and put some body language into the equation. The FZ-6S is happy either way.

The mirrors are brilliant and the generous 19.4 litre fuel tank consistently returns a touring range in excess of 300km.

Yamaha updated the FZ-6S for 2007 with nicer instruments and a more attractive swingarm. 2007 and later models also scored refined fuel injection mapping to provide a little more mid-range grunt and the braking hardware was upgraded with higher spec’ four-piston monobloc calipers. The later models are also slightly more comfortable for both rider and pillion with a better seat and passenger legroom.

Low kilometre secondhand models can be a good buy with the post 2007 models more sought after. A 2008 model is currently for sale on drive.com.au for $8690 with only 8531km on the clock.

Yamaha dealers sell the latest FZ-6S for $11,499 plus on road costs. A naked version dubbed the FZ-6N is $500 cheaper.

Yamaha FZ 6S
Yamaha FZ 6S
Yamaha FZ 6S
Yamaha FZ 6S
Yamaha FZ 6S
Yamaha FZ 6S

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