6 Nov 2015

Yamaha My Garage app - XSR700

I have not heard a lot of possitive ractions about the looks of Yamaha's new twin, the XSR700.
And that's probably because it looks like a mess in the standard trim. The lines go everywhere on this bike. To many ideas, every part of this bike seems to be designed by an other designer. A clear vision is what is missing. Probably because Yamaha re-used lot's of parts from the MT-07 to save costs. Wheels, engine, parts of the frame, etc. And it shows. This thing looks like a compromise and that's a real shame because the concept is great. Great twin in line engine, nice frame, light weight, yamaha's first real answer to the custom new wave scene. The competition showed the way with the Ducati Scrambler and the BMW RnineT. This XSR700 could have been such a great bike with the XS650 heritage. This should have been the ultimate no nonsense, less is more bike. The perfect modern version of the base model that could be changed into almost everything. That affordable, super reliable, light weight, good looking, blank canvas every custom builder dreams off. I think the designers of the iconic XS650 must be crying in a dark corner some where. But maybe it was just a false start.

Yamaha launched the Yamaha My Garage app.
Could it be possible to change this ugly duckling into a swan with some new factory parts?

The answer is of course yes, but unfortunately not with the options that Yamaha now has online.

With the the app I changed the seat with the weird lines into the solo seat. And just for fun I added the harmonica rubbers and the black radiator covers. For some reason the exhaust is missing in some of the rendering shots. I have to say it already looks a lot better with this new seat. Less chaos, but still...
The rest of the options are only adding extra noise to the design instead of cleaning it up. Come on guys, you can do better than this! People strip their bikes to give it a clean look. Where's that rear mudguard removal kit? If Triumph can offer it for their new Bonnie, Yamaha can do it too. Give options to make the bike lighter or to make it look lighter. Don't add extra noise. It's to noisy already!

There's still a lot of the weird stuff going on on the XSR700. I hoped they would have made more parts to address this. The weirdly shaped headlight that is mounted to high. The bunny ears handlebars. It would look and probably handle so much better with a superbike bar or low mx bars.
That plastic thingy on the rear frame, protector. Please throw it in the bin.. The floating front mudguard. To high, to chunky. It could work with some nice scrambler tires but now it looks out of place. The Y spoke rims look great but what about that rib in the center of the rim? That is again just added noise. And the hunchback gas tank with all those strange angles on the wrong spots, I don't think anybody likes that thing.

Yes all these things can be changed and custom builders will no doubt show that in the following months with the Yard Built program. But it could have been so much better from the start. Let's hope the XSR900 is looking much cleaner. Keep it simple guys. Less is more.