Well, say hello to the 20-year-old lineage of Yamaha’s FJR. As of 2021, Yamaha righteously paying homage to its entire duration of legit swag, the company decided to roll out a final show with the FJR1300ES Ultimate Editions.
Yamaha’s two-wheelers are generally any motorcyclist’s eye candy. Although most bikers won’t like the idea of an automatic transmission, the electrical revolution isn’t going to leave anything out of its box. Unlike how Honda uses a fully automated gearbox, Yamaha decided to let the rider feel a bit true with a clutchless gearbox. The semi-automatic transmission can be operated using switches or clutch pedals.
In early 2001, the Yamaha FJR1300 was introduced in Europe before being brought out in North America in 2002. Under the 2003 model year designation, the vehicles featured in a non-ABS version only. As of 2005, the FJR in North America was honed without tampering with the car structurally or its design. Instead, they decided to bring out an optional ABS model. Another recognizable feature was the adjustable vents present on the FJR1300, which gave the rider the option to direct air towards or away from the body.
Finally, in 2006, the base standard models offered a new Unified Braking System linked to the Anti-Lock Brake system.
Returning to the last era, the available FJR1300s are the:
- A (standard)
- AE (with electronic suspension and cornering LEDs)
- AS (Includes everything an AE has, but also has and also has a YCC-S system replacing the gear shift actuator and clutch)
Enough talk of lineage and historic yap; let’s cut to the chase and find out why we believe the FJR1300ES to be the best automatic transmission motorcycle on the market.
The FJR1300s Specs Are Damn Right Outstanding
The FJR1300s spec sheet screams how most of the details and ideologies implemented were way ahead of the thought process of the current industry.
The FJR1300ES is fueled by a relatively large 1,298 cc DOHC 4valve, 16 cylinder engine. The bike produces around 141 HP at a tire-shredding 8000 RPM and 99 pound-feet of torque at 7000 RPM.
As expected of a high-end sports tourer, the FJR1300AS has a blissful top speed of 154 MPH and can blaze to 60 MPH within 11.3 seconds.
The Liquid-cooled engine is beneficial on two ends. The fluid not only helps impair most of the mechanical noises generated in situ, but it also naturally accounts for less heat brushing past the rider in long journeys.
Since 2016, FJRs came with a six-speed gearbox, a new Assist-and-Slipper clutch, or an electronic clutchless gear system. The main motive behind this was to reduce the clutch-lever effort while increasing clamp load and limiting back-torque.
The new helically-cut gears with a larger sixth gear in the transmission allow smoother shifting with no driveline-lash clunking. Yamaha even goes to the height to install Yamaha’s Chip Controlled Throttle (YCC-T). This bad boy manages induction with the fuel-injected throttle bodies.
The sports tourer provides two different flexible power output profiles. One is for day-to-day casual smooth cruising, and the other is a sportier version with better throttle responses.
Last but not least, the traction control system reduces fuel input from injectors by closing the secondary throttle plate in the YCC-T when any wheel slip is noticed.
FJR1300s Ride Comfort Is Unrivalled
Since the FJR1300ES is deemed as a luxurious, sporty tourer, it only is a matter of time that Yamaha inclines to incorporate frames from Yamaha’s mainstream sportbikes.
The chassis is an all-aluminum frame that enhances a sturdy and beefy balance of strength and power with flexibility at a wet weight of 296kg to find the right balance at the core. The lengthened aluminum swingarm accounts for a better rear suspension ideology by pushing the wheelbase out to 60.8 inches.
Meanwhile, the rake is still in the average sporty range at 26-degrees, and the 4.9-inch trail is spacious enough to make the FJR more stable, comfy, and less cumbersome for long-distance cruises.
ES came out with an Electronic suspension control that highlights the bike. It allows the rider to tune the suspension through a push-button manipulation amongst four different preload settings and a total of ten damping settings. It comes equipped with dual 320 mm front discs and a 282 mm rear disc linked with the Unified Brake System callipers to deliver an extremely balanced brake with low skid chances.
Although the bike’s weight may cause a bit of a weighted shoulder as you lean, the entire chassis is well distributed, and you wouldn’t even feel its presence.
Our Final Stance
With time growing fad, the refurbished lighting on the Yamaha FJR1300 gets a thumbs up with accurate LEDs placed to symbolize a beast. The cornering lights above the headlights auto-detect turn on as the vehicle is leaning and turning. The harder the lean, the more the LEDs illuminate.
Even after a couple of hundred miles in the saddle, if your back doesn’t ache and your shoulders don’t burn, the ergonomics are simply sweet. Most of it is merely a by-product of the adjustable seat height and plush seat.
In the end, the FJR1300ES, although being a semi-automatic transmission motorcycle, still competes well against the high-priced automatic ones.
Apart from being a visual beauty, the headlight can throw laser-sharp cones that pierce the darkness for good visibility, a legitimate harbinger of hope.
As sad as an ending could be, it is being discontinued. At the moment, nobody knows what the FJR1300 will be replaced with, but we all know that it will be god sent.
Among the six vehicles is a rare 1967 Dodge Polara convertible.
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