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Discussion Starter #1
A few Sundays back I was riding out west of Austin and passed a Yamaha sportbike that had some type of articulated swing-arm front end. I vaguely remember the bike from the late 80's or early 90's. Anybody know what it was? Size motor, years produced, handling characteristics, etc. The bike obviously had been well-maintained. Unfortunately, I didn't have the time to wave the guy down as the sun was pretty low and I had over 100 miles to ride to get home.
 

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Thanks Nitrous. Looks like it was intended to go after the sport-touring market against the ST1100, Concours, etc. Yamaha must not have been able to move enough of them. The spec sheet shows it to be more advanced than anything available in that segment eight years later. Too bad it didn't catch on. It reminds me of Honda's VT500 Ascot. Beautiful little V-twin sport cruiser they killed after only 1 year. I'd pay dearly to get that VT with a 750 or 1100 cc motor.
 

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From what I remember, it was a very competent bike but didn't sell that well. I would imagine that it was a little bit too weird for the people in the Concours/ST1100 market. I think it was also pretty expensive which would never help sell something that radically different.
 

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it was expensive. really expensive (even but sport touring standards, but cheap by today's standards). i think they sold them in 93 and 94. from what i remember it was yamaha's first attempt at seeing if the radd front-end would do well. and they thought sport touring wouldn't be as harsh of a segment as sportbikes. bimota understands that. the tesi wasn't exactly a big seller either. but what bimota was?
 

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Yep, the Yamaha GTS-1000 was a unique piece, and way, way ahead of its time. Had ABS, electronic fuel injection, and the James Parker designed RADD swingarm front-end, not to mention its aluminum "Omega" frame (which was basically nothing more than a "loop" around each side of the engine lower-end). It used the FZ-1000 five-valve motor, and was really quite quick, but ...

It was heavy (553 lbs., if memory serves me correctly), brutally expensive for a Japanese sport tourer in 1993 and 1994 (over $12,000.00, again, if memory serves ...), and though it handled wonderfully and was more than competitive feature-wise with the other sport touring bikes at the time (BMW's, ST1100's, Concours', etc.), it was perhaps just a bit *too* radical for the sport touring crowd at that time. Having a chain drive hurt it in that market segment, too.

Was introduced in the USA in 1993, but only lasted through 1994, with Yamaha actually having non-current 1994's in inventory for sale on into 1997, I believe. Continued to be sold in Europe right until the 2000 model year if I am not mistaken, and has now been replaced by the FZR1300 sport touring model.

Hope this helps!
 

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Yeah, I remember going through some old bike mags awhile bakc and I saw one of them picked this bike as bike of the year. 1993 I think?
 

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Another factor that killed it was that the RADD front end had limited steering lock (like the Tesi), meaning it had the turning circle of a barge.

With that much weight you don't want problems doing U-turns.


:)
 

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Here is a photo i found if some of you don't know exactly what it looked like
 

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