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Prompted by Blackhat I’ve penned this short review of my MT-125. A few caveats first off. I’ve only been on two wheels since April of this year and only licenced since late July therefore assume I know nothing (my wife will happily confirm your assumption). My reason for getting another 125 (I sold my original YBR125 for a Foxeye Fazer) was that following a flare up of an old back injury I’ve found it very difficult to cope with the weight of the Fazer. The strength in my legs is apt to fail with little warning and has on two occasions led to me dropping the big bike whilst manoeuvring it off my property. Not good for the confidence. So I wanted something lighter but didn’t want to go back to anything basic. Didn’t like the Duke for no specific reason I could explain, I didn’t want a race inspired riding position so the shopping list was quite short. My daughter who currently rides a twist and go would also like the opportunity to get some time on a geared bike so it looked like a good idea.
Most of the bike mags have posted reviews by ‘real’ journos and the specs are easy to come by so I won’t rehash any of that here. So what’s it like ? Well performance wise it’s a learner legal 125 with all the restrictions that that entails. Apparently Yamaha say that the MT in the series stands for maximum torque. Not in this case. Dimension wise it’s very similar to the MT-07 and it feels like a ‘proper’ bike when you first sit on it. Handling is confidence inspiring, tracks well and turns in quickly. My first YBR always felt like a recalcitrant child in that you hoped all would go well but there was always a lingering doubt that if the going suddenly got tough it would misbehave, the MT125 is like that annoying cousin your parents always compared you to – the one that always did as they were told. In town it’s nippy in traffic and gets up to 30/40 without any fuss. The real revelation was in longer journeys, I live about an hours ride from the Yorkshire Dales and it has always been one of my favourite places (despite being the wrong side of the Lancashire/Yorkshire border) so I’ve been doing 150/170 mile round trips up there whilst the weather is kind and the roads dry. Brakes work without any fuss and the UK spec bike comes with Michelin Street Pilots. The gearbox was really smooth from day one (it still retains the Yamaha clunk when going into first though) and I haven’t found any false neutrals yet.
Fuel economy is astounding even when riding on the rev limiter
The pillion is designed solely to torture your passenger, don’t even think about it unless you’ve been smoking crack.
The mirrors are good, but not up to those on the Fazer.
Now for the moans, neither the clutch or front brake lever are span adjustable and at this price point I feel they should be. Those with smaller hands will struggle for a comfortable grip. The tank is shrouded in plastic so a no go area for magnetic tank bags (Yamaha will sell you their system which appears to use a harness fitted between headstock and the rear of the tank but even the dealer looked shamefaced when telling me the price) Time to break out the Kriega I think.
The exhaust system has been assembled out of old beer tins and designed by someone thrown out of work when the Trabant factory closed. No doubt the usual aftermarket suppliers will provide their own systems in due course.
No centre stand, not a deal breaker for me. I use an Abba Pro stand
1600 miles in and nothing has broken/fallen off yet. Lots of plastic trim that may suffer with use
It’s a lot of cash for a 125 at around £3900 but my local dealers tell me that all the stock imported for the launch sold within days and that they are on back order until November.
Am I glad I bought it, yes but I have quite specific requirements. Had I been riding when I was 17 this would have ticked every box and several more beside.
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Great report mate, enjoyed reading it. for those of us who dont know...It would be best with a couple of pictures I reckon

In the gallery

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...is like that annoying cousin your parents always compared you to – the one that always did as they were told... :chair:

...when the Trabant factory closed... wait, I love the little Trabis. :biglaugha:

Nice write-up! :)

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  • 1 year later...
1600 miles in and nothing has broken/fallen off yet. Lots of plastic trim that may suffer with use



12 months and another 4500 miles down the line. Nothing has fallen off yet and the plastic seems very resilient. The sidestand switch developed a very occasional fault 3 months ago where it would fail to register that the stand was in the up position. Fixed with a FBH. 

Other than that it continues to be a delight. A genuine toss up as to which i prefer to ride this or my Viggie.

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is that a hammer of considerable proportions?

The very one. A remarkable tool that can be pressed into service in many different situations. Comprises 50% of my tool box, the other being the blowtorch.

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  • 1 year later...

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