2017 Yamaha 210

Life is full of surprises, isn’t it? It’s too bad not all of them are of the good variety, but hopefully you have your fair share. Luckily, I had a very nice surprise just recently when I picked up the new Yamaha FJ-09.

To be honest, this is a bike that was just not on my radar; its Transformer-like looks, with body bits hanging all over the place, are just a bit too modern for my taste. But like that proverbial book that can’t be judged by its cover, the real attraction of the FJ-09 starts as soon as you throw a leg over the seat. 

Wow, comfortable; the handlebars are wide, like a motocross, and the pegs are so low it almost feels like you’re standing up. The seat is adjustable from 33.3 inches to 33.9 inches, so most riders above 5-foot-7 or so will be able to find a suitable height. Overall, the seating position is ideal for a long haul in the saddle – which, unfortunately, is the only thing that can inhibit a big trip, it having as much cushion as a sheet of plywood. After an hour’s worth of riding, my backside was so sore I had to stop every so often to loosen up; luckily, Yamaha offers an optional softer seat, which I highly recommend.