Yamaha MT-09 SP might be revealed at EICMA 2017
We spent quite a bit of time with the 2016 Yamaha MT-09 and absolutely loved it. Its compact dimensions, comfy ergonomics, sharp steering and manic motor had us floored. The only grouse we had with it was the soft suspension that was barely able to keep up with the performance and the limited adjustability it offered. The present gen, however, did get minor suspension updates with a new design that looked more up with the times. That said, here’s the good news for MT-09 lovers. News floating on the Internet suggests that Yamaha might perhaps launch the MT-09 SP at EICMA. For context, the MT-10 SP is a high-spec copied of the MT-10. It gets a semi-active Ohlins suspension from the YZF-R1M which mechanically adjusts rebound and compression settings on the go for superior handling and grip in all conditions. It also gets a quick shifter and comes in silver and blue carbon paint schemes.
Leaked documents point towards the MT-09 SP, one of the five forthcoming bikes based on the MT-09. We can safely expect the MT-09 SP to come with the exclusive SP colors of silver and blue carbon. However, Yamaha might not go overboard by equipping the MT-09 with the Semi-active Ohlins electronic suspension as costs would be prohibitively high. Instead, you can expect fully-adjustable front and rear Ohlins. The documents also disclose that performance will remain unchanged. Not that we were complaining in the first place.
Will the MT-09 SP come to India? Well, Yamaha India has stopped selling the earlier gen MT-09 here and has not revealed any plans about getting the current generation bike here. Another issue is, being a CBU, the previous generation MT-09 costs a whopping Rs.11.36 lakh (ex-showroom Delhi). Considering the fact that the premium suspension alone would increase the current-gen MT-09 SP’s price by more than a lakh, the bike would easily end up in the price realm of litre-class nakeds. Moreover, with the recently launched Triumph Street Triple RS, which makes 122PS and sports high-spec suspension parts, offering so much at Rs.10.55 lakh (ex-showroom, India), a CBU Yamaha MT-09 does not make much sense. Now, if Yamaha could get the MT-09 SP via the CKD route, it would drop the price, but not by enough to get it down to the magical 10.5 lakh bracket. We, though, hope that Yamaha pulls a rabbit out of the hat and gets the MT-09 SP here priced around the Rs.10 lakh bracket. That’d be something.
Yamaha will continue to offer the similar 847 cc in-line 3 engine, which makes 113 bhp and 87.5 Nm of highest torque. Yamaha might also offer a quick-shifter on the MT-09 SP. Some internet reports also suggest that Yamaha has strategic to present up to five bikes based on the MT-09. Yamaha does sell the MT-09 in India, which is priced at Rs.11.36 lakh (ex-showroom, Delhi). Having said that, we would love Yamaha to get the MT-09 SP to India! The naked middleweight segment in India currently has the Ducati Monster 821, Kawasaki Z900, MV Agusta 800 and the newly launched Triumph Street Triple a new and naked middleweight bike from Yamaha does sound like a good idea.