2013 Yamaha FJR 1300 A Test
Yamaha’s latest edition of the FJR1300A sport-tourer gets a slicker gearbox, traction control, ABS and a host of smaller refinements applied to its sporting inline-4 motor.
And all enhancements are coupled to a superb chassis with upgraded suspension. Cruise control, an electric windshield, heated handlebar grips, and roomy luggage also make it a great long-distance touring machine.
Adding a mere three horsepower and three ft. lbs. of torque helps the motor feel stronger, especially low down, and Yamaha’s sublime ride-by-wire throttle gives a precise response that is especially appreciated when accelerating hard from a corner exit.
Two fuel maps (D-Modes) are button-selectable; both provide full power, but Touring sanitizes the power delivery. Although traction control and ABS are now included on the FJR, neither one is adjustable.
Despite still “only” having five gears, the ratios are ideally spaced, and at 80 mph the engine turns a leisurely 2500 rpm. If required, the torque output of the FJR is sufficient to pull fourth gear briskly from low-revs without any problem.
Instrumentation is very good, with an analog rev counter on the left, a large center LCD section with digital speedometer, fuel gauge, and clock, while the right multi-function screen shows everything else including fuel consumption and range.
Considerably longer springs and much improved, fully adjustable suspension (for both compression and rebound damping) improve the FJR’s sporting ride, and bump absorption is stellar.
The sporting riding position can be customized thanks to three-position handlebars and a comfortable, height-adjustable seat. A new textured seat cover with suede-like side panels adds to the upscale look, as does the FJR1300A’s simpler, more aggressive bodywork.
The changes Yamaha have made to its sport-touring flagship have enhanced its sophistication and it feels like a fully modern machine. The FJR is compact, fast, and agile enough that if it is pushed hard, the bike will deliver. Yet, the Yamaha FJR1300A is also comfortable and accommodating enough for long-distance rides in genuine comfort.