Review: Yamaha FJR1300AS

FJR. What do these three letters stand for? Fast Joy Ride? Furiously Jumping Rhino? For Jackass Racers? Nope. The correct (and official) answer is Fast Journey & Ride.

Since many years the Yamaha FJR1300 has a permanent spot in the sports tourer segment. Yamaha introduced this model in 2001. Today it exists in three versions: the FJR1300A (the basic version), the FJR1300AE (with electronically adjustable suspension) and the FJR1300AS (everything from the AE plus a semi-automatic transmission). I had a date with the latter.

The AS, the most complete FJR model, costs £17,099. In return for that pile of pounds you receive a bulky package: generous fairing, electrically adjustable windscreen, two mappings, ABS, switchable traction control, height-adjustable seat, sidecases, electronically adjustable suspension, semi-automatic transmission, cruise control, heated grips, LED lights with front cornering lights, 12v socket, shaft drive. In other words, everything you need and more.

The FJR is perfect for long journeys. The sitting position on the wide seat is comfortable yet slightly bowed towards the handlebars. Yamaha sells the FJR1300 as a sports tourer and not as a pure touring machine, so that forward bend seems legit.

With the windscreen down, only your head’s in the wind. If you raise the screen, there’s minor turbulence around the helmet, depending notably on the traffic in front of you: behind a truck, your head will shudder more than when you’re flying down an empty highway. Also a minor (but subtle) Continue reading