If there is one motorcycle with multiple charges that can be leveled at it for its constantly delayed official launch date, it has to be the Yamaha T7; we have eagerly been anticipating this bike since its announcement in 2017.
The first two units arrived in South Africa in September 2020. They were homologated and have paved the way for the long-awaited sales stock, having been ridden by motorcycle journalists worldwide with outstanding reviews.
Many dirt bike enthusiasts have spent uncounted time chatting about and debating the T7, so I cornered Adrian Bac of Yamaha at a social event about the yays and nays of this bike. Adrian, and Commercial Manager Peter Wilkin, GM of Yamaha, were at the time probably the only two people in SA to have ridden the T7. This little chat took place two weeks before our annual Jozi2Kozi (J2K) ’Summer Edition’ for which I normally ride my KTM 500. We wanted Adrian to join us on the J2K on the T7 but, surprisingly, he declined, saying he had some work to do! The J2K is a motorcycle challenge, so he suggested that I ride the T7 bike on the event. Well, that deal was signed and sealed in a matter of seconds! Cheers to that!
The Jozi2Kozi is a 4-day off-road event offering both Adventure and Enduro riders various GPS routes, riding to their own time and traveling approx. 300km per day through some utterly magnificent terrain in KZN and rural Zululand. It really is untamed, unridden Africa and GG Alcock, our Route Director, and I can change the routes all the time without repeating ourselves and yet still offering a real challenge to participants. I could not think of a better riding and appraisal challenge for the Yamaha T7.
For five years now, the J2K has started at Jan Du Toit’s farm Country Trax near Amersfoort. We normally spend the first afternoon riding on the farm and enjoying one of the best - and oldest motorcycling playgrounds in the country, but the heavens opened, and the storms came in – even the farm dogs were scared! Well, that canceled the shenanigans for the day, but it did give us the opportunity for all participants to connect and chat about the T7 which, of course, opened up debates and discussions about the pros and cons of different adventure bikes.
Continue reading your story on the app
Continue reading your story in the magazine
WHAT NEXT FOR NORTON AND BSA?
Following on from the success of the Triumph revival, a lot of noise was made about the arrival of Norton back on the motorcycling scene in 2008. The new owner of the brand, Stuart Garner, got everyone excited when he announced that he would be making not only a new Norton Commando motorcycle but would be returning to the Isle of Man TT with a new superbike, powered by an Aprilia V4 motor.
In the world of motorcycling, it is rare, if not unique, for a manufacturer to have two bites of the cake - both with a cherry on top - with two iterations of one particular model, especially when separated by a couple of decades.
TALES FROM THE HOOD
SA & MOTORCYCLE COMMUTING
NORIYUKI HAGA SULTAN OF Slide
Rare in-depth interview with Nori-chan himself explains how the Sultan of Slide rode the bike - and the crucial differences between Superbike and 500 GP
THE GXCC’S PUSH THE SEASON TO THE LIMIT IN 2020
THE GREATEST Comeback?
The greatest British bike racer? Surtees? Sheene? Both have good claims to the title but, in reality, there can be only one king. This is the story of the race that only served to enhance an already glittering reputation.
Engineering DEAD-ENDS Part 2: Hub-Centre Steering
Motorcycle development never stands still, although maybe recently, it would be more accurate to say that motorcycle electronics development doesn’t stand still; it is very little in the physical architecture of a motorcycle that is likely to change. But it wasn’t always so and one innovation that was tried not only on road bikes but also 500cc Grand Prix bikes was hub-center steering.
Great Bikes? The Ariel Square Four
Elsewhere you will have read about the Ariel motorcycle company and here I intend to talk more about their most famous design, the incredible Square Four.
So, What Really Happened To The British Motorcycle Industry?
It’s a story that no-one is unfamiliar with; how the British motorcycle industry withered and died through the 1960s and into the ‘70s. What was once a thriving industry that sold state-of-the-art motorcycles from world-famous manufacturers, by the hundreds of thousands, was reduced to first a handful and then just one manufacturer, producing an outdated design in the face of modern and reliable machines from Japan.
Gone But Part 5 Ariel Not Forgotten
Turner’s Square Four remained in production from 1931 to 1959
A World of Adventure
Epic Trips on All Seven Continents
Christian Motorcyclists Association
Recently, I decided to get back on my bike, after a long time of not being in the saddle.
Yamaha WR250R Long-Ranger
Smaller bikes—in the West they’re something of a sacrilege. But in most parts of the world, a 250cc is considered “big.” I personally haven’t owned anything under 650cc in so many years that I’d become accustomed to manhandling big adventure bikes. I’d also forgotten just how practical smaller dual-sports can be. But… a recent extended trip to northern Thailand forced a re-think. While there I had so much fun on 250cc and smaller dual-sports that there was no way I could return without indulging.
Backcountry Discovery Routes
A Decade of Adventure
A Dane's Best Friend: Bicycling in Denmark
When was the last time that you rode a bike? Did you ride to school, or a park, or just to have fun with your friends?
Hells Angels Meet Housewives on Harleys
How bikers turned into their parents and turned off their kids
Danica - The Avalanche Legacy
We’re standing in the infield at Hesperia BMX, admiring Danica’s matching red Ssquared bikes, and I notice her front gear looks a tad larger than most.
Chasing A New Pack
Women-only motorcycle rallies are gaining speed—and anxious bike makers are finally on their heels.
Harley Davidson- The Hog ​​​​​​​of Tomorrow
Harley’s future looks nothing like its past.
Meet the Cycling Startup that's Reinventing Studio Fitness
Peloton did everything wrong - and still reinvented the studio fitness industry.