Sunday, 11 May 2014

Why I picked the Fz6

If you have read my previous blog post: 'Thoughts on my next bike' then you may be wondering why I bought my Yamaha Fz6n. A Fazer wasn't mentioned at all - I was originally looking at bikes such as the 650 Vstrom or the Xt660r. I didn't consider the naked 600 an option at all.

However, in my specification I stated that I would like a bike with better fuel economy, superior comfort and practical, hard luggage. For some reason I totally bypassed bikes like Fazers, Bandits and Hornets. How many middleweight nakeds do you see with hard luggage doing road trips? Loads.

The Fz6 ticks all of my boxes... kind of.

The new beast - Yamaha Fz6n
First of all, there is an obvious change in comfort. Compared to my old Sv which had fairly low bars but (more importantly) very high foot pegs, this Fazer feels like I'm sat in an armchair. My 6"1 frame fits comfortably into the roomy saddle. My wrists are no longer aching as the raised bars give me hours of riding with minimal complaints. But the foot pegs make the biggest difference, my flamingo legs are no longer touching my elbows, they are much more relaxed without compromising much ground clearance - although my foot peg has hit the floor once or twice.

Although my bike isn't currently fitted with any hard luggage it quite easily can be. Top boxes are the easiest and cheapest form of luggage for my 2005 model Fz6n. Being a pre-07 model, the pillion foot pegs are welded to the subframe as opposed to being bolted on like later models - this restricts the ability to add on panniers. This is a fairly big deal as the underseat exhausts prevent most soft throw-overs from being used - they'd just melt. Luckily, I have obtained a pair of semi-rigid panniers that fit fine, without coming into contact with the silencers. My trip later in the year is to tour Scotland, nine days wild camping. So by using an upcoming Wales weekend trip in July as a trial run, I will test out my throw overs and see whether buying a top box would be necessary.

Finally, fuel economy. Standard Fz6s average at around 45mpg but with the aid of the power commander fitted to my bike, it's hitting over 50mpg - and that's not bad considering I don't take it that steady. This is about the same, if not better than the Sv's fuel consumption. So there's nothing to complain about, but it's nothing to rave about either.

How well will it cope for a long haul? Only one way to find out...
Compared to the Sv, it is better in every way; it is more economical, comfier and has over twenty extra horsepower. So it fits the bill alright but is still yet to be tested on a road trip, this weekend to Wales will be the test to see how it performs.

Yet the biggest reason I picked this particular Fz6 is because... it was a bloody good bargain! And we all love a good deal, don't we?

Let's just hope I've made the right decision.

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