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Yamaha XJR1300

Yamaha XJR1300

4.9 from 31 reviews

Life is now complete!

Was a bit nervous about moving from a super sports bikes to a big naked. But so glad I did. Was fortunate enough to get one of the last ones of the zero K (new) December 2016 builds in the showrooms of Australia. Wow. Riding those big waves of torque is just a sublime experience. So gorgeous. This bike could not be better. Sounds, looks and feels amazing! After nearly 40+ years of buying 'things' I have always been able to find some fault. But not with this yet. Build quality is amazing. Top class. First class quality and engineering. So glad I got one of the last oil/air cooled muscle bikes before they are resigned to the history books. Off now for another surf on those addictive waves of torque.....

Date PurchasedJan 2019

Black Beauty

I've had my Black XJR1300 from new in 2014, i'm 58 and been riding and racing bikes for nearly 50 years, my previous bike was a 1995 fjr1200 Yamaha i had 70000 kms on it and wanted something new, when i walked in to the Yamaha shop in Brisbane and saw the XJR it was love at first site i test rode the bike and fell even more in love, it ticked every box for me i love the retro look as my first big road bike was a Z900 Kawasaki, at 5'11" and 110 kilos it is a good comfortable fit for me, the power delivery, torque and handling are outstanding and the smile on my face as the front wheel reaches for the sky in second gear under heavy acceleration is the icing on the cake, and the sheer beauty of the bike in my eyes makes it more a piece of art as well as a great functioning machine, i have a number of other bikes dirt and road but the XJR is by far the favorite i even parked it in my lounge room for about a year as i loved the look of it so much.The bike has only done about 2500 kays since new and is stock and emaculate and i will keep it that way.

Date PurchasedFeb 2014


I’ve had my xjr1300 for the best part of 10 years. Absolutely love it.
I wanted a bike that still felt nimble but being 6’2” I didn’t want a sport bike.
I absolutely love the linear power curve. The torque is awesome.
I transplanted an R1 front end and wheels/brakes on mine. Reduced the unsprung weight considerably. And put mikuni flat slide carbs on it with k&n filters.
I didn’t want to increase the top end performance.
4-1 exhaust.
It now goes way better than the stock bike. Not that there was anything wrong with stock.
I absolutely love it

Date PurchasedJul 2009

Love at First Sight

Spotted the 2002 XJR1300 parked of the front lawn with a For Sale $5,500 on it. Immediately though “that’s a sexy looking bike”. Drove past it few times over the next couple weeks until I could not resist any longer, Took it for a spin, negotiated a deal and been smiling since. Ride her every day it’s not raining, and when I have to in the rain. Perfect bike for the bigger blokes, heaps of torque throughout the range, just twist on the throttle even in 5th and she just gets up and goes, no looking in the rear view mirrors on this baby. It could do with a 6th gear. Handles sweet for a big bike, loves to lean ‘till the foot pegs are scraping. The twin discs up front pulls this baby up instantly. Great looker, great ride, great motorcycle. I love it.

Date PurchasedMar 2018

2010 - Love this bike

Surprisingly nimble for its size. I was worried it would handle like a boat, but very far from it. Lightening quick for the street and very comfy. But handling is so good it feels like a much smaller bike. The bars feel narrow when you first get on it, but after a while you realise they really suit this bike. 3000rpm at 80kmh can be managed with sprocket changes. I wanted something with character - i dont like the new transformer look of modern bikes...the XJR has all that and modern performance. Its a dream machine. I love it.

Date PurchasedJul 2018

Dream machine.

I got mine second hand on a recommendation from a mate of mine. I knew I wanted it after the first 500m of the test ride. Suspension is amazing from 2007 onwards but needs careful adjustment to suit the rider. With new iridium spark plugs, k&n air filter, penrite synthetic oil, and a new set of road5s the bike rides like a dream machine. It can handle anything, it is a supreme piece of machinery. I recommend changing the oil every 2000km, the machine just loves the synthetic.

Date PurchasedDec 2017

great bike

i have xjr 1300 love the bike only problem is im always looking for another gear,,,, any suggestions will be appreciated,, great power. little soft on the rear. i carry pillion regularly the bike is ideal for me and my partner.fuel consumption is around 35 mpg easy to ride around town.just lacking gear for touring

Date PurchasedApr 2017

XJR 1300 Review After 20 months of ownership

A great retro looking motorcycle with strong clean lines & a very comfortable seat for rider & pillion.
The Good: handling is very impressive and this is a very good and reliable touring motorcycle with a sporting pedigree as well.
Reliability also a strong point - I have not had any issues at all with this machine when doing 2up touring and loaded up.
The Not So Good: The 5 speed gearbox for any model from say 2000 onwards to 2015 is a bit ordinary and it always felt a little like it could have done with another gear particularly on the long trips.
It had a tendenancy to run a little rough around 3500-4000 rpm this is apparently a known issue and I am to understand it can be fixed; it wasnt really that big a deal for me however did take the edge off the shine so to speak.
Acceleration - more power lower down in the rev range (more usable power & not needing to really rev it) would have been nice and again I do think Yamaha are lagging a little in this regard.
Overall out of 10 I would given it a 7.5 out of 10.

Date PurchasedMar 2016

The perfect bike for me.

I'm 5'10", 52 years of age, have been riding for approximately 25 years, owned 12 bikes of varying types and my 2014 XJR is the BEST bike that I have ever owned.
It's that 'halfway between naked Sportsbike and Cruiser' feel that I love. It's comfortable, makes a statement without threatening any bike genre' and it's the bike that I get off and ALWAYS turn around and have a second look at.
Euro standards were the only thing that could kill this beast off. Find one before they totally disappear.

Date PurchasedJul 2016

An old style, fantastic to ride - 2008 Model

One word for this machine - Awesome.

Coming off an old relic 75' XS650 custom for the last 12 years of riding, the XJR was my first purchase of a modern bike. The looks are similar to what I was already riding, just updated t the max.
What can i say, compared to the old girl, this is a controllable weapon to say the least.

I purchased mine a month ago, 2008 XJR with only 6,000 original K's on the clock. Two services since new, it was criminal that the previous owner had it sitting in the shed more than it was out on the road. I'm not complaining, it meant i picked up a beauty at a solid price.

I have read in many other reviews, that the XJR is a heavy bike > weighing in at around 245kgs, it doesnt feel that heavy whilst riding and is balanced very well. On straight roads or around the twisties, its nimble enough to throw into a corner with confidence and has the "stones" to sling shot you out of them !

Technical is not my strong point, so i can't reallyt go on about the nitty gritty, but overall if you want a good all rounder (that can plod a long, also haul like nothing else i've ridden) then the XJR is a must. Last bike i will ever buy !

Date PurchasedAug 2017

Extra gear suggestion

I had a 2001 and at that time i was commuting daily central coast to sydney.
I found a company called "the chain gang" at that time and they supplied performance sprockets and chains.
They supplied a front sprocket with an extra tooth which dropped the revs at 100kph around 500-750 rpm from memory
Not sure if they're still around but worth investigating

Date PurchasedJan 2001

I love my Li'l Dragon

What an awesome motorcycle...!!

Enough horsepower to fling you forward in an overtaking manouver - and then some! ...an unexpectedly happy surge of power at higher RPMs (probably from the variable exhaust power-port - Yamaha's version is called EXUP), a proud air-cooled engine that shows off its plethora of fins and a very forgiving spread of torque across the 5-speed gearbox.

Lots of character - that's what this motorcycle is about... the looks are amazing, but it is the way she behaves over her rev range that got me in love with her. You can hit 100km/h on second gear without batting an eyelid - that surprised me the first time I did it - it was on the Hume Highway, and she revved so happily that I didn't shift to third gear until I saw the speedo hit 100km/h.

On a couple of overtaking situations, I had to twist the throttle. Once, the clown in front of me had been doing 80km/h on the 100km/h highway, and I was annoyed - as soon as an overtaking lane showed up, I moved right and zipped to 100km/h overtaking him... guess what! as I overtook him the swine decided to accelerate - I think he hit 120km/h very quickly. I had three choices - brake, and fall behind into the left lane - except that there was another car behind us in the left lane who had decided to speed up too, stay in the right lane with this terrible driver going faster than me in the left lane, or twist the throttle.

I twisted the throttle, and saw my dragon roar up to what I think was 180km/h in the few seconds before I eased up on the throttle grip. The dangerous driver was far behind, the overtaking lane had ended and I was able to continue my ride at a peaceful 100km/h with minimal fuss.

Mine is a 2011 model that had done 11,000kms when I bought her off an motorcycling veteran in August 2016. He'd taken care of her and loved her well - but was hitting his 60s and his wife thought he ought to get off two-wheeled rockets.

I noticed a lot of people have criticised the factory tyres - but well, since Yamaha is reasonable with the cost of the motorcycle, and considering what you get for the price, it is easily worth it.

...many manufacturers do the same - Suzuki put pretty lousy shock-absorbers on the similarly designed Bandit 1200, most Aprilias and Triumphs are a pain to maintain, and most Ducatis come up with problems that can't be explained by normal usage - obviously, most Aprilia, Triumph, BMW and Ducati owners presume that this is 'normal' for their 'cool' motorcycles - if it costs more to be maintained, then it must be better. It's a bit like expecting a Holden or a Ford owner to admit his/her car is a pain - in many cases because these owners have not experienced the joy of driving a car that does its job.

Mine runs on Pirelli Diablos - Yamaha of Canberra recommended Pirelli Angel GTs (or something that sounds like that) where as a lot of other motorcyclists recommend Michelin P4s (or something that sounds like that, again)...

Have never had any trouble with the motor or starting up. I ride every weekend, and in some cases every fortnight - and she starts up happily every time - no exceptions.

I've not made any modifications, and am thinking of getting iridium plugs for the 20,000km service, and am going to try Yamalube this time - I'll probably be taking her to Yamaha of Canberra for the service - they seem to know the motorcycle well enough. I did fit on a pair of sliders (Oggy-Knobbs) so I wouldn't damage the engine casing on low-speed tumbles or falling slides - haven't had any yet, but just in case...I'm a little fellow about 5'4" and this is a 220 kilo motorcycle - 240 with a full tank of fuel.

I might consider a better air filter (K & N?) for the 20,000km service.

Date PurchasedAug 2016

Great mountain range tourer

2011. 1300cc model. Purchased this machine only 4 -7weeks ago.
Immaculately kept by previous owner.
Fantastic bike for the big rides...its a heavy bike being a 1300, though once you're moving its hard to notice.
If used correctly it will corner very well...but certainly no super sport.
Fuel tank could be bigger - negative side.
Back end gets a bit light under heavy braking....probably need to adjust the suspension.
Positives- very comfortable pillion seat .
Has heaps of mid range torque and overtaking on the highway is a breeze.
Don't feel fatigue despite lack of wind protection even after 4 hours in the saddle.
Ohlins suspension (front and rear), being highly adjustable is another big plus.
Lovely classic looking instrument cluster at night, almost like looking at a work of art.

1 comment
Specs 5 speed, 98hp, 108nm of torque, 1251cc displacement.

Got another one!

After a couple of years without a bike, I got a promotion at work and my wife said "you should get another bike" (she's a keeper!). I've always loved XJRs, and missed my old one (see earlier review) so I bought a low mileage (45k) '99 model for $4500. It was absolutely mint, except for traces of a low speed drop. Anyway, I loved riding it around for a few weeks, especially with some nice carbon cans, 4 degree ignition advance and iridium plugs. The bike is now off the road, being gradually transformed into a shed built cafe racer.

panniers for an xjr 1300

Had my xjr 1300 for 2 years now and i love it, the only down side is the original tyres are crap change them as soon as you can afford to.Has anyone fitted side panniers, i've been unable to find any givvi side panniers? i have fitted a givvi top box but the better half says she needs more room so she can take more clothes when we go away??

Macho bike

I'm 64 & have been riding since i was 18. Am biased & prefer the looks of retro machines. I added Staintune mufflers & changed the air filter for a K&N unit. Well the character of the bike changed from mild mannered to snarly. So much more power! Mine is a 2002 model with a 4-into-2 pipe configuration. It is an old fashioned looking machine which is pleasing to the eye. It is a good looker! Not a beauty; handsome.
It pulls hard (lovely) but could do with a 6th gear but cruises effortlessly at 110 kph. Love the 23 litre fuel tank & that beautiful naked engine. The delivery is linear but there is another surge of power around 8500 rpm which took me by surprise the first time i revved it out in 3rd gear.
With so much torque i learned not to snap the throttle as it easily does wheelies in the first 3 gears.
The negatives:
1. It is thirsty when pushing hard
2. It is hard work when one hits a series of 15-25 kph bends. It is a bit cumbersome especially compared to my other bike - VStrom 1000. However it has so much more character. The CB1100 (no longer available in Oz) feels so much smaller & lighter eventho it is the same weight. Different packaging
3. Hate the plastic bodywork around the seat. Notice the new XJR1300 Racer concept does away with that plastic & looks so much better for it
4. Needs a 6th gear as it has so much torque
5. Current models have 4-into-1 pipes. Looks unbalanced from the rear
6. Paint work on tank is a bit thin. Not deep or lustrous.
The positives:
1. That engine is stupendous!!!!
2. Great cruising bike
3. Stable
4. Good looking
5. Great value - a lot bang for bucks
6. Retro looks
7. Lovely snarly howl when moving thru the rev range (have Staintunes. Stick standard pipes are too quite)
8. Stands out in a crowd. Receive a lot of compliments re its looks even from younger people
9. Comfortable. Am 6ft and 100kg
10. That engine makes me feel good
Would i buy another one? Hell, YES!!!!
If the XHR1300 Racer is released, I am buying one. It looks AWESOME especially in black.

The best all rounder

I purchased my xjr in 2002 and have just turned over 86000 trouble free ks l have only replaced a clutch slave cylinder which failed with a kit l purchased from yamaha ,fork seals when l serviced the forks and brake pads.This bike is so easy to work on l do all the servicing work myself. The xjr is so comfortable loaded up on a 800k day ride or just run around town and it will leave a lot of other bikes in its wake,l enjoy this bike today as much as when l first rode it new l like the naked look and fat yam as l call her will always live in my shed,for those who are thinking of buying an xjr you will not be disappointed they are a great all rounder.

I don't know what it is but it made me smile.

I've ridden bikes for over 35 years, all makes and models of sport bikes etc.
Then after admiring its looks for quite a while I bought an XJR 1300 without even a test ride. I can tell you I smiled all the way home. I don't know what exactly but I loved the chrome clocks or the retro styling, it was smooth beyond belief and the pwr was linier and just perfect, felt like I was dreaming and could not believe how much I loved the experience.
Handling? Second to none! Amazingly agile.
If you like that older styling and naked look you best go test one because this bike is every bit modern in its performance, handling and comfort.
Why did it take me so long! Can't wait to go riding again.
Now I know why it's still made after all these years, why change something that isn't broken.
Never written a review in my life, this bike was so deserved.

35years of riding and I love this bike

I have owned and ridden many bikes, but the XJR1300 is one of the best I have ever owned. I bought this bike as a toy, but it is quick, comfortable, economical and reliable. Only thing I would like to do is to play with the front sprockets to drop the RPM down for consistent highway riding. Great bike, love it, highly recommended.
Comfort, power, looks, reliability, price

XJR 1300 - What is There to Not Like?

Why did I buy a Yamaha XJR 1300? Are you kiddin'? Simply take one good, long look at it: go on! See what I mean? And being a big naked machine, it's so mano a mano! Which is EXACTLY what a motorbike should be. Although I am a male rider over 70, I would highly recommend this bike to anyone, any age, any gender! How does it feel to ride? In World War 11, Spitfire pilots used to rave over how the Spitfire seemed to fit them like a glove, hence much more intuitive handling. And this goes for this big naked beauty. It fits the rider like a bespoke suit; the knees just seem to soak into the side of the huge tank and away we go! The headlight? Fantastic! Some bikes I've owned would be better off with a Halloween pumpkin mounted on the front. This bad boy it slices through the dark night like a spotlight on an anti-aircraft gun! My other bikes have had fairings, and they look more plastic than a CNN newsreader. I just adore the wicked retro look. I'd love a 6th gear, but hey, I'll get used to this. It pulls nice and smooth even in top if required. Another reason why I like it? It makes me feel good, real good when I throw a leg over it, and I can't think of a single better reason than that to pop on one. I love going out into the garage just to look at it. The saddle is a perfect height for people between 5' 5" and 6'. Mine is a 2011 model, sexy black with just enough bling on board to give it a lift. In the bright sunlight the paintwork simply gleams with an 'oh so subtle' touch of colour.

G'day All. Since my last review - and I'm enjoying this bike more and more with each ride- I've changed the plugs and flushed out the oil on the brakes and the clutch. A few timely hints to the wise follow. Replacing the spark plugs first - drain the tank or ride it pretty much dry on your next outing. It must be nearly empty unless you are a better man than I am, which is highly likely! Now, no need to remove the pesky electrical and the fuel lead etc under the tank prior to removing the tank completely as some riders say is necessary to access plugs 2 and 3. Instead, undo the 12mm bolt then simply lift the tank up at the rear and slide it rearwards to pull it out of the two rubber grommets at the front then swivel it around carefully on an angle and place some thick towels underneath to stabilize it on the bike frame whilst you access the two inner plugs. (Hint: grease the two grommets to ease the tank back into place later). Plugs 2 and 3 are awkward to remove and replace - believe me! I own literally 20 spark plug socket removal tools and not a single one would fit the 18mm plugs; so I popped into Supercheap Auto and bought their $8 T-bar 18mm long handled flexible plug spanner and it JUST managed to do the this 'oh so fiddly' job. I replaced the plugs with Iridium plugs, only $50 delivered to the door (check on the net. They sell the correct plugs for this model; no need to alter the plug gap). Now, to carefully lower plugs 2 and 3 down into the deep hole, get a small piece of small diameter clear plastic tube, cut it about 10cm long and place it over the tip of the plug - the terminal. This then gives you something to grip with finger and thumb and twirl when introducing the plug into the thread in the head without the risk of crossing it. Problem: the tube is hard to keep stiff and vertical so that you can twist the plug easily, thus the risk of crossing the thread is present. To avoid this disaster I inserted a pipe cleaner into the plastic tube - great! You cannot put the plug back in using the spark plug socket tool as there is simply no room to do so. This area is tighter than a mouse's ear! Dinky toys have more engine work room than modern bikes!! On the plus side, plugs 1 and 4 are really easy to access, thank God! Be sure to slip the plug leads back on before replacing the fuel tank. Now to the hydraulic fluid change on the brakes and the clutch. Put an 8mm closed end spanner over the brake bleed nipple, then simply ease a small diameter length of plastic tube over the bleed nipple and put the end into a plastic container on the floor. Totally cover the tank etc with rags and undo the brake reservoir. Clean with warm water the cap and the rubber diaphragm, inspect then dry carefully. Squeeze the brake lever gently as far as it will go then and hold it there, lean down and undo the nipple and watch the old fluid run through the tubing, the brake handle will then ease up against the handlebar grip, hold it there and close the nipple. Keep repeating this exact process whilst topping up the reservoir as you go until the old dirty fluid is completely replaced with nice clean fluid. The name of the game here is go slowly and carefully to avoid spills. Have a spray bottle of hot water available to hit any fluid drips or spills. When satisfied, tighten the nipple and remove the hose then spray this area with the warm water as there will be some unavoidable leakage of fluid around the bleed nipple thread. Roll up a tiny bit of tissue or paper towel and mop out the fluid that is still sitting inside the teensy tip of the bleed nipple - a pipe cleaner works just fine for this, but hey, how many people smoke pipes these days! - then replace the rubber bleed cap. Do the clutch and rear brake exactly the same way. Enjoy!
Great looks and simply perfect in every respect. Fuel injected, great stopping power.
Nothing. A sixth gear would be nice, but depends what you are used to.

Excellent review thankyou. I've been thinking about trading in my Eddie Lawson replica ZRX 1200, and have done research on Triumph, Moto Guzzi, and Honda CB 1100. The truth is the Yamaha is gorgeous!! I think a sexy black number with silver stripes retro rocket will eventually find a home in my garage...Thanks for the feedback man, hope you have the Yamaha by now! Doc

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Questions & Answers

Hi guys I've noticed on YouTube some xjr 1300 speedos Go to 320 kph but the majority are 260 kph does anybody know what year models had the 320 kph speedometers ??
No answers

Hi. I've got a Yamaha XJR 1200 97 model and it has developed an intermittent rattle from the bottom end. The value shims and cam chain tensioner have been done. Someone mentioned that it could be the starter motor chain. Any thoughts?
1 answer
I have a 88 model fj1200 has done the same thing for15 years. The motors are almost identical. I just let the old girl warm up at low revs. Seems to be a common problem.

Can anyone tell me if Yamaha XJR 1300s have rain mode or B mode for riding in rain to prevent engine running erratically? Runs perfectly well in the dry the next day. Thanks
4 answers
Hi Pete Not sure what model you're riding,i have a 2013 model XJR 1300 and definitely doesn't have a rain mode.As far as i am aware all a rain mode does is decreases power to the rear wheel and also prevents the rear wheel from spinning (traction control ) .only thing i can think of is water getting into the electricals if it runs ok the next day in the dry.Thank you Mike for your help I think your right will replace high tension leads as a test.Hi Pete Before you go out and spend money on new leads start your bike up and spray a stream of high pressure water all over the high tension leads for a few minutes and see if this affects the running of the motor..


Yamaha XJR1300
Release dateMay 2007

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