The trend of retro models of café racers from the 60s and 70s has been kicked up on one wheel with Yamaha’s Sports Heritage Range XJR1300, a warrior inspired by the Vintage Superbike scene of the 1980s. The raw power and stripped-back style commands respect, with a design that draws attention to what sits between your legs – it’s like Frank Sinatra going commando at a toga party.
In motorcycle history, the Japanese 4-cylinder is an icon, and the one main goal of the design of this XJR1300 is to expose this mighty engine as much as possible. The plastic parts have been chucked aside and the tank has been shaped for a powerful engine appearance and cut into the frame to create the narrowest possible knee grips, which help the handling, too.
This no large-scale toy, it’s a big hearty serve of man’s bike that’s built to perform. The big air-cooled engine with its torquey, silky-smooth pull is true to the original, but it’s backed up with modern components in the fuel injection, suspension, and chassis. The racy aluminum side covers with intakes in the style of a seventies racer number plate are a great touch, but if you want to add a few of your own, Yamaha has made the bike ‘easy to pimp’ with many accessories offered, including three handlebars options offering very different riding positions.