Yamaha teased us yesterday, and today they have delivered the good, showing us the brand new* MT10. At first, I was surprised we had been treated to a new MT10 before the new R1, but then the MT10 outsells the R1 in huge numbers, and let’s be honest, both models needed an update. Since the MT10 was released in 2016, the whole hyper naked sector has stepped up its game. Aprilia’s Tuono, KTM’s Superduke R and Ducati’s V4 Streetfighter have moved the class forward into new territory, ahead of the competition.
Essentially, the new MT10 for 2022 hasn’t had a complete makeover; moreover, some bits have changed specs, and there’s some fresh paint. It still keeps the R1’s CP4 engine, which makes more power than the previous MT10, but less than the R1. The interesting part is in Yamaha’s text; there is no actual power figure to quote. Outright power has never been the ultimate aim of the MT10; this bike is purely about torque, and it that!
2022 MT10 makes more power and more torque, but no numbers listed from Yamaha!
New lightweight forged aluminium pistons, offset rods and direct-plated cylinder bores increase efficiency. Steel con rods have been used over the R1’s fracture-split rods, increasing torque and keeping the cost down slightly. A revised fueling table brings in more torque between the 4k and 8k rpm, exactly where the MT10 is designed to be used. The engine makes more power, is more economical, has had its CO2 levels reduced and still meets Euro5 standards.
The noise a motorcycle makes is important, especially when it comes to the crossplane CP4 engine. Arguably one of the best soundtracks other than a V4, throw on a decat pipe and, well, the stuff of dreams. The people who set the Euro regulations don’t like loud cans and decat pipes; these are bad for the environment and bad for noise. Boo.
With this in mind, Yamaha’s engineers have focused on the less noisy but almost as good sounding intake noise. An all-new airbox using three intake runner lengths and cross-sections, each designed to produce a different sound at different load and rpm, which Yamaha says adds to the riding experience. A ‘ Sensual roar’ comes in between 4000 and 8000 revs, that ideal range for powering on out of corners.
New acoustic amplifier grilles are incorporated onto the front of the fuel tank, transmitting noise sound directly to the rider. These grilles also vibrate, adding to the rider experience. The exhaust end can is Titanium and has had some changes from the previous MT10 and the R1. The downpipes, which previously were stainless, have been swapped for a saucy titanium number, which will look great once a few heat cycles have passed through and they turn blue or purple.
2022 MT10 Revised bodywork and styling with LED lighting
I’d be lying if I said the MT10 was a looker, but there’s certainly no other bike that looks like it. Yamaha has continued with where they left off, reducing more unnecessary bodywork for yet more naked aggressiveness. It was expected that the new MT10 would go down the ‘Cyclops’ single projector headlight like the MT09 and MT07, but no Yamaha has kept the twin mono-focus headlights using LED bulbs, using separate high and low beam units, much like the R1. Daytime running LED strips sit above the headlights in an eyebrow fashion. The rear end gains a more compact taillight.
The MT10 wasn’t the most uncomfortable bike ever, but Yamaha has still attempted to make it even better. Suitable for literally any ride, be it on track, a Broad blast, or a long tour, MT10 was genuinely a do it all bike, with or without pillion. The new model sees Yamaha update the riders triangle: the contact areas between the footpegs, handlebars and the seat. The fuel tank has a smoother finish giving increased feel on the knees, and the seat has been given more padding for added comfort.
Not only have Yamaha improved the engine and the styling, but the chassis has also had a revamp. The brake master cylinder has been upgraded to the Brembo radial system as used on the R1, actuating onto 320mm discs with four-pot calipers. The new master cylinder should give a better lever feel when stopping.
Forks and shock use the same KYB business found on the R1, both of which are fully adjustable and, once set up, transforms the bike. Bridgestones new S22 tyres have been selected in 120/70 and 190/55/17 size for the 2022 MT10; the tyre perfectly suits the bike and is excellent in all weathers and conditions.
Complete rider aids update!
The new update to euro5 brings other electrical advances too. Yamaha variable speed limiter allows the rider to specify a top speed limiter, useful for 30mph zones or heavy speed camera areas. This is programmable through the new 4.2″ TFT dash, which uses a full-colour TFT panel controllable through the LH handlebar switchgear, controlling the state and settings of rider aids. Four rider modes with variable throttle response characteristics to suit the riders preference are optimised for the new air inlets. This gives the rider more flexibility on how they like to ride or when conditions get worse. Chances are, once set, they will rarely be changed!
The update to Euro5 brings the new 6-axis IMU system from the R1, developed into a smaller and lighter unit. These new sensors provide new rider aids like lean-sensitive traction control: measuring the differential between the front and rear wheel and stepping in when the difference in speed gets too large. Momentarily cutting drive allows the wheel to grip, maintaining stability. This level of difference in speed is adjustable through the menu. This new modern system also considers the amount of lean, giving more traction control at higher lean angles.
Also added is the Slide control system allowing the rear wheel to regain traction, working in a similar way to traction control. When the wheel is predicted to slide sideways, the ECU can cut drive, stopping the slide. Again this can be adjusted using the preset intervention levels or turned off completely. Lif control is also added, allowing the ECU to control the amount of front-wheel lift. Once more, this is adjustable, so big wheelies are possible and encouraged!
Previously the QSS system has been an optional extra (Standard on the MT10SP), and it’s always been something I thought the bike lacked and needed desperately for when having fun. From 22 onwards, it has been added to the standard equipment list Great news; everybody knows the benefits of a quick-shifter.
Three colour options are available for the 2022 MT10, Cyan storm, Icon blue and tech black. The cyan storm colour fits the MT10’s Dark Side of Japan, misfit style, the icon blue is…well, as the name suggests, iconic, and it has to be said MT10’s look ace in all black! All in all, you can’t go wrong with any of the colours.
Expected into dealers in February 2022; however, I’m not sure how the parts shortage will hold things up. Interestingly the Yamaha release gave no indications on price, 2021’s model came in around the £12.5k mark, and I’m expecting the new 2022 MT10 to go up slightly.
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