A proper adventure tourer | The 2014 Yamaha SuperTenere is a fully capable top-of-the-food-chain machine.
This is the fourth year for Yamaha in the North American Adventure Touring market. Gutsy moves to compete against the 1200GS from BMW, which we will admit, is considerably more expensive. The 2014 Yamaha SuperTenere is a fully capable top-of-the-food-chain machine with enough standard features to conquer the open road. Here are some continual improvements for the 2014 model year:
- More HP, more torque
- New KYB electronic suspension system
- New cruise control system
- New multi-function meter with DOT Matrix liquid crystal display with GPS holder
- New, no tools required, 4-position adjustable windshield
- New aluminum tapered handlebar, resulting in a revised riding position
- New LED signals, handlebar switches, R.H.S. side cover and muffler cover
- New heated grips
I must admit to not being an overly experienced off-road rider, but I did get a chance to take the SuperTenere out on some gravel roads. The ABS does some interesting things on gravel and that combined with a linked braking system left me with both wheels braking when I only wanted the rear brake engaged. There is not a factory-equipped toggle to turn off the ABS, a consideration that Yamaha may want to consider. This is a big bike at 584lbs and it took considerable concentration to keep moving at any pace on a gravel road. On road riding is a breeze and I was amazed at how well this bike handled. The multitude of settings for dampening and spring preload make this bike a charm on any road condition with pavement. I kept the setting on Hard “0” in one up riding mode. This provides ample stiffness even with seven plus inches of fork travel.
The overall ergonomics on this bike are extremely comfortable and allow the rider to relax and enjoy a long ride on any sort of terrain. The seat is wide enough and nicely padded with good quality foam allowing for maximum posterior comfort. The seat is height adjustable from 33.3 inches to 34.3inches. At 5’9 I preferred the lower setting which just allowed me to place my feet flat on the ground. The pegs have rubber inserts which are embedded in a cleated peg that allows you to engage the cleats when you stand on the pegs. The handlebar is wide and allows for maximum control and places your arms at a neutral position. All the controls are easily accessible and Yamaha’s single-click menu toggle and up down cycle buttons are all very easy to use. Hand guards and heated grips keep your hands dry and warm in any condition.
The 1199cc parallel twin is an incredibly strong engine with a wide torque and power range that only gets buzzing at higher rpms. It provides more than adequate power in sixth gear and cruises comfortably at highway speeds. This engine does not provide that whiplash power that some high displacement engines provide, but that is not its purpose and it suits the adventure touring use perfectly. I was never left wanting more power or torque at any speed. Two fuel maps are provided, one being Touring and the other Sport. In Touring mode the bike handled perfectly without any throttle snap at slow speeds and was perfect at highway speeds. The Sport mode proved to be great for spirited and aggressive riding but proved to be a little too abrupt at slow speeds. I would have liked a more “in between” setting, maybe an Urban mode that is in between the linear output of the Touring and snappy control of the Sport.
At $17,499 with an additional $1043 for hard side cases the SuperTenere is the value king and slices through the middle of the adventure touring field in terms of sportiness, touring ability, and off road capability. In this regard, the KTM and BMW competitors are stuck being fixated on either side of any of these attributes. In terms of value there is no doubt that this bike would allow you to do anything from a simple daily commute, a complex weekend tour or even a full-out cross continent trip. The 2014 Yamaha SuperTenere must be considered when opting to enter the adventure touring field.
2014 Yamaha SuperTenere Gallery