Now in its third generation, Yamaha’s middleweight sport-tourer — now called the Tracer 9 GT — is new from the ground up. It has a larger, more powerful engine, a new frame, and a state-of-the-art electronics package that includes semi-active suspension. With these updates comes a higher price, with MSRP now $14,899.
As the platform has evolved so has its name, starting with the original FJ-09 in 2015 and continuing with the Tracer 900 GT in 2019. For the latest update, the Tracer 9 GT gets a lightweight aluminum frame made using the latest casting technology to strategically reduce bulk. Like its predecessors, the new Tracer uses the inline triple from the MT-09, which is lighter, more fuel-efficient, and complies with Euro 5 emissions standards. An increase in displacement (890cc, up from 847cc) should yield more power and torque, though Yamaha does not quote figures. D-Mode now offers four presets for varying throttle response and power. The 6-speed transmission has an assist-and-slipper clutch and a new quickshifter.
The focus on weight reduction continues to the longer, lighter, and stiffer swingarm, resulting in a slightly increased wheelbase, which should improve stability and traction, and new forged aluminum wheels also reduce unsprung mass for improved handling. Curb weight has been reduced by 18 pounds to a very reasonable 485 pounds.
The use of new technology wasn’t limited to design and development. The new Tracer 9 GT is fitted with an integrated electronic control package, enabling Yamaha to incorporate a number of new features. This includes a 6-axis IMU that continually feeds data to the new KYB semi-active suspension, which electronically adjusts rebound and compression damping in the fork and rebound in the rear shock in real-time to suit the terrain and conditions. It also stabilizes the chassis under braking and acceleration and offers two modes (Sport and Comfort).
The IMU also feeds data to the new rider aids which can be adjusted to preference or completely turned off, these include lean angle-sensitive traction control, slide control, wheelie control, and cornering lights. The ABS is newly equipped with a brake control system, and riders can choose between two levels of intervention. Yamaha’s YCC-T throttle-by-wire system now includes Accelerator Position Sensor Grip (ASPG), which uses a sensor and a magnet to detect throttle opening and send corresponding signals to the throttle valves. ASPG uses a spring, slider, and gear to produce variable resistance to the grip creating a natural throttle feel. An additional D-Mode has been added providing four preset running modes that adjust throttle response and power. Cruise control and heated grips are standard.
As with the previous model, dual 298 mm discs provide the bulk of the stopping power, now with the addition of a new radial Nissin master cylinder, which promises a more linear supply of hydraulic pressure for excellent controllability.
Riders of various sizes will appreciate the Tracer 9 GT’s new adjustable footpegs, which along with the dual-height seat and adjustable handlebar on the previous model allow ergonomics to be customized.
With cruise control, a large windscreen, and standard hard saddlebags, the 2021 Yamaha Tracer 9 GT is ready to hit the road. It’s available in Liquid Metal or Redline for $14,899, and it’s in dealerships now.
2021 Yamaha Tracer 9 GT Specs
Base Price: $14,899
Engine Type: Liquid-cooled, DOHC, inline 3-cylinder w/ 4 valves per cyl.
Bore x Stroke: 78.0mm x 62.1mm
Transmission: 6-speed; multiplate assist and slipper clutch
Final Drive: Chain
Wheelbase: 59.1 in.
Rake/Trail: 25.0 degrees/4.3 in.
Seat Height: 31.9/32.5 in.
Wet Weight: 485 lbs. (claimed, does not include side cases)
Fuel Capacity: 5.0 gals.