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Marlboro Man: 1985 Yamaha RZ500

RZ500_2

Update 2.5.2013: After selling for $9k, this RZ500 is back on eBay after the buyer couldn’t put together the funding. Good luck to buyers and sellers. -dc

While good friend and co-worker Ian may not be stuck in the 1980s, I am happy to languish in that era for as long as magnificent two strokes such as this RZ500 are still available. Cue up the Miami Vice soundtrack and staple the Delorean poster to the wall; we’re going back in time to when bad-ass 500cc smokers roamed the streets (of countries other than the USA).

RZ500_9

One of the best views in all of motorcycling. What’s up calling this beauty an antique???

The RZ500 was a bike commemorating Yamaha’s success in 500cc GP racing. Offering a half-liter of V-4 configured power, the overall package was visually striking, but not exactly cutting edge. The perimeter frame is mild steel (only the Japanese market had access to the RZV model, with aluminum frame). The front wheel is a GP-inspired 16″ unit, but that was more fad and fashion than performance. Power was good enough, but the decades that followed offered knowledge and tuning prowess that can really wake up the beast inside of the bike.

RZ500_12

From the seller:
Up for auction is my prized 1985 RZ500. If you are reading this you probably know what this bike is and how rare it is to find one these days. Cosmetically the bike is in nice condition for its age, with only 18565 km (11603 miles) on the clock. All the lights, blinkers, horn, etc operate properly. The motor was recently (October 2012) treated to a complete rebuild by Lance Gamma, the premier and world-renowned RZ/RG tuner. The carbs were also completely rebuilt by Lance Gamma. All the proper specs and adjustments were dialed-in, and about 150 miles have been put on the bike since the rebuild. Starts on the first kick, idles smoothly, and runs and shifts perfectly. Surprisingly fast for a 500 when you get it up into the band, and combined with that great 2-stroke sound we all love, makes this bike a blast to ride! Other Lance Gamma treats added during the rebuild are his RZ-specific auxilliary cooling system upgrade that keeps everything running cool, and his supplemental fuel petcock upgrade. The bike is located in Montross, VA 22520, and prospective buyers can inspect it prior to the end of the auction.

RZ500_8

I don’t need to tell you that the big RZs are hot property right now. This one looks very clean, and any time Lance breathes on a bike you know it will perform. Although there are reports that the front fairing is not a stock unit, the overall presentation is very clean and the seller is willing to provide additional photos for distant buyers, or open it up for an inspection for local buyers.

RZ500_3

Definitely a good looking bike. Not sure I like the mini turn signal stalks.

This auction is nearing the end, and the current bid is only $8,500 with reserve still in place. There are a fair number of bidders involved thus far, and I suspect the frenzy will build as we get down to the final few hours. For your chance to check this one out, click the link and jump over to the auction. 2013 is turning into a banner year for two strokes – you might want to grab one before they all go away!

MI

8 Comments

  • Rick Lance says he knows nothing about this bike? Be careful , Just passing along what I know!!!

  • ***Just heard from a good friend of mine who says he talked to the guy who is selling it and that he seamed to be legit although he(the seller) couldn’t really say what had been done to motor except Rick Lance did do the work !? Be careful people, do your home work before ya let go of the big bucks!!! Not doubting anyone just passing along what I know!!!

  • It looks rough to me, most of these are project bikes, it has a cheap repaint with crappy decals, I missing parts, crappy turn signals, looks like POS to me, have bought much nicer for less than 4K.

  • Wierd upper fairing…looks likea piece of an older 250 molded on..

  • I talked to the guy selling it and he was very nice and gave me a complete break down on the bike . Honest seller!!! Looks like someone got a nice bike! Congrats on sell 🙂

  • It’s too much money for the condition.

    The whole front fairing, top, mid and bottom are not OEM Yamaha Plastic. if you look at the belly ban you see that it is missing the three vertical slots and the belly pan and mid fairing is missing bump that fits over the RHS case cover. What happened to the OEM Fairings? Did he or someone wreck it? If you take a close look at the upper fairing it is a matte red and not high gloss like the OEM Paint is. Also looks like the tank has been resprayed. if you look closely at the right side above the yamah decal you can see the tape marks. so buyers beware and check it out before you drop $9k

  • jeez ,its going up and up! somebody must like it!

  • wow Jim 15 bids already isn’t the current bid higher than what is sold for this time? I hope it’s a local guy and has checked it out to know exactly what he is bidding on. Otherwise he could be disappointing what he’s going to get for $10k or whatever it closes at

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