Warning!This post is in our archives. Links in this post have been updated to point to similar bikes available to bid on eBay.
1987 brought a trade tariff for motorcycles over 700cc, and Yamaha’s response was to de-stroke their recently designed FZ750 to 697cc’s. Though it had the Genesis 5-valve head, some sporting aspirations were value-engineered out. Still, it was an able street performer and is now very rare.
Carrying some interesting design points from the 1985 FZ750, the 700’s straight four is canted well forward to 45 degrees, with the four Mikunis pointed up, and a substantial portion of the fuel load moved down and behind the airbox. This arrangement paid the steel twin-spar center of gravity benefits as well. 38mm forks and rear monoshock were budget conscious, brakes as well with 267mm disks in triplicate. The fairing is lightly updated from 1985 and provides good protection and great looks.
With photos showing just under 10K miles, the Iowa owner states the current mileage is just under 13,000, hoping there’s little difference between the before and after pictures. It boasts progressive fork springs and braided brake lines but it’s otherwise stock. From the eBay auction:
Very nice used 1987 Yamaha FZ700 in very good condition. Does show some wear, scuffs, scratches here and there, otherwise looks very good. Gets a lot of looks and good comments from people. It starts well, runs well, shifts and brakes very well. The front suspension has been upgraded with progressive springs. It has stainless steel brake lines front and rear. This is a bike you can start it up and ride for hundreds of miles with out any problem.
Though Yamaha was in between very sporty periods with the FZ’s, the 700 had plenty of giddayup for an 11-1/2 second quarter and road-if-not-track-worthy handling. Classic showroom management with the FZR baiting the eventual FZ sales. Might be just the low pressure entrée into a classic sportbike…