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The Year That Was: 1985 Yamaha RZ 350

Mike 15

Really a bike that needs no introduction, the Yamaha RZ350 had a brief couple of year fling in the States until the EPA shut them down for good. Today’s clean looking 1985 model has been mistakenly listed as a 1984 – however unless you lived in California, the differences between the years were minor and largely cosmetic (for CA residents the years available were cut short as well). Let’s take a deeper dive!

1985 Yamaha RZ 350 for sale on eBay

When released in 1983, US riders were once again able to unleash the ring-a-ding, popcorn sounds of the ubiquitous Yamaha parallel twin. In stock form the RZ was decently potent, although it struggled to match the pace of the 550cc middleweights of the same era. Part of the struggle was due to the concessions made to noise and emissions. Most bikes were quickly modified by adding proper expansion chambers (adding performance and shedding serious weight). Once jetting was dialed for the upgraded pipes (usually accompanied by replacing the restrictive airbox with pods), the buzzy 350 was transformed into a hive of angry bees that could run ring-a-dings with four stroke stockers.

From the seller:
1984 1985 Yamaha RZ 350 Kenny Roberts addition, well taken care of Beautiful clean condition, much cleaner than most, stored in a clean controlled environment, adult driven its entire life, I have original exhaust if you would rather have it then the Toomey chambers that I just put on it last summer, I also I have the original seat or the solo Corbin seat whichever you would prefer, runs like new with rebuilt engine just to freshen things up, was not broke or blown up, no rusty gas tank issues, new tires, new chain and sprockets, this is a running bike with clean title in hand, located in Michigan, local Ann Arbor Michigan pick up or I can help with shipping at your cost for any questions you may have

When you consider the condition of this particular bike (including the near stock appearance), it is hard to fathom that it has nearly 22,000 miles on the odometer. Clearly someone cared about this little smoker. The seller notes an engine rebuild – which is an excellent idea for a 37 year old two stroke, and much less involved than a similar task on a four stroker. No details on exactly what was done, but one would imaging rings and seals for starters, and assuming that a refresh was all that was needed.

Like everything else in our modern life, the price for a decent RZ350 is getting more and more expensive. This particular example shows very well, and has been bid up over $9k very quickly. That is only half way to the Buy It Now number of $18,500, and there is a reserve still in place. Given the way this bike looks, it might just get there before this auction is over. Check out all of the details here, and then jump to the comments and share some RZ love. Unlikely to ever go through a major recession, the RZ350 will continue to climb at or above market provided that the condition is as excellent as this one seems to be. Good Luck!!


  1. Billy B Billy B

    Prices on these have gone absolutely crazy – well over $10k for a nice one. They’re cool and all, but the sudden price increases are hard to justify even in these crazy times. I remember giving a friend a hard time back in 1990 for buying a cherry RZ with almost no miles and Toomey pipes just like this one… for $2000. I told him he paid too much 🙂 I had an RD350 at the time and we rode together a fair amount. We’d switch bikes and I’ll never forget how smooth, big and torquey the RZ felt after getting off the RD (my RD had clip-ons and rearsets and a solo seat – cramped but oh so cool!). Night and day between the 2.

  2. Samuel R Samuel R

    Interesting price for a 22k mile bike. Plus for the asking price buyer gets to choose only one set of pipes or seats explains a the justification of being fairly priced. Billy, I think a very few sellers are pricing these bikes based of one or two examples sold in auctions like Mechums at the highest price(Which doesn’t mean the prices have gone up that high). In any case seller GLWS 👍🏻

  3. JR JR

    For $18,500 you only get photos of the right side of the bike. How much more $$$ if I want to see both sides?

    There is some confusion regarding the model year. The VIN # indicates it is a 1985, not a 1984. Easy to verify that here

  4. jess jess

    Sooo much more engineering and trickery in an ’85 FZ750, yet a comparable FZ750 will only fetch about $6 to 7.5K. I’ll never understand the collector market.

  5. Jasonu Jasonu

    Jess the answer is obvious. 2 strokes are way cooler than 4 strokes.

  6. Bob Bob

    I know of a 3 digit mile bike, have seen and touched it

  7. Luke Warmwater Luke Warmwater

    Would you mind sharing its location because I would like to put about 15,000 miles on that machine in the first year I had it!

  8. Dan Dan


  9. DC DC

    The most recent RZ350 sold for 18,600 non running with no stock pipes or mirrors, the miles were lower on the odometer ( 1800 ) but showed more wear. I am sure the seller based his buy now on that sale.
    This price seems to be in line with the current craziness of the market.

  10. jess jess

    Obviously, Bob. Now I’m just waiting for the ’69 350 Jawa Sport prices to go crazy. LOL

  11. Vin Vin

    Jasonu February 02, 2022 3:31:44 pm
    “Jess the answer is obvious. 2 strokes are way cooler than 4 strokes.”


  12. Jay Jay

    I have a 10 mile bike still on mso. I also will be selling a 1200 mile red and white one . Bike has a small dent in tank and a scrape on the fairing.

  13. Gary Gary

    $18,500 ????? I have a 1994 RGV250 (factory Lucky Strike) that only has 1,821 kilometers , and I don’t think I could get $18,500 for it

  14. Mike Mike

    eBay shows a high bid of $11,800 and bike failed to meet reserve.


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