By June 12, 2009

Say hello to Apollo: 2009 Yamaha FJR1300A first impressions

I just got home from work, so I am not going to spend a whole lot of time on this post — because I should be out breaking in Apollo, my brand new 2009 Yamaha FJR1300A.

The “Feej,” as it is known by the owner community, is a sport touring bike: meant to go long distances but still have fun in twisty terrain. The FJR1300A doesn’t have as much storage room as, say, a Goldwing or BMW K1200LTE, but it weighs 2/3rds what Raptor weighed and is much easier to ride. These good “street manners” made it easy to navigate my new bike home through rush hour traffic with total confidence. I was nervous all the time bringing the nearly 1,000 pound K bike through tight city traffic; the FJR1300A feels just like my old BMW R1150R.

The “A” in FJR1300A stands for “ABS,” which became standard with the second generation model in 2006. This is not to be confused with the FJR1300AE, which is the electric clutch model. The odd thing about the FJR is that they only offer one color a year, and this year happened to be black with black rims. Luckily for me, I think black is bad to the ass.

I bought Apollo from Fredericksburg Motor Sports. My salesperson Gary and I hashed out everything via email. Everything was settled before my arrival, and if it were not for a mishap with prepping the bike ahead of time I would have been in and out in about 30 minutes. I highly recommend FMS — they have an excellent selection of motorcycles, scooters, ATVs and personal water craft. They gave me a very good price, especially after factoring in the cost of traveling out of state to get a bike at a lower price. FMS also matched a competitor’s price on the 48-month Yamaha factory extended warranty.

How many miles on the clock?
Zerooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo dot zero.

So, after a late start I was on the road. My first sixty-three miles were along the interstate. The bike is absolutely ridiculous. I made my way to 5th gear (the top gear on the FJR) and got comfortable at 80MPH to keep pace with traffic. I looked down, and the bike had just barely hit 4,000RPM … out of a redline of 11,000RPM. I knew I wasn’t supposed to do this without a proper break-in period, but I left the bike in 5th and rolled the throttle back about 1/5th a twist. Apollo surged forward, and I started to laugh uncontrollably.

I am going to ride as many miles as I can this weekend and give a better report on the performance, comfort, ergonomics, and usability of the bike as soon as possible. In the meantime, here are some pictures of Apollo, named after the hotshot pilot turned bureaucrat from Battlestar Galactica. Kind of fitting for a sportbike engine in a comfy frame.

Posted in: motorcycling

8 Comments on "Say hello to Apollo: 2009 Yamaha FJR1300A first impressions"

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  1. Tomax says:

    Dood that bike is HOT! Even better now that you won’t be roastin’ weenies on your way to work, since they added the fairing vents! It almost makes me want to trade in the Stuka…almost. I bet you could even take ME out two up on that thing and it would scare the piss out of both of us. I’ve got some serious bike envy going on right now :P.

  2. Tomax says:

    p.s. you can still park the FZ in my garage if you want to 😉

  3. Mike says:

    Shiny. Pretty.


  4. Spectre says:

    she is sooo pretty. I’m officially jealous, and I hate you haha!

  5. Starbuck says:

    He is handsome.
    I can’t wait until you feel more comfortable on him and I can ride with you 🙂

  6. Gremlin says:

    Start saving up for tires now, that right grip is very addictive.

    I’m off to Beartooth pass for the day. It’s like the dragon, but at 10,000 feet.

  7. Motodisiac says:

    What a beauty. Looks fantastic in black!

  8. BMWEW says:

    Sweet new ride, you got it on my b-day, how nice it’d been for me to find that waiting in the drieveway when I woke up that morning. I ride an R1150R, so interesting to hear your comparison.