Named after a desert in the Central Sahara region of Africa, the 2020 Yamaha Tenere 700 Rally has now been released for the European market. Drawing on DNA from the very first XT600 Tenere back in 1983, the Tenere 700 Rally, also known as the XTZ700SP, comes decked out in a colour scheme taken from the Gauloises Yamaha Paris-Dakar competition bike of the 80s.
While Malaysian riders still wait for news of the release of the Yamaha XT700 Tenere, this is an upgraded version of a dual-sport motorcycle. There is an important distinction here, not every tall suspension motorcycle is designed to handle heavy-duty off-road with most offerings in the market biased towards the touring side of “adventure-touring.”
This is shown by the use of upside-telescopic forks in front with 210 mm of travel and a mono shock with 200 mm of travel. Wheels are similarly sized for true dirt work with a 21-inch spoked wheel in front and 18-inch unit at the back, shod in 90/90 and 150/70 Pirelli Scorpion rubber, front and rear.
Seat height and ground clearance are similarly biased towards off-road work, with the rider placed 895 mm off the ground, 20 mm higher than the standard Tenere 700 and 240 mm of air underneath the bike. Fuel for the Tenere 700 is carried in a 16-litre tank and weight, fully-fuelled and ready to go, is claimed to be 204 kg.
Motive power comes from Yamaha’s 689 cc Crossplane 2 parallel-twin, with liquid-cooling, DOHC and four-valves per cylinder. Power with the standard equipment Akrapovic exhaust is claimed to be 72 hp at 9,000 rpm and 68 Nm of torque at 6,500 rpm, with power getting to the ground via a six-speed gearbox and chain final drive.
Braking is done with twin 282 mm diameter hydraulic discs in front and a single 280 mm disc on the back wheel, with switchable ABS. Rally style lighting is done with a four-element LED headlight and an aluminium skid plate, radiator guard and chain guard are supplied as standard.
Also designed for off-road work is the rubber grip pads, meant to provide extra knee and inner thigh grip during acceleration while standing up and off-road handlebar grips. The 2020 Yamaha Tenere 700 Rally is expected to arrive in Yamaha Europe dealer showrooms this July.