Yamaha Reveals 2020 Sport Heritage Models

motorcyclecruiserIn what’s become an annual rite of autumn, the big motorcycle companies collectively spew their latest model-year info into our in-boxes, with Yamaha being the latest manufacturer to dish its lineup for the US market. This year’s 2020 release includes the VMAX, the Bolt bobbers, and the V Star 250.

At this point every season, the relentless crush of model releases come fast and furious, with the Big Four unfurling their planned models for the new year. Yamaha’s latest slew of returning models in the company’s Sport Heritage category so far are the musclebound VMAX, the Bolt, and Bolt R-Spec “urban” cruisers, with the entry-level V Star 250 bringing up the rear. It’s pretty much just bold new colors for this latest group, but let’s take a closer look anyway.

2020 VMAX

The 2020 Yamaha VMAX ($17,999).
The 2020 VMAX ($17,999).Yamaha Motor Sports

Iconic, legendary, unique—the superlatives have piled up for Mr. Max over its long, storied career. A “power cruiser” (we’re not even sure it’s a cruiser) before there even was such a term, the tire-shredding machine was always defined by its V-4 engine, the latest incarnation being a 65-degree, 1,679cc arrangement with, yes, 170 hp. Which is what you’ll see for 2020, along with wicked acceleration, fly-by-wire technology, and that distinctive 4-into-1-into-2-into-4 exhaust system. The 2020 VMAX will hit showroom floors in October, but only in Matte Raven Black, for an MSRP of $17,999, which is unchanged from last year.

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2020 Bolt

Yamaha’s 2020 Bolt ($7,999).
Yamaha’s 2020 Bolt ($7,999).Yamaha Motor Sports

Yamaha’s popular Bolt pops back into the fray for 2020 to represent what Yamaha calls the “urban performance” segment, which sort of feels like the same spot in the market Harley’s Sportster occupies. What we know for sure is that the Bolt still features a 942cc, air-cooled, 60-degree V-twin engine that pumps out solid power and great chunks of low-end torque. The spare, stripped-down look is a winner, with an emphatic nod to bobber styling, while a low seat height and an upright riding position let you take advantage of the compact chassis’s maneuverability. You’ll only be able to get the 2020 Bolt in Raven, and it’ll retail for a suggested $7,999.

2020 Bolt R-Spec

The 2020 Bolt R-Spec ($8,399).
The 2020 Bolt R-Spec ($8,399).Yamaha Motor Sports

Yup, this is pretty much the same bike as the Bolt, but with upgraded suspension and wheels. On the R-Spec, the only differences come in the form of twin piggyback rear shocks tuned for a more composed ride, and 12-spoke cast alloy wheels which give the R-Spec a slightly more badass look along with added strength. Another difference is the color; the 2020 R-Spec will be available only in Matte Silver. It’ll be in dealers by the end of September, with the MSRP stated as $8,399.


2020 V Star 250

Is this the last remaining 250cc cruiser? It’s definitely the only V Star left.
Is this the last remaining 250cc cruiser? It’s definitely the only V Star left.Yamaha Motor Sports

The last remaining 250cc classic cruiser?! In a field once packed with classically styled bikes, the 2020 V Star 250 is now the master of its own very shrunken domain and the only remaining V-twin in the class. Not much else has changed for 2020—you still get an air-cooled 249cc V-twin, a five-speed transmission, and chain drive, but what power there is gets delivered in a smooth predictable way—just what you want in an entry-level package. The low 27-inch seat height and the bike’s light weight makes it easy for first-timers to access, and the estimated 78 mpg certainly won’t hurt the pocketbook. The 2020 V Star 250 can be had in Metallic Silver and comes mid-September for an MSRP of $4,349.

Yamaha’s already said the luxury touring Venture model would be back for 2020, but no word yet on the XSRs yet.
Yamaha’s already said the luxury touring Venture model would be back for 2020, but no word yet on the XSRs yet.Yamaha Motor Sports

Several months ago, Yamaha also mentioned it was bringing back the Star Venture touring model for 2020, with no changes, just a new color option—but no Eluder. And there’s also been no mention of the XSRs—the XSR900 and its XSR700 relative—returning for 2020 just yet. Stay tuned.

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