Learner Approved Motorcycles Under 10K

Date 18.5.2016

Presented by
  • Motorcycle Trader

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Buying A Learner-Approved Motorcycle (LAMS) Under $10k

Yamaha MT-07

What you get: New-2016, 0km

Read any review and you’ll get the picture very quickly: people love the MT-07 for its light steering, plus the character and flexibility of that triple-cylinder engine.

The 655cc learner version of the 689cc engine is down a little on power, but it’s been done in a way that you’re really not going to miss it.

Yamaha has made a bit of a virtue of the naked styling by providing lots of little highlights in the frame and chassis, so it doesn’t look like a cheap and cheerful operation. Just cheerful.

The only downside was the omission of ABS in earlier models (now added to current release) and a 14-litre tank, which is a little smaller than ideal for longer trips.

POWER: 38kW at 8000rpm

TORQUE: 57.5Nm at 4000rpm

WEIGHT: 179kg (wet)

THUMBS UP: Quick and nimble

THUMBS DOWN: No ABS with earlier examples, fuel capacity

Suzuki V-Strom 650

What you get: circa-2014, 5000km

Suzuki was one of the first makers to supply a proper LAMS tune on a road bike, with the SV650, and it soon followed with the V-Strom. That means you get an engine that feels very willing in a package that makes a good tourer (with some dirt-road ability) and a half-way reasonable two-up mount once you’re off your restrictions.

Suzuki V-Strom 650

Engine flexibility is a highlight, as is the slick-shifting gearbox. Overall, this is a good match-up for the taller learner. The engines are tough and it’s really only high-milers (think around 80,000km) that you’ll start replacing peripherals such as radiators or brake discs.

POWER: 35kW at 12,500rpm

TORQUE: 60Nm at 6400rpm

WEIGHT: 214kg (wet)

THUMBS UP: Friendly and flexible

THUMBS DOWN: Big for some