MT’s Custom Yamaha SR400: Loud & Proud

Date 16.6.2015

Presented by
  • Motorcycle Trader



MT’s custom Yamaha SR400


The countdown clock is ticking on our street scrambler project SR400, with not long to go before we draw the lucky winner.

ENTER the comp here

Our Yamaha SR400 attracted huge interest at this year’s Broadford Bike Bonanza and gave visitors to the event a chance to win it. The competition closes on 30 June and the winner will get the finished bike along with all the original parts in case he or she ever needs them for registration purposes or wants to take it back to standard specification.

But why would you? Yamaha itself always envisaged the base SR400 to be the starting point of a personalising process undertaken by owners to make the bike their own.


We opted early for a street scrambler treatment to make the most of the host bike’s slim dimensions and ability through traffic. It will be a point-to-point urban weapon in the right hands but will still have the ability to put up pleasant country distances if that’s what’s required. We were tempted at Broadford to cut a few laps on the race circuit but sanity prevailed. The chunky Heidenau K60 Scout tyres are about as far from racing slicks as you can get but will be well suited to daily road use.

Besides, we’re trying to keep the distance travelled by the bike as low as possible so it will still have that ‘new bike’ feeling for the winner.

We have, of course, had to ride it occasionally between photoshoot locations and its temporary home at Mid Life Cycles in Cremorne, Melbourne. The wide bars, low seat and the position of the footpegs provide a great sense of control and it’s a treat to gaze across the twin mini-gauges at the road ahead. The thin, low seat places the rider’s bum close enough to the frame rails to pick up some engine throb and associated vibes but this is quickly forgotten as you take a glimpse of your reflection in passing shop windows – cool beyond cool.

An advantage of the low seat is, of course, suitability for shorter riders. The SR400 isn’t a big bike to start with and the MT street scrambler is even more compact.

The bark from the Mostyn Performance exhaust system is another scene-stealer and you’re constantly aware of eyes following you down the road. The system helps the torque of 23Nm arrive early, delivering performance that will shock the four-wheel brigade.


Arguably the biggest improvement to the dynamics of the host bike comes from fitting Ikon suspension. If the name ‘Ikon’ looks suspiciously familiar, it’s because the letters can also be used to spell ‘Koni’, the legendary European suspension supplier from the 1960s. Konis used to revolutionise the handling of early Japanese bikes and Ikons now do the same thing for the occasionally inferior original equipment we still get on bikes at the lower end of the price range.

With adjustable spring pre-load and four-position damping control, it’s now possible to set the rear suspension on the SR400 up perfectly for the individual rider, whatever their weight.


All in all, the MT/Mid Life Cycles SR400 street scrambler is now a hoot to ride and will be a loyal and faithful companion to whoever wins it.

How do you make it yours? Fill out the entry form in Motorcycle Trader and post it to us for 10 free entries. For a free entry, you can go here and complete the form.

Holding your mobile and want to enter right now? Call 1900 911 001 or send a text/SMS message with your full name and address. This much trouble gets you five free entries.

If you want to bring out the big guns, use the subscription form in Motorcycle Trader and you’ll not only get MT for 13 months at a discount price but you’ll get a full 100 chances to win. As they say, you have to be in it to win it.

The closing date is June 30, so if you haven’t already, get your entry in.