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2009 Yamaha Star VMAX Comparison Photo Gallery

Follow along as MotorcycleUSA takes a ride on the successor to the original muscle bike that started it all: The 2009 Star V-Max. Check out our editor's complete 2009 Yamaha Star VMAX Comparison.

Slideshow
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Yamaha VMAX vs Suzuki B-King dyno comparison, courtesy of Mickey Cohen Motorsports.
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The Yamaha design team deserves a tip of the hat for producing a bike that inherits the distinctive looks of the V-Max, but with a more modern finish.
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With a super-long 62.6 inch wheelbase, kicked out front wheel, and weighing in at a hefty 685 lb when filled, the 2009 VMAX forsakes the typical nimbleness of Japanese sportsbike in exchange for beastly brawn.
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Yamaha VMAX versus Suzuki B-King
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The old 140 hp of the V-Boost has been swapped for a more powerful 200 hp engine that carries an intoxicating whallup.
The modern aluminum chassis provides rigid support for the unruly powerhouse in a lightweight skeleton.
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The hand buffed, iconic VMAX aluminum intake covers maintain the characteric nature of the Yamaha V-Max.
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Four-into-one-into-two-into-four exhaust system with titanium end caps is in keeping with the V-Max look and delivers a wide, fluid powerband.

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Luckily, Yamaha spared no expense in breaking this aggresive heavyweight. The rear disc is a thick 298mm wave design, with a single-piston caliper and Brembo master cylinder. ABS comes standard.
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The front uses beefy 320mm wave-type discs with dual six-piston calipers. They quickly tame the bike's power while not overwhelming the rider's feel and control.
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The solid, 1-1/8” tapered-diameter handlebars sweep back for sturdy handling. Yet, with conventional sized controls the rider still benefits from ride-tested ergonomics. Large LED shift timing indicators add to the VMAX's performance styling.
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The 1,679cc, 16-valve, 65-degree V-4, with a 90mm bore and 66mm stoke couples with a compact header design to gives the VMAX plenty of thunder from a tight package.
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The somewhat smallish 4 gallon fuel tank is mounted under the seat, with the filler under the rider’s backrest. This design allows for a lean profile with centralized mass that improves the V-Max's handling.
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Forks have both compression and rebound damping adjustability plus spring preload. The high-performance engine is cooled by two radiators for efficiency and clean looks.
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The rickety steel tube bedframes of the old V-Max have been changed out for a cast and extruded aluminum frame that makes the VMAX ride as solid as rock. The swingarm is also forged from cast aluminum.
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The 2009 VMAX handles curves far better than its predecessor, with the lightweight aluminum chassis positioning the engine low and forward for better mass centralization.
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The riding position of the VMAX has the rider squatting on his heels, which works great for stockier riders but might strain the knees of the long-legged.
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The wide 200/50 R18 rear tire is harnessed by a specially designed shaft with two cross joints. The cruiser's brute power comes from a thickset drive shaft akin to the V-Maxes of old.
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The original bike never was an agile handler, so the 2009 VMAX's smooth, stable steering is the bike's most praise-worthy improvement.
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Caution: One should always approach 200 corralled horses with due care, least you be bucked out of town by their combined 123 pound-feet of spine-snapping torque.
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Despite the Star VMAX's robust powerhouse it is still a practical machine built for the real world. It will handle the urban commutes and rural snaking back-roads that are the mainstays of chronic riding.
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The instrument panel includes a large analogue tachometer with an inset LCD speedometer. On the dummy tank, there is an organic LED array, that displays trips, time, gear, throttle, temp, and fuel.
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Replacing the old CV carbs are four-bore fuel injections with Yamaha's latest YCC-I intake and YCC-T fly-by-wire throttle techonologies. As long as you can maneuver an accelerating missile you're golden.
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With a 29-degree rake and 4.7 inch trail it takes a little body weight to change directions quickly, but the sprawling bike always keeps its rear wheel gripping pavement. Overall, the VMAX is a much more confident turner than its forerunner.
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The rider can take full advantage of the five-speed transmission's perfectly spaced gear ratios, which allow for awesome acceleration coming out of torturous turns and through lengthy, straight stretches.
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The Star VMAX does not afford much clearance between the road and its low-set footpegs, so any sort of knee-scraping antics are out of the question. The crusier will however give you enough confidence to tackle most turns at dramatic speeds.
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Using the slipper clutch the VMAX can bang down a few gears coming into turns and then unpack a heavyweight punch on the way out.
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The fully adjustable front and rear suspensions are factory set to be soft enough for a comfortable journey.
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The cast aluminium, five-spoke wheels come in an the unusual 18-inch diameter size, with Bridgestone Radial tires.
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The Bridgestone Radial 200/50-R18 76V rear tire takes the brunt of the engine's destructive brute force.
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The 2009 Star VMAX might not be as sporty as the Suzuki B-King, but it sets new standards for performance and rideability within the cruiser class.