Ever since the first Yamaha VMax rolled off the line back in 1985, this machine has been a tone poem to motorcycling madness. The VMax is and always has been about going over the top. From the styling to the performance specs, owning a VMax meant you were serious as a heart attack about going fast and looking like you’re going fast, even when you’re idling at a stop light.
Complain all you want about handling issues and soft suspension, but anyone riding a VMax will stare you straight in the eye with a look that says, “How about we race a half-mile for pinks, pal?”
This year, Yamaha put the latest incarnation of the iconic Vmax, the Hyper, in the shops of a trio of serious custom builders. These guys, Roland Sands, Marcus Walz and Ludovic Lazareth were asked to take what’s already a brutish and wild machine, and inject it with the motorcycle equivalent of stanozolol.
And that took some doing.
The performance of the current iteration’s V41700cc (200HP) made it a wild ride right off the showroom floor.
For his version, Lazareth included a wider rear wheel, more efficient brakes and lowered forks, added new air intakes and headlight, new performance exhaust, a new radiator and chin scoop and finished it off with a revised tail section.
1999 Yamaha V-Max Specifications
V-Max Owners Association
ENGINE & DRIVETRAIN
- Type: Liquid-cooled, 70-degree V-4
- Valve arrangement: DOHC, 2 intake valves, 2 exhaust valves; adjusting shims
- atop buckets Displacement, bore x stroke: 1198cc, 76 x 66mm
- Compression ratio: 10.5:1
- Carburetion: 4, 35mm Mikuni CV, V-Boost valve system
- Lubrication: Wet sump, 5.0 qt
- Minimum fuel grade: 87 octane
- Transmission: Wet, multiplate clutch; 5 speeds
- Final drive: Shaft, 2.851:1
- Wet weight: 617 lb
- GVWR: 1100 lb
- Wheelbase: 62.6 in.
- Overall length: 90.6 in.
- Rake/trail: 29 degrees / 4.7 in.
- Wheels: Cast, 18 x 2.15 front, 15 x 3.50 rear
- Front tire: 110/90V19 Bridgestone Excedra tubeless
- Rear tire: 150/90V15 Bridgestone Excedra tubeless
- Front brake: 2, 4-piston calipers, 11.7-in. discs
- Rear brake: Double-action caliper, 11.1-in disc
- Front suspension: 43mm stanchions, 5.5 in. travel, adjustable for air pressure
- Rear suspension: 2 dampers, 3.9 in. travel, adjustable for spring preload, rebound damping
- Fuel capacity: 4.0 gal (.8 gal reserve)
- Seat height: 30.1 in.
- Handlebar width: 27.7 in.
- Fuel mileage: 26 to 39 mpg, 34.0 mpg average
- Average range: 136 miles
- RPM at 60 mph, top gear: 3820
- 200 yard, top-gear acceleration from 50 mph, terminal speed: 91.4 mph
- Quarter-mile acceleration: 10.87 sec., 124.0 mph