Our buyer’s guide has everything you need to know about Yamaha’s pure-sport side-by-side.

The 2021 Yamaha YXZ1000R combines a high-revving engine with a nimble chassis.Yamaha

Ups

Lightweight chassis, high-revving engine, and compact design for excellent maneuverability.

Downs

No fully automatic drive option—you must shift. Only available with two seats.

Verdict

Since its inception, the YXZ1000R has morphed into an excellent pure-sport choice for each terrain.

Overview

The YXZ1000R may be a sport side-by-side designed for fun whether you’re call at the dunes or hurtling through the trees. Initially, the YXZ left something to be desired when it came to low-end power, but transmission gear reductions and a stronger clutch improved climbing ability in 2019. Yamaha also moved the radiator to the rear cargo deck for better cooling performance and protection that very same year.

Two base models are identical apart from different transmission shifting styles. The YXZ1000R employs a manual foot clutch to shift the five-speed sequential transmission with reverse. The YXZ1000R SS comes with steering wheel-mounted paddle shifters and an auto-clutch.

Both models are available in special-edition options that include different colors, graphics, and Genuine Yamaha Technology Racing (GYTR) bolt-on parts. Speaking of GYTR, an outsized number of GYTR accessories are available for the YXZ, including a GYTR Turbo Kit.

 

Updates for 2021

Fox 2.5 Podium RC2 shocks are new on all YXZ1000R models, and are available with dual-spring-rate adjustable crossovers. The dampers include adjustable spring preload, rebound, and high- and low-speed compression settings.

Pricing and Which One to Buy

  • Yamaha YXZ1000R MSRP: $18,999
  • Yamaha YXZ1000R SS MSRP: $18,999
  • Yamaha YXZ1000R SE MSRP: $20,699
  • Yamaha YXZ 1000R SS SE MSRP: $20,699
  • Yamaha YXZ 1000R SS XT-R MSRP: $21,799

Do you need a standard foot-operated clutch, or does one prefer paddle shifting with an auto-clutch?

there’s no difference in price, but we prefer the rally car feel of the YXZ1000R SS paddle shifters. Clutching is automatic and therefore the engine gets to the highest of every gear in swift order. The Special Edition (SE) SS model includes flashy colors and graphics, beadlock wheels, contrast stitched seats, high-spec interior controls, additional underbody protection, and a roof for a further $1,700. The YXZ1000R SS XT-R gets all of that and Maxxis Carnage tires, additional LED lighting, a front bar equipped with a heavy-duty Warn winch, painted bodywork, a center-mount car mirror , and auxiliary lights throughout the cabin.

With a 10,500 rpm triple, the YXZ sounds like nothing else on the trail.

Powertrain: Engine, Transmission, and Performance

The YXZ1000R SS XT-R features a high-revving, high-output inline-triple engine with a dual-overhead cam and 4 valves per cylinder. It redlines at 10,500 rpm. The engine is fed through three 41mm Mikuni throttle bodies. Unlike most of the opposite pure-sport side-by-side manufacturers, Yamaha uses a sequential five-speed direct drive transmission instead of a belt-driven CVT.

the corporate beefed up clutching in 2019 and lowered all gears to spice up acceleration and enhance low-speed navigation. The YXZ1000R transmission still doesn’t include separate high and low range settings, but the changes did transform the YXZ into a way more confident rock crawler. Yamaha’s On-Command 4WD system lets the driving force select between 2WD, 4WD limited-slip, and full differential-lock 4WD modes.

Handling

Yamaha’s electrical power steering mechanism is solid, providing effortless and lightweight steering control while damping the high-speed hits from rocks and roots. The short wheelbase and lightweight overall weight of the YXZ makes it very flickable within the corners and nimble when the terrain turns nasty, but it also tracks straight at high speed. Fox Podium 2.5 shocks offer more adjustment than most competitor machines, including high- and low-speed compression damping settings. The shocks provide 16.2 inches of travel up front and 17 inches at the rear. At 64 inches wide, the YXZ falls right in line with other machines in its class for trail performance, but it’s also right reception within the desert and sand dunes.

Brakes

Braking power is remarkable. The YXZ received updated brakes in 2019, including steel-braided lines and bigger calipers and discs in the least four wheels. The update provided much more powerful and predictable braking with none fade.

Fuel Economy and Real-world MPG

We don’t have exact numbers on fuel economy yet, but we do know the YXZ will go all day on a single tank. A 9-gallon fuel capacity is plenty for this lightweight, direct-drive performer.

Ergonomics: Comfort and Utility

The YXZ may be a smaller car, but legroom is adequate for average-size adults. it’s only available during a two-seat configuration. We appreciate the relocation of the radiator from the front grille to the rear cargo deck this alteration substantially reduces heat inside the cockpit. It provides additional protection to the radiator without abandoning cooling capacity at any speed. High-back bucket seats are comfortable, and every one controls/instruments are within arm’s reach.

Payload/Towing

Rear cargo space is little but can handle up to 300 pounds. Items are often strapped down with provided tie-down anchors. there’s a glove box and extra storage areas within the cockpit for private items. Cupholders also are standard.

Prices for the YXZ1000R start at $18,999.Yamaha

Electronics

The YXZ1000R features instruments inspired by Yamaha’s high-performance supersport motorcycles. Functions include a digital speedometer, analog tachometer, programmable shift light, and readouts for 4WD mode, gear position, reserve , tripmeters, hourmeter, coolant temperature warning, and a clock. All lighting is LED. The YXZ1000R is additionally compatible with the journey Pro—Yamaha’s exclusive trail-focused GPS system.

Warranty and Maintenance Coverage

A six-month limited factory warranty is included with purchase. Extended terms are available for purchase through Yamaha Extended Services (Y.E.S.).

2021 Yamaha YXZ1000R Claimed Specifications

Price: $18,999–$21,799
Engine: Liquid-cooled DOHC inline three-cylinder; 12 valves
Displacement: 998cc
Bore x Stroke: 80.0 x 66.2mm
Compression Ratio: 11.3:1
Horsepower: N/A
Torque: N/A
Fuel Delivery: Fuel injection w/ 3 41mm Mikuni throttle bodies
Transmission: 5-speed sequential w/ reverse
Final Drive: On-Command; 3-way locking differential; selectable 2WD and 4WD w/ diff-lock; shaft
Front Suspension: Independent double wishbone w/ anti-sway bar, fully adjustable Fox 2.5 Podium RC2 dual-spring shocks w/ adjustable crossover; 16.2-in travel
Rear Suspension: Independent double wishbone w/ anti-sway bar, fully adjustable Fox 2.5 Podium RC2 dual-spring shocks w/ adjustable crossover; 17.0-in. travel
Front Tire: 29 x 9.00R-14 Maxxis Bighorn M917-8PR
Rear Tire: 29 x 11.00R-14 Maxxis Bighorn M918-8PR
Wheelbase: 90.5 in.
Turning Radius: 236.0 in.
Length: 123.0 in.
Width: 64.0 in.
Height: 68.9 in.
Ground Clearance: 13.2 in.
Fuel Capacity: 9.0 gal.
Wet Weight: 1,521 lb.

UTV Driver Tested Specifications

Wet Weight: 839 lb.
Horsepower: 103.11 hp @ 5,560 rpm
Torque: 113.08 lb.-ft. @ 3,330 rpm
0–60 mph: 4.1 sec.
1/4-mile: 12.72 sec. @ 105.51 mph
Braking 30–0 mph: 33.4 ft.
Braking 60–0 mph: 127.4 ft.