2021 has been a year of many new releases for Yamaha. For starters, the new and improved MT-09 hit the market. Complete with a redesigned aluminum chassis, an uprated 890cc triple, and cutting-edge performance-oriented tech, the MT-09 is now well and truly in the big leagues when it comes to performance. The update, too, brought about revisions to the middeweight sport-tourer, the Tracer 9 GT.
Jumping off of the launch of the MT-09, the MT-07 got the Dark Side of Japan treatment, as well. It ditched the old halogen headlight in favor of an LED unit, similar in styling to that of its bigger sibling. Apart from that, a new LCD instrument cluster replaced the old bike’s monochrome unit, and the bike was fitted with an exhaust system fit for Euro 5. More recently, Yamaha pulled the veils off the XSR900, which, apart from boasting all the MT-09-derived updates, flaunted new styling, which has clearly been heavily influenced by bikes of the ’80s, thanks to its boxy tail section.
Now, moving into 2022, Yamaha has taken the opportunity to update the XSR700, too, because why not? Unlike the XSR900, however, we don’t see as big of a refresh, as it consists mainly of a new LED headlight and Euro 5 compliance. Of course, Yamaha would be hard pressed not to release a new striking color for their middleweight neo-retro machine. As such, we see a sleek black and gold motif aptly named XTribute.
The 2022 Yamaha XSR700 continues to be powered by the 689cc CP2 engine, a parallel-twin motor equipped with a 270-degree crank producing around 73 ponies. This, evidently, is the same motor we find in the previously mentioned MT-07, the Tenere 700 adventure bike, and the YZF-R7 sportbike. Other refinements for the 2022 model year consist of larger brake discs up front—a common complaint for the previous generation. Yamaha has also updated the layout of the cockpit for a more seamless riding experience, but retains the retro-style touches such as the dark-themed digital LCD instrument pod.