— New changes to make it a better back east woods machine —
The 2019 YXZ1000R is the most extensively upgraded version of the five-speed sport machine to be released so far, and many of the improvements are aimed at making it faster and more fun in eastern riding conditions. Fully manual and Sport Shift (SS) automatic clutch, paddle-shift YXZ models are available in base and SE versions. We tested a 2019 YXZ1000R SS SE on the challenging trails at Alabama’s Stony Lonesome OHV Park to see how all the changes work.
WHAT’S NEW FOR 2019?
The new rear-mounted radiator is the most obvious change. It ends radiator clogging when following other vehicles in muddy conditions and eliminates heat from the coolant lines that ran in the driveshaft tunnel between the seats on previous YXZs. The new radiator is also much larger than the previous one.
The Yamaha’s five-speed sequential shift transmission gets lower overall gearing with an extra-low first gear for easier going in technical terrain. Yamaha’s testing shows the lower gearing and new shift programming more than doubles clutch life. Shock springs and valving are changed for a more compliant ride without compromising control and bottoming resistance in aggressive driving.
Larger, tougher, 29-inch Maxxis Bighorn eight-ply tires replace the 27-inch tires on previous YXZs. SE models come with a rear-view mirror. All 2019 YXZ engines come with the stronger GYTR connecting rods, which is a huge plus if you plan to add a turbo kit. A new cage profile makes the vehicle easier to enter and exit. Bigger brake rotors come on hubs with the 4/156 bolt pattern also used by many Polaris UTVs.
HOW DOES COST COMPARE?
The 2019 YXZ1000R is $18,999 and the 2019 YXZ1000R SE is $20,599. The 2019 YXZ1000R SS is $18,999 and the 2019 YXZ1000R SS SE is $20,599–$21,799. The Polaris RZR XP 1000 starts at $17,999. Can-Am’s X3 Turbo starts at $19,999. Textron’s Wildcat X starts at $15,999. The Wildcat XX is $20,499.
WHAT POWERS IT?
An inline, three-cylinder, 998cc, double-overhead-cam, 12-valve engine.
WHAT KIND OF TRANSMISSION DOES IT HAVE?
Sport-shift YXZs have a paddle-shift, auto-clutch, five-speed transmission. It has launch mode for fast starts and automatically downshifts to first when you slow to a stop. Regular YXZs have a fully manual, sequential-shift five-speed.
HOW FAST IS IT?
It rips! The YXZ takes off like a dragster using the transmission’s launch mode, and the high-revving triple pulls full-throttle upshifts as fast as you can feed them. Acceleration is intense even without launch mode, thanks to the engine’s solid power delivery and the new lower gearing. You really need to run the Yamaha through the gears to feel how fun it is. It’s a very different experience than driving a UTV with a fully automatic transmission.
HOW IS THE POWER DELIVERY?
It’s entirely up to you. The engine makes power across a huge rev range. It comes on hard at high revs and revs higher than other UTVs. The broad power spread and the ability to choose your own gears let you make the YXZ respond as abruptly or as smoothly as you like. The YXZ’s tractability on difficult tight woods trails in Alabama was excellent. You don’t have to be an aggressive driver to master tough trails with it, but there’s plenty of performance on tap for drivers who can use it. The SS model’s automatic clutch eliminates stalling, and automatic downshifting makes the machine very forgiving, especially in tough terrain. The YXZ is a serious high-performance machine, but it’s content to cruise smoothly at a relaxed pace if you want to.
WHAT KIND OF SUSPENSION DOES IT HAVE?
Double A-arms up front and trailing arms in the rear with Fox RC2 shocks. The shocks have adjustable high- and low-speed compression, adjustable rebound, spring preload and adjustable spring crossovers. The Ultra White SE gets Fox X2 shocks with adjustable high- and low-speed compression and adjustable high- and low-speed rebound.
HOW DOES THE SUSPENSION WORK?
It’s excellent, even in tight, bumpy eastern conditions where speeds are often lower than out west. Previous YXZ suspension favored fast, aggressive driving in more open, high-speed conditions. The new settings make the ride more compliant, but it’s still firm enough for highly skilled drivers and wide-open western conditions. Larger tires improve the 2019’s ride too. The SE’s RC2 shocks are among the most tunable offered on a UTV, so it can be adjusted to suit a wide range of conditions and driving styles.
HOW IS IT FOR MUD AND WATER?
Like most sport machines, splash protection could be better, but Yamaha accessories has over-fenders that help. The YXZ’s geared transmission has no belt to burn in slow, muddy conditions, and the 2019’s lower gearing makes for easier-going in deep mud. Selectable 2WD/4WD with a locking front differential gives you all the traction four wheels can offer. The new larger tires provide 13.2 inches of ground clearance.
HOW DOES IT HANDLE?
The YXZ’s balanced handling, agility and planted, predictable feel has impressed drivers of all skill levels since it was introduced, and the 2019 is even more composed. Smoother suspension and larger tires keep it more settled at speed and in bumpy turns.
HOW IS IT ON HILLS?
The YXZ has more hill-climbing power and traction than most drivers have the nerve to use, and the vehicle’s steep hood provides excellent forward visibility uphill or down. The Sport Shift’s auto downshift feature helps less skilled drivers tackle hills even if they’re not experts at shifting. Natural engine braking makes the YXZ one of the most confidence-inspiring UTVs on ugly downhills, and this machine’s brakes are among the best on any UTV.
HOW ARE THE DETAILS?
Yamaha’s outstanding engineering and build quality are easy to see all over the YXZ—from the feel of the controls to the machine’s finish to the way the parts fit, and even the look of the hardware that holds everything together. The new cage makes it easier to get in and out. The seats are comfortable and offer great support, and the instruments are clear and easy to read.
WHAT IS OUR FINAL ANSWER?
The 2019 Yamaha YXZ1000R SS’ many upgrades make the machine faster and easier to drive in technical terrain, and some of the changes will improve its performance in faster western conditions too. It’s also more comfortable and more ruggedly built than previous models. This is the best YXZ yet.
2019 YAMAHA YXZ1000R SS SE
Engine type Liquid-cooled, 12-valve, DOHC 4-stroke triple
Bore x stroke 80.0 x 66.2mm (x3)
Compression ratio 11.3:1
Lubrication system Dry sump
Additional cooling Auto fan
Induction Yamaha EFI w/3 41mm bodies
Starting procedure Turn ignition key
Choke location N/A
Type Washable foam & wet paper
Access Remove 5 Dzus and cover, unscrew cap
Transmission 5-speed sequential, auto-clutch w/ reverse
Reverse procedure Pull D/N/R range selector to “R”
Drive system Selectable 2WD/4WD w/ diff -lock & EBS
Final drives Shafts
Fuel capacity 9.0 gal.
Overall length/width/height 123.9”/64.0”/68.9”
Ground clearance 13.2”
Claimed wet weight 1,563 lb.
Bed weight limit 300 lb.
Towing limit N/A
Frame Steel round tube
Front Dual A-arms w/ prel./ hi-low comp./reb./
X-over adj. shocks/16.2”
Rear Dual L/H-arms w/ prel./hi-low comp./reb./
X-over adj. shocks/17.0”
Front Twin-piston hydraulic discs
Rear Twin-piston hydraulic discs
Parking Lever on console
Front 29x9R14 Bighorn 2.0 8-ply
Rear 29x11R14 Bighorn 2.0 8-ply
DC outlet Console
Front 4 LED headlights
Rear Single LED brake/tail light
Instrumentation Digital speedo/fuel/gear/trip &
hour meters/temp/time, analog tach
Colors Yamaha Blue, Ultra White
Minimum recommended operator age 16
Suggested retail price $20,599–$21,799
Contact Yamaha Motor Corp., (800) 962-7926
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