Yamaha YZF600 Thundercat Overview
If you’re in the market for a cheap sports-tourer then the Yamaha YZF600 Thundercat is definitely worth a look. It’s a mid-nineties middleweight sportsbike, which did well when new, and is now a relaxed alternative to later, more track-focused 600s.
There’s plenty of room on the touring side to ride two-up and it can carry enough soft luggage for a weekend adventure. The larger fairing gives you an extra level of protection, compared with a half-faired or naked machine, and the dual seat is plush and much comfier than more hardcore machines.
First released in 1996, and in production for eight years, Yamaha hit the nail on the head when creating the Thundercat. It offers a good balance between tourer and sportsbike – the engine is torquey and easy to ride, while the brakes were top of the class in 1996 – and still compare well to today’s machinery. There’s no ABS option though, which makes it less useful for novice riders.
You can get your hands on a pre-owned Thundercat easily these days, with the starting prices from well under £1,000. Look for crash damage and worn-out ancillaries like tyres, brakes and chain – rough running might be down to dirty carburettors.
Yamaha YZF600 Thundercat Spec
- Top speed145mph
- Engine16v, inline-four
- Average fuel consumption40mpg
- Seat height805mm
Yamaha YZF600 Thundercat Insurance
Yamaha YZF600 Thundercat Photos
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Not the best for pillion passengers.
Never had an issue with her.
Stops on a dime.
Corners like a dream.
Fast and very powerful.
£18 for a full tank =170-190 miles.
Unfortunately on a long ride
Never broken down.
Good breaking and the grip is down to the tyres
Light when riding but heavy when pushing
It's quite good.
Running costs are good but I need to get the cards set up.
Its 23 years old and still going strong… in its day it was one of the best money could buy… technology has well surpassed her now but still going strong… accelerates well, smooth ride for its age, quite heavy compared to modern 600's but still corners quite well..
99BHP @11500 RPM in 1994… probably lost a few of those horses now. But still pulls like a train..
£64 fully comp insurance… 140-180 miles to the tank…
Its a Yamaha…! Excellent build quality at the time of production… surpassed by modern bikes obviously… but how many of these modern machines will still be going strong in 23 years time..?
Brakes are twin vented discs on front with 4 pot caliper & single disc 2 pot caliper on the back. For a 23 year old they work well… upgraded the lines to colour coded HEL braided lines. Also upgraded the front calipers to Blue spot Calipers off an early R1..
Nice to ride
It's lasted 20 years
Fitted braided hoses