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Thread: Yamaha's First Inline Four - The XS Eleven

  1. #1

    Yamaha's First Inline Four - The XS Eleven

    79 Yamaha XS Eleven Special (3).jpg 79 Yamaha XS Eleven Special (2).jpg 79 Yamaha XS Eleven Special.jpg






    In 1978 Yamaha jumped into the inline four market with both feet. The XS Eleven was a massive affair weighing in at 630 pounds with a full tank of gas. In 1979 they introduced a much prettier (in my humble opinion) and less boxy cruiser version known as the XS Eleven Special which is pictured above. The new cruiser featured a smaller teardrop gas tank, stepped up seat, swept back handlebars, fatter rear tire, and altered frame.

    Performance was at or near the top for that period: 95 HP, 0 to 60 in 4.7 seconds, standing quarter mile in 11.78 seconds, and a top speed of 136 MPH.

    Professionals have knocked the XS Eleven for not cornering like a champ but I never noticed that shortcoming in saner everyday use. For freeway use few bikes do better. It accelerates like a rocket from almost any speed and doesn't buffet easily. At 70 MPH it reaches a smooth sweat free canter with ample reserves of power to spare. Some bikes are worthy of being brought back to life as so called "modern classics". The XS Eleven Special may be one of them.

  2. #2
    Administrator Ken's Avatar
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    Another interesting, although quirky bike, was the massive Munch Mammut. Using engines from the NSU range Friedl Munch built a selection of these big bikes, although his total production was probably less than 300. A typical example was the TTS 1200 shown below. Each bike was built to the customers requirements so, apart from frame, engine, suspension and brakes the trim, colour and fittings were specified by the customer, not the factory. With drum brakes front and rear and around 100 BHP/220 KPH on tap these bikes were not for the faint hearted.


    munch_1200_tts.jpgMammut.jpg

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    Senior Member grouch's Avatar
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    I always have wanted to buy, or at least ride, a Honda CBX. It was a massive bike with a straight SIX engine. I'd hate to drop one and have to pick it up.
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    Administrator Ken's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by grouch View Post
    I always have wanted to buy, or at least ride, a Honda CBX. It was a massive bike with a straight SIX engine. I'd hate to drop one and have to pick it up.
    Or one of these beauties, Grouch?

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    606Hoss.jpg
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    Senior Member grouch's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ken View Post
    Or one of these beauties, Grouch?

    Ken.

    606Hoss.jpg


    Actually, I have ridden a Boss Hoss before. Anything over a 350 in one of those isn't something you want to get silly with. The 350 in the one I rode was a handful. Torque swing was nasty, heat off the engine cooked you on a cool day and fuel mileage stinks. I will admit, the response, once I got used to riding it, was fantastic. I wouldn't want to own one though.
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  6. #6

    Slightly Better XS Eleven Photo

    It's basically the same photo used in the initial post with some small changes.79 Yamaha XS Eleven Special.jpg

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    Administrator Ken's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marc View Post
    It's basically the same photo used in the initial post with some small changes.79 Yamaha XS Eleven Special.jpg
    It is indeed a very nice looking retro, Marc. Judging by the performance figures, on the road, it could still hold its own with a lot of modern machinery. Is it just a 'bike you like' or are you lucky enough to have it in your stable?

    Ken.
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  8. #8
    Based on the statistics I've read, not many new (non-electric) bikes are faster in the quarter mile. Most of those that are quicker are probably so specialized that they lack the ability to carry a passenger and accommodate saddlebags. I'm not real big on passengers but being able to occasionally carry items when the need arises is a utilitarian plus. I owned the bike for about six years but sold it to raise money for a venture that I was involved with at the time. Seriously, I've been kicking myself grieving ever since. Like I said before, hindsight is always twenty-twenty.

  9. #9
    Administrator Ken's Avatar
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    For comparison I have just converted the performance figures given for my 2012 Yamaha Fazer 8 ABS from foreign parameters into proper English, Marc.

    Standing 0 - 62 mph 3.9 sec
    Standing 0 - 87 mph 6.5 sec
    Standing 0 - 124 mph 14.7 sec
    Acceleration 37- 62 mph 4.5 sec
    Acceleration 37-87 mph 9.8 sec
    Acceleration 62-87 mph 5.3 sec
    Acceleration 87-112 mph 5.6 sec
    Top Speed 135 mph

    Ken.
    Last edited by Ken; 01-13-2015 at 09:51 AM.
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  10. #10
    Very Interesting. The Fazer 8 is almost a second faster to sixty. In a hypothetical straight line competition using skilled riders of equal ability, however, they would literally be neck and neck a little beyond the quarter mile point with the XS Eleven Special then distancing itself at a rate of only one mph.

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