Yamaha XJ 650 Turbo 1982

My 1982 Yamaha XJ650 Turbo covered just 22,000 miles from new. It was kept in original condition, except for the addition of a set of panniers - necessary for touring.

Unfortunately it got pushed to the back of the garage in 2000 and I never rode it again, so in 2010 I gave it to a friend who has full intention of getting it back on the road, and letting me ride it again (I hope).

The longest trip I made on the Turbo was London to Sicily. The bike ran perfectly and the only problems encountered were when I dropped the bike at the base of Mt Etna, breaking the clutch lever, and then a rear puncture on the way home through France.

Only when I got home did I discover my friend took a tow rope with him as he was convinced the Turbo would break down!!

I went to watch the Isle Of Man TT twice, and on one occasion entered the Ramsey Sprint.

Gooseneck Hairpin

Ramsey Sprint

So, how does a Turbo perform?

Top speed approx. 130 mph.

At the Ramsey Sprint (on the Isle of Man) I recorded a best time of 8.54 seconds over the 200yd strip, terminal speed 86mph.

It is not a modern sports bike, but it tours well and the kick from the turbo is simply what it is all about!

You think the XJ650 Turbo is rare ? My friend Kevin owned an XJ750 Seca (Grey import to the UK). This had almost identical fairing panels to my Turbo and an even more complex LCD dash display. This is the only one I had ever seen in the UK, and unfortunately now resides in the great scrap yard in the sky.

TV Advert shown in the USA ...

Did you know James Bond used a Yamaha XJ 650 Turbo in the film Never Say Never Again?

One annoying problem with the bike is corrosion of the pivot for the turbo waste gate; it sticks in the closed position resulting in unlimited boost pressure necessitating careful observation of the boost gauge to avoid anything terminal (Unlimited boost = Great fun though) !