I’d like to introduce you to the 2018 SLUK long-term test machine. Although to be fair the Yamaha TMAX is a scooter that should need no introduction. We collected the mighty TMAX from Silverstone in May and it’ll be staying with us until November.
I first rode a TMAX way back in 2003 and have ridden every incarnation since then. It’s an out and out tool of a scooter, if you want a sports scooter that can live with most bikes through the twisties then you’ve come to the right place. If you also want a relatively practical machine then the TMAX can tick those boxes as well, it’s roomy, comfortable for rider and pillion, has a decent amount of space beneath the ample seat and can swiftly take you touring if you fancy getting away.
Our TMAX is the 2018 ‘Original’ but comes with a couple of extras taken from the Yamaha accessories catalogue. Firstly the short black sports screen replaces the original taller clear screen. It makes the gloss Black TMAX look even meaner than it does already. It also has a full titanium Akrapovic system with ceramic black muffler and carbon can fitted. Surprisingly it’s not a loud pipe, although it enhances the twin cylinder exhaust note quite nicely. I may try it without the DB killer though at some stage. These extras take the cost of the TMAX to £11,092 and there are plenty more TMAX accessories to choose from.
Whose the daddy?
When we got the TMAX last month we also had the Kymco AK550 in our SLUK toy cupboard, naturally, those two scooters are competitors, separated by price and to a certain extent brand name. Taking them out for a back-to-back road test was high on the list of priorities so me and Sticky gave the large capacity duo a thorough thrashing on one of the warmest, nicest weekday rides I’ve had the pleasure of for a long time.
A fantastic days riding, fast and hard. We’ll bring you the full TMAX versus Kymco AK550 at the beginning of July. We’ll also be using our TMAX as much as we can over the summer and will bring you a regular report.
Words and photos: Iggy, Action shot: Sticky
Long termer in numbers
Yamaha TMAX 530 Original: £9999
Sports screen: £74.60
Mileage when collected: 80
Mileage now: 649
Average MPG: 58.2
Summary so far: Good looking, great handling, fast, comfortable and can eat a few middleweight bikes for breakfast.
Niggles? The only thing so far is the right-hand cubby hole keeps popping open.
Contact: Yamaha UK
New products always in development…