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4 Most Common Problems With Yamaha MT-10

The MT-10 is the flagship model of Yamaha’s Masters of Torque (MT) motorcycle range.

Introduced in 2016, the model has won the hearts of buyers with its nimble handling and solid engine performance.

However, before you buy, it’s important that you know common problems with these bikes.

In this article, we will go over some issues encountered on the motorcycles and outline possible fixes to help you.

Let’s dive into it!

1. Engine May Blow

A few owners have reported cases of the engine on their bikes blowing up.

Sure, these owners are few and in the minority. However, we included this issue on the list because a blown engine is an expensive problem to fix.

Even when the bike is under warranty, the engine rebuild process may be lengthy, especially if parts are not available.

Either which way, you’ll lose money or quality riding time.

Based on the complaints of the affected owners, the MT-10’s engine can fail irrespective of mileage. In fact, most of the affected bikes were low-mileage bikes (3,000-6,000 miles). Therefore, age is definitely not a factor that influences engine failure on this model.

Some owners admit riding the bikes aggressively, which explains a lot. Yamaha engines are reliable and can tolerate hard riding habits.

However, any engine, no matter how reliable, can (and will) fail if consistently ridden at excessively high RPMs.

Signs your engine has blown:

  1. A pronounced knocking/rattling noise in the engine may signal engine failure.
  2. Blown rods and pistons are also a sign that your engine has failed.
  3. Excessive smoke, oil leaks, and an abrupt loss of power are other symptoms of a blown engine.

Possible Causes:

On the affected MT-10 bikes, diagnoses traced the problem to oil starvation in the engine.

Because of some fault, the engine oil couldn’t reach some parts of the engine. Forced to operate without lubrication, the components became excessively hot, eventually leading to total failure.

In one case, the bearings, starved of oil, seized to the crank and broke the rod, leading to catastrophic engine failure.

The other cases also had instances of oil not reaching certain components, leading to extensive engine damage.

Possible Solutions:

If your engine goes out, the only option is to buy a new one or rebuild the previous engine.

If the bike is under warranty, you may pay a tiny fraction of the repair cost.

An out-of-warranty bike is a different animal altogether and will cost more to repair.

2. Bike Runs Rough

Some complaints concerning the MT-10 model revolve around the bike running rough and giving a poor performance.

Some problems associated with this issue include:

  1. Engine cuts out at idle: According to the owners, the engine on the MT-10 dies while the bike is idling.
  2. Erratic performance: The engine doesn’t run smoothly during rides. Riders often experience some jerking and shaking, which can make the ride extremely uncomfortable. In worse cases, the bike may stall.

Possible Causes:

A likely cause for your engine running rough is a bad air filter.

If the air filter is clogged, airflow in the engine will reduce, and cause an imbalance in the air-to-fuel ratio. This will eventually cause the engine to run lean, which will lead to a rough idle or stalling.

Other causes include:

  1. Throttle bodies out of sync
  2. Bad gasoline
  3. Faulty tuning

We’ll also recommend looking at the electrical system.

While it’s rare for electrical faults to cause the bike to run rough, it’s not impossible. In fact, a particular owner traced rough running problems to a loose positive connector.

The previous owner had installed a hand-warmer and a tender and had failed to reattach the connections.

As such, the positive connector had provided enough juice to cause intermittent poor running issues.

3. Bike Won’t Downshift

In our research, we spotted some mentions of MT-10 riders finding it difficult to shift into a lower gear.

According to these riders, the bike switches into upper gears with ease but often refuses to switch to lower gears.

Sometimes, the problem occurs at a specific point. One owner said he couldn’t shift from the fourth gear into a lower gear, e.g., 2nd gear, but could shift upwards into a higher gear. He also added that the ‘inability to shift downwards’ issue only occurred when the gearbox was in fourth gear.

Possible Causes:

A faulty shift linkage may be responsible for the notchy gearshifts.

A badly adjusted shift linkage will make it hard for you to downshift from any gear. Similarly, inadequate lubricant in the shift linkage may also cause an inability to switch to a lower gear.

Other causes include:

  1. Incorrect tension in the chain
  2. Lack of free play in the clutch lever

Possible Solutions

  1. Inspect shift linkage: Check the shift linkage component and adjust if necessary.
    • You may also want to check the internal shift linkage components and see if they are well-greased.
    • One owner traced his problem to inadequately lubricated pivot ball joints in the shift linkage.
  2. Measure chain tension and clutch free play: You can consult the service manual for specifications to guide your diagnosis.

4. Malfunctioning Cruise Control

The cruise control system controls a bike’s speed by adjusting the throttle.

With this feature, your bike can move at a selected speed without you twisting the throttle. Particularly, it’s a helpful feature, especially if you go on multiple long-distance rides.

The problem with the MT-10 cruise control is that it malfunctions repeatedly.

Already, a sizable number of owners have reported instances of the cruise control on their bikes going off during rides.

Possible Causes

Engine fault codes: The cruise control feature won’t activate if it detects an active fault code.

A fault code doesn’t always mean something is wrong with your bike.

For example, cleaning your bike’s chain on a stand with the engine running will cause a fault code.

This fault code will disable the Cruise Control feature until it is cleared out of the ECU.

Faulty/stuck brake light switch: The cruise control feature is designed to shut off when the brake light comes on.

If the brake light switch is malfunctioning, the cruise control won’t activate because it thinks the brake light is on (when it isn’t).

In addition, a stuck switch will cause the brake light to remain on, even after you try switching it off. If the brake light keeps running, the cruise control won’t run.

Faulty/stuck clutch switch: The cruise control deactivates when the clutch light is in the “ON” position.

Usually, the clutch switch comes on only when you engage the clutch.

However, a faulty clutch switch may activate even though you didn’t pull in the clutch. This will fool the cruise control system and cause it not to run.

Similarly, a sticky clutch switch won’t go off after you disengage the clutch. This also will lead to the deactivation of the cruise control feature.

Possible Solutions

  1. Check your dashboard for any fault code or “Check Engine” light: If you find any code, take your bike to your dealer or a technician who can clear the codes from the ECU.
  2. Inspect the brake and clutch switches: If any (or both) of the switches are malfunctioning, have them replaced at a repair shop.

Also, if you think the switch(es) may be stuck, spray some cleaner liquid such as WD40 to clear out any dirt that may cause the switch to stick.

General Pros and Cons of the Yamaha MT-10

Here are the selling points and shortcomings of the Yamaha MT-10:

Pros of Yamaha MT-10:

1. Innovative Engine Technology:

The Yamaha MT-10 comes with a 998cc inline 4-cylinder engine that features the Crossplane Crankshaft technology.

This also happens to be the same engine technology featured in the iconic Yamaha YZF-R1 superbike.

The difference being that the MT-10’s engine has been specially tuned to produce huge amounts of low-and-mid-range torque and breathtaking power.

2. Advanced Digital Features:

The MT-10 model comes standard with a slew of digital features designed to give you, the rider, complete control of the bike.

First, there’s the YCC-T ride-by-wire throttle unit that gives riders precise engine control. There’s also a D-Mode feature that allows you to control engine responses at the snap of a switch.

This model also has a Traction Control System (TCS) feature that delivers excellent traction and stability on various road conditions.

Finally, the model comes with a cruise control system that increases rider comfort.

With this feature, you can easily select a set speed, especially on long-distance rides.

3. Excellent Braking Performance:

Given the speed of sportbikes, good brakes are necessary.

Luckily, the Yamaha MT-10 doesn’t disappoint in this regard.

At the front, a pair of 320mm discs provide excellent stopping power.

The rear features a 220mm brake disc as well. Both brakes are AND-equipped, meaning you can safely brake on wet surfaces.

4. Lightweight Aluminum Frame:

Rather than using steel, Yamaha opted for aluminum.

The result is a light frame that makes for nifty and responsive handling.

Moreover, thanks to its use of a strength-rigidity balance, the Yamaha MT-10 is stable in corners and takes turns like a champion.

Cons of Yamaha MT-10

Here are some drawbacks of the MT-10:

  1. Engine May Fail
  2. Bike Won’t Downshift
  3. Bike Runs Rough
  4. Malfunctioning Cruise Control

What Do the Reviews Say?

“The Yamaha MT-10 is an absolutely superb, firmly committed sportbike that happens to have upright, comfortable ergonomics. The MT-10 is so confidence-inspiring it is incredibly easy to ride very, very fast. It handles brilliantly through corners fast and slow, and it will smear big broad rubber tire stripes on corner exits if you want.”

[Source: Ultimatemotorcycling.com]

What Are the Resale Values On Yamaha MT-10?

Year Mileage Price
2017 5,898  9,460
2017 11,500 9,229
2019 5,526 9,590
2018 3,772 10,999

Note: These prices may vary based on mileage and location.

References:

2018 YAMAHA MT-10 – yamaha.nyhondayamaha.com

2018 YAMAHA MT-10 REVIEW | STILL RAZOR SHARP – Ultimatemotorcycling.com

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