The big news out of Yamaha’s subsidiary is the arrival of a new cruiser, the V-Star 950. Star sees its newest addition as an “entry cruiser,” although we’re not sure what that would make the V-Star 650 or 250. Regardless, it’s a big-style cruiser without a heavyweight price, and engineers took into account the female market when designing it.
The V-Star 950 is built around an all-new 942cc V-Twin motor with cylinders placed 60 degrees apart. For an authentic look and simplicity, it’s air cooled, but there’s some modern technology also built in. Fuel injection precisely meters the intake charge while a single overhead cam operates four valves per cylinder via roller rocker arms. Pistons are made from forged aluminum, and cylinders are coated with a ceramic material for efficient heat dissipation. A five-speed transmission throws power rearward via a belt drive. Yamaha/Star promise “big cruiser character and pulsing torque feel” from the engine and its two-into-one exhaust, plus best-in-class acceleration.
Star describes the styling of its new bike as “sport classic"
Holding the wheels 66.3 inches apart is a double-cradle steel-tube frame that uses the engine as a stressed member. Smaller riders will be happy with a seat holding a rider’s butt just 26.6 inches off the ground. Suspension duties are handled by a 41mm fork and a single shock. An attractive 18-inch aluminum front wheel holds a 130/70 tire and a single 320mm front rotor. At the rear is a 170/70-16 bias-ply tire and a 298mm disc. Full of fuel, it is said to weigh in at a reasonable 612 lbs.
Star describes the styling of its new bike as “sport classic,” though we’re not quite sure what that means. Like all Stars, it is fitted with gen-u-wine steel fenders. Polished cylinder fins and chrome-plated head covers add the requisite bling. Compared to the V-Star 1300, the 950 has its handlebar pulled back nearly 2 inches, and it has lower and further-forward floorboards.