Yamaha SRX600

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Little Miss Fit: The SRX600 got positive reviews but was ignored by American buyers.
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Contender: 1983 Honda FT500
3 / 3
Contender: 1986 Suzuki LS650

Yamaha SRX600

Years produced: 1986 (for U.S. market)
Total production: 19,000 (worldwide)
Claimed power: 41bhp @ 6,500rpm
Top speed: 106mph (est.)
Engine type: 595cc, four-stroke single cylinder
Weight (wet): 176kg (387lb)
Price then: $2,599 (1986)
Price now: $2,500-$3,850

The mullet. Miami Vice jackets. Those ridiculous electric shavers that left behind a few millimeters of stubble.

The Eighties and fashion sins went together like the Ice Age and cold, and the motorcycle world wasn’t immune. Case in point is the American motorcycle mainstream’s indifference to the 1986 Yamaha SRX600.

While factory customs poured from showrooms like Falco albums from record bins — yes, even sludge like Rock Me Amadeus could become a No. 1 hit in the Eighties — domestic buyers ignored the tough and bold SRX like the 55mph speed limit signs of the day. Yamaha claims to have sold 19,000 units of the single-cylinder SRX, but it’s clear that all but a tiny fraction of those sales were in Europe and Asia.

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