Yamaha introduced its Road Star line of motorcycles in 1999. Back then, the Road Star had a 1602 cc V-twin engine and a seat that was 28 inches high. It was the first motorcycle to have a belt drive in its line. Fast forward to 2008 when the Road Star has a 1672 cc engine, still an air-cooled V-twin, and a seat that was 27,9 inches high, making it a more comfortable ride for shorter drivers. The Japanese manufacturer offered four Road Star models in 2008: the Road Star Base, Road Star S, Silverado, and Silverado S. All the motorcycles have the same classic look; the Silverado frame is based on the basic Road Star. The engines are the same, though the Silverado has a bigger gas tank, 5.3 gallons compared to 4.7 gallons for the basic two. All models have lots of chrome. The main difference is in the standard features, such as a windshield, full-sized floorboards, and saddlebags, offered on the Silverados. These are options on the basic Road Stars. Electronic fuel injection was offered on all Road Stars models for the first time in 2008. Colors in 2008 for the Road Star Base were two-tone blue color combination and white.
Motorcycle reviewers give the Road Stars good ratings for driver and passenger comfort and reliability. Cycle World does note the Road Stars are not as fast as their competitors, which include Suzuki and Kawasaki, with the same size engine. However, by way of trade-off, they note the Road Stars cost a lot less than their competitors. Owners also like the stylish classic low-line looks of the Road Stars that make them look smaller than they are. Instrumentation includes an ultra-thin speedometer that is mounted to the fuel tank, as well as an odometer, clock, dual trip meters, fuel gauge, and engine diagnostic lights.