2011 Yamaha Tmax Review


The 2011 Yamaha TMAX is one of the best maxi-scooters on the market. It couples sporting performance with easy operation and convenience to truly blur the line between scooters and motorcycles. It has enough power to maintain freeway speeds and enough well-designed bodywork to offer comfort, protection, and style. It offers a comfortable seat big enough to carry a passenger and an adjustable backrest for the operator. Lighted, secure storage underneath the seat is big enough to hold a full-face helmet. A double glove box up front offers more storage. Full multifunction instrumentation includes both a speedometer and a tachometer. Floorboards, apron, and windscreen are tied together with aggressive styling. The sum of all these parts is an affordable and practical alternative to a conventional motorcycle. The 2011 Yamaha TMAX offers enough performance and fun for spirited riding. It feels like a real motorcycle and can easily stay with many sports bikes on twisty roads. This is a remarkable achievement and a testament to Yamaha design. This is a scooter for people who like to ride motorcycles.

The 2011 Yamaha TMAX is built on a very stiff chassis carrying a beefy suspension and sporty H-speed-rated, radial tires on 15-inch alloy wheels. The frame of the bike is lightweight, die-cast aluminum. The 499-cc, liquid-cooled, four-stroke, parallel two-cylinder engine is mounted horizontally and serves as a stressed member of the frame. Inside that motor are forged pistons on carburized connecting rods and four valves per cylinder. Cylinder walls are plated with a ceramic composite for reduced friction and improved durability. The compression ratio is 11.0:1. Electronic fuel injection and digital transistor-controlled ignition contribute to efficient operation and low maintenance. The clutch is a wet, multi-plate, automatic, centrifugal unit. It connects the engine to a continuously-variable automatic transmission with a double-cog V-belt. The double-sided swing arm is separate from the power unit and this contributes to the very motorcycle-like feel of this scooter. The dual-disc front brakes feature four-piston monobloc calipers. The rear brake is a single disc. All three rotors are 10.5 inches in diameter. The result is one of the best-stopping big scooters around. This is reassuring on a machine that can top 100 miles per hour. A four-gallon fuel tank and the 47 mpg combine for a usable range of more than 150 miles between fill ups. The 2011 Yamaha TMAX can realistically be called a touring scooter that rides like a sports bike.

Although the 2011 Yamaha TMAX weighs 489 pounds, it is one of the lighter maxi-scooters available. Moreover, the center of gravity is very low. This along with the rigid chassis, the engine bolted to the frame, and the sophisticated suspension give the TMAX a very sporting feel. Scooters are fun. Motorcycles are fun but in a different way. The TMAX offers motorcycle-style fun, and lots of it. Yamaha offers a range of accessory top boxes to compliment the built-in storage and bring even more scooter-style practicality to the decidedly motorcycle-like TMAX.

New For 2011

  • New color: Raven (black)

2011 Yamaha Tmax Specs

  • Model: 2011 Yamaha TMAX
  • Engine Type: 499-cc, liquid-cooled, four-stroke, parallel two-cylinder
  • Bore and Stroke: 2.60 by 2.87 inches
  • Compression ratio: 11.0:1
  • Valve Train: dual overhead camshaft; four valves per cylinder
  • Induction: electronic fuel injection
  • Ignition: digital transistor-controlled ignition
  • Transmission: automatic, continuously-variable transmission
  • Final Drive: V-belt
  • Fuel Capacity: four gallons
  • Estimated Fuel Economy: 47 mpg
  • Brakes (Front): dual hydraulic 10.51 inch disc
  • Brakes (Rear): single hydraulic 10.51 inch disc
  • Suspension (Front): 1.69 inch telescopic fork
  • Suspension (Rear): single shock absorber, double-sided swing arm
  • Wheelbase: 62.2 inches
  • Rake: N/A
  • Trail: N/A
  • Seat Height: 31.5 inches
  • Curb Weight: 489 pounds
  • Tires (Front): 120/70-R15
  • Tires (Rear): 160/60-R15


  • Rear rack
  • Passenger backrest
  • Side wind deflectors
  • Console bag
  • Chrome and anodized aluminum accents
  • 12-volt DC power outlet, battery charger and adapters
  • Saddle cover

Key Competitors For The 2011 Yamaha Tmax

  • Kymco Xciting 500Ri
  • Aprilia Scarabeo 500ie
  • Suzuki Burgman 400
  • Suzuki Burgman 650
  • Piaggio MP3 500