Yamaha XT500 – The Motorcycle That Won The First Two Paris-Dakar Rallies


The Yamaha XT500 will almost certainly always be ideal remembered as the bike that received the initial Paris-Dakar Rally, all the way back in 1979. Then just to confirm it was not a fluke, it won the function all over again a calendar year later in 1980.

In the decades since these wins, the XT500 has develop into a well-known option for these looking for a classic enduro bicycle thanks to the point that they are tough to crack, straightforward to get pieces for, and a large amount of pleasurable to trip.

Speedy Facts – The Yamaha XT500

  • Yamaha introduced the XT500 in 1976, it shares considerably the identical engine and drivetrain as the road-heading Yamaha SR500 and the TT500 off-roader.
  • The motor is a straightforward solitary-cylinder with a single overhead cam, it has two valves, a 5-speed transmission, and a chain generate to the rear wheel.
  • The XT500 would remain in generation from 1976 until eventually 1989, and it would gain a slew of races which include the Paris–Abidjan-Wonderful, the Paris-Dakar Rally (twice), and the 1977 FIM Motocross Luxembourg Grand Prix.
  • The XT500 you see in this article is detailed as being a previous stunt bicycle that has considering the fact that been totally restored and only pushed in dry climate due to the fact. It has matching motor and frame numbers, and it is becoming marketed out of Oxfordshire in the United Kingdom.

The Major Desert Rallies

In the 1970s the age of the major international desert rallies had arrived, races like this experienced existed just before of study course, but there was something new and somehow extra intense about races like the Paris–Abidjan-Good Rally and the Paris-Dakar Rally.

Earlier mentioned Online video: This clip exhibits footage of the 1979 Paris-Dakar Rally, together with the race-winning Yamaha XT500 in motion.

In these situations there was really very little aid, most of the entrants typically didn’t end owing to crashes or mechanical breakdowns, and in the beginning at the very least, there was incredibly very little media coverage. Individuals did not do it for the fame they did it for the obstacle.

Nevertheless it wasn’t explicitly intended for desert stamina racing, the Yamaha XT500 would transform out to be fantastic for it. The explanation for this was virtually unquestionably the toughness and mechanical simplicity of the engine and drivetrain.

The XT500 would acquire the Paris–Abidjan-Pleasant Rally and the to start with two runnings of the Paris-Dakar Rally, soon after which the larger sized journey bikes started to dominate, bikes like the BMW R80G/S which would earn in 1981, 1983, 1984, and 1985.

The Yamaha XT500

When the Yamaha XT500 was introduced in the mid-1970s the globe was in the midst of the two-stroke enduro craze, and a 4-stroke motorbike like the new Yamaha need to have appeared a small out of position.

Earlier mentioned Image: This episode of Harry’s Garage focusses on the Yamaha XT500, and Harry discusses its heritage and importance.

As we seem back again on this issue in motorcycle history now it is possible to establish the XT500 has a link in between the iconic but primitive scramblers of the 1960s and the much more present day enduro bikes of the 1980s.

The engine in the XT500 would prove to be remarkably useful for Yamaha, they equipped it to the SR500 avenue bicycle and the TT500 off-roader, as effectively as the XT500, more of a dual sport bicycle.

This motor has a one cylinder with a single overhead cam running two valves, there’s a solitary carburetor in and a solitary exhaust out, and power is sent to the rear wheel via a 5-speed gearbox and a chain travel.

Although they didn’t know it when the motor was remaining intended in the mid-1970s, it would confirm to be Yamaha’s most enduring motor design.

It is has now been in production, with updates about time, from 1976 to the fashionable day – it’s continue to made use of in gas-injected sort in the Yamaha SR400.

The 1977 Yamaha XT500 Revealed Below

The bicycle you see below is a Yamaha XT500 from the second calendar year of output, 1977. Nevertheless particulars are scarce the listing notes that it was originally applied as a stunt bicycle before becoming absolutely restored in 2006.

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It continues to be a matching-quantities bike and it is observed that it is only been ridden in dry weather conditions since its restoration.

It is finished in the white/pink/black livery this design is acknowledged for, it has seating for two, and it’s equipped with cross-spoke wire wheels fitted with Continental and Trelleborg “knobbly” tires.

The bicycle is highway authorized of course, making it a extremely-useable classic dual activity bike.

It is now becoming available for sale on Accumulating Cars out of the United kingdom, and you can stop by the listing right here if you’d like to read through additional about it or sign-up to bid.

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Photographs courtesy of Accumulating Autos

Yamaha XT500

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