KIWI RIDER MAGAZINE July 2017 - Page 80

BLING YAMAHA Words: Jock McLauchlan / Photos: Geoff Osborne Yamaha’s WR450F not got enough grunt or pizazz for you? Northern Accessories’ WR is a showcase for the importer’s products and delivers on both fronts. N orthern Accessories’ latest rolling test bed of all things fast, cool and shiny is a 2017 Yamaha WR450F. Covered with a huge assortment of Zeta, Renthal, Yoshimura and Twin Air products, plus Michelin tyres and a DR Trim seat cover, the WR certainly looks the part, and is a showcase of the products they distribute within New Zealand. The big ticket performance items on this Yamaha are the Yoshimura slip-on muffler and the Twin Air airbox kit, but also the Michelin Starcross 5 tyres and the Twin Air radiator sleeves play their part in going quick. I must say that I am a fan of Zeta products. The levers are small, but widely adjustable for hand size, are virtually unbreakable and beautifully made. I have less experience with their other products like the brake pedal and alloy foot pegs, but they’re certainly made to the same very high standard and felt excellent on our test ride. Likewise Renthal products have always been fantastic – I think I got my first set of Renthal bars over 35 years ago and pretty much the exact same bar comes on the latest Honda CRFs... Is there a better endorsement? But for this old boy I’ve never been a real fan of their Twinwall bar, in this case the Carmichael bend on the WR. I find them a bit too rigid, but all the young, fast guys seem to love them... yes, they are very strong but a little more ‘give’ is kinder on the body and less arm-pump inducing. However, Renthal’s chain, sprockets and hand grips are awesome. Three things were immediately apparent 78 KIWI RIDER