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2022 Yamaha YZ85 Review [8 Fast Facts From The MX Track]

With the addition of the new Yamaha YZ85LW, it was a good time for Yamaha to update the standard YZ85 as well. The chassis caught the eye, although there’s a lot to be said for it. We drafted in Fasthouse-sponsored Anthony Keasey as test and photo driver because everyone on staff is too big for the minis. So we listened to what Anthony had to say and watched him in action as he shredded the REM track at Glen Helen Raceway on the 2022 Yamaha YZ85.2022 Yamaha YZ85 Review: Price

  1. The chassis received several upgrades, and the result is a stable ride. Yamaha has reworked the stiffness and strength of the steel frame, with new swingarm mount thicknesses and changes to the lower engine mounts. There’s also a new one-piece aluminum swingarm and a solid rear axle. Anthony was able to hit the tough parts of the track aggressively without worrying about the exchange. There is also a new aluminum subframe. It’s lighter and, like its steel predecessor, replaceable if the subframe takes a hard hit from the track.
  1. Even with the improved stability, the 2022 Yamaha YZ85 turns well. With a wheelbase under 50 inches, the YZ85 is a natural turner. Cornering is aided by excellent Dunlop Geomax MX3S rubber and predictable fully adjustable KYB suspension. Whether in fast sweeps or tighter corners, Anthony could put the YZ85 where he wanted and considered cornering to be one of the YZ’s strengths.

2022 Yamaha YZ85 Review: MSRP

  1. The induction power-valve two-stroke engine is another impressive part of the YZ85 package. Anthony described the engine as quick and smooth—two things we always love to hear. When it needed acceleration to air it out for photos, it could level reliably for jumps, while still having the punch to control the air. When other shots demanded some cornering roost, the little mill delivered, with muscular low-end power. This year, the 85cc engine has a revised intake thanks to new dual pre-airbox intake vents that are part of the new seat and subframe combo.
  1. Getting the most out of a small two-stroke takes some clutch work, and the YZ85 makes it easy. Anthony commented that the clutch has a slight pull and engagement is predictable and smooth. Even under heavy use all day, it did not slip.

2022 Yamaha YZ85 Review: For Sale

  1. Braking is excellent and the master cylinder is new on the rear brake. Yamaha brought the YZ85 rear brake setup up to fat-bike standards by integrating the fluid reservoir into the master cylinder. It also tightened the travel of the brake pedal. After some initial tweaks, the rear brake worked perfectly and matches perfectly with the front brake, which was updated in 2019.
  1. Easy movement on a motocross bike is essential, and the new plastic on the 2022 Yamaha YZ85 delivers just that. When Yamaha improved the look with the symmetrical radiator shrouds, it also made it easier to change position, as both sides feel the same and the overall design is narrower. Also, the seams have been moved out of the knee area, so nothing gets snagged. We had Anthony all over the YZ85 with no issues. The saddle is also flatter and narrower, allowing the rider to get where they need to be.

2022 Yamaha YZ85 Review: Mini Motocross Racer

  1. Mom and dad will love the new integrated radiator shroud graphics. The sticker budget will be significantly reduced and the plastic will look better for longer. Kids and adults love the ’22 graphics. We had DeCal Works license plate stickers on the bike, with our logo, and they look factory.
  1. Although not a complete package, Yamaha took a nice mini package and smartly upgraded it. Improved ergonomics allow anyone to go faster. Supporting this with a more stable chassis enhances the benefits of the new ergonomics. A little more power doesn’t hurt, and the new 2022 Yamaha YZ85 is absolutely a fantastic motocross race bike. At $4799, it’s $1600 cheaper than the Austrian equivalents, a significant difference. The YZ85’s user-friendly power delivery and user-friendly spring forks make it a go-to choice for a rider looking for accessible support for local races.

Test driver Anthony Keasey is sponsored by Fasthouse Photography by Will Embree/SMX Photos and Don WilliamsDRIVING STYLE

  • Helmet: Bell Moto-9 Flex
  • Mask: 100% Armega
  • Jersey: Fasthouse Grindhouse Domingo
  • Gloves: Remnants of Fasthouse Speed ​​Style
  • Pants: Fasthouse Grindhouse
  • Knee pads: Asterisk Junior Cell Youth
  • Socks: American Flag Stance
  • Boots: Alpinestars Tech 7

2022 Yamaha YZ85 SpecificationsMOTOR

  • Type: Single cylinder two-stroke
  • Displacement: 85cc
  • Bore x stroke: 47.5 x 47.8 mm
  • Compression ratio: 8.2-9.6:1
  • Intake: induction reed valve
  • Fuel supply: Hitachi Astemo Keihin PWK28 flat slide carburetor
  • Exhaust: Power valve and expansion chamber
  • Transmission: 6 speed
  • Clutch: Wet multiplate


  • Front suspension; Travel: Fully adjustable 36mm KYB inverted fork; 10.8 inches
  • Rear suspension; Travel: Link-Assisted Fully Adjustable KYB Piggyback Reservoir Shock; 11.3 inches
  • Tyres: Dunlop Geomax MX3S
  • Front tire: 70/100 x 17
  • Rear tire: 90/100 x 14
  • Front brake: 220mm wave rotor
  • Rear brake: 190mm wave rotor


  • Wheelbase: 49.4 inches
  • Rake: 26.3 degrees
  • Trail: 3.5 inches
  • Seat height: 33.1 inches
  • Ground clearance: 12.6 inches
  • Fuel capacity: 1.3 gallons
  • Curb weight: 161 lbs.
  • Colour: Team Yamaha Blue

2022 Yamaha YZ85 Price: $4799 MSRP

2022 Yamaha YZ85 Review Photo Gallery

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With 50 years of riding experience, Don Williams is a fan of all kinds of motorcycles. He likes sport bikes, cruisers, dirt bikes, touring bikes, adventure bikes, dual sport bikes and custom bikes. Ask Don what his favorite bike is and he’ll say, “Whatever bike I ride.