2017 YXZ1000R SS Clutch/Shifting Problems
In early March of 2018, a friend and I both purchased new 2017 YXZ1000R SS's.
From the beginning, my YXZ had a very harsh clutch engagement and shifting. I thought this was normal and even mentioned it to my friend when he began driving his YXZ.
After a couple of weeks of use, at 13.0 hours, my clutch failed (burnt/slipping). I had not abused the clutch with excessive slipping, running too high of a gear for the terrain, multiple launches, etc.
The manager of the dealership was helpful and convinced Yamaha to warranty the clutch. He also charged me a reduced labor amount to install a GYTR Torque Assist Gear Reduction Kit (70% 1st gear, 30% 2nd - 5th) that I had purchased from an outside vendor because the kits were backordered until late May from Yamaha. I decided to have the gear reduction kit installed to avoid another clutch issue.
23 days after dropping my YXZ at the dealers after the clutch failure, I picked it up (two days ago). My YXZ had 14.1 hours on the hobbs meter when I picked it up. My friend and I took both YXZ's to a local OHV area to test my newly rebuilt clutch and gear reduction kit transmission.
The first thing I noticed was that the trans still engaged harshly, probably more so than before the gear kit. Also, it would not shift into 2nd gear until a fairly high rpm in 1st.
The next thing that was different is that after shifting into 4th and 5th gears under low throttle settings, the engine would delay returning to power immediately, sometimes for a second or two. This was different from before the gear kit installation.
After approximately an hour, in a downhill section with no load on the clutch, the trans would not shift out of 1st gear, even at high rpm. After a few seconds I noticed the high trans temp light illuminate and as I came to a stop, the engine died.
After approximately 10 minutes to allow the trans to cool (if it was actually hot to begin with as the downhill section should not have created slipping heat), my YXZ restarted and we began looking for an easy way back to the staging area.
Initially, the trans shifted normally and I was being very easy on throttle to allow us to return to the staging area without getting stuck. After approximately 5 minutes, on a slight downhill forest road, once again, the trans would not shift out of 1st, even at high rpm, the trans over temp light came on, and the engine quit.
After sitting for another 10 minutes, my YXZ restarted and we were able to drive the 5 miles back to the staging area with no further problems. The clutch was not burnt and functioned normally with the exception of the above noted engagement issues.
Upon arriving back at the staging areas, my friend and I switched YXZ's to see if they drove differently. We both immediately noticed the much smoother, less abrupt engagement of his YXZ clutch, quicker and quieter shifting, and no delays in the power returning after shifting to higher gears. Additionally, my friend noticed that sometimes my YXZ would not shift from 1st to 2nd without a lot of throttle/rpm.
My friend and I both believe that the original clutch problem was not related to abuse/high gear ratios but instead was an existing problem that was not corrected with the gear reduction kit.
Once again, back to the dealer. Again, the manager was positive and helpful, advising that a Yamaha Master Technician would assist his mechanics with identifying the problem and repairing it. When speaking to his service manager, both my friend and I were told that each YXZ had a different engagement/shifting feel to them even though even though they were identical new 2017 YXZ1000R SS's. His comments/excuses did not leave me with positive expectations.
At this point, I wish I had never purchased the YXZ but it is what it is and the manager is attempting to fix the problem.
Has anyone else had similar issues and found a solution?
Thanks for any info, Bob.