1985 Yamaha XJ700 Maxim X from United States of America


The bike is solid and well made; I like it


The bike was stored outside for a year or more before I got it.

The seat has a tear, but this item could be repaired easily.

I had to have the carburetors cleaned, due to the long period of disuse.

It is hard to start when the weather is cold.

I tipped the bike over while pushing it; put a smooth dent in one side of the gas tank; otherwise no damage.

Several times, early on, it stopped suddenly while cranking it over to start. Took out number four spark plug to check whether the head gasket was leaking and had filled the cylinders with antifreeze. Whoosh! Out came gasoline! Lucky I didn't burn the garage down. This must occur due both to a leaky vacuum valve on the petcock and a bad carburetor float valve. I have done nothing to correct this, and the problem has not recurred, recently.

General Comments:

The bike is very quick.

I like the sound of a four cylinder engine. This engine purrs with a very pleasant sound.

I use the bike for around town travel. I have put about 1200 miles on it since getting it.

The seat is not comfortable for a long ride. I have ridden about fifty or sixty miles at a stretch. Seat gets sore, but I am 81 years old; maybe that is the problem!

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 17th October, 2012

21st Dec 2012, 15:40

Hi, my Dad has the same bike. We love it; the power band and stuff, but I got into an accident and the bike slammed down on one side. No real cosmetic damage, but now it doesn't have the same smooth feel when you rev from 6,000 RPM and up, but it sounds fine; just not as much of a power band either; more doggy in the high range power band. Idles fine though; you wouldn't know the difference unless you rode it. But anyway, we took the plugs out and tested the compression, and all the cylinders come up 10-15 compression. Is it a blown head gasket from the sudden stop in the accident?

6th Oct 2013, 10:44

Sell these junkers while they are running. Engine overhaul parts are either obsolete or way over priced. I have been customizing and restoring bikes since the 70s, and have never had so hard a time finding engine parts. If anyone out there knows without doubt where I can get head gaskets and standard rings, let me know. Please don't tell me Bike Bandit or Parts-n-more or Partzilla etc. If you are not an actual mechanic or shop, then please don't waste my time or yours sending me on a wild goose chase.



14th Jul 2014, 17:35

I have owned my 1986 Maxim X for more than a decade, and it currently has just under 15K miles on it. Yesterday I took it out of the garage to clean it up for possible resale, and it appears the head gasket is leaking. I am just starting to look for parts, but won't know for certain what's needed until I get it apart. Any advice on where to find gasket kits would be appreciated.

Without question, this bike has been awesome to own and ride. Just purchased a FJR1300A and am enjoying it, but can see where I will miss the Maxim X IF I let it go. Let's hope I can find the parts...

30th Oct 2014, 23:31

I have a 2009 FJR and an 86 Max-X, and I'm not selling it, it's mint.

1986 Yamaha XJ700 Maxim X from United Kingdom


Love it to bits (nearly as much as the wife??) Truly one of Yamaha's greats!


Replaced the starter motor at 16000 miles; 25 years old!

Problem with a bad connection, which took me months to find!

Slight misfiring at 5000 RPM, but not a problem with the riding of the bike.

General Comments:

I have always had sports bikes, and at the moment I have an R1, which of course is breakneck fast.

I bought the Maxim X from a friend, who had owned it for 8 years, but never really used it; it sat in his garage gathering dust. This bike was imported into the UK from the States in 1991. I ended up with it, because my friend didn't have time for it, hence I became the new owner with no regrets; in fact I cannot believe how lucky I am... what a bike!

I was amazed to see how much power comes from the Maxim X 700cc engine. Straight line power is something else. A lovely bike to ride, with comfort and power combined surprisingly well. Not the best bike on handling, but a pleasure to ride. Superb around town, with the big plus of a low seat and feet touching the ground easily!! Well balanced.

The engine sounds fantastic! Great in the country at fairly high speeds; once you go above 100mph you do get a bit battered!! But to be fair, it's not really designed for that.

In conclusion, a fantastic bike, and its design is ageless. Many people have been taken back that it's 25 years old, and looks a much younger bike! I'm amazed how much power you get from the engine! A great all rounder, with many years of fun to come from it yet.

Would you buy another motorcycle from this manufacturer? Yes

Review Date: 20th July, 2012

28th Jun 2014, 03:41

Hey, will a Maxim X keep up with an R6?

26th Nov 2017, 18:33

Nope sorry, it will not keep up with the R6... 20+ years of tech updates. It is still a fast 700cc cruiser for it's time. 11.7... 113mph in the quarter mile time. 135+mph top speed. The all around style of the bike speaks for itself. What a great Yamaha classic.