2022 Yamaha Raptor 700 MSRP: $8,799
2022 Yamaha Raptor 700R MSRP: $9,399
2022 Yamaha Raptor 700R SE MSRP: $9,999
What separates the Raptor 700 from the Raptor 700R comes down to shocks. Both share the same amount of suspension travel, but front and rear shocks on the Raptor 700R include piggyback reservoirs that keep the shock oil cooled, threaded preload adjustment, high- and low-speed compression adjustment, and rebound adjustment. The base Raptor 700 does not get piggyback reservoirs on the front shocks and only includes minimal preload adjustment. Unless you plan to completely upgrade your suspension with aftermarket components, we suggest coughing up the extra $600 for the far superior shocks on the Raptor 700R.
The Special Edition models look great, but unless you really want one of the two SE color options, we suggest saving the additional $600 and sticking with the standard Raptor 700R. The SE models do include a GYTR bumper and GYTR heel guards, but you can get both of those and nerf bars from the aftermarket with the money you will save.
Powertrain: Engine, Transmission, and Performance
When it comes to engine and drivetrain performance, all Raptor models are equal. While Yamaha doesn’t like to give out horsepower and torque numbers on its sport ATVs, we’re comfortable stating that for most ATV riders it’s much more than enough. Low to midrange torque from the fuel-injected 686cc mill is plentiful, revving all the way to 9,000 rpm. There are no flat spots as the engine pulls strong through the top of fifth gear. Manual clutch shifting is smooth and includes a reverse gear for getting out of tight spots. The Raptor comes with an X-ring chain for durability and dependability on cross-country trail rides. Electric start is standard, so you won’t wear yourself out trying to kick this throaty beast over.
The Raptor isn’t quite as wide as Yamaha’s MX-ready YFZ450R, but a low center of gravity and lightweight chassis design make for excellent stability at speed and through the corners. Without a doubt, the Yamaha Raptor 700R is one of our all-time favorite dune rides.
While the base Yamaha Raptor 700 comes with preload-adjustable shocks that are best described as adequate, the Raptor 700R is fitted with high-end shocks, front and rear, that provide a wider range of threaded preload adjustment, high- and low-speed compression damping, and rebound adjustment. The result is a perfect combination of high-performance handling of rough terrain and all-day comfort. It won’t beat you up. All Raptor models come with double A-arm suspension and 9.1 inches of front wheel travel and a swingarm providing 10.1 inches of rear wheel travel.
Dual aluminum-piston hydraulic disc brakes provide stopping power at both front wheels. A single dual-piston rear hydraulic disc controls the rear straight axle. All discs are drilled to reduce unsprung weight and speed up brake disc cooling. A handlebar-mounted parking brake is also standard.
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