Under its skin, Yamaha’s engineers had taken drastic steps to increase shock travel and reduce harshness over bumps.
If you check out the 700 sitting next to a 660, you’ll observe a hundred differences in the layout of the suspension parts.
The front and rear shocks are now mounted on the lower A-arms and are considerably longer than the former model.
This shock travel increase means more bump absorption potential from the suspension and less chance of shock fade on long, rough rides.
The rear shock placement is noticeably different in relation to the A-arms and this assists in absorbing impacts from square edged hits from rocks and stumps.
How much weight was lost by deleting the power steering feature, we’re not sure. Yamaha claims the whole electric power steering system only adds about two pounds.
However, the EPS-delete Grizz pulls enormous throttle wheelies on immediate command merely by leaning back and applying some of that limitless Yama-torque to the rear wheels.
In 4×4, riding over trail junk, the front end feels lighter and the whole aura it exhibits is one of lightness and agility.
Once in motion, we haven’t felt any more steering effort is required than the EPS and it’s only at crawling speeds you’ll find you’re using some extra muscle to crank the bars.
Hits from obstacles on the trail are a bit more pronounced and there’s a tendency to feel left to right impacts up through the bars more than you would with power steering.
It’s not a big deal, though and certainly no worse than any of the competition.
With 4WD diff lock engaged there is a considerable increase in steering effort and this alone is one benefit we love and appreciate about the EPS Grizz.
With power steering you can turn the bars with two fingers on the grip whether you’re in 2WD or 4×4.
Hey, there’s gotta be a difference somewhere, right?
Find more in All-Terrain Vehicle Magazine Volume 9, #1.