Will Team Blue offer adaptive cruise control in 2023?
In July, 2022, photographers caught a Yamaha Tracer 9 GT test mule out on a leisurely joy ride. Resplendent in the 2022 model’s Liquid Metal livery, nothing looked out of place on the recently-renewed sport-tourer. That’s until we noticed a new element added under the Tracer 9 GT’s chinny-chin-chin. Tucked under the lip of the front fairing and between the two LED headlamps, a new radar unit led the way.
If that visual proof wasn’t enough evidence that Yamaha plans to equip the Tracer with adaptive cruise control, recently filed patents should seal the deal. Uncovered by Cycle World and Bennetts’ friendly neighborhood sleuth, Ben Purvis, the patents reveal the bLU cRU’s newly designed radar bracket and housing.
Unlike Ducati or KTM, who unabashedly slapped a Bosch-developed radar unit to the front of the 2021 Multistrada V4 S and 2021 1290 Super Adventure S and called it a day, Yamaha prefers a more discrete route. To integrate the same Bosch unit into the Tracer 9 GT, Iwata designers fashioned a bracket that wedged the radar into the existing architecture. According to the patent, Yamaha also devised a system that allows riders to correct the radar’s angle should it become unaligned.
Team Blue takes a different approach to safeguarding the unit’s functionality as well. Instead of leaving the radar exposed to the elements, the Japanese firm hides the component behind a protective cover. Of course, the housing’s material can’t alter or block the radar’s electromagnetic pulses, but it also defends the system from direct hits by bugs and road debris.
With these developments, we fully anticipate Yamaha to join Kawasaki, BMW, Ducati, and KTM on the adaptive cruise control train in 2023. We’ll have to wait and see if the brand adds the feature to the standard Tracer 9 GT or if it spins off an up-spec variant. However, we’re confident the new tech will add to the model’s current $14,999 price tag.