Trail test: 2011 Yamaha FX Nytro MTX SE

The Genesis 130 FI engine gives the 2011 Yamaha FX Nytro MTX SE nice power for off-trail riding.May 18, 2010

The FX Nytro MTX SE was a new model for 2010 when it received many changes to reduce weight and improve its ride, climbing ability and handling. Yamaha said the 2010 version was about 21 pounds lighter than the 2009 FX Nytro MTX; with a lot of the weight coming off the rear suspension that ditched the steel springs in favor of Fox FLOAT 2 air shocks. A new single-ply, Maverick track also trimmed a few pounds.

The front half of the 2010 machine inherited the FXG2 front suspension with a wider 40-inch ski stance than earlier FX Nytro MTX models. The swaybar-less design has revised geometry that’s designed to deliver better handling and more predictability on the trail.

Powering the 2011 Yamaha FX Nytro MTX SE

The 2011 Yamaha FX Nytro MTX SE is virtually unchanged from last year’s version. We took the 153-inch version out for a test ride this spring near West Yellowstone, Mont. The sled’s strongest attribute is its Genesis 130FI engine. It’s a 1049cc, three-cylinder four-stroke rated by Yamaha at 130 hp, but the engine actually pumps out closer to 135 hp. Fuel delivery is through three 41mm throttle bodies.

Low on the power curve, like when navigating in tight spots around trees and narrow draws on the mountains, power comes on smoothly and evenly to help prevent trenching and provide a muscular blast through the snow. The low clutch engagement rpm also helps this.

Moving further along the power band, strong torque helps the sled climb hills, especially in the wet conditions we encountered at our test last spring near West Yellowstone, Mont. So, engine power is good, but we bet that most owners of a 2011 Yamaha FX Nytro MTX SE will add turbo to help counteract the machine’s weight.

Driving the 2011 Yamaha FX Nytro MTX SE

This is a big sled that drives heavy because a lot of weight is concentrated between the skis. Riders won’t notice the mass when going up a hill, but they’ll feel it when maneuvering in the trees or when trying to pull the sled on its side.

While the 2011 Yamaha FX Nytro MTX SE is heavier than other sleds in its class, one specific maneuver can be performed more easily than a person might think. Once the driver gets the machine on its side to carve powder or sidehill, it stays up on edge with very little effort; we can’t say that about all of the two-stroke mountain sleds.

The steering post angle of all Yamaha FX Nytro models is odd. The post comes out of the cowling at an angle that’s relatively flat, which makes the sled feel clumsy — especially when standing through physically demanding situations riders meet while boondocking. A more upright post angle would make the driver’s range of motion rotate in more of a forward-backward plane rather than the current up-down direction. This would be more comfortable for the driver and make the 2011 FX Nytro MTX SE easier to handle.

— Andy Swanson

2011 Yamaha FX Nytro MTX SE Hits

  • Genesis 130FI engine
  • Build quality
  • Low-end power

2011 Yamaha FX Nytro MTX SE Misses

  • Heavy
  • Steering post angle

2011 Yamaha FX Nytro MTX SE Specifications

  • Engine: Make/Name: Yamaha Genesis 130FI
  • Layout: Inline triple, 4 valves per cylinder, dual overhead cam
  • Type: Four-stroke
  • Claimed output: 130 hp
  • Bore/Stroke: 82mm x 66.2mm
  • Peak rpm: 8500-9000
  • Front Suspension: FXG2; Fox FLOAT 2 shocks; 8.5 inches of travel
  • Rear Suspension: ProMountain Air; Fox FLOAT/FLOAT XV; 14.5 inches of travel
  • Track: Camoplast Maverick; 15x153x2.25

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