cruiser motorcycles

Yamaha 1700 Road Star S Midnight: Specs, Background, Performance & More

Yamaha 1700 Road Star S Midnight Specs, Background, Performance & More

Yamaha, a Japanese motorcycle company, has been delivering excellent cruisers to bike enthusiasts worldwide since 1955.

Over the years, the company managed to garner praise by producing big-bore, large-displacement cruisers that are reliable for urban rides, long hauls, and camping trips.

The Yamaha’s Road Star S Midnight cruiser is known for its massive 1670cc displacement, fuel-injected engine, five-speed transmission, and narrow belt drive. The long sleek look and the midnight-inspired jet-black glossy paint on the tank, shiny cast wheels, and chrome accents on the seat and chrome parts continue to attract buyers to the thriving second-hand market.

The traditional cruiser style can be enhanced with aftermarket parts such as Yamaha-specific saddlebags, fairings, and crash bars.

But before you plan to customize your bike, take a look at the background, features, price, and detailed specifications to see if this is the right pick for you.

1. A Brief History of Yamaha 1700 Roadstar S Midnight

Yamaha introduced its Road Star cruiser lineup in 1999. Initially, the members of the Road Star family displaced 1602cc. The bikes didn’t undergo any mechanical changes for four years after their launch.

In 2004, the engineers who designed the Road Star increased the displacement to 1670cc. Cruiser enthusiasts were delighted at this upgrade. Other changes included tubeless tires attached to shiny cast-aluminum wheels, a narrow belt drive, and a new color for the engine covers. These design features continued for another four years. Finally, in 2008, the Road Star S Midnight received a much-demanded fuel-injected system to match the powerful engine.

Years Changes
1999 Launched as 1602cc bike
2004 Displacement increased from 1602-1670cc
Tubeless tires with cast-aluminum rims were introduced
Belt drive became narrower
Engine covers got a new color
2008 The fuel system was upgraded from carburetor to fuel injected.
2015 Production of Road Star 1700 S Midnight discontinued

The new changes were well-received by consumers which encouraged Yamaha to introduce two different variants of the Road Star.

As a result, these two models were made available on the market in the following trims:

1. The Road Star 1700 Silverado

The Silverado trim featured stylish touring accessories and gorgeous studded seats.

2. The Road Star 1700 S Midnight

The Silverado bikes that featured a blacked-out engine were named Midnight. The S version of Midnight offered heavy chrome accents to give the riders a traditional cruiser look. The S variant lacked touring accessories.

Here is a quick overview of their distinctive features:

Distinct Features Road Star S Midnight Road Star Silverado
Saddlebags Absent Present
Backrest Absent Present
Windscreen Absent Present
Embellished Rider & Passenger seat Present Present
Blacked-Out Engine Present Absent
More Use of Chrome Present Absent

Both variants shared the same performance figures and engine configuration, especially after Yamaha engineers tweaked the displacement and installed a new fuel-injection system.

The style profile of both bikes helps set them apart. If you are a hardcore cruiser enthusiast and enjoy bold chrome accents, striking cruiser lines, and a robust frame, then the RoadStar S Midnight is the best pick for you.

2. Yamaha 1700 Road Star S Midnight at First Glance

Yamaha 1700 Road Star S Midnight Styling

The 1700 Road Star S is a stunner with its embellished seat and luscious black paint. The bike features beautiful chrome cylinders, levers, and switches. For a chic look, the Midnight emblem is displayed on the speedometer. The bike has a 98.4-inch long body for a sleek look and hidden rear suspension to promote a rugged hardtail look

Yamaha 1700 Road Star S Midnight Instruments & Lighting

The instruments on the Road Star Midnight are compact, tank-mounted, and feature the essentials, including an easy-to-read speedometer, odometer, twin trip meters, fuel gauge, high beam, clock, and indicator lights for engine diagnostics. The bike also features stylish turn signals with amber-colored bulbs for better visibility.

The lighting of the Yamaha Road Star S Midnight is satisfactory. The headlight is surrounded by chrome and features a 12V 60/55W halogen bulb. Though it augments the look of the bike, it only illuminates a short distance ahead.

On the other hand, the LED taillight offers enough lighting to indicate your presence to other riders at a considerable distance, ensuring a safe ride at night.

Yamaha 1700 Road Star S Midnight Engine

The Road Star S Midnight possesses an impressive 1670 cc, four-stroke air-cooled V-twin engine. The overhead valve (OHV) configuration ensures a longer engine life, improved air/fuel mixture supply to the engine, and efficient exhaust emissions.

Initially, the engine was carbureted, but over the years, Yamaha introduced a fuel injection system for better mileage, throttle response, and optimum engine performance.

Unlike other Yamaha cruisers, the Road Star Midnight engine uses a dry-sump lubrication system to support engine function and reduce the engine’s height.

Yamaha 1700 Road Star S Midnight Handling


The engine’s power reaches the rear wheel via a smooth five-speed transmission with close gear ratios. The sturdy clutch allows efficient gear transitions while the skinny belt drive directs the engine power to the rear wheel for an uninterrupted cruising experience.


The long steel chassis houses a powerful engine and balances the weight of the engine, offering comfortable handling for new and experienced bikers alike.

The bike has a 32-degree rake, 66.5-inch long wheelbase, and a 5.59-inch trail for more stable steering. These dimensions and the frame give the bike its low, lean, and balanced profile.


The telescopic 43mm front fork offers plush wheel travel of 5.5 inches. The rear suspension is a swingarm link-type monoshock that offers 4.33 inches of wheel travel. The rear suspension is hidden but cannot completely reduce the shock from bumps in the road. In other words, the rear suspension is soft and offers inadequate


Riders complain about feeling every bump and hit when riding on uneven roads. To enjoy the suspension of the Yamaha Roadstar S Midnight, you would have to ride on smooth roads; otherwise, you are in for an awkward ride.

Yamaha 1700 Road Star S Midnight Brakes

The Road Star S Midnight has reliable brakes. The brakes help keep the bike under control even on slippery roads and in poor weather conditions. Featuring four-piston calipers, the front brake is a 298mm dual disc while the rear brake is a 320mm single disc. Confidence-inspiring and reliable, the brakes will allow you to stop quickly, reducing the risk of accidents.

Yamaha 1700 Road Star S Midnight Wheels

Powerful brakes and durable wheels are as important as a powerful engine when it comes to a motorcycle. The Road Star S Midnight features tubeless tires that are resilient, long-lasting, and offer adequate grip.

The front tire is 130/90 x 16 M/C and the rear tire is 150/80B x 16 M/C in size. The cast wheels have highly-polished silvery rims to enhance the retro character of the bike.

Yamaha 1700 Road Star S Midnight Comfort

The bike features a beautiful low-slung seat and a low center of gravity. The seat not only contributes to riding comfort but also improves the handling of the bike. Under the seat, you will find built-in helmet holders. This design feature is stylish and comes in handy when you don't want to carry your helmet around.

The large fuel tank holds 5.28 gallons of fuel and comes with warning lights that indicate when you need to refuel.

3. Yamaha 1700 Road Star S Midnight: A Buyer’s Guide

3.1 When Did Yamaha Discontinue Manufacturing Road Star S Midnight Cruiser?

Launched in 2004, Yamaha would continue manufacturing the Road Star S Midnight motorcycles until 2015.

3.2 Is the Yamaha Road Star S Midnight Carbureted or Fuel Injected?

Until 2007, the Yamaha Road Star S Midnight had a carbureted engine featuring a 40mm Mikuni carburetor and a throttle response sensor. In 2008, the bike received a modern fuel injection system that supplies a precise amount of fuel to the engine for combustion efficiency and better cruiser performance.

3.3 How Much Horsepower & Torque Does the Yamaha Road Star S Midnight Have?

The Yamaha Roadstar Midnight engine produces a horsepower of 61.1 hp and a torque of 126.2 Nm when connected to the drive train. These performance figures are measured at the rear wheel.

3.4 How Many Miles Per Gallon Does a Yamaha Road Star S Midnight Get?

The Yamaha Road Star Midnight is fuel efficient thanks to its fuel-injected engine. The bike offers an estimated mileage of 40.7 mpg.

3.5 How Fast Is the Yamaha Road Star S Midnight Motorcycle?

The Yamaha Road Star Midnight is a powerful cruiser and can hit a top speed of 105 mph on highways and open roads.

3.6 Is Yamaha Road Star S Midnight a Good Beginner Bike?

The Yamaha Road Star S Midnight boasts a 1670cc engine that generates 126.2 Nm torque at the rear wheel. This torque is an exciting performance feature as it makes long-distance travel easier. The looks are neither too traditional nor too modern. The bike is the perfect combination of both retro and modern designs. Other than its engine and looks, the bike also attracts admirers because of its nimble handling, comfort, affordability, and excellent fuel economy.

Although the bike has a large engine and a long body, the double-cradle steel frame makes it feel lightweight for its size. Therefore, the Yamaha Road Star S Midnight is also an excellent bike for beginners.

4. Detailed Specifications (Yamaha 1700 Road Star S Midnight)

4.1 Dimensions

Length 98.4 in
Width 38.6 in
Height 44.9 in
Wheelbase 66.5 in
Ground Clearance 5.71 in
Seat Height 28.0 in
Dry Weight 688 lb
Curb Weight 736 lbs
Rake 32°
Trail 5.59 in
Fuel Capacity 5.28 gal (reserve 3.5 l)
Fuel Economy 40.7 mpg

4.2 Chassis

Type Double cradle steel
Front Suspension, travel Telescopic fork, 43 mm, 5.5 inches of wheel travel
Rear Suspension, travel Swingarm link suspension with mono-shock, 4.33 inches of wheel travel
Front Tire Size 130/90-16 M/C 67H
Rear Tire Size 150/80B-16 M/C 71H
Front Brake Double disc, 298 mm, four-piston caliper
Rear Brake Single disc, 320 mm, four-piston caliper

4.3 Engine

Type Four-stroke, air-cooled
Bore & Stroke 97.0 x 113.0 mm
Displacement 1670 cc
Cylinder arrangement Two-cylinders, 48° pushrod V-twin
Compression Ratio 8.3:1
Valve Train OHV, four valves per cylinder
Fuel System/ Induction Fuel injection 2x Mikuni ACW40
Lubrication Dry sump

4.4 Performance

Maximum Power 61.1 hp - rear wheel
Maximum Torque 126.2 Nm - rear wheel
Acceleration 0 to 100 km/h (0-60 mph) 5.14 sec
Top Speed 105 mph

4.5 Drivetrain

Clutch Wet, multi-plate, cable-operated
Transmission Manual, five-speed
Final Drive Belt
Primary Reduction 1.532
Gear Ratio 1st 2.437
Gear Ratio 2nd 1.579
Gear Ratio 3rd 1.160
Gear Ratio 4th 0.906
Gear Ratio 5th 0.750

4.6 Electrical

Ignition TCI (digital)
Battery Capacity 12V-12Ah
Alternator A.C. magneto,
Starter Electric

4.7 Others

Colors Raven (black)
Base Price $12,099
Warranty 12-month limited factory warranty

5. Aftermarket Parts & Modification Options for Yamaha 1700 Road Star S Midnight

Most bike enthusiasts prefer custom cruisers and with good reason. Nothing else comes close to the feel, comfort, and satisfaction of riding a customized bike. It is equally fun to look for the perfect aftermarket Yamaha parts. Mounting different pieces to express your motorcyclist identity is an exciting feeling. Once your bike is fitted with custom parts, you are ready to flaunt your work to the world on the highways.

It is quite easy to go overboard when purchasing custom parts. Choose wisely. Here are some tips from VikingBags.

If you are planning to use your bike for touring and camping trips, then saddlebags and luggage racks should be at the top of your list. With saddlebags, you can carry your travel essentials without worrying about losing them. There is a myriad of motorcycle luggage available in different sizes and textures.

For better comfort, choose a new seat, sissy bar, and rider and passenger backrests. The motorcycle seats are designed according to the placement of the handlebars and footpegs. If the seating position feels off after the modifications,  then consider installing handlebars that would provide the right ergonomic configuration for you.

These small changes will have a big impact on your bike’s touring performance and level of comfort. Now you are ready to escape the scorching summer heat and explore the cool camping sites in mountainous valleys or lush forests.

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