cruiser motorcycles

Yamaha V-Star 1100 Custom XVS11A: Specs, Background, Performance & More

Yamaha V-Star 1100 Custom XVS11A Specs, Background, Performance & More

When we talk about the best motorcycle brands in the world, Yamaha comes first to mind. True to its slogan, each motorcycle manufactured by the Japanese company “revs our hearts.” The looks, sound, engine, and design; every feature of this bike is exciting to riders and onlookers alike. The Yamaha team excels at what it does, making it extremely challenging to decide which Yamaha creation is the best so far. After much contemplation, Viking Bags brings you the Yamaha’s V-Star 1100 Custom motorcycle.

Known for its unparalleled low-end torque, understated ghost flame tank graphics, and excellent maneuverability, this bike stands out above the rest of the cruisers available on the market.

Read on to find a brief account of the evolution of this bike, its impressive specifications, features, and modification options in case you want to give it a personal touch. Have all your questions answered in this detailed review of the Yamaha V-Star XVS 1100 Custom!

1. A Brief History of Yamaha V Star 1100 Custom, XVS11A

After the success of its V-Star 650 cruisers, Yamaha introduced its XVS 1100 Drag Star cruiser lineup in 1999. The motorcycles manufactured for America were designated as the Yamaha V-Star 1100. At the time of launch, two distinct variants of these motorcycles were available.

  1. The Yamaha V-Star XVS 1100 Custom
  2. The Yamaha V-Star XVS1100A Classic

Both variants had distinct styling. The V-Star 1100 Custom motorcycles were intended for an audience looking for a modern cruiser, while the V-Star 1100 Classic was perfect for bike enthusiasts who preferred vintage-style cruisers. The styling distinctions are presented in this chart below.

Differences Yamaha V Star 1100 Classic Yamaha V Star 1100 Custom
Length 96.9 in 94.7 in
Width 37.2 in 35.2 in
Seat Height and Width Slightly higher seat; 28.0 in Low seat height; 27.2 in
Curb Weight Heavier cruiser at 628 lbs Lighter than the Classic variant; 606 lbs
Wheelbase 64.8 in 64.6 in
Ground Clearance 5.5 in 5.7 in
Trail 5.2 in 5.3 in
Front Wheel Wide 130/90-16 M/C (67S) Narrow 110/90-18 M/C (61S)
Wheels Cast magnesium wheels Aluminum rims and spoked wheels
Fenders Long fenders Bobbed rear fender
Headlight 7-inch headlight 5 ¾-inch headlight
Front forks Covered; fork covers present Exposed; no fork covers
Foot Positioning Floorboards with rocker shifter pegs Footpegs with up/down shifter

While the two variants had noticeable differences, the V-Star 1100 Custom gained more popularity among riders due to its contemporary design, power-packed engine performance, and touring capability.

The Yamaha V-Star 1100 Custom is a stunning canvas. The ease of customization allowed owners to create new looks using the latest aftermarket parts. Over the years, it received minor updates to its paint job which made it possible for owners to express their creativity and personal style. Here is a quick overview of the changes made over the years.

Model Year Price Color
2005 Yamaha V-Star Custom $7,949 Raven
Indigo Blue
2006 Yamaha V-Star Custom $8,399 Deep Red Metallic
2007 Yamaha V-Star Custom $8,599 Cerulean Silver
Black Cherry
2008 Yamaha V-Star Custom $8,699 Galaxy Blue
Raven black with flames
2009 Yamaha V-Star Custom $9,190 Candy Red
Raven - Midnight (Custom)
2010 Yamaha V-Star Custom Model Not Available in USA Dark Metallic Bluish Gray
2011 Yamaha V-Star Custom $9,190 Candy Red
Raven - Midnight (Custom)

The largest member of the V-Star lineup, the Yamaha V-Star 1100 Custom, owes its success to its powerful engine, a redesigned version of the Yamaha Virago air-cooled, V-twin engine. The V-Star 1100 Custom engine is also a 75-degree V-twin but produces better torque after tuning. The V-Star 1100 Custom also borrowed the shaft drive from the Virago. However, the engineers equipped the V-Star 1100 Custom with a new suspension and frame. The Virago had outboard dual shocks for suspension while the V-Star 1100 Custom featured a single-shock with twin downtubes. The 2x Mikuni carburetors with throttle position sensors were added to improve engine output. Yamaha discontinued the production of the V-Star 1100 Custom bikes after 12 years in 2011.

2. Yamaha V Star 1100 Custom XVS11A at First Glance

Yamaha V Star 1100 Custom XVS11A at First Glance
Photo Credit: @motorcyclespecs

Yamaha V-Star XVS 1100 Custom Styling

At first glance, anyone can conclude that the Yamaha V Star XVS 1100 Custom is an attractive bike. With its low drag-style handlebars, traditional spoked wheels, bobtail-style rear fender, and hardtail-style hidden rear suspension, the bike is a sight for sore eyes. The shiny paint in classic colors is subtle and augments the custom character of this cruiser, allowing the riders to experiment with the styling of this motorcycle.

Yamaha V-Star XVS 1100 Custom Instruments

The instrument panel includes a speedometer, trip meter, an LCD odometer, and a clock. All the instruments are tank-mounted. The rider can quickly look to check the speed and fuel gauges.

Yamaha V-Star XVS 1100 Custom Headlight & Visibility

The bike has small tear-drop-shaped mirrors. The mirrors look nice but at highway speeds, they are of little help due to the harsh vibrations.

The headlight features a halogen bulb that does not fully illuminate the road properly at night. From a visibility perspective, the bike has little to offer and most riders resort to applying a high beam.

Yamaha V-Star XVS 1100 Custom Engine

The Yamaha V-Star XVS 1100 engine is a powerful air-cooled, V-twin motor that offers linear power delivery throughout the rpm range. The engine displaces 1063 ccs and generates ample low-end torque, allowing the rider to start the bike in second gear. Fuel efficiency is enhanced through the 2x Mikuni carburetors that also provide a crisp throttle. At normal speeds, you won’t feel any vibrations. However, at highway speeds, jerky vibrations can be felt through the seat. The dual exhaust emits a keen rumbling sound that is pleasing to the ear and crucial to a satisfying cruiser experience.

Yamaha V-Star XVS 1100 Custom Handling

The double-cradle steel frame of the Yamaha V-Star XVS 1100 is lightweight and gives the bike its low-slung, sleek look. The drag-style handlebars allow effortless steering and adequate leverage to turn the bike around sharp corners. The front suspension is quite strong. However, the rear suspension not only looks cool but also behaves much like the suspension on a hardtail motorcycle. The spring preload can be adjusted to make the suspension softer but not by a huge margin. Suffice to say, you will feel the impact of your bike hitting rocks and pits.

The engine power delivery in the drivetrain is a smooth affair. The five-speed transmission with closer gear ratios, multi-plate clutch, and shaft drive ensure that the engine power transfers into the pavement through the rear wheel uninterrupted.

Yamaha V-Star XVS 1100 Custom Brakes

The 298 mm double front disc and the 282 mm single rear disc featured a two-piston caliper. The brakes of the Yamaha V-Star XVS 1100 are always reliable and bring the bike to a quick stop when pressed with enough force.

Yamaha V-Star XVS 1100 Custom Wheels

The Yamaha V-Star XVS 1100 Custom features aluminum spoke wheels reminiscent of the traditional cruiser style. The front tire is 110/90 x 18 and the rear tire is 170/80 x 15. Most riders tend to find these tires “too old school” to their liking , but they still enjoy riding this vehicle . The spoke wheels are long-lasting, durable, and easy to repair. The wheels have adequate traction and endurance so riders can drive their bikes easily on wet roads, muddy tracks, rocky terrains, and camping sites.

Yamaha V-Star XVS 1100 Custom Riding Comfort

The V-Star 1100 Custom has a 27.2-inch high comfortable seat, allowing riders to touch the ground when needed. Even short riders can easily plant their feet on the ground at stop signals and parking spaces. The seat is very plush and comfortable, so you won't get a stiff back after long-distance rides.

Riders of average height are quite happy with the seating position, while tall riders feel cramped and short riders have to overextend to reach the forward-mounted foot pegs. The air cleaners sticking out tend to decrease legroom, causing much frustration among riders. The handlebars are positioned at a lower level which helps to improve the overall ergonomics of the bike.

3. Yamaha V-Star 1100 Custom XVS11A: A Buyer’s Guide

3.1 How Much Does Yamaha V-Star 1100 Custom Weigh?

The Yamaha V-Star 1100 has a large fuel tank that can hold up to 4.49 gallons of fuel. On a full tank, the bike weighs about 606 lbs.

3.2 What Is the Difference Between Yamaha Drag Star 1100 Custom & V-Star 1100 Custom?

Yamaha Drag Star 110 Custom and V-Star 1100 Custom are practically the same bikes. The motorcycles were sold worldwide under the Drag Star 1100 Custom label, except in the United States. The American models were sold under the label of the V-Star 1100 Custom.

3.3 How Much Horsepower & Torque Does Yamaha V-Star 1100 Have?

The Virago-inspired 1063 cc V-twin engine of the Yamaha V-Star 1100 generates a maximum horsepower of 61.5 hp at 5750 rpm and a maximum torque of 85.0 Nm at 2500 rpm.

3.4 What Is the Average Price of the Yamaha V-Star 1100 Custom?

The average price of a brand new Yamaha V-Star 1100 Custom bike is $9,190. Since Yamaha stopped manufacturing the bike in 2009, you have to buy this bike from the second-hand market at an even more affordable price.

You can also rent this bike from your nearest rental service to have fun and see whether buying this bike would be a worthwhile investment.

4. Detailed Specifications (Yamaha V-Star 1100 Custom XVS11A)

4.1 Dimensions

Length 94.7 in
Width 35.2 in
Height 43.1 in
Wheelbase 64.6 in
Ground Clearance 5.7 in
Seat Height 27.2 in
Curb Weight 606 lbs
Rake 32°
Trail 5.3 in
Fuel Capacity 4.49 gal (reserve - 4.5 l)
Fuel Economy 35.8 mpg

4.2 Chassis

Type Double cradle steel
Front Suspension, travel Telescopic fork, 41 mm, 5.5 inches of wheel travel
Rear Suspension, travel Swingarm with mono-shock, spring preload adjustment, 4.4 inches of wheel travel
Front Tire Size 110/90-18 M/C 61S
Rear Tire Size 170/80-15 M/C 77S
Front Brake Double disc, 298 mm, two-piston caliper
Rear Brake Single disc, 282 mm, two-piston caliper

4.3 Engine

Type Four-stroke, air-cooled
Bore & Stroke 95.0 x 75.0 mm
Displacement 1063 cc
Cylinder arrangement Two-cylinders, V-type
Compression Ratio 8.3:1
Valve Train Chain-driven SOHC, two valves per cylinder
Fuel System/ Induction Carburetor, 2x Mikuni BSR37
Lubrication Wet sump

4.4 Performance

Maximum Power 61.5 hp at 5750 rpm
Maximum Torque 85.0 Nm at 2500 rpm
Acceleration 0 to 100 km/h (0-60 mph) 5.33 sec
Top Speed 113 mph

4.5 Drive train

Clutch Wet, multi-plate, cable-operated
Transmission Manual, five-speed
Final Drive Shaft
Primary Reduction 1.660
Gear Ratio 1st 2.353
Gear Ratio 2nd 1.667
Gear Ratio 3rd 1.286
Gear Ratio 4th 1.032
Gear Ratio 5th 0.853

4.6 Electrical

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

4.7 Others

Colors Candy Red
Raven-Midnight (Custom)
Base Price $9,190
Warranty One year limited factory warranty

5. Aftermarket Parts & Modification Option for Yamaha V-Star 1100 Custom XVS11A

The Yamaha V-Star 1100 Custom is a mighty cruiser able to handle long hauls. The large fuel tank holds 4.49 gallons of fuel, allowing the rider to easily travel 110 miles before the need to refuel arises. The solid engine power and large amounts of torque generated will keep you going until you reach your destination.

The only thing missing is the touring essentials that can be remedied with a few aftermarket parts for Yamaha.

The motorcycle is luggage-friendly, but you need soft Yamaha-specific saddlebags because the high fenders and exposed rear wheels can come in direct contact with the hard saddlebags and damage them. You can easily find a large selection of soft saddlebags at Viking Bags for a convenient luggage space. Installing fairings and crash bars will provide protection from harsh natural elements and unexpected accidents.

The Yamaha V-Star 1100 Custom has well-cushioned seats, so you don’t need to change them. But adding rider and passenger backrests and a sissy bar can greatly enhance your level of comfort.

With a Yamaha V-Star 1100 Custom in your garage, you are free to do whatever you want. Get the most out of your cruiser by hitting the highways and uncharted roads!

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