THIS IS HOW A YXZ IS MEANT TO SOUND!
Photos/Words: Cody Hooper
Yamaha’s YXZ1000R gets a lot of seat time in our fleet. The naturally-aspirated YXZ may not get all of the headlines, but it sure delivers the punchlines – quick, agile, and incredibly rewarding to drive. In our efforts to turn the YXZ into the best version of itself, we called upon the exhaust extraordinaires at HMF (Hans Motorrad Factory) Racing. HMF’s founder, Hans Luenger, began building racing exhausts for streetbikes back in the 1990s, evolving into one of the key players in the offroad ATV/UTV performance segment 30 years later. They have many options for every popular UTV on the market, so check them out at www.HMFRacing.com. Here’s our review of the HMF RACING YXZ1000R PERFORMANCE BLACKOUT FULL EXHAUST.
ALSO SEE: Our Long-Term Yamaha YXZ1000R Build & Review
The toughest part about installing an aftermarket exhaust on a YXZ1000R/SS is getting the factory muffler out of its nest. Unbolt the header pipe and the midpipe connection flange, then unbolt the muffler. Lift the muffler off of its mounting brackets from behind the UTV, and rotate (roll) the exhaust as you slide it out of the rear frame section to allow the mounting tabs to clear the frame. You will need to rotate it multiple times to get it out, but take your time to avoid pinching fingers!
Once the stock exhaust is out of the car, bolting the new one up is incredibly easy. Make sure to leave all mounting hardware finger-tight until you have the exhaust aligned, then re-check all of the hardware after the first ride and a few heat cycles. HMF’s performance exhaust requires a tune to run properly, and they have multiple options on their site. We chose to go with a DynoJet Powervision 3, which we will focus on in a separate article. Plug-and-play tuners are available on HMF’s website that come pre-programmed for your ride.
Our testing consisted of driving 300+ miles in the YXZ with the HMF Performance Series Blackout full exhaust installed. The performance and sound difference versus the stock pipe are immediately noticeable, with the YXZ’s triple-cylinder engine producing more horsepower and torque absolutely everywhere in the rev range. Up top, the YXZ now pulls hard all the way to redline, begging you to let that shift light go off all the time.
We chose to option our exhaust with the Blackout ceramic coating, which adds $250 to the cost of the system. HMF coats the exposed portions of the exhaust with a black cerakote high-temperature finish, enhancing hardness, impact strength abrasion and corrosion resistance, and keeping the heat in check. We have found that in repeated hard off-road use, the ceramic coated exhaust systems stay looking fresh much longer than uncoated stainless steel. It’s a worthwhile option for keeping temperatures in check in tighter spaces, as well. The YXZ has plenty of open air space around its exhaust system, so the Blackout coating is mostly for corrosion resistance and appearance here. Well worth the $250 option in our opinion.
HMF has two different exhaust system options; Titan and Performance. The Titan series provides quieter sound levels and a more robust design, while the Performance series is about light weight and power. Our YXZ spends most of its time wide open, which made the Performance series a great fit. Peak power gains of 15+ wheel horsepower can be expected over the stock exhaust, but the area under the dyno curve is where the HMF pipe really feels good. As we stated before, it makes more power everywhere, meaning every time you go to the throttle, you’re reminded that you made a stellar purchase!
HMF’s Performance Series full exhaust for the YXZ1000R/SS provides a nicer look, a weight savings of nearly 15 lbs, and a performance benefit that is much more tangible from the driver’s seat than it is on a dyno graph. If you’re looking for increased throttle response, stronger power, better sound, and a killer look, HMF Racing has a system for you. Don’t forget to figure a tuner/programmer into your upgrade budget however, because without it, you won’t be able to harness any power gains from your YXZ. It’s amazing how much more lively the car feels with an exhaust and a tune.
Cost: $1,159.95 (full system with ceramic Blackout option)