The MZ Skorpion was stylishly designed (by acclaimed Brits Seymour-Powell) single using a Yamaha engine which proved a refreshingly able antidote to Japanese fours in the mid-to-late 90s. Light, lithe, affordable, generally reliable and reassuringly practical.
The MZ Skorpion is powered by the acclaimed five-valve unit from Yamaha’s XTZ660 trailie. Manages to at once deliver semi-respctable revs and top end performance (110mph certainly isn’t to be sniffed at from a 600-odd cc single) with traditional thumper virtues of easy torque and characterful flexibility. Generally solid and easy-going, too, at least once the stiff-ish Yamaha gearchange has slackened off.
On the whole pretty good – and far better than most cynics might expect from the MZ brand. Beautifully simple frame is bonded together and clever use of plastics and resins abound. Mechanicals, thanks in the main to the Yamaha supplied engine, are pretty solid too even if some components are a little on the cheap side.
MZ Skorpion Sport with low bars and half fairing led the range and in light, incicisve and nimble enough to be a blast through the twisties. Brakes and suspension aren’t exactly sophisticated, but they’re good enough. Generally compact riding position isn’t the best for longer distances, howevere so if you’re that way inclined chewck out the Traveller or Tour instead.
Although ‘only’ a single, the MZ Skorpion remains one of the best singles of modern times and if you’re into that sort of motorcycling, or simply yearn after a slimline, lightweight allrounder, it’s unlikely you’ll be disappointed – good value, too.
With the sort of lightweight the MZ Skorpion is less is generally more, so don’t expect much in the way of frills of added baggage. That said, they’re much nicer ‘things’ than the name MZ traditionally conjures up and the Traveller and Tour are proper touring machines – albeit sli,line, slinky ones.