The Yamaha SRX 700 was arguably the most powerful 700 class snowmobile ever built, manufactured from 1998 through 2002. The high-performance SRX family was replaced by the 4-stroke Yamaha RX-1 in 2003.
If you want to find out more about this iconic Yamaha sled, you are in the right place. We at PowerSportsGuide have compiled all you need to know into this Yamaha SRX 700 review!
Yamaha SRX 700 Review
These revolutionary machines were the first liquid-cooled Yamaha snowmobiles on the market.
Thanks to their powerful engines and advanced heat exchanger cooling system, these sleds instantly became popular among racers and performance-minded buyers.
Yamaha brought back the SRX line in 1998 by revealing the following models:
- Yamaha SRX 600 (1998-1999)
- Yamaha SRX 600S (1998)
- Yamaha SRX 700 (1998-2002)
- Yamaha SRX 700S (1998-2002)
- Yamaha SRX 700 Mountain (1998)
The “S” models featured Ohlins front shocks, but beyond that, they were identical to the basic model.
Each Yamaha SRX model featured a 15” wide, 121” long track with 0.92” lugs, except the SRX Mountain, which came with a 136” track with 1.5” lugs.
This model was discontinued after the 1998 season, while the other 700s remained in production until 2002.
The flagship SRX 700 continued the legacy of its iconic predecessor and dominated the performance category on the race tracks and in sales.
This was no accident, as Yamaha claimed this sled was the most innovative and fastest stock snowmobile on the market. According to SuperTraxMag, the machine was called a “devil in a blue dress”, referring to its outstanding performance.
The SRX 700 engine was a triple-piped, 696cc, 2-stroke, triple designed for maximum performance. This powerplant featured three flat side Mikuni TM33 carbs, CDI ignition, and electronic power valves.
Besides its amazing performance, the machine also generated a unique exhaust sound, which was easily distinguished from the sounds of competitor models.
On top of that, it also got good mileage, about 12-15 mpg in average riding.
The SRX was extremely powerful and also offered excellent handling thanks to its rigid ProAction System chassis.
According to Motorsport-Network, compared to competitor designs, this innovative chassis produced twice the torsional rigidity, resulting in sharp handling and better overall performance.
Also, the quick-adjust ProAction SRX rear suspension ensured an outstanding weight transfer and unbeatable acceleration. This short-travel suspension made the SRX 700 a great drag racing machine, but didn’t provide much comfort on uneven surfaces.
Standard features included a hydraulic brake system with adjustable handlebar lever, electronically-controlled thumb and hand warmers, bright headlights powered by a 300-watt magneto, tunnel protectors for easier studding, and a unique parking brake system.
Another notable novelty of the SRX was its Throttle Override System, known as T.O.R.S. This system was a safety feature designed to keep the engine revolution between 2800-3000 RPM in case of a malfunction with the carburetors or the throttle cable.
The SRX 700 came in one color scheme, the iconic Yamaha Blue and White combination.
For the 1999 model year, the Yamaha SRX line remained unchanged, but for the 2000 season, the models saw some engine upgrades. Some of the most significant changes were the larger exhaust ports and hotter self-adjusting ignition, which added some horsepower to the engine.
The 2000-2002 models were basically the same except for some minor changes on the hand warmer controls, suspension calibration, and the colors.
We also have to mention the industry-first Detonation Control System (DCS), which debuted in the 2002 Yamaha SRX 700. This innovative system was designed to monitor and control the combustion process to prevent an engine seizure.
Despite this model’s popularity, the Yamaha SRX 700 was discontinued after the 2002 model year to make room for the more advanced 4-stroke RX-1.
However, the Yamaha SRX made a second comeback in 2019 when the new Sidewinder SRX LE was introduced.
Yamaha SRX 700 Problems
Let’s face it, besides its strengths, the SRX 700 had some weak points as well. In a nutshell, the most common problems of the Yamaha SRX 700 were as follows:
- Heavy weight (545 pounds)
- Defective crankshaft (only on the 1998 models)
- T.O.R.S. malfunctions
- Hard to work on
- No reverse
Although it was really fast and powerful, the machine was heavy, so it was only recommended for trail riding.
But one of the biggest problems with the Yamaha SRX 700 was arguably its poor rear suspension system. This short-travel suspension ensured excellent accelerations, but on the other hand, it didn’t provide any comfort.
Unfortunately, it resulted in bumpy rides and a poor riding experience. This is the reason why you will find aftermarket rear suspension upgrades on many SRX 700s!
On top of that, the 1998 Yamaha SRX 700s had a recall due to defective ski columns.
It’s also good to know that the early ‘98 and ‘99 models had a habit of fouling the spark plugs at the start. However, if you didn’t touch the throttle until the engine was completely warmed up, this usually prevented the problem.
Although the newer models didn’t have any starting issues, on the 2002 SRX the DCS was prone to giving a “false alarm.”
Many riders found it annoying, but let’s face it, an unjustified DCS activation caused far fewer headaches than having to tow the machine back to the trailer with a blown engine.
On top of that, all of the SRX models came without reverse.
When it comes to the Yamaha SXR 700 recalls, we have to mention the crankshaft issues on the 1998 models. Unfortunately, each of the 1998 SRX models (both 600 and 700) were manufactured with a defective crankshaft.
But Yamaha stood behind their sleds, as usual, didn’t issue an official recall, and the dealerships fixed the crankshaft on these models for free.
The 1999 SRX line came with stronger cranks, but a few studded SRX 700s still had crankshaft problems. From the 2000 model year on, these issues were completely eliminated in the entire model line.
Beyond these minor issues, the SRX was considered a reliable and dependable sled. As long as its carburetors and power valves were kept clean, it started easily and ran very reliably.
Let’s move on and take a closer look at the Yamaha SRX 700 specifications!
Yamaha SRX 700 Specs Chart
For your convenience, we’ve compiled the key specs of the Yamaha SRX 700 into these charts:
Yamaha SRX 700 Engine Specs
|Engine type||Triple-piped, 2-stroke, 7-port|
|Cylinder arrangement||Parallel 3-cylinder|
|Cooling system||Liquid cooled|
|Bore x Stroke (“)||2.72 x 2.44|
|Horsepower (98-99 models)||135 (Approximately)|
|Horsepower (00-02 models)||145 (Approximately)|
|Idle speed (rpm)||1800 +/- 100|
|Starting system||Manual with recoil starter|
|Carburetor||Mikuni TM33 x 3|
|Engine oil type||YAMALUBE 2-cycle oil|
|Fuel type||Premium unleaded gasoline|
|Fuel tank capacity (gal) 1998||11.9|
|Fuel tank capacity (gal) 1999-||11.7|
|Oil tank capacity (qt.) 1998||2.5|
|Oil tank capacity (qt.) 1999-||3.5|
Yamaha SRX 700 Dimensions
|Dimensions (“)||Length||Width||Height||Ski tread|
|SRX 700 Mountain||116.9||46.5||48||40.9|
Yamaha SRX 700 Weight Chart
|Dry weight (lbs.)||1998||1999||2000||2001||2002|
|SRX 700 Mountain||571||–||–||–||–|
Yamaha SRX 700 Transmission
|Type||Automatic centrifugal engagement, infinitely variable 3.8:1-1:1|
|Sheave distance (“)||Approx. 10.57|
|Sheave offset (“)||Approx. 0.59|
|Engagement speed* (r/min) 98-99 models||Approx. 3,800|
|Engagement speed* (r/min) 00-02 models||Approx. 4,000|
|Shift speed* (r/min)||Approx. 8,500|
|Drive chain||Silent chain enclosed in oil bath|
|Reduction ratio (98-99 models)||37/23 (1.609)|
|Reduction ratio (00-02 models)||38/23 (1.65)|
*Subject to change according to elevation settings.
Yamaha SRX 700 Drive Track and Suspension
|Track||Molded rubber, fiberglass rod reinforced|
|Track dimensions (“) – SRX 700||121 x 15 x 0.92|
|Track dimensions (“) – SRX 700 Mountain||136 x 15 x 1.5|
|Track deflection (“)||0.98 – 1.18 / 100 N (10 kg, 22 lbs.)|
|Length on ground (“)||29.6|
|Suspension type||Slide rail suspension|
|Drive sprocket||Quadruple polyethylene, 9 teeth|
Yamaha SRX 700 Features
|Front suspension type||Independent double wishbone|
|Break type||Hydraulic disc brake (ventilated)|
|Break operation||Handle lever (left hand)|
|Throttle operation||Handle lever (right hand)|
|Chassis||Yamaha ProAction System|
Source: Yamaha Owner’s Manuals. These charts are for informational purposes only! For exact specifications, refer to the factory manual.
Yamaha SRX 700 Top Speed
The innovative Yamaha SRX 700 reached a top speed of 110-115 mph under ideal conditions.
Vintage Yamaha SRX 700 For Sale
The iconic Yamaha SRX 700 is still a popular choice among performance-minded riders. These aged machines are much cheaper than new sleds and much easier to work on.
If you’re considering buying one, you can find a vintage Yamaha SRX 700 for sale on Craigslist, eBay, Snowmobiletrader, and other dedicated snowmobile ad sites.
You also can’t go wrong by visiting Yamaha snowmobile forums and FB groups. Besides some deals, you can also find a lot of helpful information on these machines!
Takeaway – FAQs About the Vintage Yamaha SRX 700
What models were included in the Yamaha SRX 700 line?
The Yamaha SRX 700 line included three different models, which were as follows:
- Yamaha SRX 700
- Yamaha SRX 700S
- Yamaha SRX Mountain (only available in 1998)
What is the difference between the SRX 700 and the SRX 700S?
The only difference between Yamaha SRX 700 and 700S was that the latter utilized Ohlins front shocks. As a side effect, this sled was 2-3 pounds heavier than the base SRX. Besides that, these two models were identical.
What year did the Yamaha SRX 700 come out?
The legendary Yamaha SRX 700 made its debut in 1997 and was marketed from the 1998 model year.
What years was the Yamaha SRX 700 made?
The Yamaha SRX 700 was available from 1998 through 2002 and was replaced with the 4-stroke Yamaha RX-1 in 2003.
What size is a Yamaha SRX 700?
The “short-track” Yamaha SRX 700 was 46.1 inches wide, 108.7 inches long, and 42.7 inches high. The SRX 700 Mountain (only available in 1998) was slightly bigger as this sled was 46.5 inches wide, 116.9 inches long, and 48 inches high.
What is the track size for the Yamaha SRX 700?
The stock track size of the Yamaha SXR 700 was 121” x 15” x 0.92”, while the SRX 700 Mountain had a 136” x 15” x 1.5” track.
How much does a Yamaha SRX 700 weigh?
The 1998-1999 Yamaha SRXs models weighed 545 pounds, while the 2000-2002 models were only 522 pounds. The “S” models with Ohlins front suspensions were 2-3 pounds heavier, while the weight of the SRX 700 Mountain was 571 pounds.
What kind of engine is in a Yamaha SRX 700?
The Yamaha SRX 700 is powered by a liquid-cooled, triple-piped, 696cc, 2-stroke, 3-cylinder engine.
How much horsepower does a Yamaha SRX 700 have?
The 1998-1999 Yamaha SRX 700s cranked out about 138 HP, while the 2000-2002 Yamaha SRX models had about 142 HP.
Can you add reverse to a Yamaha SRX 700?
One of the biggest drawbacks of the SRX models is that these sleds didn’t have a factory reverse option. Although it is possible to add reverse to a Yamaha SRX 700 by installing an aftermarket reverse kit, keep in mind that this is not an easy task.