- Air-cooled 2-stroke; reed-valve inducted
- Wet centrifugal automatic with shaft final drive
- VM12 Carburetor
- 49cc L
- Top Speed:
- 25 mph
The PW50 has introduced thousands of young riders to the dirt over the years. Safety, confidence and convenience are standard features. Just wait till you see those smiles.
The PW50 two-stroke is the original kid’s bike, and when you take a closer look you’ll understand why. Everything about this stylish little motorcycle is designed to make learning to ride even more fun both for the pupil and the teacher! Its fully-automatic transmission means that the rider simply has to twist the throttle and they’re on the move and with an easily-adjustable throttle limiter, parents can adjust top speed to suit the rider’s ability. The clean-running shaft drive requires little maintenance, and the YZ motocross styling makes the latest PW one of the most desirable junior bikes for your children.
The year 1981 marked the beginning of a long story of young rider excitement. A history of more than 20 years and the story continues. That year Yamaha started to carry children into the wonderful world of motorcycling on the PW50 and we can not thank enough for the truly great product.
Being equipped with a 49cc 2-stroke engine featuring a user-friendly character, the PW soon started to be appreciated but what really made this bike popular was its easy-to-handle diminutive size.
It was initially available yellow and black painted and that is pretty much what Yamaha changed at the bike: color. Once they began winning championships on their motocross machines, they painted the PW in Yamaha’s Team colors, Blue and White.
The small Yamaha still features the easy maintenance Auto-lube oil-injection system that does the job for you, so fun would be complete. Why change it if it’s not broken?
26 years later, children can still enjoy riding the Yamaha PW50 and this proves its gigantic success.
Yamaha surely had a vision when it created, produced, and first sold this truly unique motorcycle, the PW50. Other manufacturers noticed the bike’s success but by that time riders were already being initiated on the awesome PW and future ones couldn’t imagine starting on a new machine that didn’t proved its success until the time.
Honda introduced the XR50 but this bike marked a new evolutionary step and riders would prefer to start on a PW and than continue on an XR. Yamaha later introduced the TT-R50E to compete with the XR50, leaving the PW in a class of its own.
Suzuki and Kawasaki went further away as the first created the DR-Z70 and the second drifted far away and introduced 100cc machines that address to riders situated on a mid level of experience.
Featuring the lowest seat height (19.1 inches), the PW50 is the most appropriate starter bike ever and it promises to remain the same a long time from now. Do I even have to mention that it kept its original design and that is the biggest proof of consistency? Of course, not!
Further giving uniqueness and still being practical are the mag-style wheels which get rid of the spoke replacing or tightening problems that may appear on 10-inch diameter wheels that will encounter more than a few bumps during their riding years.
Also cool are the toy-looking plastics which have a square shape and give the bike’s general apparel which identifies it together with the seat, handlebars, and wheels. A single unit consisting in the front number plate and fender form the “nose” of the bike and that pretty much sets the tone continued all the way through the nicely-shaped rear fender together with the side number panels.
The exhaust has an ingenious arrangement meant to protect the rider and be as discrete as possible. Would you like it if it was any different?
Team Yamaha Blue/White paint scheme is more than adequate for the PW and gives it a modern look while the engine, tranny, and shaft final drive are kept black, reminding us of the bike’s initial look.
Yamaha understands the parent’s worries for their children’s safety and that is why it created long time ago the most user-friendly little motorcycle that can be 100% safe and fun if the kid is properly supervised and able to ride the small bike.
Depending on their strength, children can start riding the PW50 at the age of four and if your kid is more able to ride, it can start earlier or the contrary. Usually, they have the necessary strength by that age and they will manage to learn without any problems.
Returning to the bike and the worming up process which in this case is a bit special because, being automatic, neutral is nowhere to be found. Users will raise the rear wheel on a stand so they can rev the engine a little it until it reaches operating temperature. When the engine idles the rear wheel doesn’t move so any danger is excluded.
Watching those dedicated small riders warming up their bike’s engines, I noticed a very important detail that counts a lot when the bike is used in backyards or in places close to the neighbor’s ear. The utterly quiet motor that equips the bike, together with the discrete exhaust note won’t give you any problems as you supervise Junior.
Being designed with the sole purpose of initiating riders, the Yamaha PW50 features a mild-mannered air-cooled engine matted to an automatic transmission that allows kids to learn how to balance and develop their own riding technique, eliminating any worry that might appear. Their biggest friend will be the throttle but the supervisor will take care to set the throttle limiter depending on the small rider’s abilities and confidence that it develops. This way, power and acceleration will come in stages depending on how you will turn the screw that releases them. You will immediately notice that the 49cc two-stroke engine delivers predictable power throughout the powerband and no abrupt jumps will scare the small rider. The carefully limited power delivered by the engine helps kids to create confidence without being intimidated by amounts of power that they can’t handle.
Your kid will immediately start to enjoy the front and rear suspensions featuring 2.4 and 2.0 inches of travel which will deliver a plush ride and pass over bumps smoothly. They will be used with the bike’s behavior off the road and this way the first step is being made towards a brilliant riding future or even career.
Yamaha equipped the PW50 with 80mm drum front and rear brakes which deliver excellent stopping power, exactly what you would expect from a ride which guides your child into a new domain. Brakes are actuated by bicycle-style handlebar-mounted levers for both front and rear so when the rider wants to stop or slow down it won’t find itself searching for a rear brake at his feet. This significantly contributes to the learning process and doesn’t make things so hard on the small rider when it will go for the manual transmission and encounter slightly different commands. It is all about getting used to the new bike.
The bike’s tubular steel frame holds the small engine which makes sure to direct its exhaust pipe inside the tubular frame exiting low and along the side of the rear wheel eliminating any accidental burns. A shaft final drive is also safe and doesn’t require any maintenance.
Overall, the bike is excellent for starters because it offers a low seating position, meaning complete control and safety. The power won’t scare your kid because it can be gradually increased and brakes are at quick reach.
All the qualities that the Yamaha PW50 features will carefully show Junior the way into motorcycling and trail riding. The suggested retail price of $1,149 actually makes it a bargain as the smiles will quickly appear on your kid’s face and you will already start wondering what to buy him next. It is recommended though to stay with the first bike for a while even though the rider makes big steps.
You may notice that the term “Pee Wee” often gets used to generally describe any mini motorcycle. That’s because the famous Yamaha Pee Wee 50 has given a deadest legion of riders their start in the wonderful world of off-road motorcycling. The 2008 Yamaha PW50 proves that some legends of the sport have wheels instead of feet.
Engine and Transmission
Type: Air-cooled 2-stroke; reed-valve inducted
Bore x Stroke: 40.0mm x 39.2mm
Compression Ratio: 6.0:1
Transmission: Wet centrifugal automatic
Final Drive: Shaft
Chassis and Dimensions
Suspension/Front: Telescopic fork; 2.4-in travel
Suspension/Rear: Unit swingarm; 2.0-in travel
Length: 49.0 in
Width: 22.6 in
Height: 28.1 in
Seat Height: 19.1 in
Wheelbase: 33.7 in
Ground Clearance: 4.1 in
Dry Weight: 82 lb
Fuel Capacity: 5.3 gal
Warranty: 90 Day (Limited Factory Warranty)
Color: Team Yamaha Blue/White
Fully automatic transmission means no shifting required; the PW50 is a total twist-and-go package.
Torque-tuned, spunky little 49cc two-stroke is built to thrill without intimidating beginners.
A seat only 19.1 inches high makes this one the logical choice for the littlest rider in the group.
An adjustable throttle stop screw lets the adult in charge gradually increase speed as skills improve.
Shaft final drive makes chain maintenance a think of the past.
49cc air-cooled case-reed-inducted two-stroke single is tuned to deliver predictable power that gently eases the new rider up the off-road learning curve.
Single-speed automatic transmission means the rider simply twists the throttle and goes, allowing him/her to concentrate on the ride ahead.
Class-exclusive shaft drive system is virtually maintenance-free and comes fully enclosed for added durability.
Exclusive autolube oil injection system eliminates the need for fuel/oil premixing.
19.1-inch seat height allows most kids to put both feet down for handling-enhancing and added confidence.
22mm telescopic front fork with 2.4 inches of travel smoothes out the bumps for responsive handling.
Mag-style wheels mean there’s no need to tighten or replace spokes.
Dual rear shocks with 2.0 inches of travel smooth the trail to deliver confidence-inspiring ride quality.
Front and rear drum brakes provide smooth, predictable stopping power.
10-inch front and rear knobby tires provide excellent traction and superior wear.
Quiet exhaust pipe, complete with removable baffle, is routed away from the rider.
Rear fender, seat and side panel units removes quickly for ease of maintenance.
A thick seat cushions the trail’s blows and allows maximum rider movement.
Team Yamaha-inspired colors, graphics and front and side number plates create styling just like the bigger off-roaders.
Large, folding footpegs with rubber grips provide excellent footing.
Standard centerstand for added convenience.
An adjustable throttle stop screw lets the adult in charge gradually increase speed as skills improve.