1968 Yamaha DT-1


The Yamaha DT-1 was a “clean slate” design for Yamaha, did not borrow any major components from street machines in Yamaha’s line-up. Although other “high pipe” machines like the Yamaha Big Bear and Honda CL72 had been available for years, it can be argued the DT-1 is the first real dual sport bike out of Japan; single cylinder, two-stroke, light in weight, high ground clearance, capable of trail riding and making miles on the street. All with Japanese reliability and a huge dealer network.

The DT-1 sold like hotcakes, supposedly 50,000 in the first year, and soon became available in 100, 125, 175, 250 and 360cc displacements each with a different alpha-numeric name.

But even with the GYT Kit offered the year after introduction, it was not Japan’s first serious motocrosser; in 1968 Kawasaki offered the F21M and Suzuki offered a batch of 50 RH67 250cc motocrossers. The RH was the prototype for the first TM250’s and most agree that the contemporary twin port CZ was its prototype.

When you visit the National Motorcycle Museum, you’ll have a chance to see nearly 50 great examples of Trials, Enduro and Motocross bikes including this DT-1 on loan from the Moto Armory Collection in East Moline, Illinois. The DIRT RIDING USA exhibition includes apparel and period advertising graphics and the Motocross Shop where a few bikes are being worked on.


  • Engine: Two-Stroke Single
  • Induction: Port Induction, 26mm Mikuni Carburetor
  • Ignition: Flywheel Magneto/Points, Condenser
  • Bore & Stroke: 70mm x 64mm
  • Compression Ratio: 6.8:1
  • Displacement: 246cc’s
  • Lubrication: Autolube Injection
  • Primary: Gear Driven
  • Transmission: Five-Speed
  • Horsepower: 18 Horsepower
  • Starting: Kick, Only
  • Chassis: Steel Tube, Duplex Cradle
  • Wheels/Tires: 3.25 x 19 / 4.00 x 18
  • Brakes: Drum, Front & Rear
  • Wheelbase: 54.7
  • Weight (Claimed): 271 Pounds


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  1. Timothy Walsh

    This was the motorcycle that I began my motorcycle obsessing over. This one and the XS-650. I never owned a DT-1, but I still have an XS-650.

  2. JJ Saunders

    Great to see this! I bought the 1969 model, in yellow gold. Out the door new $750 in Tucson. Those were the days.

  3. Dan Proper

    I also had the 1969 yellow gold. I bought mine while in the Navy stationed in Cubi Point Phillipines. $500.00 brand new. I had so much fun with that bike. I could cruise it on the beach then take it through the jungle and climb a moutian and cross streams meeting up with moutian people called Negritos on the top.Shipped it back to the states and continued to have a great time. A friend of mine saw how much fun I was having, so he went and got one for himself. We named them “Yammer Hammer 1″ and Yammer Hammer 2″

  4. Allen Brotz

    I recently acquired a 1968 DT-1 myself from the Jim Moon collection since he has passed. It is an all original condition and has only 1.2 original miles. It was recently on display that Mid-Ohio vintage motorcycle days. It will next be on display at Barber Motorsports vintage motorcycle days in October at the VJMC area.

  5. Charles Mcgarty

    I have a 1968 dt1 enduro, clean, will run with work, needs clutches. Looking for offers

  6. RJ Wilton

    I was luck enough to purchase a 68 DT1 from LA a few years ago. In need of restoration but 99% complete with the hard to find unique to 68 parts`still on the bike. It gets plenty of thumbs up when I ride it. :)

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