Banshee Quad

Yamaha Motor Company is a Japanese automobile company established in 1955 that manufactures motorcycles, ATVs, marine, and other motorized products. Yamaha Banshee 350 is one of the best ever two-stroke quads in the market. The vehicle ruled the category with its powerful engine and amazing performance.

Banshee 350 continues to be popular despite being discontinued years ago. The quad took the market by storm and posed a great challenge to other manufacturers. Everything about Banshee screams power and performance, be it the RD350 twin-cylinder engine or the special features that make it a worthy racing quad.

Let’s read more about the Yamaha Banshee quad and find out why it is one of the most preferred ATVs.

What You Should Know About Yamaha Banshee 350 Quad

Yamaha Banshee was first launched in 1987. This performer didn’t take long to reach the top of the charts. Though Yamaha no longer produces Banshee, you can buy a second-hand version from the current owners. Banshee has a simple design with four wheels and a 350cc engine with a top speed of 65mph.

It is considered a reliable quad on the trails, but only if you are an experienced driver. Banshee is surely not for newbies or the inexperienced. It surges ahead with confidence and requires an equally confident driver to enjoy the ride.

Customization is another highlight of this four-wheeler ATV. Though Banshee doesn’t have a reverse gear or electric starter, it is still a favorite of many. The kick-start is easy to use as the engine fires up right away. Banshee is not for those who like more power at lower speeds. It is for drivers who love to race and slide around the curves and bends on the tracks.

The six-speed gears and two exhaust pipes growl as you rev the engine to the top speed. It takes around five minutes to warm the engine and get going. The manual clutch is convenient and allows you to shift from one gear to another seamlessly.

You’ll notice that Banshee is having the time of its life when the engine’s sounds change to a purr. The ATV quad glides on the roads when you ride at medium to high speed. Banshee is an expert at navigating the sandy dunes, hilly trails, and roads.

Yamaha Banshee 350 Specifications

Banshee 350 is more than its twin-cylinder two-stroke engine. Let’s look at its specifications and features in detail.

Dimensions: 73.0x 43.3x 42.5 inches (LxWxH)
Dry Weight: 386 lbs
Fuel Capacity: 3.2 gallons
Ground Clearance: 5.3 inches
Seat Height: 31.5 inches
Wheelbase: 50.4 inches
Wheels: Steel
Max Load Capacity: 220 lbs (including rider and cargo)
Tires: Dunlop KT851A AT21 7- 10 front tires and Dunlop KT877 AT20 10- 9 rear tires
Suspension: Independent Double Wishbone, 9.1 inches travel with 5-way preload adjustment front suspension
Suspension: Swingarm with Linkage 8.7 inches travel with a rebound, compression, and threaded preload adjustment rear suspension

Engine and Drivetrain

The twin-turbo engine is considered bulletproof by Banshee owners. The 347cc two-stroke, twin-cylinder, liquid-cooled engine has a bore-stroke ratio of 2.52 * 2.13 inches and a compression ratio of 6.5:1. The engine has a horsepower of 34.

Banshee is known for the six-speed drivetrain with a wet and multiple-disc manual clutch system. The gearshift is on the left side and foot-operated. It doesn’t have a reverse gear.

Ignition and Brakes

Yamaha provided a CDI (Capacitor Discharge Ignition) starter system with an auxiliary mechanical recoil starter. The kick starter uses dual 26-mm Mikuni carbs to fire the engine.

Banshee comes with hydraulic disc brakes. It has a dual hydraulic disc brake at the front and a foot-operated single hydraulic disc brake at the rear. Both are on the right side of the vehicle.

The brakes, shocks, and suspension make Banshee a smooth ride, even at high speeds. Pay close attention to the front shocks and replace them whenever necessary.

Exterior and Build

Yamaha Banshee has a steel tube frame and plastic body designed for rough use and durability. It comes with light guards, front and rear bumpers, grips, and two 30W Krypton headlights. You can upgrade the headlights to LED for better night visibility. Banshee also has fender flares for splash protection. It is a single-seat ATV. The seating is comfortable and spacious for people with an average build.

Issues with Banshee 350

Like other vehicles on the market, the Banshee quad is no stranger to some manufacturing and maintenance issues.

Front Shocks

Shock absorbers are vital in an ATV, especially for race-worthy quads like Banshee 350. However, the front shocks aren’t as good as they should be. The rods can bend when you repeatedly ride the vehicle on dunes and racing tracks. While the suspension is an absolute treat, you need to pay close attention to the front shock absorbers and replace them whenever necessary.


The 1995 Banshee 350 model has a bit of engine trouble due to bad coils. However, this can happen to any Banshee, irrespective of the year, model, and version. The only way to avoid engine trouble is to follow a strict schedule and replace the coils every year without fail. Skip it one year, and you’ll notice the issues cropping up often.

Get the stock carbs, throttle cable, and crank main seals inspected when you change the coils. Some tweaking and loosening the jamb nut will help. Talk to an experienced mechanic and follow the manufacturer’s instructions in the manual.


Banshee comes with balloon-type stock tires. These are suitable and designed for all terrains but not really a good choice for racing. The tires continue to roll even when the throttle shuts down, and that can literally pitch you forward and out of the seat. You might fly over the handlebar around the curves when the throttle shuts off for a bit. Changing the tires is considered an upgrade by some racers and experienced drivers.

Upgrades for Your Banshee Quad

Yamaha Banshee and upgrades go hand in hand. Racers who want more from the already powerful engine change various components to get the desired results. In fact, it was noticed that an upgraded Banshee touched a whopping 118 mph as opposed to the 65 mph top speed offered by the factory model. You can easily reach 75 mph, 85 mph, and more, depending on the upgrades, maintenance, road conditions, weather, altitude, etc.

Here are a few upgrades to revamp your Banshee 350 and enhance its performance.

Remove Airbox

Remove the airbox and open the air filters and outerwear. Many veteran Banshee owners found that this increased the top speed by a few miles. The stock airbox in Banshee accumulates dirt and reduces airflow to the engine (thus decreasing the top speed). Removing it will fix the problem.

Remove Throttle Override System

TORS or the Throttle Override System comes in the way when you need to access the carbs. Just remove and replace it with a twist throttle. This minimizes the pressure on the engine and prevents overloading.

Other Upgrades

Install a custom inline cooler and billet pump. Change the stock pipes. Modify the axle carrier. Polish the cylinder heads, and do much more. There’s no limit to the upgrades and modifications for a Banshee 350. Choose what you want after a thorough assessment by the mechanic. You don’t need to make all upgrades.

Banshee 350 Discontinued

The manufacturer continued production for years before discontinuing it in North America after the strict implementation of EPA regulations in 2006. Yamaha continued to sell Banshee in Canada for the next two years (until 2008) and in Australia until 2012.

Unfortunately, Banshee’s powerful engine became the reason for its discontinuation. The two-stroke engine fitted to an open course body didn’t meet the regulations. The limits set for emissions by ATVs, UTVs, and off-road vehicles affected a few models like Banshee.

Banshee 350 has emissions above the set limit as per the EPA regulations. Yamaha decided to discontinue its sale in North America because of this. That doesn’t mean you can’t drive a Banshee in the US. You just need to stay away from certain zones (like the green-sticker parks) to avoid complications with the law.

Some say Yamaha discontinued Banshee due to economic reasons. New ATV quads entered the market in the subsequent years and posed tough competition to Banshee 350. No matter the reason, Banshee continues to be famous among experienced riders.

Final Words

Yamaha Banshee 350 is a well-put-together four-wheeler ATV with an awesome top speed. The engine, suspension, sliding ability, and speed make it an excellent racer vehicle for off-road enthusiasts.

Banshee is a racing-ready quad and is customization-friendly. Race on the sand dunes, muddy trails, and just about anywhere you want. It comes in different colors like black, white, blue, and lemon yellow. Thoroughly inspect the second-hand Banshee before finalizing your purchase.