Two-Stroke ATV: 1995 Yamaha Banshee 350

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Still ranking among the best ATVs in history and a favorite among many riders, Yamaha’s Banshee is a powerhouse relative to its normal appearance. I mean, other than the bright purple and yellow paint scheme on the 1995 models. The seller has this 1995 Yamaha Banshee 350 listed here on eBay in Mount Carmel, Illinois. And just in case you thought that the bubble had burst and prices were on the way down, this one is currently at $6,200 with three days left on the auction as I write this. That’s about double what I expected to see, but, congrats to the seller.

Let’s see a show of hands for those of you who thought that the bubble had burst. I didn’t think it had either. Yamaha made the Banshee 350 between 1987 and 2012, but they went away in the U.S. after 2006 due to their two-stroke engines and emissions regulations. Canada got them until 2008 and Australia went whole-hog on two strokes, as they were available there until the end of the line in 2012.

The Banshee 350 is known for being a rugged machine, but you’d never know that by looking at the somewhat delicate-looking driveline in the photo above. I’d be afraid to ride this around our living room for fear of it breaking, but that’s no cause for concern for people who know that these are tough ATVs.

Here’s a photo of the underside showing how clean this beauty is. The seller says that it’s all original other than the tires. The name Banshee means “…a female spirit in Irish folklore who heralds the death of a family member, usually by screaming, wailing, shrieking, or keening.” Given the number of ATV injuries, it’s a strange name for a company to put on its ATV. Not to mention naming an ATV after an Irish folklore female spirit. I get it, though, “screaming”, and these things are incredibly-powerful screamers.

These 386-pound machines are well known for being great on sand dunes, easy to maintain, and almost indestructible, despite my mention of the delicate-looking drivetrain. It is definitely not delicate, these are tough four-wheelers.

And they’re fast, 75 mph is no problem with a Banshee 350. You already know that this ATV is a two-stroke, it’s Yamaha’s 347-cc twin, which had 34 horsepower when new and the seller says that this one has been garage-kept and it runs great. It sure looks like a gem. Have any of you owned a Yamaha Banshee ATV?

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  1. HoA Howard A ( since 2014)Member

    1st, and foremost, it’s a 2 wheel drive. That is the dumbest thing for an ATV. 2nd, you’d have to be the ultimate mishuga to go over 20mph with this. 75!?! No way, even I know that. Maybe 50, and even then. I’ve ridden 2wd ATVs and they are terrible. It excludes the very meaning of ATVs, and THESE are the culprits for most injuries. They are fast, tippy, don’t stop well, and get one stuck, your next investment will be a winch,,,or a 4×4. 4×4 ATVs have a clear purpose, these are nothing but an accident waiting to happen.

    Like 5
    • sakingsbury20

      I would guess Scotty was implying that its a 4 wheel atv not 4whl drive, say versus a 3 wheeler atv… wouldn’t call that a 2 wheeler just because its rear wheel driven…….

      Like 6
    • Scotty GilbertsonAuthor

      Oops, sorry about that. Yeah, four-wheeler, as in one more wheel than a three-wheeler. Sorry for not wording that better.

      Like 6
    • Tommerp

      @Howard – Actually this is one of the best, if not the best Sport ATVs ever made.

      4 wheel drive is for utility ATVs – This is not even in that realm of usage!!

      Your analysis of this being the dumbest thing for an ATV is slightly skewed. Would you say that only having front wheel drive on a car “is the dumbest thing” for a car because 4×4 trucks exist? As with any specific use equipment, training and experience is key to success and NOT getting hurt. Yes, I’ll agree that they contributed to a lot of injuries, but that was mostly parents buying these for completely inexperienced kids because “they looked fun”.

      A Banshee is primarily used for sport riding – trails, dunes, drag racing, etc. Rarely has anyone used these to pull a deer our of the woods or go check a fence line ( although I know someone may chime in and say they do that all the time LOL ) .

      Anyway, it looks like a great mostly stock machine. $6500 is not outside of the realm of the going rates on those now. Great write up!

      Like 26
    • JMB#7

      More people get hurt on Utility Quads than Sport Quads. Sport Quads are lighter, wider, and have suspension that absorbs the bumps just like a good trail bike. With the appropriate tires for the terrain you are riding, you would need a special talent to get stuck. The Yamaha Banshee series is the best quad ever (for sport use) in my opinion. They are also extremely reliable. If your needs are farm work travelling at low speeds, and carrying equipment then a 4wd utility quad would be the correct answer. There is no substitute for appropriate training, and having equipment appropriate for your size & weight & skill level.

      Like 13
    • Bobby

      You are obviously a terribly inexperienced rider. 2wd atvs have a clear purpose just like anything else.

      Like 9
    • chris

      the motor was taken directly from yamaha RZ 350 street bike this quad is not for an amatuer rider

      Like 5
  2. Howie

    The seller has another one listed with 80+ HP.

    Like 5
  3. Jasper

    My brother had one of these and gawd it was FAST!!! No business on trails, these were for wide open dunes and such.

    Like 3
  4. Bert

    Put some sand paddles on that and head for the dunes! No need for 4 wd when the front wheels don’t touch the sand for the first 3 gears!
    I had an 89, fmf torque pipes and milled head was a hoot.

    Like 2
  5. Mutt

    A two stroke ATV capable of 75 mph, sounds dangerous.
    I should buy it for my ex wife.

    Like 13
  6. George Nilsen

    I have had many big bore bikes and snowmobiles. I purchased 2 of these and they Scared me and that took a lot. IF you are a good rider you can play in the woods but be very careful. That price seems pretty good.

    Like 5
  7. Tooyoung4heyday Tooyoung4heydayMember

    A friend of mine had one in high school in the late 90’s. Him and another friend went toe to toe about who had the faster quad. My other friend is into the 250R’s. Not sure if that debate was ever resolved. Both were modded, the banshee sits blown up to this day and the other friend has had a series of 250’s over the years. Both scream, thats all i can tell you.

    Like 1
    • The truth

      Banshee’s are quick the the 250r’s are the faster machines in the top end, the same goes for the 450 atvs.

      Like 0
  8. Phipps

    I always raced dirt bikes in this era, But i can tell you these things sound insanely awesome!

    Like 1
  9. JMB#7

    Both bought used, so this may not be completely fair. My son had a Raptor 660, and later bought a Banshee 350. The Banshee was a much better machine all around. Smoother power delivery which made it easier to control. And who would think… it ran much longer on a tank of gas. I cannot say enough good things about the Banshee. The one listed does seem a little curious… I have never seen one stay that clean!!!

    Like 2
  10. JMB#7

    Sold for $8,705 not surprised, it is so clean it looks like it just came out of the crate!

    Like 1
  11. Rob

    The Honda ATC 250r eats these up all day long with ease bone stock no mods far better bike in my opinion

    Like 0

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