Yamaha Motor Company

Last updated

Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd.
Native name
ヤマハ発動機株式会社
Romanized name
Yamaha Hatsudōki Kabushiki-gaisha
Company type Public
TYO: 7272
Industry Automotive
Founded1 May 1955;68 years ago (1955-05-01)
Founder Genichi Kawakami
Headquarters,
Japan
Area served
Worldwide
Key people
Hiroyuki Yanagi (Chairman & Representative Director)
Yoshihiro Hidaka  [ jp ] (President & Representative Director)
Products Motorcycles, commuter vehicles & scooters, recreational vehicles, boats, marine engines, snowmobiles, small tractors, personal watercraft, electrically power assisted bicycles, automobile engines, unmanned aerial vehicles, golf carts, cycling components
Revenue2,414,759,000,000 yen (2023)  OOjs UI icon edit-ltr-progressive.svg
Owners
  • The Master Trust Bank of Japan (18.03%)
  • Custody Bank of Japan (5.84%)
  • Yamaha corporation (4.73%)
  • Toyota Motor Corporation (3.78%)
  • SMBC Nikko Securities (3.37%)
  • (as of December 31, 2023) [1]
Number of employees
52,664 (as of December 31, 2014)
Subsidiaries
Website global.yamaha-motor.com

Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. (ヤマハ発動機株式会社, Yamaha Hatsudōki Kabushiki gaisha ) is a Japanese mobility manufacturer that produces motorcycles, motorboats, outboard motors, and other motorized products. The company was established in the year 1955 upon separation from Nippon Gakki Co., Ltd. (currently Yamaha Corporation) and is headquartered in Iwata, Shizuoka, Japan. The company conducts development, production and marketing operations through 109 consolidated subsidiaries as of 2012. [2] [3]

Contents

Led by Genichi Kawakami, the company's founder and first president, Yamaha Motor spun off from musical instrument manufacturer Yamaha Corporation in 1955 and began production of its first product, the YA-1 125cc motorcycle. It was quickly successful and won the 3rd Mount Fuji Ascent Race in its class.

The company's products include motorcycles, scooters, motorized bicycles, boats, sail boats, personal water craft, swimming pools, utility boats, fishing boats, outboard motors, 4-wheel ATVs, recreational off-road vehicles, go-kart engines, golf carts, multi-purpose engines, electrical generators, water pumps, snowmobiles, small snow throwers, automobile engines, surface mounters, intelligent machinery, industrial-use unmanned helicopters, electrical power units for wheelchairs and helmets. The company is also involved in the import and sales of various types of products, development of tourist businesses and management of leisure, recreational facilities and related services. Yamaha's motorcycle sales are the second largest in the world [4] and Yamaha is the world leader in water vehicle sales. [5]

History

Parent company

Nippon Gakki Co., Ltd (currently Yamaha Corporation) was founded by Torakusu Yamaha in 1887 to manufacture reed organs and pianos and became the largest Japanese manufacturer of musical instruments in the early 20th Century. Yamaha was contracted to manufacture wooden and (later) metal airplane propellers by the Japanese government during World War II. The company struggled in the aftermath of the war, and in the early 1950s, chairman Genichi Kawakami decided to repurpose its underutilized war-time facilities to manufacture small motorcycles for leisure use. [6]

Beginnings: 1955

The motorcycle division of Yamaha was spun off in 1955, being incorporated on 1 July 1955 in Japan, [7] and was headed by Genichi Kawakami. Yamaha's initial product was a 125 cc (7.6 cu in) two-cycle, single cylinder motorcycle, the YA-1, which was a copy of the German DKW RT 125. The YA-1 was a competitive success at racing from the beginning, winning not only the 125cc class in the Mt. Fuji Ascent, but also sweeping the podium with first, second and third place in the All Japan Autobike Endurance Road Race that same year. [8] Early success in racing set the tone for Yamaha, as competition in many varieties of motorcycle racing has been a key endeavor of the company throughout its history, often fueled by a strong rivalry with Honda, Suzuki, Kawasaki, and other Japanese manufacturers.

Yamaha began competing internationally in 1956 when they entered the Catalina Grand Prix, again with the YA-1, at which they placed sixth. The YA-1 was followed by the YA-2 of 1957, another 125cc two stroke, but with significantly improved frame and suspension. [9] The YD-1 of 1957 was a 250cc two-stroke twin cylinder motorcycle, resembling the YA-2, but with a larger and more powerful motor. A performance version of this bike, the YDS-1 housed the 250cc two-stroke twin in a double downtube cradle frame and offered the first five-speed transmission in a Japanese motorcycle. [10] This period also saw Yamaha offer its first outboard marine engine.

Success and growth in the 1960s

By 1963, Yamaha's dedication to both the two-stroke engine and racing paid off with their first victory in international competition, at the Belgian GP, where they won the 250cc class. Success in sales was even more impressive, and Yamaha set up the first of its international subsidiaries in this period beginning with Thailand in 1964, and the Netherlands in 1968. 1965 saw the release of a 305cc two-stroke twin, the flagship of the company's lineup. It featured a separate oil supply which directly injected oil into the gasoline prior to combustion (traditionally riders had to pre-mix oil into gasoline together before filling the gas tank on two stroke engines). In 1967 a new larger displacement model was added to the range, the 350cc two stroke twin R-1.

In 1968, Yamaha launched their first four-stroke motorcycle, the XS-1. The Yamaha XS-1 was a 650cc four-stroke twin, a larger and more powerful machine that equaled the displacement and performance of the popular British bikes of the era, such as the Triumph Bonneville and BSA Gold Star. Yamaha continued on with both the two-stroke line and four-stroke twins at a time that other Japanese manufacturers were increasingly moving to four cylinder four-stroke machines, a trend led by Honda in 1969 with the legendary CB750 four-stroke four-cylinder cycle.

Two stroke era begins: the 1970s

In early 1969, Yamaha added reed-valve induction to its previously piston-ported designs to produce the twin-cylinder RD and single-cylinder RS families, with variants in a number of capacities. There was a persistent, but apocryphal, rumour to the effect that "RD" indicated race developed. In fact, "R" appears to have indicated reed valved, "D" the twin (or double) cylinder models and "S" the single-cylinder models. The RD family would be developed through the 1970s and 1980s, gaining solid wheels, water-cooling, YPVS, and other newer technology 'til they had little in common with the original variants (before being supplanted by the TZR). The RS family was produced for many years in a large number of variants by Yamaha and then Escorts Limited in India without losing its resemblance to its progenitors. In addition to the RD and RS standards, Yamaha also manufactured small standards with stamped steel frames and rotary disc-valved motors such as the Yamaha FS1, and step-through V-50 and V-80 designs. Its Enduro trail bike was replaced by the DT models. Not until 1976 would Yamaha answer the other Japanese brands with a multi-cylinder four stroke of their own. The XS-750 (and later 850) a 750cc triple cylinder machine with shaft final drive was introduced almost seven years after Honda's breakthrough bike. Yamaha's first four-cylinder model, the XS-1100 followed in 1978, again with shaft drive. [11] Despite being heavier and more touring oriented than its rivals it produced an impressive string of victories in endurance racing.

The 1970s also saw some of the first dedicated off-road bikes for off-road racing and recreation. Yamaha was an early innovator in dirt-bike technology, and introduced the first single-shock rear suspension, the trademarked "Monoshock" of 1973. [12] It appeared in production on the 1974 Yamaha YZ-250, a model which is still in production, making it Yamaha's longest continuous model and name.

Yamaha continued racing throughout the 1960s and 1970s with increasing success in several formats. The decade of the 1970s was capped by the XT500 winning the first Paris-Dakar Rally in 1979. [13]

1980s: diversification and innovation

Yamaha Motor's West Coast administrative headquarters in Cypress, California Yamaha Motor Corporation USA West Coast Operations Cypress California 2021.jpg
Yamaha Motor's West Coast administrative headquarters in Cypress, California

By 1980 the combination of consumer preference and environmental regulation made four strokes increasingly popular. Suzuki ended production of their GT two stroke series, including the flagship water-cooled two-stroke 750cc GT-750 in 1977. Kawasaki, who had considerable success throughout the 1970s with their two-stroke triples of 250cc, 350cc, 400cc, 500cc and 750cc ended production of road-going two strokes in 1980. Yamaha bucked this trend and continued to refine and sell two-strokes for the street into the 1980s. These bikes were performance oriented, water-cooled twin cylinder machines, designed to achieve excellent performance taking advantage of the lower weight of two strokes. The RZ-250 of 1980 [14] was the progenitor of this series. The RZ-350, the largest displacement model, was a popular hot-rod bike of the 1980s and continued to be sold in some countries into the early 1990s.

Throughout the 1980s the motorcycle industry gradually went from building a few basic but versatile models designed to work well in many roles, to offering many more specialized machines designed to excel in particular niches. These included racing and performance street riding, touring, motocross racing, enduro and recreational off-road riding, and cruising. Yamaha branched out from the relatively small number of UJMs (Universal Japanese Motorcycle) at the start of the decade to a much larger set of offerings in several clearly defined markets at the end of the decade.

The XV750 of 1981 featured an air-cooled V-twin four-stroke engine and cruiser styling, and was one of the first Japanese cruiser style motorcycles. By the end of the 1980s Yamaha had offered dozens of cruiser styled bikes in a variety of displacements and engine configurations.

The RZV500 was one of the first "repli-racers", a near copy of Kenny Roberts competition GP bike, it featured a liquid-cooled two-stroke motor of 500cc displacement in a V4 configuration, along with a perimeter frame and full fairing. [15]

A more popular and practical high-performance model for the street was introduced in 1985, the FZ750. It was an innovative 750cc four-stroke inline four cylinder model. It was the first motorcycle to feature a five-valve cylinder head, something Yamaha became well known for. It also featured a cylinder block canted forward at 45 degrees, and a box-section steel perimeter frame. Production of the FZ continued until 1991.

Another bike that was performance-oriented was the Yamaha RX-Z, introduced in 1985 as a two-stroke naked sport bike, related to the Yamaha RX-135 and Yamaha RD-135, borrowing its chassis and platform. Originally equipped with a five speed transmission and a solid front disc brake rotor with rear drum brakes, it was popular in Malaysia and Singapore. After a few years on the market, the engine was upgraded with the installation of a six-speed transmission, together with a newer instrument panel and handlebar switches, as well as a cross-drilled front disc brake rotor, while the rear remained with the drum brakes. The design was unchanged until it was updated in 2004, with the rear lights being borrowed by the Yamaha Y125Z and a new headlight. It was also installed with a catalytic converter, which reduced its horsepower to 19bhp. However, the maximum torque remained unchanged but the low-end torque was improved compared to the early models. Some owners of the earlier RX-Z motorcycles may have problems during take-off because the engine tends to stall when an inexperienced rider tries to take off in the first gear. However, the problem was resolved in the new model. In Malaysia, this bike was associated with street racers and was featured in many Malay movies. In 2011, after 26 years, it was discontinued.

The 1990s: Performance bikes and a spin-off brand

In 1998 Yamaha marketed a 1000cc four cylinder road bike called the YZF 'R1', this model introduced a new style of gearbox design which shortened the overall length of the motor/gearbox case, to allow a more compact unit. This, in turn allowed the motor to be placed in the frame further forward, designed to improve handling in a short wheel-based frame. [16]

In 1995, Yamaha announced the creation of Star Motorcycles, a new brand name for its cruiser series of motorcycles in the American market. In other markets, Star motorcycles are still sold under the Yamaha brand. This was an attempt to create a brand identity more closely aligned with the cruiser market segment, one of the largest and most lucrative in the US.

The 2000s: Expansion and consolidation

In 2007, Yamaha established the Philippine operations and distributes Yamaha motorcycles under the corporate name of Yamaha Motor Philippines, Inc., one of more than 20 worldwide subsidiaries operating on all continents.

Yamaha XS650 vertical-twin Yamaha XS650.jpg
Yamaha XS650 vertical-twin

Yamaha purchased small engine maker Subaru Industrial Power Products from Subaru in October 2017. Subaru's engines powered lawnmowers, generators and water pumps and have since been rebranded as Yamaha.

Motorcycle racing highlights

Three-time Grand Championship winner Kenny Roberts at the 1981 German Grand Prix Kenny Roberts.JPG
Three-time Grand Championship winner Kenny Roberts at the 1981 German Grand Prix

In motorcycle racing Yamaha has won 39 world championships, including seven in MotoGP and 10 in the preceding 500 cc two-stroke class, and two in World Superbike. In addition Yamaha have recorded 210 victories at the Isle of Man TT [17] and head the list of victories at the Sidecar TT with 40. [17] Past Yamaha riders include: Jarno Saarinen Giacomo Agostini, Bob Hannah, Heikki Mikkola, Bruce Anstey, Kenny Roberts, Eddie Lawson, Wayne Rainey, Jeremy McGrath, Stefan Merriman, Dave Molyneux, Ian Hutchinson, Phil Read, Chad Reed, Ben Spies, Jorge Lorenzo, and nine-time world champion Valentino Rossi.

The Yamaha YZ450F won the AMA Supercross Championship two years in a row, in 2008 with Chad Reed, and 2009 James Stewart. Yamaha was the first to build a production monoshock motocross bike (1975 for 250 and 400, 1976 for 125) and one of the first to have a water-cooled motocross production bike (1977 in works bikes, 1981 in off-the-shelf bikes). Yamaha's first Motocross competition four-stroke bike, the YZ400F, won the 1998 USA outdoor national Championship with factory rider Doug Henry.

Since 1962, Yamaha made production road racing Grand Prix motorcycles that any licensed road racer could purchase. In 1970, non-factory privateer teams dominated the 250 cc World Championship with Great Britain's Rodney Gould winning the title on a Yamaha TD2.

Yamaha also sponsors several professional ATV riders in several areas of racing, such as cross country racing and motocross. Yamaha has had success in cross country with their YFZ450, ridden by Bill Ballance, winning 9 straight titles since 2000. Yamaha's other major rider, Traci Cecco, has ridden the YFZ450 to 7 titles, with the first in 2000. In ATV motocross, Yamaha has had success with Dustin Nelson and Pat Brown, both who race the YFZ450. Pat Brown's best season was a 3rd place title in 2007, while Nelson has had two 1st place titles in the Yamaha/ITP Quadcross, one in 2006 and the other in 2008.

In 2021, Yamaha has won several competitions, such as British Superbike with Tarran Mackenzie, MotoAmerica with Jake Gagne, MFJ Superbike with Katsuyuki Nakasuga, WorldSSP with Dominique Aegerter, and several other competitions.

Their 2022 MotoGP lineup was Fabio Quartararo and Franco Morbidelli, continuing in 2023. The 2022 world superbikes team was Toprak Razgatlıoğlu and Andrea Locatelli, continuing in 2023. Yamaha's Superbike World Championship team since 2016 has been delivered by Crescent Racing. [18]

World Superbike

Yamaha Superbike
2024 namePata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK
Base Shizuoka, Japan
Team principal/sPaul Denning,
Project Director

Team Manager
Race riders55 Flag of Italy.svg Andrea Locatelli
65 Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Jonathan Rea
Motorcycle Yamaha YZF-R1 (2019→)
Tyres Pirelli
Riders' Championships 2009 Ben Spies
2021 Toprak Razgatlıoğlu

The first Yamaha rider to ever win a World Superbike was Ben Spies in 2009. Then in 2021, Toprak Razgatlıoğlu managed to become world champion.

By season results

(key) (Races in bold indicate pole position; races in italics indicate fastest lap)

YearBikeTeamTyresNo.Riders12345678910111213PointsRCPointsTCPointsMC
R1SRR2R1SRR2R1SRR2R1SRR2R1SRR2R1SRR2R1SRR2R1SRR2R1SRR2R1SRR2R1SRR2R1SRR2R1SRR2
2022 Yamaha YZF-R1 Pata Yamaha with Brixx WorldSBK P 1 Flag of Turkey.svg Toprak Razgatlıoğlu SPA
3
SPA
3
SPA
3
NED
3
NED
2
NED
Ret
POR
2
POR
2
POR
3
ITA
Ret
ITA
1
ITA
2
GBR
1
GBR
1
GBR
1
CZE
2
CZE
1
CZE
1
FRA
11
FRA
1
FRA
1
SPA
5
SPA
4
SPA
3
POR
1
POR
1
POR
2
ARG
15
ARG
1
ARG
2
INA
1
INA
1
INA
1
AUS
2
AUS
2
AUS
4
2nd5298032nd5772nd
55 Flag of Italy.svg Andrea Locatelli SPA
5
SPA
5
SPA
19
NED
4
NED
4
NED
2
POR
4
POR
5
POR
5
ITA
6
ITA
6
ITA
6
GBR
10
GBR
8
GBR
8
CZE
6
CZE
6
CZE
6
FRA
7
FRA
10
FRA
7
SPA
9
SPA
21
SPA
16
POR
6
POR
7
POR
6
ARG
8
ARG
10
ARG
8
INA
4
INA
3
INA
4
AUS
4
AUS
5
AUS
5
5th274
2023 Yamaha YZF-R1 Pata Yamaha Prometeon WorldSBK P 54 Flag of Turkey.svg Toprak Razgatlıoğlu AUS
3
AUS
3
AUS
Ret
INA
2
INA
1
INA
2
NED
3
NED
3
NED
2
SPA
2
SPA
2
SPA
2
ITA
3
ITA
2
ITA
2
GBR
2
GBR
1
GBR
2
ITA
2
ITA
1
ITA
1
CZE
2
CZE
1
CZE
Ret
FRA
1
FRA
1
FRA
2
SPA
2
SPA
3
SPA
2
POR
2
POR
2
POR
2
SPA
2
SPA
4
SPA
2
5522nd8792nd5812nd
55 Flag of Italy.svg Andrea Locatelli AUS
4
AUS
5
AUS
3
INA
3
INA
2
INA
5
NED
4
NED
5
NED
3
SPA
4
SPA
3
SPA
7
ITA
12
ITA
7
ITA
6
GBR
5
GBR
4
GBR
8
ITA
4
ITA
3
ITA
4
CZE
6
CZE
Ret
CZE
7
FRA
6
FRA
4
FRA
4
SPA
4
SPA
4
SPA
Ret
POR
9
POR
3
POR
5
SPA
3
SPA
5
SPA
10
3274th

* Season still in progress.

Formula One

Yamaha as a Formula One engine manufacturer
Formula One World Championship career
First entry 1989 Brazilian Grand Prix
Last entry 1997 European Grand Prix
Races entered130 (116 starts)
Chassis Zakspeed, Brabham, Jordan, Tyrrell, Arrows
Constructors' Championships 0
Drivers'
Championships
0
Race victories0
Podiums2
Points36
Pole positions 0
Fastest laps 0

Yamaha produced Formula One engines from 1989 to 1997 (with a one-year break in 1990), initially for the Zakspeed team, in 1991 for the Brabham BT60Y, in 1992 for the Jordan 192, from 1993 to 1996 for Tyrrell, and in 1997 for the Arrows A18. The Yamaha Engines never won a race (Damon Hill nearly did so at the 1997 Hungarian Grand Prix), drivers including Damon Hill, Ukyo Katayama, Mark Blundell and Mika Salo scored some acceptable results with Blundell achieving a surprise 3rd place at the 1994 Spanish Grand Prix and Hill with 2nd at the aforementioned 1997 Hungarian Grand Prix, this partly was considered to be due to Yamaha collaborating with the John Judd Engine Organization to create a better and reliable engine however there were questions raised as to whether the Yamaha Engines used from 1993 until 1997 were just Judd engines with the Yamaha branding on top of this.

1994 was considered to be Yamaha's most successful year in terms of points accrued, apart from the Podium achieved by Blundell in Spain the Yamaha engine in the Tyrrell Car achieved 4 Fifth Place finishes and 1 Sixth Place finish over the course of the season, However, due to the inconsistency of the engine over the years they were often unreliable and were usually regarded as not very powerful, the Yamaha powered engine never secured a Fastest Lap or Pole Position despite being on the grid for nearly a decade.

After the conclusion of the 1997 Formula One Season, Yamaha decided to pull out of the sport, a possible reason for this was due to a disagreement with Arrows regarding the 1998 engine's identification, Yamaha wished to carry out work on the engine with their engineers while Arrows wished for their own engineers to work on the engine instead while still having it badged as a Yamaha engine.

Formula One World Championship results

(key)

YearEntrantChassisEngineTyresDrivers1234567891011121314151617 Points WCC
1989 West Zakspeed Racing Zakspeed 891 Yamaha OX88 3.5 V8 P BRA SMR MON MEX USA CAN FRA GBR GER HUN BEL ITA POR ESP JPN AUS 0NC
Flag of Germany.svg Bernd Schneider RetDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQRetDNPQ
Flag of Japan.svg Aguri Suzuki DNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQDNPQ
1991 Motor Racing Developments Brabham BT59Y
Brabham BT60Y
Yamaha OX99 3.5 V12 P USA BRA SMR MON CAN MEX FRA GBR GER HUN BEL ITA POR ESP JPN AUS 39th
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Martin Brundle 111211EXRetRetRetRet11Ret91312105DNQ
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Mark Blundell RetRet8RetDNQRetRetRet12Ret612RetRetDNPQ17
1992 Sasol Jordan Yamaha Jordan 192 Yamaha OX99 3.5 V12 G RSA MEX BRA ESP SMR MON CAN FRA GBR GER HUN BEL ITA POR JPN AUS 111th
Flag of Italy.svg Stefano Modena DNQRetRetDNQRetRetRetRetRetDNQRet15DNQ1376
Flag of Brazil.svg Maurício Gugelmin 11RetRetRet7RetRetRetRet151014RetRetRetRet
1993 Tyrrell Racing Organisation Tyrrell 020C
Tyrrell 021
Yamaha OX10A 3.5 V10 G RSA BRA EUR SMR ESP MON CAN FRA GBR GER HUN BEL ITA POR JPN AUS 0NC
Flag of Japan.svg Ukyo Katayama RetRetRetRetRetRet17Ret13Ret101514RetRetRet
Flag of Italy.svg Andrea de Cesaris RetRetRetRetDSQ10Ret15NCRet11Ret1312Ret13
1994 Tyrrell Racing Organisation Tyrrell 022 Yamaha OX10B 3.5 V10 G BRA PAC SMR MON ESP CAN FRA GBR GER HUN BEL ITA POR EUR JPN AUS 137th
Flag of Japan.svg Ukyo Katayama 5Ret5RetRetRetRet6RetRetRetRetRet7RetRet
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Mark Blundell RetRet9Ret31010RetRet55RetRet13RetRet
1995 Nokia Tyrrell Yamaha Tyrrell 023 Yamaha OX10C 3.0 V10 G BRA ARG SMR ESP MON CAN FRA GBR GER HUN BEL ITA POR EUR PAC JPN AUS 58th
Flag of Japan.svg Ukyo Katayama Ret8RetRetRetRetRetRet7RetRet10Ret14RetRet
Flag of Italy.svg Gabriele Tarquini 14
Flag of Finland.svg Mika Salo 7RetRet10Ret7158RetRet8513101265
1996 Tyrrell Yamaha Tyrrell 024 Yamaha OX11A 3.0 V10 G AUS BRA ARG EUR SMR MON ESP CAN FRA GBR GER HUN BEL ITA POR JPN 58th
Flag of Japan.svg Ukyo Katayama 119RetDSQRetRetRetRetRetRetRet781012Ret
Flag of Finland.svg Mika Salo 65RetDSQRet5DSQRet1079Ret7Ret11Ret
1997 Danka Arrows Yamaha Arrows A18 Yamaha OX11C/D 3.0 V10 B AUS BRA ARG SMR MON ESP CAN FRA GBR GER HUN BEL ITA AUT LUX JPN EUR 98th
Flag of the United Kingdom.svg Damon Hill DNS17RetRetRetRet91268213Ret7812Ret
Flag of Brazil.svg Pedro Diniz 10RetRetRetRetRet8RetRetRetRet7Ret13513Ret

Formula E

In March 2024, it was announced Yamaha would join Formula E in the 2024-25 season as a powertrain supplier in a technical partnership with Lola Cars. [19] [20] A month later, Lola-Yamaha secured Abt Cupra Formula E Team as its first powertrain customer for the 2024-25 season. [21]

Products

Overview

Yamaha Motor is a highly diversified company which produces products for a large number of industries and consumer market segments:

Automobile engines

Yamaha-built DOHC V6 Ford Taurus SHO engine 1991 Ford Taurus SHO.jpg
Yamaha-built DOHC V6 Ford Taurus SHO engine

Yamaha has built engines for other manufacturers' vehicles beginning with the development and production of the Toyota 2000GT (1967). The cylinder head from the Toyota 4A-GE engine was developed by Yamaha and built at Toyota's Shimayama plant alongside the 4A and 2A engines. [25]

In 1984, executives of the Yamaha Motor Corporation signed a contract with the Ford Motor Company to develop, produce, and supply compact 60° 3.0 Liter DOHC V6 engines for transverse application for the 1989–95 Ford Taurus SHO. [26] [27] From 1993 to 1995, the SHO engine was produced in 3.0 and 3.2 Liter versions. Yamaha jointly designed the 3.4 Liter DOHC V-8 engine with Ford for the 1996–99 SHO. Ford and Yamaha also developed the Zetec-SE branded 4-cylinder engines used in several Ford cars like the small sports car Ford Puma.

From 2005 to 2010, Yamaha produced a 4.4 Litre V8 for Volvo. The B8444S engines were used in the XC90 and S80 models, whilst also adapted to 5.0L configuration for Volvo's foray into the V8 Supercars with the S60. British sportscar maker Noble also uses a bi-turbo version of the Volvo V8 in their M600.

All performance-oriented cylinder heads on Toyota/Lexus engines were designed and/or built by Yamaha. Some examples are the 1LR-GUE engine found on the 2010–2012 Lexus LFA, the 2UR-GSE found in Lexus ISF, the 3S-GTE engine found on the Toyota MR2 and Toyota Celica GT4/All-Trac, the 2ZZ-GE engine found on the 1999–2006 Toyota Celica GT-S and Lotus Elise Series 2, and the Toyota 4GR-FSE engine found on the Lexus IS250. [28]

Yamaha also tunes engines for manufacturers, such as Toyota, so Yamaha logos are on Toyota S engines. [29]

Yamaha also tried to produce a supercar in the 1990s, named the Yamaha OX99-11. It was made as a supercar to have a Yamaha Formula 1 engine as its powerplant and have Formula 1 technology in it. Even though their engines did not win a Grand Prix, by 1991 the team had produced a new engine, the OX99, and approached a German company to design an initial version of the car. Yamaha was not pleased with the result as it was too similar to sport cars of that time, so it contacted IAD to continue working on the project. By the beginning of 1992, just under 12 months after starting to work on the project, IAD came with an initial version of the car. The car's design was undertaken by Takuya Yura, and was originally conceived as a single seater; however, Yamaha requested a two-seater vehicle and a tandem seating arrangement was suggested which was in keeping with Yamaha's motorcycle expertise. This resulted in a radical and somewhat outrageous design based on Group C cars of the time, with features such as the cockpit-locking roof. It also shared the same chassis as the Formula 1 car, to try to give the consumer market a pure Formula 1 experience. Eventually disagreements with IAD over the budget made Yamaha take the project to its own Ypsilon Technology which was given six months to finish the project, otherwise it would be terminated. To make matters worse, Japan was in the midst of an economic downturn, which made Yamaha believe there would be no customers for the car, and so the project was cancelled in 1994 after many delays, with only 3 prototypes in existence.

Concept cars

Beginning in 2013 Yamaha revealed a series of concept cars developed in collaboration with Gordon Murray Design utilizing the company's iStream design process. The first concept, named the MOTIV, was revealed at the 43rd Tokyo Motor Show in 2013. The MOTIV was a compact city car designed to accommodate gasoline engines, EV drivetrains, hybrid systems, and range extenders. [30]

The second concept, the Sports Ride Concept, was revealed at the 44th Tokyo Motor Show in 2015. The concept was a lightweight two-seat sports car that drew inspiration from the company's motorcycles. [31]

The third concept, the Cross Hub Concept, was revealed at the 45th Tokyo Motor Show in 2017. The Cross Hub was a coupé utility with a diamond-shaped sitting arrangement to allow it to carry two motorcycles in the bed while retaining compact dimensions for urban use. [32]

Yamaha confirmed at the 46th Tokyo Motor Show in 2019 that cars were no longer in the company's plans. [33] [34]

Related Research Articles

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Aprilia</span> Italian motorcycle manufacturer

Aprilia is an Italian motorcycle manufacturer founded immediately after World War II in Noale, Italy, by Alberto Beggio. The company started as a manufacturer of bicycles and moved on to manufacture scooters and small-capacity motorcycles. In more recent times Aprilia has produced large sportbikes such as the 1,000 cc V-twin RSV Mille and the V4 RSV4.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Straight-twin engine</span> Inline piston engine with two cylinders

A straight-twin engine, also known as an inline-twin, vertical-twin, or parallel-twin, is a two-cylinder piston engine whose cylinders are arranged in a line along a common crankshaft.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Straight-four engine</span> Inline piston engine with four cylinders

A straight-four engine is a four-cylinder piston engine where cylinders are arranged in a line along a common crankshaft.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">MZ Motorrad- und Zweiradwerk</span> German motorcycle manufacturer

Motorenwerke Zschopau GmbH is a German motorcycle manufacturer located in Zschopau, Saxony. The acronym MZ since 1956 stands for Motorenwerke Zschopau GmbH. From 1992 to 1999 the company was called MuZ, an acronym for Motorrad und Zweiradwerk.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">KTM</span> Austrian motorcycle and sports car manufacturer

KTM is the abbreviation of the name of Hans Trunkenpolz's auto repair shop in Mattighofen, Austria; Kraftfahrzeug Trunkenpolz Mattighofen. The shop was founded by Mr. Trunkenpolz in the year 1934. It became what is now known as KTM.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Suzuki GSX-R series</span> Sports motorcycle models

Suzuki GSX-R is a series of sports motorcycles made by Japanese automotive manufacturer Suzuki since 1984.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">AMA Superbike Championship</span>

AMA Superbike Championship is an American motorcycle racing series that has been run every year beginning in 1976. For most of its existence it has been considered the premier motorcycle road racing series in the United States. It is sanctioned by the AMA American Motorcyclist Association since its inception, and the promotion of the series has been licensed to several organizations over the years. Since 2015 the series has been run and promoted by MotoAmerica, who also manage several other AMA professional road racing championships, including the popular 600cc Supersport class.

Erik F. Buell is the founder, former Chairman and Chief Technical Officer of the Buell Motorcycle Company, which eventually merged with Harley-Davidson Corp. Buell is a pioneer of modern race motorcycle technology. Buell is also the founder of Erik Buell Racing.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Suzuki GS series</span> Series of motorcycles

The Suzuki GS series was Suzuki Motor Corporation's first full range of 4-stroke powered road motorcycles, having previously almost exclusively manufactured 2-stroke machines. Suzuki had produced the 4-stroke Colleda COX 125cc and 93cc 4-stroke single-cylinder machines in 1955 however the rest of Suzuki's production from 1952 to 1976 had been increasingly sophisticated two-stroke road machines, whose ultimate expression was the 750cc 3-cylinder water-cooled GT750.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Sport bike</span> Motorcycles designed for performance

A sport bike, sports motorcycle, or sports bike is a motorcycle designed and optimized for speed, acceleration, braking, and cornering on asphalt concrete race tracks and roads. They are mainly designed for performance at the expense of comfort, fuel economy, safety, noise reduction and storage in comparison with other motorcycles.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Motorcycle engine</span> Engine that powers a motorcycle

A motorcycle engine is an engine that powers a motorcycle. Motorcycle engines are typically two-stroke or four-stroke internal combustion engines, but other engine types, such as Wankels and electric motors, have been used.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Honda Racing Corporation</span> Motorsport subsidiary of Honda

Honda Racing Corporation (HRC), also known as Honda Racing, is a motorsport subsidiary of the Honda Motor Company formed in 1982. From its founding, the company was initially solely responsible for Honda's motorcycle racing activities, before the brand's automobile racing activities were integrated into HRC's scope of work on 1 April 2022. The company combines participation in motorcycle races throughout the world with the development of racing machines. Its racing activities are an important source for the creation of technologies used in the development of Honda motorcycles. HRC activities include sales of production racing motorcycles, support for satellite teams, and rider education programs.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Yamaha WR450F</span> Type of motorcycle

The Yamaha WR450F is an off-road motorcycle made by Yamaha Motor Company. It currently has a 450 cc (27 cu in) liquid-cooled single-cylinder engine. First offered in 1998 at 400cc, it shared many components and design concepts with the YZ400F motocross model. It is basically the racing YZ450F detuned slightly for more controllable power, with a headlight and lighting coil, softer suspension, a kickstand, lower noise specifications, larger radiators and lower emissions. The WR in the name indicates a wide-ratio gear box common to most enduro or trail bikes and stands in contrast to the close-ratio gearbox essential to a motocross racer. Over the years the WR has benefited from the advances made in the YZ motocross version gaining displacement and advancements such as an aluminum frame and improved suspension. Over much of its life the weight of the WR450F has remained fairly constant ranging from 244 to 249 pounds dry weight.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Yamaha YZ450F</span> Type of motorcycle

The Yamaha YZ450F is a four-stroke racing motocross bike built by Yamaha Motor Corporation. It was the successor to the previous YZ426F which was discontinued in 2003. It is credited by Cycle World and Dirt Rider magazines as the bike that started the four-stroke dirt bike revolution. The 2006 YZ250F and YZ450F were the first production motorcycles equipped with titanium suspension springs.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Kawasaki Motors</span> Motor vehicle manufacturing subsidiary of Kawasaki Heavy Industries

Kawasaki Motors, Ltd. is a Japanese mobility manufacturer that produces motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, utility vehicles, watercraft, outboard motors, and other electric products. It derives its origins from Kawasaki Aircraft Industries, a subsidiary of Kawasaki Heavy Industries, and is rooted in the motorcycle, boat, and engine businesses. In 1953, they began manufacturing engines for motorcycles and have since produced products such as the Mach and Ninja series in motorcycles and the Jet Ski, which has become a generic term for personal watercraft. Until 2021, it was a division of Kawasaki Heavy Industries, known as the Kawasaki Aerospace Company (川策重工業汎用機カンパニー) and later the Kawasaki Motorcycle & Engine Company (川崎重工業モーターサイクル&エンジンカンパニー). In 2021, it was separated as Kawasaki Motors, Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of Kawasaki Heavy Industries.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Yamaha FZ750</span> Japanese motorcycle produced 1985 to 1991

The Yamaha FZ750 is a sports motorcycle produced by Yamaha Motor Corporation between 1985 and 1991. The FZ750 is notable for several reasons, perhaps the most radical being the 5-valve cylinder head with a radial arrangement. This became something of a Yamaha trademark. The FZ750 would be the first bike in the Genesis design concept.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Superbike racing</span> Motorcycle racing with highly modified production motorcycles

Superbike racing is a category of motorcycle racing that employs highly modified production motorcycles, as opposed to MotoGP in which purpose-built motorcycles are used. The Superbike World Championship is the official world championship series, though national Superbike championships are held in many countries, including the United Kingdom, the United States, Japan, Australia and Canada. Superbike racing is generally popular with manufacturers, since it helps promote and sell their product, as captured by the slogan "Win on Sunday; Sell on Monday".

<span class="mw-page-title-main">Yamaha YA-1</span> Type of motorcycle

The Yamaha YA-1 is the first motorcycle produced by the Yamaha Motor Company. It was made from 1955 to 1958. This was also the first vehicle in Japan to have a primary kick start system. The Society of Automotive Engineers of Japan(in Japanese), includes the 1955 Yamaha 125YA-1 as one of their 240 Landmarks of Japanese Automotive Technology.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">American Flat Track</span> American motorcycle racing series

American Flat Track is an American motorcycle racing series. The racing series, founded and sanctioned by the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) in 1954, originally encompassed five distinct forms of competitions including mile dirt track races, half-mile, short-track, TT steeplechase and road races. The championship was the premier motorcycle racing series in the United States from the 1950s up until the late 1970s.

<span class="mw-page-title-main">MotoAmerica</span> North American Motorcycle Road Racing Organization

MotoAmerica is the organization that promotes the AMA Superbike Series since 2015. Sanctioned by the American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) and the Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme (FIM), it features eight classes of road racing: Superbike, Stock 1000, Supersport, King of the Baggers, Super Hooligan National Championship, Twins Cup, Junior Cup, and Mini Cup.

References

  1. "Stock Information". global.yamaha-motor.com.
  2. "Yamaha Motor Establishes Highly Profitable Business Structure". businesswire.com. February 9, 2017. Retrieved February 15, 2017.
  3. "Yamaha Motor Establishes Highly Profitable Business Structure". finance.yahoo.com. Retrieved February 15, 2017.
  4. "二輪車・バイク業界の動向・ランキング等を研究-業界動向サーチ" [Research on trends and rankings of motorcycles · motorcycle industry - industry trend search]. gyokai-search.com (in Japanese). Retrieved November 11, 2017.
  5. "Yamaha, marine business earns earnest and leverages motorcycle know-how". nikkei.com. Nihon Keizai Shimbun. September 17, 2013.
  6. Hays, Constance L. (May 28, 2002). "Genichi Kawakami, 90, Dies; Led Yamaha's Big Expansion" . The New York Times. Retrieved July 19, 2022.
  7. "Yamaha Day 2020 | Yamaha Motor Australia". www.yamaha-motor.com.au. Retrieved December 16, 2020.
  8. "Yamaha Motorcycles and Brand History". autoevolution.com. SoftNews NET. Retrieved January 15, 2015.
  9. "Yamaha Showroom Communication Plaza Collection". yamaha-motor.com. Yamaha Motors. Retrieved January 15, 2015.
  10. "Yamaha Collection – YDS-1". Yamaha-Motor.com. Retrieved January 15, 2015.
  11. "Yamaha Collections: XS-1100". yamaha-motor.com. Yamaha Motors. Retrieved January 16, 2015.
  12. Melling, Frank. "Memorable MC: 1974 Yamaha YZ250M Monoshock". Motorcycle USA LLC. Archived from the original on May 28, 2013. Retrieved January 16, 2015.
  13. "Dakar Retrospective 1979–2007" (PDF). Dakar.com. Archived from the original (PDF) on May 15, 2011. Retrieved April 29, 2011.
  14. "Yamaha Motors Collection RZ-250". yamaha-motor.com. Yamaha Motors. Retrieved January 16, 2015.
  15. "Yamaha Collection: RZV500R". yamaha-motor.com. Yamaha Motors. Retrieved January 16, 2015.
  16. Vandenheuvel, Cornelis (1997). Pictorial history of Japanese motorcycles. MBI Publishing Company. pp. 84–90. ISBN   978-1-870979-97-9.[ permanent dead link ]
  17. 1 2 "Machines - Isle of Man TT Official Website". iomtt.com. Retrieved November 11, 2017.
  18. Racing history Crescent Motorcycles. Retrieved 25 May 2022
  19. "Lola Cars Returns To Top Tier Motorsport With Yamaha As Technical Partner". Formula E . March 28, 2024. Archived from the original on March 28, 2024. Retrieved March 28, 2024.
  20. Mackley, Stefan (March 28, 2024). "Lola returns to motorsport in Formula E with Yamaha powertrain partnership". Motorsport.com . Archived from the original on April 11, 2024. Retrieved April 11, 2024.
  21. "ABT will partner with Lola and Yamaha from Season 11". Formula E . April 11, 2024. Retrieved April 11, 2024.
  22. "Yamaha Outboards". yamaha-motor.com. Yamaha Motors. Archived from the original on October 25, 2010. Retrieved November 11, 2017.
  23. "Yamaha Motorcycles for Sale - Sydney's #1 Yamaha Dealer | Bikebiz". www.bikebiz.com.au. Retrieved November 28, 2018.
  24. "Intelligent Machinery – Company information". yamaha-motor.co.jp. Yamaha Motors. Archived from the original on December 16, 2011. Retrieved December 27, 2011.
  25. All About the Toyota Twin Cam (2nd ed.). Tokyo: Toyota Motor Company. 1984. p. 24. Retrieved December 6, 2012.
  26. "SHO n Tell". fordmuscle.com. Jon Mikelonis and Matt Wilder. Archived from the original on April 26, 2011. Retrieved April 4, 2008.
  27. 1989 Ford Taurus SHO commercial. Ford Motor Company. Retrieved July 19, 2007 via retrojunk.com.
  28. "Products History".
  29. "Toyota Twin-Cam Evolution". Toysport.com. Archived from the original on June 26, 2009. Retrieved July 14, 2009.
  30. Motor, Yamaha. "The 43rd Tokyo Motor Show YAMAHA 2013". The 43rd Tokyo Motor Show YAMAHA 2013. Retrieved May 16, 2023.
  31. "Sports Ride Concept". YAMAHA MOTOR CO., LTD. Retrieved May 16, 2023.
  32. "CROSS HUB CONCEPT | Tokyo Motor Show 2017 - Event | YAMAHA MOTOR CO., LTD". YAMAHA MOTOR CO., LTD. Retrieved May 16, 2023.
  33. "Yamaha axes all car development plans". Autocar. Retrieved May 16, 2023.
  34. "Yamaha updates". Price Hubz. Retrieved September 16, 2023.