Yamaha to debut 6 concept vehicles in Tokyo (w/images)

When the Tokyo Motor Show opens at the end of October, Yamaha will have 20 different vehicles on its stand and 6 of them will be on view for the first time.

Yamaha is not well known to most car enthusiasts, but it has been intimately involved behind the scenes on several significant automobiles. It was a consultant to the Toyota Formula One team, where its expertise at building high performance engines was put to good use. Several years ago, it partnered with Ford Motor Company to build the V-6 engines used in the Taurus SHO.

At one time, Yamaha toyed with the idea of building its own 12 cylinder supercar, but the final product proved too costly. Now the company has released a sketch of a car it says will be on display this year in Tokyo. Absolutely no details are known about the car, although it appears that its front end is too low for a conventional gasoline engine, leading to speculation that it may be a mid-engine car or even an electric vehicle. We will know more in about 10 days.

Yamaha-Teases-Sports-Coupe

Yamaha is known for building motorcycles, very fast motorcycles, in fact. Its machines just captured the 2015 MotoGP championship. In Tokyo, it will showcase an electric motorcycle with two motors — one for the rear wheel and a smaller one powering the front wheel. An all wheel drive motorcycle is a rare beast. How its handling will compare to driving a traditional bike is unknown, but it could offer significant advantages for off road riding.

PED2

The PED2 (Passion Electric Dirt/above) and Street sport PES2 (Passion Electric Street/below) share a new power unit called “Yamaha Smart Power Module with a monocoque structure that also functions as the frame

PES2

The PES2 on-road sport model has an additional electric motor built into the hub of the front wheel to make it a 2WD motorcycle

Yamaha will also showcase several new small motorcycles for markets where bikes are used regularly for daily transportation. There will be a 4 wheel prototype with articulated suspension that leans into turns as well. Electric bicycles will be featured as well.

Yamaha-LMW-740

Tilting three and four-wheelers are continuously gaining in popularity and Yamaha doesn’t want to miss on this trend

YPJ-MTB-CONCEPT

The electrically power-assisted YPJ-MTB mountain bike mounts an electric motor on a high-performance bicycle

Yamaha is never going to challenge any of the major car makers, but it is destined to play an important role in the future of mobility, especially in the congested urban environments of the future.

Posted by Steve Hanley

Steve Hanley is a car nut and Formula One addict who occasionally drives his Mazda MX-5 on track at HPDE events. He has been known to drive to Nova Scotia just to see the lupins in bloom or to Watkins Glen for a weekend of historic racing. He writes about automobiles, technology and travel from his home in Rhode Island.

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