Yamaha Motor Company Limited is a Japanese producer of motorcycles, marine products such as boats and outboard motors, and other motorized products. The company was set up in 1955 when get separated from Yamaha Corporation. The company conducts development, production and marketing operations through 109 consolidated subsidiaries as of 2012. In 1955, Yamaha Motor began production of its first product.
The YA-1. Yamaha products includes motorcycles, scooters, motorized bicycles, boats, sailboats, personal watercraft, 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.
July 1, 1955
Iwata, Shizuoka, Japan
The Beginning :
The motorcycle division of Yamaha Corporation was found in the 1955 as Yamaha Motor Company. Yamaha launched its first initial product, a 125cc two-cycle, single cylinder motorcycle, the YA-1, which was a copy of the German DKW RT125. 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. 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 and other Japanese manufacturers.
In 1956, Yamaha began competing internationally when they entered the Catalina Grand Prix, again with the YA-1, at which they placed sixth. 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.
In The 1960s :
By 1963, Yamaha placed first victory in international competition, at the Belgium GP, it is just because the dedication of Yamaha to both the two-stroke engine and racing. In 1964, Yamaha set up the first of its international subsidiaries in this period beginning with Thailand. In 1965, 305cc two-stroke twin was released with the flagship of the company’s lineup. It featured a separate oil supply which directly injected oil into the gasoline prior to combustion.
In 1967 a new larger displacement model 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.
In The 1970s :
Not until 1976 would Yamaha answer the other Japanese brands with a multi-cylinder four stroke of their own. The XS-750, a 750cc triple cylinder machine with shaft final drive introduced almost seven years after Honda’s breakthrough bike. In 1978, Yamaha introduced first four-cylinder model, the XS-1100. Despite being heavier and more touring oriented than its rivals it produced an impressive string of victories in endurance racing. In 1970s Yamaha also showed 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. In 1974, the production of Yamaha YZ-250 started. Yamaha continued racing throughout the 1960s and 1970s with increasing success in several formats. The decade of the 1970s capped by the XT500 winning the first Paris-Dakar Rally in 1979.
The 1980s :
The combination of consumer preference and environmental regulation made four strokes increasingly popular by the 1980s. In 1977, Suzuki ended production of their GT two stroke series, including the flagship water-cooled two-stroke 750cc GT-750. Yamaha bucked this trend and continued to refine and sell two-strokes for the street into the 1980s. The RZ-250 of 1980 was the progenitor of this series. The RZ-350, the largest displacement model, a popular hot-rod bike of the 1980s and continued to be sold in some countries into the early 1990s.
In 1981, the XV750 featured an air-cooled V-twin four stroke engine and cruiser styling, and was one of the first Japanese cruiser style motorcycles. 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. In 1985, the most popular and practical high-performance model for the street introduced, named as the FZ750.
The 1990s :
In 1995, Yamaha announced the creation of Star Motorcycles. A new brand name for its cruiser series of motorcycles in the American market. Also, in other markets, Star motorcycles still sold under the Yamaha brand. In 1998, Yamaha introduced the 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.
The 2000s :
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.