Meet the Yamaha 01Gen: Yamaha Launches Three-wheeler Crossover
Yamaha 01Gen. It is one of those designs that splits opinion right down the middle. Some will feel it’s the most smoking hot thing to ride out of Iwata, Shizuoka Prefecture in a long while, while others, well others think it’s plain ole stupid.
Whatever side of the spectrum you lie,
The 2014 Intermot show in Cologne saw Yamaha debut a new concept model they’ve dubbed the Yamaha 01Gen. This piece of machinery has had all sorts of tags thrust at it: a multi-wheel crossover, a trike or an ‘on and off crossover’ as Yamaha themselves call it.
Whatever term or syllable your tongue fancies, the three-wheeled motorcycle is designed for crossing a range of terrain, both on and off-road.
You probably may be curious as to what’s behind the name 01Gen. According to the Japanese OEM, it has been inspired by the words ‘genesis’ and ‘generate’, and these two express the bike’s ‘original Yamaha design and the new values it now represents now and forever.’
The three-wheeler concept was a common sighting back in the ‘80s, albeit they had a single wheel in the front, before the four-wheeler came about. Back then, they were not very popular with many because they were accused of being unsafe and unstable with the blame placed on the single wheel in front.
It was just a matter of time until the then three-wheelers made way, and quads came onto the scene.
Street-legal three-wheeling motorcycles have been a common feature on the streets for decades, but in the last couple of years, a shift has happened where we are seeing some preferring dual wheels in the front with the rear boasting a sole drive wheel.
It is this trike concept that Yamaha has pulled the wraps off, and their idea is to have a dual-purpose trike that can be used on both asphalt and rugged terrain.
Motorcycles meant for riding both on and off road have been around for quite some time now, so the dual sport concept is no fresh off the oven idea. However, this stab at the market by the Japanese whopper is the first attempt to make a reverse trike for both trail and street.
At the moment though, Yamaha is a bit mingy on this boy’s mechanical parts.
A press release by the company dubbed the Yamaha 01Gen angular design as ‘Refined Dynamism’.
The top half is meant to bear resemblance to a sport bike what with the sharp lines and mean look. The lower half, on the other hand, is supposed to be utilitarian to hint at the trike’s dual-track cabilities. Yamaha says this is just the beginning, and the company has plans for more GEN concepts on the horizon.
The suspension on the front uses separate forks for every wheel to enable it to lean. The idea is to provide riders with the stability to cross rough terrain and still find it usable on the asphalt. It also boasts larger wheels and more suspension, an integrated exhaust, with a striking silver and blue color scheme. Sources also say the rear is belt-driven.
The Yamaha 01Gen resembles others like the Piaggio MP3, which actually have a great performance and feel more like a motorcycle than you would have yourself expect.
If you are the futuristic type, this will no doubt come as very welcome news. And as much as the idea of a trike may not augur well with some of us, you have to admit the Yamaha 01Gen should be able to lean smoothly through turns, which in itself can add to the motorcycle sensation, but this time with a bit more stability on the front end.
The press release by the company may sound a bit farfetched, but give them credit for the design.
It may not be everyone’s cup of coffee too, but Yamaha has done a good job in delivering for powersport aficionados.
Watch the launch here: