The smartest vehicle—for everyone.
Our basic concept when designing the TRICITY was "Smart for All." "All" can mean many different things, one of these being all the different situations that one might encounter in life. The TRICITY is smart—not just when it is running but also when it is standing still. It matches any backdrop. Another possible meaning of "all" is "all customers." Our target demographic could have been men and women aged 20 to 60. In other words, we might have wanted anyone who can ride a motorbike to ride a TRICITY.
"All people" would have been too broad, however, so we made it a design goal to convey the novelty of three-wheeled vehicles, as well as the TRICITY’s unique "Yamaha-esque" quality—as opposed to just producing a simple vehicle that would appeal to the lowest common denominator of taste. "Yamaha-esque" means that the motorbike makes everything brighter when you’re with other people. My job during the production process was to make sure that we stuck to this idea. This is Yamaha's first three-wheeler, so there were some difficulties. However, I think that the result has been that anyone who rides a TRICITY is going to find that it is a smart vehicle. I also think that it truly embodies this notion of "Yamaha-esqueness."
- Toshiyuki Yasunaga
The three-wheel commuter TRICITY- a completely new design that combines a "smooth ride" and "originality." The basis for this design concept is "Smart for All (a smooth ride and originality for everyone)." This is expressed in the smooth ride of the Leaning Multi Wheel (LMW), and the "originality" of the excitement experienced at first glance. The combination of these two factors was "Refined Dynamism", the Yamaha design philosophy.
- Styling designHirotoshi Noguchi
- Joined Yamaha in 2011. Responsible for styling design, concept models, etc. for the TRICITY and YZF-R25.
- Coloring designGen Mizutani
- Joined Yamaha in 1994. After being tasked with the design of scooters including the Neo‘s, Passol, and Fino for use in a variety of countries, assumed responsibility for coloring management.
New things are always fascinating.
I think that the value you get from something new—something that has never existed before—is highly significant. When designing the TRICITY, we showcased the fenders for the two front wheels so that you could see at a glance that this is a new type of vehicle—a three-wheeler!
Personally, I love new things. Every time there is a new program on television, I always make a point of recording the first episode so that I can see what it is like. I always take a good look at new cars and motorbikes, and—if they become hit products—I try to work out what it is about them that makes them so popular. With my hobbies, too, I am filled with curiosity, and my motto is "a little bit of everything." Right now, I am spending a lot of time on my camping trailer. On weekends, I go out on trips with my family. I like novelty—the idea that nobody has had a particular thing before and that it has never been seen around town.
How can we show off the novelty and dynamism of a three-wheeler?
I decided to be a product designer early on, but at first I was more interested in bicycles and cars. Motorbikes just did not appeal to me. Then I saw a Yamaha SRX, and it came as quite a shock to me that a motorbike could be so sophisticated! That was how I came to like motorbikes, too.
Just as the SRX instantly changed the way in which I saw motorbikes, I feel that the TRICITY has the power to overturn preconceptions regarding the nature of the vehicle. The TRICITY is a three-wheeler, so it feels stable—even when stationary. However, when you rev up the engine and go, it handles very lightly and easily. The form is highly dynamic: when you take a corner, the two front wheels and the chassis lean over noticeably, changing the very structure of the vehicle as it turns. I really wanted to show off the motorbike’s dynamism in that moment as it is turning, so I put a great deal of thought into the coloring of the front fenders.
We thought hard about our target audience—exactly who we wanted to ride the motorbike.
I used to be a freelance designer—designing toys and illustrating comics as well as designing motorbikes. I was keenly aware then that just a small difference in the target age changes the audience's values and preferences completely. For example, if you fail to carefully consider the target gender and age group for a toy, then nobody will play with it.
The basic concept of the TRICITY is "Smart for All." Although we want as many different types of customers as possible to ride the vehicle, I specifically thought that it would be wonderful if women as well as men (until now our core users) could ride it. Because we were targeting female riders, the TRICITY had to have a certain sense of "lightness" about it, so that women would think, "Even I can ride that." The section comprising the two front wheels could well have looked very bulky, so we designed it as an intricate combination of two types of parts: some with a beautiful painted finish and some with a black-embossed surface. The effect is to make the motorbike look very sleek, and we also added a few vents that not only serve a functional purpose as air intakes but also greatly enhance the motorbike's light appearance.
Maximizing that moment of exhilaration just before you start your ride.
The front section of the TRICITY is truly something to behold. We have designed it so that when you sit on the seat, you feel as if the inner panel is enveloping you. The speedometer (the read-out that you will look at most frequently) is built into an integrated LCD instrument panel. When you start up the motorbike, the entire LCD screen flashes, displaying all its readouts for a brief moment. Then the different displays come on again, one by one. We call this the "Welcome Mode." When you turn the motorbike's ignition key, there is this short moment before you start moving—when your adrenaline is pumping the most—and we wanted to make it that much more enjoyable and exciting.