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Yamaha ASV-3 to Debut at the 2006 JSAE Automotive Engineering Exposition Advanced Yamaha ASV-3 Safety Research Vehicle Incorporates Development Version Motorcycle Airbag System

May 23, 2006

Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. (the “Company”) will exhibit the Yamaha ASV-3 research vehicle -- incorporating a new airbag system being developed for motorcycles -- at the 2006 JSAE Automotive Engineering Exposition. The Expo, sponsored by Society of Automotive Engineers of Japan, Inc. will run from May 24 through 26 at the Pacifico Yokohama Exhibition Hall.

The Yamaha ASV-3 is based on the technologies developed for its predecessor, the Yamaha ASV-2, an Intelligent Transport Systems (ITS)-compatible, research-use vehicle with an airbag system, announced in 2000. However, the Yamaha ASV-3 features a new, more advanced airbag system for improved crash safety, being developed using a variety of analysis software programs.

The Yamaha MAXAM 250cc scooter is the base vehicle for the ASV-3 to be exhibited in the 2006 JSAE Automotive Engineering Exposition. It incorporates a new “backplate and multi-chamber” airbag system designed to simultaneously hold the lumbar section of the rider in place and mitigate the impact of a collision.

Yamaha ASV-3 research vehicle incorporating an airbag system


Yamaha ASV-3

Display site:

Yamaha booth in the 2006 Automotive Engineering Exposition

Display period:

May 24 through 26, 2006


ASV is the Japanese Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport designation for its Advanced Safety Vehicle project, promoting development of vehicles with improved safety by the 14 participating vehicle makers in Japan.

Features of the Motorcycle Airbag System Incorporated in the Yamaha ASV-3

1) Development background
Airbags are commonly used in conjunction with seatbelts as a key safety device in four-wheel vehicles, protecting occupants in collisions. For two-wheel vehicles, however, the rider is not held in place by seatbelts, so a special system had to be developed to offer effective protection in a collision.
The Company took the unique characteristics of motorcycles into consideration in its research and development approach for two-wheel vehicle airbag systems. The airbags should not only protect the rider in collision, but also minimize secondary damage resulting from the rider being thrown from the motorcycle.

2) Development of the airbag for the Yamaha ASV-3
In developing the motorcycle airbag, the Company creates collision analysis models by combining the finite element method* with multi-body dynamics software, and uses the models to analyze the rider injury in a crash. The Company also uses collision analysis software based on the finite element method to analyze the airbag deployment and other actions. In addition, the Company conducts crash tests to verify the effectiveness of the motorcycle airbag system.

3) Features of the Yamaha ASV-3 airbag
The airbag system incorporated in the Yamaha ASV-3 has an airbag located closer to the rider and a backplate to hold the deployed airbag, in order to hold the rider’s lumbar section in place and mitigate the impact of a collision.


* The finite element method is a numerical calculation technique widely used for structural analyses.

Deployed airbag of Yamaha ASV-3

Crash test

Deployed backplate and multi-chamber airbag

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