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Newsletter : Versatile EV Platforms for Small, Low-Speed Mobility Under Development --Co-Creating and Collaborating with Numerous Partners toward a Society Where Mobility Is Seamless for All--

March 25, 2024

Yamaha Motor's DIAPASON uses the Company's electric motors and is compatible with the Honda Mobile Power Pack e: portable battery, making it a versatile platform for personal low-speed electric mobility. Co-creating with partners from a variety of different industries, development of DIAPASON is picking up pace. The goal is to create a society where everyone can enjoy seamless mobility, and we spoke to the passionate key person behind the project to learn about its current status and the progress made so far.

■Democratizing Mobility with a Versatile Platform
The Yamaha Motor booth at the Tokyo Auto Salon 2024 showcased seven prototypes from two platform variations.

In January at this year's Tokyo Auto Salon, the Yamaha Motor booth featured a lineup of small and unique EVs that caught the eyes of show visitors with how they effortlessly brought to mind all sorts of ideas and possibilities for use.
 The vehicles were prototype personal mobility solutions using DIAPASON, a versatile vehicle platform from Yamaha currently under R&D. Each uses either a single-seater or two-seater variation of the platform-both highly versatile-and Yamaha Motor is exploring new ideas and possibilities for use every day through collaborations with partners from numerous different fields and industries.
 Jun Daito from Yamaha's New Business Development Center heads the project and describes DIAPASON's basic configuration as "a lightweight, compact, and highly reliable power unit paired with a portable battery pack." Building on that configuration, existing mechanisms and insights from collaborative partners are combined like toy blocks, while actively introducing AI into the mix is expected to facilitate faster, cost-effective development of a diverse spread of mobility solutions.
 "In Japan, we're seeing the elderly willingly giving up their driver's licenses while young people are forgoing them altogether. We believe that this project will connect to a 'democratization of mobility' where anyone can enjoy personal mobility regardless of whether or not they have a driver's license."
Jun Daito, the driving force behind the project, standing in front of the single-seater version of the platform

■Collaborating with Partners from Various Domains
Including the C310 (left) specialized for marine recreation, collaborating with partners from a wide breadth of fields and markets has birthed various low-speed EVs using the platform's versatility.

"At the Tokyo Auto Salon, we spoke on the possibilities of collaborating and partnering up with some 60 companies from so many different sectors, from the automotive and leisure industry to agricultural machinery players and assembly plants in emerging market. Engaging in discussions with them about the platform's potential uses allowed us to deepen our understanding of each other's resources and challenges, and this was inspiring for both parties," explains Daito.
 Yamaha Motor has continued to grow and branch out by creating new businesses and products that combine its core competencies of: powertrains, with their foundations in small-engine technologies; electronic control that prioritizes human senses, perceptions, and sensitivities; chassis and hulls facilitating handling and performance; and manufacturing, which forms the basis for sound Monozukuri.
 "Looking back on Yamaha Motor's journey so far, there's this 'winning pattern' that emerges when it comes to starting new businesses," says Daito. In describing it, he confidently states that, "There's usually an individual who has high goals or aspirations, sort of like a samurai, and that person's passion and enthusiasm draws other talented individuals from various departments to their side. This winning pattern has occurred often enough in our history that I think this project is starting to fit into that same mold."
 Products created from existing platforms eventually evolve into new platforms of their own, ushering in the next generation of products and value. Please look forward to the exciting developments ahead and this new kind of Monozukuri that combines Yamaha Motor's 70 years of accrued mobility industry resources with the expertise and needs of our co-creation partners.
DIAPASON: A Versatile EV Platform for Personal Low-Speed Mobility
*Video in Japanese only. window

Message from the Editor

For Yamaha Motor's first time exhibiting at the Tokyo Auto Salon, we presented show visitors with seven prototype model variations based on the theme of bringing seamless and enjoyable mobility to everyone.

One visitor to the Yamaha booth shared his thoughts with me while looking at the small three-wheeled EV concept. He mentioned having an elderly father who used to have quite an active lifestyle. But now, his father's body has weakened to the point that even a short walk to the nearby park is challenging for him. This visitor said he hoped Yamaha would release vehicles that can enhance the quality of life for seniors, ones that allow them to head out and still enjoy the changing seasons even as their physical strength declines.

During the interview for this issue, Daito-san shared that his aspiration with this project was to create Yamaha products that people can enjoy for a lifetime. DIAPASON is adaptable for various types of mobility, whether they have two, three, or four wheels. Today, as the world's population continues to grow older, I hope that our technologies will contribute to creating societies where people still have ample freedom and choice for personal mobility as they age.


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