Yamaha confirmed it plans to introduce a new Leaning Multi-Wheeler (LMW) vehicle for 2014. An accompanying image of a test unit in camouflage reveals two closely-aligned front wheels beneath a broad fairing.
The new model will be a three-wheeler similar to Piaggio‘s MP3 scooter instead of the four wheels like the Tesseract concept (pictured further below) first introduced at the 2007 Tokyo Motor Show. Yamaha does make a clear distinction between its LMW from existing three-wheeled scooters, saying its LMW will be a much sportier vehicle. Yamaha also says its LMW is intended for both commuting and leisure riding compared to the more utilitarian commuter uses for models such as the MP3. (UPDATE: MSN reports the LMW will indeed be a three-wheeler, though Yamaha is also developing a four-wheeled micro-car.)
With at least one more wheel than a traditional motorcycle, the LMW will offer improved safety and stability while it’s tilting mechanism will allow it to lean into corners like a two-wheeler. Yamaha claims the LMW will be lightweight and compact with good handling, further contributing to its sportiness.
The Tesseract was one of the highlights of the 2007 Tokyo show, combining the form of a sports quad with sportbike styling. The LMW looks to be quite a bit less radical than the Tesseract with a large fairing and thinner front tires and a single rear wheel.
Hiroyuki Yanagi, president and chief executive officer of Yamaha Motor, tells MSN the LMW will be priced at 1 million yen (US$10,000).
Yamaha is targeting a 2014 launch for the LMW which means we should expect to see it in final production form at the 2013 EICMA show in Milan this November (MSN also reports the LMW will be revealed at the Tokyo Motor Show, also in November.)
[Source: Yamaha, MSN]