Yamaha has officially released the much anticipated Tricity three-wheeler in the Thai market. Billed as the first Yamaha production vehicle that “represents our long-term vision of a ‘growing world of personal mobility,'” the Tricity is a world model, manufactured in Thailand, with plans for sales to begin in Europe and Japan by the end of 2014.
Powered by a 125cc, liquid-cooled, fuel-injected Single, the Tricity is aimed at the congested urban streets of many metropolitan areas. Of course, the major talking point of the Tricity is its three-wheel design, with the front two wheels also capable of leaning into turns, much like the Piaggio MP3. According to Yamaha, the LMW (Leaning Multi Wheel, a patent-pending designation) integrates a “Parallelogram link” and a “Cantilevered telescopic suspension” for the two front wheels to absorb road imperfections leaned over or fully upright.
Similar to the Piaggio, one benefit of having the three wheel design with two forward wheels is stability while maintaining agile, sporty handling. Combine this with the Tricity’s 30.7-inch seat height (with the ability to stuff a full-face lid underneath the seat), 335 lb. wet weight, 1.7 gallon fuel tank, continuously variable transmission, step-through design, and compact dimensions, and it has the underpinnings of a great urban commuter.
The Tricity was designed with near 50/50 weight distribution and its fuel tank placed as close as possible to the bike’s center of gravity for consistent handling characteristics regardless of fuel load.
An interesting nugget wedged in the Yamaha release said the Tricity, “is the first of Yamaha’s series of LMW models that represent our ‘growing world of personal mobility.'” This clearly means Yamaha isn’t finished with multi wheel models, which likely means bigger versions of the design, taking another page out of Piaggio’s book. There’s no word yet whether the Tricity, or any of its future siblings, will make its way to the U.S., but considering its world model status, it’s entirely possible, even probable.