Yamaha’s green initiative: $100 million fund available for environmental tech firms

Yamaha MW Vision
Yamaha MW Vision

Yamaha has become the latest major motorcycle manufacturer to significantly expand its green credentials with the announcement of a new $100 million fund for investing in environmental initiatives. 

Called the ‘Yamaha Motor Sustainability Fund’, the £81.2m pot will be used for investing in companies working to address problems concerning the environment. The fund has been set up to run for 15 years. 

More specifically it says it is to be used to find new ways of carbon offsetting as well as reducing the CO2 levels and environmental footprint of Yamaha’s existing businesses. 

Yamaha factory

In an official statement from the company’s headquarters in Iwata, Japan, Yamaha Motor said that its corporate mission was to, “offer new excitement and a more fulfilling life for people all over the world,” and those eco-focused initiatives were among the most important themes for achieving this mission. 

Yamaha lays out a plan for the future: New models, new niches and new power sources

First published on 30 July 2021 by Ben Purvis

Yamaha MW Vision

Yamaha has outlined a plan that pushes the firm towards carbon neutrality by 2050. That’s a long way off but the firm gives strong hints about the models it’s working on right now.

Interestingly Yamaha predict we shouldn’t be expecting a rush of mainstream electric superbikes anytime soon. The firm only targets 2.6% of riders to adopt electric by 2030, followed by a sharper increase to 20% by 2035 – which doesn’t bode well for the GUK Government’s consultation on potentially banning the sale of petrol-powered bikes by 2035.

Yamaha expect 90% of their motorcycles to be electric by 2050, with some of the last holdouts using synthetic, carbon neutral (CN) liquid fuels. Higher compression ratios and variable valve actuation are also expected to improve the efficiency.

In the nearer term, though, Yamaha are working on electric vehicles that blur the lines between current classes, particularly with its passion for tilting, three-wheeled ‘LMW’ (leaning multi-wheel) models.

In the firm’s latest report, Yoshihiro Hidaka, Yamaha Motor’s President said: “We will aim to create new and unprecedented forms of mobility by combining our mobility technologies based on small powertrains – a Company strength – with the robotics born of our production technologies.

“For example, our TRITOWN standing electric micromobility model with twin front wheels was developed wondering what we could achieve if we targeted the last-mile mobility segment.

“With our other pursuits, we are not restricting ourselves to existing forms of motorcycles and are moving forward with the development of a model taking our LMW platform and technologies, which we have been refining for many years, even further.”

That gap between cars and bikes will be filled by a production derivative of the high-performance, hybrid-powered MW-Vision concept trike that was shown at the 2019 Tokyo show.

The report says: “Our mobility proposals aim to improve on the shortcomings of motorcycles while leveraging their advantages of small size, minimal road and parking space requirements, a small environmental footprint, and their ability to quickly navigate urban areas… our next-generation mobility vehicles are equipped with a simple cabin, are self-standing thanks to automatic control technology, and can lean through turns like a motorcycle.”

Yamaha’s future vehicle plans

Yamaha E02

E02: Shown as a concept in 2019, the E02 uses an existing scooter’s frame to keep costs down, along with a removable battery in line with the swappable battery recently agreed by major players in the sector.

Yamaha E01 concept

E01: The battery electric E01 is virtually certain for production with 125cc-equivalent performance, promising a 90% charge in an hour.


TRITOWN: Already manufactured in small numbers, Yamaha see this as a steppingstone between power-assisted bicycles and motorcycles.

Phil West

By Phil West

MCN Contributor and bike tester.