Yamaha is making a surprise bid to enter the new four-stroke Moto3 class in 2012.
The Japanese factory revealed to MCN in Sepang earlier this month it is developing a concept bike for the new 250cc four-stroke single-cylinder class, which will replace the current 125cc two-stroke class next year.
Honda and KTM are already well advanced with development of their own projects but Yamaha is working on an engine based on its YZ250F motocross bike.
Yamaha boss Masao Furusawa said: "From the standpoint of saving costs we want to forget about Moto3. But in terms of growing up riders we need to do something. We want to catch up the competitors, so we are doing something for Moto3."
Furusawa wouldn't confirm that Yamaha planned to enter Moto3 immediately in 2012 but he added: "We are preparing an engine and also a complete bike. We haven't track tested yet but we are doing lots of computer simulations for the engine and chassis."