Want an adventure scooter from Yamaha? Don’t get all excited for an ADV version of the TMAX—Yamaha says we won’t see one anytime soon.
The news comes out of an interview that Italian bike mag Motociclismo did with Paolo Pavesio, a big shot in Yamaha Europe’s marketing department, with some questions about the future of Yamaha’s flagship TMAX maxi-scooter. Pavesio had lots of good things to say about the Honda X-ADV, praising its intelligent crossover design, with scooter comfort and rideability, but also utilitarian capability. Most scooters tend towards stylishness, not SUV-like practicality, and Pavesio said the X-ADV was an “intelligent” design that would tempt away some TMAX riders.
Having said that, Pavesio also said Yamaha likes to chart its own course, not copy other company’s designs. For that reason, he said to hold your horses—Yamaha isn’t planning on announcing an adventureized version of the TMAX for the next couple of years. From what he said, it sounds as if designers are more concerned about balancing the desire for safety electronics with the need to keep prices affordable. The outgoing TMAX model wasn’t as sporty as the previous machines in the lineup, Pavesio figures, so expect the new 2020 scooter to have more zip, at least.
However, it is puzzling that Yamaha seems to be conceding the growing ADV scooter market to Honda. At this point, Honda’s got the X-ADV, ADV150 and CT125 in the lineup, and the Super Cub also has the capability to be a very utilitarian machine. Even the lowly Ruckus looks more rugged than anything in Yamaha’s current scooter lineup. While Yamaha may say it doesn’t want to follow in Honda’s footsteps, the reality is that both brands have battled it out in almost every other segment over the years, from superbikes to supermotos; it would be a surprise if Yamaha didn’t bother to come up with an answer to the X-ADV.