“Prepping” is big business these days, thanks to COVID-19 and geopolitical unrest. In North America, we have reality shows depicting the survivalist lifestyle, filling bunkers with beans and banana mags. Lest you think this mindset is simply a quirk of the rural conservative types, take note that the Chinese government recently counseled its citizens to stock up on essential supplies, to prepare for possible shortages this winter. No matter which side of the political theater you’re cheering for, the message (if you listen closely) is, “Cheer Up: Harder Times Are Coming.”
Yamaha seems to have an eye on this shift in the global zeitgeist, with the announcement of the Rough Road Tricity Concept, a leaning three-wheeler that’s aimed at usefulness through both good times and bad times.
This is a mutation of the Tricity 125 and Tricity 155 scooters, with knobby tires, protective crash bars, pannier racks and other features that are intended to keep you rolling through broken-down infrastructure. It’s “easy and comfortable” for everyday use, but “Simple and reliable” in a disaster, supposedly very stable on bad roads, and with easy handling.
It’s part of the Play Survive theme (see video above), which seems to combine a bit of Scrambleresque goofiness with real-world practicality.
Yamaha has other vehicles and equipment in this line, including a rescue boat, generators, and from navigating the company’s internal webpages with the help of Google Translate, it seems this is indeed a serious attempt to branch out into the world of specialized disaster relief vehicles. However, the general feel is “1980s kids’ cartoon vehicle.” Hey. We’re not complaining. If the apocalypse is now, then it might as well be fun, and come with bright paint schemes.