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Re: Bring Tmax to the US

3585 Views 4 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  thegelding
In the Feedback for Yamaha section there is a posting suggesting that Yamaha sell the Tmax to the United States (http://majestyusa.com/forums/viewtopic.php?t=67). As that is not a conversation thread section of the forum, I am posting here to continue the discussion raised

[quote="In that thread emsac":2uc0c1dr]I have already called Yamaha public relations. But I figured that I would post here.

Yamaha. Bring the Tmax to the United States!

All other scooters really pale in comparison. I do not understand why we do not have the quality of scooter that is in Europe and elsewhere.

I am in the market for a new scooter and although at this point I think that the Majesty would be my best option, it does not WOW me. The Tmax on the other hand is awesome! I would buy it immediately if it was available.[/quote]
This question has come up on other boards about the Yamaha Tmax 500 and also the Honda Silver Wing 400. The big problem for both of these machines seems to be production cost versus the American consumer mindset.

Unlike other maxiscooters in the 400 to 500cc range, both the Tmax and the Silver Wing 400 are twin cylinder engines, similar to the Silver Wing 600 and the Suzuki Burgman 650. This makes these scooter more expensive to manufacture then single cylinder models. In fact in the case of the S'Wing, the only difference between the 400 and 600 models is the engine, so the manufacturing cost is nearly identical.

In the United States, where the general motorcyclists line of thought is bigger is better and smaller should be less expensive, the Tmax and S'Wing 400 would be anomalies. Using Japanese and European prices as a guide, these two maxiscooters would retail within a couple of hundred dollars of the Honda Silver Wing 600 and the Suzuki Burgman 650. If brought to the U.S. they would be attempting to sell in the limited maxiscooter market a 398cc and a 449cc machine for virtually the same price that the customer could buy a 582cc or a 638cc machine. Simply put, it probably wouldn't be worth their cost to important the scooters and the parts to support them for the relatively few sales they would generate.

In Europe and particularly in Japan they have two things going for them that makes all the difference in the world. First, there is already a mindset that maxiscooters are mainstream two-wheel transportation, so they sell a higher percentage of them. Secondly, the insurance, tax, and registration costs jump significantly when you go from under 500cc engines. This second point alone makes the Tmax and the Silver Wing 400 much more cost effective in those markets.

I personally would love to see the Tmax sold here. It looks to be a great machine. However, I sincerely doubt that we will see them here anytime soon.
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probably true...but also too bad...

the TMax looks to be the only true sport touring scooter with the ability to ride low and lean into the turns...also it is the best looking and has plenty of power...we in America also often have the extra bucks to spend to get just what we want, so the TMax might be a bit overpriced, but if marketed right people will buy it...

my concerns are that Yamaha is going to lose out some sales that will go to the Kymco Xciting 500 that IS coming to the US market and is a partial clone of the TMax (though not a twin engine and also has a much wider CVT unit)...

i personally have my choices down to the Xciting and Majesty...that would change in a heartbeat if Yamaha brought this beauty to our market:

seems the costs, since this is an established product already being produced, shouldn't be prohibitive for Yamaha to sell this model also...like when you go to look at a civic and walk out with an accord...most will buy the majesty, some will upgrade when they see and test the TMax...

also, it seems that yamaha doesn't have a "top of the line" model in the scooter dept...how do they compete with honda and suzuki without a 500 or higher cc model? if the american consumer really does think bigger is better than yamaha has to have the TMax here...

but mostly it just saddens me that there is a scooter out there i really really want and can't have (thinking of having one shipped from ireland...but that seems extreme...and my scooter shop is trying to get me to get the xciting anyway...they really like it)

i wrote to yamaha about this...they wrote back...it was not very reassuring...

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thegelding said:
...also, it seems that Yamaha doesn't have a "top of the line" model in the scooter dept...how do they compete with Honda and Suzuki without a 500 or higher cc model? if the American consumer really does think bigger is better than Yamaha has to have the TMax here...
It really is like the big Japanese brands are still in the testing the waters phase for scooters in the U.S. None of them carry a complete line up (49cc, 125~150cc, 200~250cc, 400~500cc, 600cc+). Honda sells on brand, as their price points are beaten across the board by either Yamaha or Suzuki. It really is a bit puzzling. Of course, we are in the land where the motorcycle is king and scooters, even maxiscooters, are thought of as second class citizens.

Perhaps there is light at the end of the tunnel, with a real push to automatic transmissioned, hybrid motorcycle/maxiscooter designs showing up in prototypes at shows. Even BMW is suppose to be working on an 850cc touring scooter design, so who knows what the future will bring. Perhaps the Yamaha Tmax 800?
we here in oz are lucky in that we already get the Tmax 500. but it retails at about $3000AU more than a majesty 400.

most people here (myself included) could not justify the extra $ for what is efectively 54cc more displacement (Maj 400 at 395cc, Tmax 500 at 449cc).

while i do agree that it's a much nicer machine overall, if it were priced closer to the Maj 400, a lot more people would be buying them.

The biggest advantage over the majesty is the design of the rear suspension setup. the Tmax has a fixed engine and a normal rear swingarm. unlike the Maj 400 which pivots the entire engine and drive system, so the Tmax handles much more like a motor cycle, not a scooter.

don't get me wrong, i would love to own one, but at the cost it's just not practical (for me)

no, i agree the cost is a factor...a very big factor for many (why more honda civics are on the road than acura rsx)...but many (myself included) would be willing to run up that credit line a bit for the TMax...just surprised that Yamaha doesn't take advantage of that fact...get people in the showroom and let them decide...most would go for the majesty, but many would say damn that TMax is nice, think i'll spring for that instead...win win as far as i can tell...eh, guess i will wait a bit and hope for the best...i'm sure i would be happy with a majesty or a xciting 500, just would be even happier with that damn Black Max

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