New Bikes

Yamaha could be working MP3 rival

New patents unearthed seem to show a leaning multi-wheel motorcycle from Yamaha that could rival the Piaggio MP3

YAMAHA looks to be working on a new three-wheeled leaning motorcycle, as patents show a scooter chassis with wishbone suspension controlling the front two wheels.

The patents, found by, show some tech that is very similar to that of the Brudeli Leanster – a company that Yamaha purchased a few years ago.

With Yamaha having the NIKEN leaning multi-wheel machine already nestled in their lineup, it’s not really a huge surprise to see another trike waiting in the wings. What is slightly surprising though is the way the new machine would function, and how little there is of the NIKEN’s design and tech in the latest machine.

Instead of opting for the same, telescopic fork legs mounted on complex levers, the machine seen here uses a simpler method of suspending the front wheels – tried and tested double wishbones. They are connected to a centrally mounted shock absorber and while the departure from the NIKEN system might be a surprise to some, the use of the system on this bike does make sense.

The KTM-based Brudeli above uses a similar front end to the new Yamaha - Yamaha bought the licence to this design back in 2019

The NIKEN set up (that’s scaled-down and used on the Tricity too) is a fairly heavy and cumbersome setup, that wears much of its bulk just around the headstock – right where you’d rather not be carrying an extra few kilograms. The new system moves that mass much further down, relocating the bikes centre of gravity to a much more conventional position.

The NIKEN front end, as mention above, is a very complex bit of kit, the other advantage of this design is its simplicity. It contains fewer moving parts, fewer pivot points, and fewer places for the system to fail. In fact, if you were looking for a mass-market alternative to the NIKEN – based around something like a TMAX scooter – you’d have to say that this looks pretty much perfect.


Honda has been rather conservative as far as leaning three-wheelers go, but it looks like things are finally moving. The sketch, if real, shows a scooter that has two leaning front wheels and a rear swingarm unit engine

albertson's picture

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It needs to be comfort, rather than the latest Tmax, sport biased and have at least 700cc to be useful.

For the enthusiast audience, Yamaha has the Fazer, FZ-S, YZF-R15 and the YZF-R3. For budget-conscious customers, there are the Saluto RX, Saluto and the SZ-RR.

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