OFF‡ROAD

Ohm-migod! Petrol­head Pear­son rides Yam’s TY“E elec­tric bike. And loves it.

BIKE (UK) - - CONTENTS -

YAMAHA’S TRI­ALS pad­dock bike stand TY-E sits in on a a small Bel­gian quarry look­ing ev­ery bit the show con­cept. Make no mis­take though this is a thor­ough­bred fresh from the race of its life com­pet­ing in the Trial-e World Cham­pi­onship. 15 Yamaha tech­ni­cians and staff at­tend rider Kenichi Kuroyama and his ti­tle chase. They fin­ished sec­ond, the win go­ing to Loris Gu­bian and Gas Gas. Mr Kouichi Tsuji, Se­nior Gen­eral Man­ager of Yamaha Mo­tor­sport Devel­op­ment Divi­sion, is in this Comblain-au-pont ex­plain­ing the TY-E’S quarry role: ‘Motogp is im­por­tant to us and it takes in­vest­ment to win the cham­pi­onship. The TY-E has the same goal – we de­vel­oped it to im­prove tech­nol­ogy and win the world cham­pi­onship not to build a production model.’ So the TY-E is no po­ten­tial production ma­chine. In fact, there are just two in the world and here I am let loose on one… I’ve rid­den pro­to­types and my share of E-bikes and the truth is they don’t al­ways work as you’d hope. The TY-E bucks that trend with pro­gres­sive and re­spon­sive sus­pen­sion that’s bet­ter than most stan­dard tri­als bikes and it han­dles like a dream thanks to its hand­built, car­bon­fi­bre mono­coque frame. The brakes have the power and feel that’s needed for this del­i­cate sport. con­ven­tional The TY-E has trick a up its sleeve too: a hy­draulic clutch. It trans­forms this elec­tric bike into a tri­als bike with an elec­tric mo­tor – if you see the dif­fer­ence. The clutch lets you me­ter power with the throt­tle and con­trol grip like ‘nor­mal’. A pin-sharp throt­tle re­sponse is trick­ier and with no trans­mis­sion lag or de­lay in the re­ac­tion to the back wheel it takes a minute to ac­cli­ma­tise. A sur­pris­ing amount of back torque helps ‘nor­mal­ity’ though. How much power is there? Yamaha aren’t say­ing, but as far as climb­ing steep hills or

‘As­ton­ish­ing at­ten­tion to de­tail sums up this rare cre­ation’

steps fir­ing goes up the rock TY-E matches a ‘reg­u­lar’ 250cc. What’s not con­ven­tional is the sur­pris­ingly loud mo­tor but it doesn’t take long to ig­nore the whine – a ringding or a rum­ble it isn’t. The ele­phant in the room is bat­tery life. It lasted around 30 min­utes here, which isn’t prac­ti­cal. But this bat­tery walks the fine line be­tween size, weight and power and doesn’t need to meet production de­mands. The TY-E mo­tor draws from a bat­tery inside a small tri­als bike frame of a bike which must weigh no less than 70kg for FIM rules. This is where will star­ing watch­ing per­form­ing I spend learn fu­ture at the the much from. their Yamaha tech­ni­cians TY-E of spe­cific the and e-bikes day roles: to un­plugs re­veal one ter­mi­nals, the re­moves bat­tery, four a third an­other bolts takes looks the like dead a shoe-box bat­tery with (which a loft con­ver­sion) out of sight. The guy me­thod­i­cally squirt­ing the per­fect amount of chain lube on each in­di­vid­ual roller – one link, one squirt at a time – showed the as­ton­ish­ing at­ten­tion to de­tail which sums up how Yamaha feel about this su­per rare cre­ation.

Trick Sixony Nano coat­ing abounds Yes it’s a con­cept only. De­tail is su­perb

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