Rick’s Gentleman’s Express Blog

Motorcycle news and opinion

Archive for November, 2009

Toyota pulls out of F1

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Following on the heels of Honda, Toyota has abandoned F1 racing, citing cost considerations.

This is another body blow to F1, which has gradually morphed into a manufacturers’ competition from the days when cars proudly carried the flags and/or colours of their home countries. Gone are the blue French and dark green British cars. If the traditional blood red Ferrari’s ever pull out, I fear that F1 will be dead forever.

Perhaps racing is no longer necessary as a testbed for new automobile technologies, as it once was. Is MotoGP to follow?

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November 4th, 2009 at 8:14 am

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Yamaha posts 1.8 billion dollar loss

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According to an AFP story, Yamaha Motor lost almost 2 billion dollars during the first three quarters of 2009.

The poor showing this year was blamed on the US-triggered financial meltdown. Yamaha had been enjoying record sales numbers until it hit the wall. Sales of smaller bikes are still strong in Asia, but sales of big bikes are way down in Europe and the US.

What I fail to understand is why small bike sales aren’t up in the US as scooter sales are. Could it be because Americans will ride a scooter because it’s considered cool and sophisticated, but don’t want any “girlie” bikes? This would seem to reinforce the theory that motorcycles are not considered transportation in North America but are, instead, a “lifestyle choice”.

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November 4th, 2009 at 8:04 am

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