Is a new TMAX just around the corner?
Yamaha introduced the TMAX 500 in 2001. Since then, the platform has set the benchmark for performance scooters and sold over 300,000 units. Despite COVID-19-related production and retail shutdowns, the sporty scoot increased sales by 56 percent in 2020. With the TMAX’s 20th anniversary coming up, Yamaha seems poised to introduce a new chapter to the scooter’s storied history.
A short teaser posted by Yamaha Europe hints that the reveal is right around the corner. The ten-second clip opens on a wave of geometric shapes flowing over what appears to be the panel of the TMAX 560. The tight composition, monochromatic aesthetic, and two-second runtime maintain the mysterious atmosphere. Then, the camera quickly pulls out to reveal Yamaha’s tuning fork logo, a fixture frequently found on TMAX fairings.
After a few visual clues, a ticker counts from 2001 (the TMAX’s first year in production) up to 2021 (the model’s 20th anniversary). While the video doesn’t call out the performance scooter by name, only a few models remain from Yamaha’s 2001 lineup. The R1 is still around despite the R6 getting the axe last year, but the superbike was originally introduced in 1998. Similarly, the YZ family is still in the company’s catalog but that nameplates date back much further.
Conversely, the naked MT platform and XSR neo-retro only came out in 2014 and 2016, respectively, so they can’t claim a 20-year run any time soon. If Yamaha does unveil a new TMAX 560 on March 4, 2021, the update will be the first we’ve seen since EICMA 2019. We'll have to wait to see exactly what Yamaha has in store for the 20th anniversary, but it could easily signal a new era for the popular scooter.