“When I was a small
kid, I really wanted to be an airplane engineer, but after World War II,
we are kind of forbidden by United States from making airplanes. So
most of the good engineers went into automobiles or motorcycles. That’s
why motorcycle engineering is very important and very good in Japan. A
motorcycle to us is an airplane.”——–Masao Furusawa, Yamaha’s chief executive engineer.
So why is it that we wonder why Japan builds superior long life high performing engines and vehicles? Its because of the limitations of producing aircraft. Those passion driven engineers had to do something, and now efficiency, precision, and quality is now embedded into their engineering and manufacturing culture. It has made them a very competitive not only with the foreign market but also among themselves to strive for the better.
Furusawa, was the Executive Officer of
Engineering Operations at Yamaha, and was guiding hand behind Yamaha’s
YZR-M1 project – and introduced the cross plane crankshaft engine into
MotoGP for Rossi’s 2004 Yamaha debut.
This tech is 10 years old or older, and most of it still isn’t available on production model bikes. Looking at it the average Joe would think it was state of the art.
Compare it with this production R1. I know it isn’t fair comparing a million dollar machine with few thousand dollar machine. I am just saying Masao Furusawa knew what he was doing with the M1 and much of it will eventually trickle down to the production bikes.
Sport Rider Magazine, The subscription is well worth it.