At the upcoming 2015 Tokyo Motor Show, the Japanese manufacturer has announced it will show off new iterations of its designs, aptly named the PES2 and PED2. As you can see from the images above, there seems to be some evolution of the design toward a commercial product, though the PES2, at least, doesn't appear to be a production-intent machine.
The saddle on the street bike looks more enthusiast-oriented, while the foot pegs are positioned far to the rear – more appropriate for racing on the track than commuting through city traffic. The same machine also boasts a single-sided front fork which, while interesting, is unlikely to reach the showroom floor anytime soon. For its part, the PED2 looks more ready to go, sporting, as it does, a full complement of lights and mirrors, and in contrast with its predecessor, an actual seat.
Other changes also raise our hopes. Weights have blossomed, indicating batteries big enough for ranges consistent with their expected use cases. The PES2 now tips the scales at about 130 kilograms (287 pounds), up 30 kg (65 lbs) from the original design, while the PED2 is about 15 kg (33 lbs) heavier at about 100 kg (220 lbs). Of course, we'd prefer less mass, but we also recognize range can require some compromise.
Interestingly, the PES2 also boasts a hub motor in its from wheel, making this a 2WD motorcycle. We're not sure how that will affect the drive experience on city streets, but it should, in theory, help with braking and energy recapture when slowing down, at least. The belt-driven bike also appears to lack a gear shifter, which suggests a single-speed gearbox. This would be a technological about-face from the PES1.
If they do reaffirm the 2016 production date, don't expect these to compete performance-wise with the various offerings from Zero Motorcycles or, perhaps, Alta Motors. The company says, "Both models are equivalent in performance to Class II (50–125cc) mopeds and motorcycles." To gain an audience, price will be a key factor.
As we mentioned earlier, Yamaha will also be showing off a new coupe concept, an electric bicycle, and an intriguing-sounding "autonomous motorcycle-riding humanoid robot." We'll be on hand for all of this and will share, of course, what we discover.