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Archive for September, 2007

September 27, 2007

Should We Fall Into Spring?

Things are starting to buzz around here with winter just around the corner. This weekend will witness a brand new sled show in Toronto spearheaded by the Ontario Federation of Snowmobile Clubs (OFSC) with a focus on promoting the recreation of snowmobiling exclusively, with proceeds going back to the federation and the many volunteer based programs they support. Yamaha, along with the other three manufacturer’s have committed our full support to the new OFSC Go Snowmobiling Show and are planning to attend in a big way with full corporate representation. It’s a bit of a political mess because there is another power sports show in October that began as a sled show and has evolved into something, ah lets just say… different. I’ll be there on Friday and Jon will be presenting product information and answering questions in the show theater throughout the weekend. Make sure you drop by and say hello if you are at the Congress Center.

The whole idea of fall snowmobile trade shows has us wondering. I was speaking with a friend who organizes a lot of the BRP shows and he feels, as do I, that it may be better to put more effort into the spring show tours when all the new sleds are released and the season is winding down. Fall shows could be handled through interested dealers and accessories vendors all focused on selling current and non-current products. It costs a truck load of dough to present a full size corporate booth at a trade show which seems kind of pointless when we have nothing really new to display. What do you think?

Another interesting ‘Go Snowmobiling‘ project was launched this week by the CCSO (the governing body for all the provincial snowmobile federations) . They have worked with a software developer to create…

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Posted @ 2:28 pm in Yamaha Insights   

September 19, 2007

Snake Bit At Deerhurst

I have been here at Deerhurst for the past three days attending our Yamaville dealer conference and its been an awesome event to date. I did a little review of the logistics and came up with this: We have approximately 50 motorcycles on site with 25 in use for demo-riding which includes the new XV1900 cruiser, MT01, an R6 (now slightlysept07-021.jpg sept07-023.jpgused ‘oops’) and road legal WR X and R. On the dirt we have 20 Rhinos and ATV’s heavy on the new 700FI engines. Waverunners only 8 units but that includes the new supercharged 1800 SHO. The outboards and boats number over 50 with 22 rigged and floating many with BIG power and another 30+ on display including some of our sept07-027.jpgsponsored bass and go fast guys. Over 700 dealers and staff are here to ride and drive the products. We’ve gone though 5000 liters of fuel and at least triple that in ‘refreshments’. Our vendor village is full of business partners everyone from Supertrax to other large inflatables (no pun intended ; -)

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It has been great talking to a lot of my old friends and meeting some new ones. A hi-lite for me personally has been all the positive comments I have gotten on this blog, seems the Vmax4 post has special meaning for a lot of us. I met a dealer / racer last night who introduced himself to me as ‘Frees-tyler’ who is recognized here at SledTalk and over on TY. What an interesting guy, he drummed up a few ghosts as he was racing under our umbrella back in the Chris Vincent days and hanging with another Saskatchewan boy, Blair Morgan.

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Posted @ 7:13 am in Yamaha Insights   

September 13, 2007

Vmax4…ever

I had an interesting comment come in on the ‘FX Nytro Fuel Capacity post from V-Max Forever. He has over 20,000 miles on his Vmax4 and he reminded me of my experiences on several of the big 4’s. How many 15 year old snowmobiles are still going strong with a die-hard owners posse, complete with their own exclusive, web-site? I have seen this in motorcycles where a particular model will attain ‘cult’ status within a group but I can’t think of any other sleds that have carved quite the niche that the Vmax4 has.

The Vmax4 has special meaning for me as a Yamaha product manager. It was the first project I got to work on from concept right through to production and what a project it turned out to be. Kenny Takada was the lead development engineer or, as we refer to the position, ‘project leader’. He had a strong background in motorcycle and a whole bunch of new ideas he wanted to develop with this new sled. I remember the first sessions of ‘sketch checking’ the concepts. We were way out there compared to the ‘wedgey’ styling of the day. One thing that I really thought cool was

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Posted @ 2:49 pm in Yamaha Insights   

September 7, 2007

It’s Show Time!

It’s been a crazy week around the office. We are preparing to host a national conference for all our dealers across Canada up at Deerhurst Resort on the 17th and 18th. It looks like we’re going to have a blast with close to 800 people already confirmed (not including nearly 100 staff). We are planning one and a half days of demo riding on motorcycles,yamaville-sign.jpg ATV’s, WaveRunners, boats and Rhinos at Yamaville. I know what you’re thinking, and yep, Jon might even have the sleds available with wheel-kits and summer cooling systems (we’ll be sponsoring some sled rides at the upcoming Go Snowmobiling Show in Toronto).

A good dealer conference always has, at its heart, some cool new products to debut and this one is no different. If you are interested in some of our other products outside of snowmobile, you might want to check out our web-site any time after noon this coming Monday (10th). wink wink 😉 …

Now for the important stuff… snowmobiles. I was given a list of accessories which have not yet been released. They will be in the near future but so far our dealers do not have any pricing or details yet, here you go…

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Posted @ 2:48 pm in Yamaha Insights