Background[eedit | eedit soorce]
In the early '50s, efter haein tae replace the factories for the production o muisical instruments, severely damaged during the war, Yamaha wis facing the industrial conversion o factory machines, wi mechanical precision, previously uised for the production o propellers for aircraft o the Imperial Navy, sic as the A6M Zero an the biplane Yokosuka K5Y.
Equally tae aw European kintras, includin Japan efter Warld War II, the motorcycle haed acome a widespread means o transportation, thanks tae the constructive simplicity an economy o purchase an uise. Japanese motorcycle production haein increased frae 10,000 units in 1950 tae 750,000 in 1954, wi ower 100 domestic manufacturers.
Due tae the strong expansion o the mercat, Yamaha Motor Co. decidit tae convert tae the production o motorcycles, an foond in the beginnin the need tae grapple wi heich specifications, for customers wi elite, rather nairae needs, especially in view o the reduced nummer o production potential.
It wis the beginnin o 1955 when thay presented the YA-1, a motorcycle biggit wi parteecular attention tae materials an assembly, enhanced bi sophisticated engineering, strangly inspired bi the contemporary model DKW RT125, an driven bi a twa-stroke, single cylinder, 125 cc.
In Januar o 1955 the Hamakita Factory o Nippon Gakki wis biggit an production began on the YA-1. Wi confidence in the new direction that Genichi Kawakami (Yamaha Motor's first preses) wis takkin, Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. wis foondit on 1 Julie 1955. Staffed bi 274 employees, the new motorcycle manufacturer biggit aboot 200 units per month.
That same year, Yamaha entered its new YA-1, kent tae Japanese enthusiasts as Akatombo, the "Red Dragonfly", in the twa biggest race events in Japan. Thay wur the 3rd Mt. Fuji Ascent Race an the 1st Asama Highlands Race. In thir debut races, Yamaha wan the 125cc class, an the follaein year, the YA-1 wan again in baith the Licht an Ultra-licht classes o the Asama Highlands Race. This bike established a reputation as a well-biggit an reliable machine. The racin successes helped boost its popularity an a seicont machine, the 175cc YC-1 wis suin in production bi 1956.
Immediately uised in competitions, "YA-1 wan the victory in the prestigious race in ascent o Mount Fuji, held in Julie 1955, demonstrating that the model wis free frae defects in youth, except for the price it reached the stratospheric figure of 138,000 ¥, amounting to aboot 40,000 € in 2005.
The competition models wur aften painted the same orange-red military aircraft an the "YA-1" wis dubbed aka-tombo (in Italian, red dragonfly), lik the famous biplane trainer o Yokosuka.