Today Yamaha Motor Corporation Japan and its affiliates Yamaha Motor Canada (YMCA) and Yamaha Motor Corporation USA Jointly announced their intention to exit the snowmobile business.
While the 2024 model year will be the final available production in Europe, North America’s final production year will be the 2025 model year.
This news comes as a substantial shock and disappointment to the entire snowmobile market. Yamaha has been manufacturing snowmobiles since 1968 with its introduction of the SL350.
While sales in North America remained relatively healthy, global influences as result of Europe withdrawing and sanctions limiting the product supply to Russia weighed heavily into the overall global business outlook.
It is not yet known what the long-term impact of this move will be on Arctic Cat Inc. in Thief River Falls, Minnesota. Arctic Cat has been the snowmobile chassis supplier to Yamaha since MY 2012.
Yamaha supplies a significant number of engines to Arctic Cat for use in both their own and Arctic Cat snowmobiles, all of which are built in Thief River Falls, Minnesota.
Initial reports are that Yamaha is committed to fulfilling the contractual obligations as the engine supplier for 4-Stoke equipped Arctic Cat snowmobiles.
In the short term it is business as usual for Yamaha snowmobile dealers with production of MY 2024 models in full force. Included with this release is Yamaha’s release to consumers and the industry, as well as answers to a number of FAQs.
We will continue to follow this breaking story over the next days and weeks.
Here’s the official announcement from Yamaha…
Yamaha Motor Announces Eventual Withdrawal from Snowmobile Business
Yamaha Motor Co., Ltd. today announces plans for an eventual withdrawal of the snowmobile business. The 2024 model year will be the final for available production in the European market, while North America’s final production will be the 2025 model year.
- History of the Business and Reasons for Withdrawal
In 1968, Yamaha released its first snowmobile, the SL350, by applying small engine technology which it developed in the motorcycle business. Over the past 55 years, Yamaha developed snowmobiles for sports, leisure, and business use as a means of transportation mainly in snowy areas found in North America and Europe. Yamaha also aimed to grow the business through the early introduction of environmentally-friendly 4-stroke models and alliances with other companies. However, Yamaha has concluded it will be difficult to continue a sustainable business in the snowmobile market. Going forward, Yamaha will concentrate management resources on current business activities and new growth markets.
- Future Actions
Yamaha will ensure parts availability, service, and related customer satisfaction now and after the snowmobile final production run occurs.
Production of the recently introduced 2024 models is underway and scheduled for fall delivery. Yamaha distributors will be working closely with dealers to minimize impact and best position their business over the next 12 – 36 months.
- Impact on Business Performance
Due to the exit schedule outlined above, the effect on consolidated business results will be minor.
Yamaha snowmobile dealers and customers throughout the world have proven to be among the most passionate. Yamaha thanks and cherishes all for their years of loyalty and shared enjoyment of this special winter pastime.