YAMAHA: What’s Up for 2014?

We think there’s a pretty good chance Yamaha is coming with something all-new this year.

Last year’s less-than-exciting new sled line-up may have been a harbinger of corporate hold-back to get all the company’s ducks in a row for a blockbuster 2014 sled to be revealed.

So what’s our best guess? We’ve already talked about the possibility of an all-new chassis and we think it’s more than just a rumor. The question is, what sleds will be replaced by the new platform?

Our thinking is that two Yamaha chassis configurations have been around the longest and if Yamaha wants to simplify its model line in the future, it could whittle its brochure down from three to two platforms in one fell swoop by using the new body to replace the Phazer and the Nytro, both at the same time.

Does this mean Yamaha would scrap the 500cc 4-stroke twin in the Phazer? We doubt it, but we do think a universal platform that would fit both the Phazer’s existing powerplant and the Nytro’s 130-hp triple would simplify production and enable the Yamaha engineering team to focus on weight reduction.

We don’t think the best-selling Apex and Vector will be replaced this year. These sleds have both received EPS upgrades and other tech changes and still remain Yamaha’s foundational sleds in its product line. We’ll know in a week or so.

* WHAT WILL THE NEW YAMAHA SLEDS BE LIKE?

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