It's easy to get caught up in the excitement of all the beastly super-nakeds and concepts being released at EICMA, but there are also plenty of interesting things going on in the (admittedly, more mundane) world of scooters and commuters. Take the new Yamaha TMAX 530, which has been treated to an electric throttle and a lighter frame for a sportier, more engaging ride.
According to Yamaha, fitting the TMAX with a new electronically controlled throttle will make for a much smarter, sportier ride. Loz Blain discovered just how much fun maxi scooters are while chasing a Repsol Honda Fireblade on the launch of the BMW C650 Sport, so it will be interesting to see if the TMAX possesses the same superbike-humbling potential.
The electronic enhancement on board doesn't stop with a new throttle, though, because traction control is now standard across the range. Buyers who spec their bikes in more luxurious DX trim will also get cruise control and an electronically height-adjustable windscreen.
Although electronic tweaks make up a big part of the TMAX upgrade, they're not the only changes. A fresh exhaust frees up more torque from the 530 cc engine, and the link-type rear suspension has been designed to deliver a smooth ride across the worst highways and city streets Europe can throw at it. Beyond city limits, keen riders are likely to notice the scooter's totally redesigned frame, which is now 9 kg (20 lb) lighter than before.
At the moment, the TMAX is aimed firmly at Europe, where Yamaha hopes to shift 15,000 units in the its first full year on sale. Pricing is yet to be confirmed, but the new TMAX 530 is unlikely to cost much more than the current model, which starts from US$10,490.