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Yamaha has sold more than two million TMAXs in two decades. How can a maxi-scooter be so damn popular?

Not many current-model bikes can boast two decades of existence and seven generations of updates, but Yamaha’s TMAX maxi-scoot is one such machine. Released in 2001 at a time when scooters were selling in droves, Yamaha put a product in front of what was a huge global audience hoping it would capture the hearts and wallets of any one of those riders looking to upgrade to a larger-capacity machine – scooter, motorcycle or otherwise – and it worked.

That original 500cc T-Max was a hit, and it was the ‘otherwise’ part that it owes its success. Because even though it looked and rode like a practical scooter, its handling, performance and componentry belied its twist-and-go efficiency, and it earned itself a cult following in Europe and America that still exists today.

Check out our Quick spin on Yamaha’s TMAX 560 in Vol69 No 23