News Big Four Motorcycles: Earthquake Updates

Big Four Motorcycles: Earthquake Updates

Motorcycle News

The 2011 Japan Earthquake and subsequent Tsunami late last week has affected the motorcycle industry in a big way, especially since Japan is home to the "Big Four" motorcycle manufacturers: Yamaha, Honda, Suzuki and Kawasaki.

As the disaster relief efforts continue in Northeastern Japan, not much news is available about how much of an impact the devastating earthquake has had on motorcycle exports from Japan.

But some information is becoming available from the Big Four companies.

Honda released a statement earlier today, reporting it will halt production at all factories, including the Kumamoto Factory, where Honda produces the CBR600, the VFR1200F, the DN-01 and the Super Cub. Honda reported that production activities at the Kumamoto Factory will be suspended March 15-20.

Honda said to assist in relief for Japan Earthquake victims, it has donated 300 million yen toward the recovery effort, and supplied 1,000 generators (gasoline-powered and home-use gas canister-powered), along with 5,000 gas canisters. Honda said it will dispatch its staff to explain how to use the donated generators.

Honda also stated it would co-operate with "rolling electricity blackouts," which will help slow electricity usage. The rolling electricity outages are being done to avoid a total electric blackout; this is because electricity demand may overcome power supply capability due to Nuclear Plant breakdown from Earthquake.

Yamaha released a statement, reporting its factories were not damaged by the quake. Yamaha continued to keep it’s factories open, and will re-evaluate the situation on Tuesday. Yamaha also reported it will co-operate in rolling electricity blackouts.

Suzuki released that it will suspend production until March 17. On that day, Suzuki management will decide when to return to production.

Kawasaki has not released any information regarding the earthquake, and if it had any impact on the motorcycle manufacturer.

Ron Lieback
Ron Lieback
One of the few moto journalists based on the East Coast, Ron Lieback joined the motorcycle industry as a freelancer in 2007, and is currently Online Editor at Ultimate Motorcycling.

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