1969 Yamaha CS2 180cc Motorcycle
|Engine||2-cylinder, 180cc two stroke|
A relative latecomer to the motorcycle market, Yamaha’s first motorcycle – the YA-1 – was launched in 1955 and the Japanese manufacturer quickly established a niche in the marketplace, helped by competition success both at home and abroad. In 1957 Yamaha unveiled its first twin, badged the YD-1, with a 250cc two-stroke motor, but it was well into the 1960s before a smaller twin, badged the AT90, was unveiled. A dual-purpose machine, the AT90 had a small displacement (90cc) engine with a unique Autolube lubrication system, giving better performance and fuel economy. In 1967 Yamaha launched a new small commuter motorcycle, known as the Bonanza in the United States, offering sparkling performance and an advanced specification sheet. The CS featured a five-speed gearbox and an electric starter, while the 180cc engine had twin cast iron cylinders, developed 21 horsepower would rev out to 8000 rpm. With the option of high bars and side pipes plus candy paint colours, the Bonanza was a well-made, good-looking machine and sold in good numbers. In 1969 the original model was updated to the CS2, with a new instrument cluster and tank design. The CS2 model was the first 180cc Yamaha offered in Europe and survived in production until 1971, when the larger capacity CS3 appeared. With interest in vintage Japanese motorcycles growing all the time, rare survivors like this early Yamaha twin are becoming increasingly collectible and hard to find.