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 Yamaha - Morpho
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Yamaha D2-492-02-18
Photo ou archives : F-M. Dumas

Capacity : 1000
Model : Morpho
Production : 1990 -
Category : (R) Street Bike


Morpho (Prototype) – 1990

Looking to the future


At the end of the Eighties, sport bikes had become inaccessible. The average enthusiast simply couldn't lay his hands on one of these hyperstyled chunks of misplaced ingenuity. As the decade ended, escalating prices and lack of consumer interest had plunged the Japanese and American two-wheeler markets into disarray.


Searching for a Style

Feeling the ground shift under them, the major manufacturers desperately searched for a successor to the super-sport bike, for some concept that would start a new fashion capable of reversing the situation. Rarely have so many advanced studies and prototypes been created behind closed doors in the design studios.


Matching the Rider's Mood

At the 1989 Tokyo Show, Yamaha unveiled the Morpho, designed for them by GK Dynamics. While this "glimpse into the future" was still aggressively sporting, the idea was that it should be capable of responding to the mood of its rider, with handlebars that could be raised or lowered and adjustable seatback and footrests. Morpho's frame was a massive cast- aluminium beam with the silencer incorporated in the engine cradle. The carefully coordinated pastel color scheme was a chic contrast to the usual bright primary colors used on sports bikes.



Engine: 1003cc four-cylinder four-stroke

Power output: over 110 hp

Valves: twin overhead camshafts

Fuel system: quadruple carburetors

Transmission: chain final drive

Suspension: (front) leading arm with hubcenter steering by bellcranks; (rear) swinging arm

Brakes: (front) ventilated disc; (rear) ventilated disc

Wheels: cast aluminum

Weight: 700 lb.

Maximum speed: over 190 mph


Morpho was an attempt to redefine the spoils bike. It gave a pretty good idea of what the machines of the early 21st century might look like.”


Motorcycle encyclopedia Moto Passion, realised by François-Marie Dumas, include almost 2000 photos presented with an exhaustive history of the motorcycles exhibited.

This unique collection has been realised with the participation of many specialists. With many thanks in particular to Yves Campion, Michael Dregni, Didier Ganneau, Jean Goyard, Helmut Krackowizer, Michel Montange, Christian Rey, Bernard Salvat, Mick Woollett, etc

One can order here

  • Original cards on paper (in french)
  • High resolution scans or original documents presented and signed with my name.

Please contact me at for conditions and copyright.

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François-Marie Dumas

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