Manga is prevalent in daily Japanese life, and motorcycle manufacturers are often known to incorporate the media into their ad campaigns. Yamaha’s current effort to sell motorcycles utilizes manga and video to compare the experience of riding to eating delicious food and enjoying traditional saunas.
In the context of saunas, the Japanese word “totonou” refers to the act of alternating between a hot sauna, cold bath, and sitting outside in the refreshing air. This is known to provide deep relaxation and health benefits like improved circulation, and Yamaha is connecting this with riding.
In true Japanese style, Yamaha has also put out a weird and hilarious video showing a man goofily engaging in “totonou” and three-wheeling.
Yamaha has been commissioning popular manga artists to create short stories for the fictional Totonotta Magazine. They depict riding on Yamaha’s three-wheelers as a relaxing and spiritually rejuvenating experience that brings euphoria to humanity.
The characters use the Niken motorcycle (pictured above) and Tricity scooter, both featuring Yamaha’s Leaning Multi Wheel (LMW) technology, to promote local Japanese tourism. The campaign website also features recommended ride destinations and route maps, along with the illustrations.
The next time you take your motorcycle out, get drenched in the rain or cook in your own sweat in the middle of traffic, and then bust free out onto the open road — feeling the wind and remembering how awesome riding can be… Maybe you’ll think of “totonou” thanks to Yamaha.