A company that is known for building some of the finest sports vehicles has introduced an all-new golf car for the fleet and private golf car markets in the UK and worldwide. The Yamaha Golf-Car Company (www.yamahagolfcar.com) of Newnan, Georgia, has launched The Drive™, the company’s first all-new golf car since 1995.
The product was unveiled for the first time to dealers and distributors at the BTME event, in Harrogate, Yorkshire, UK. The Drive fleet car will begin shipping this month.
The idea behind the new vehicle was to build a fleet golf car for today’s market. “Today’s golf operation is a business, with real concerns about revenue and expenses,” said Brian Swinden, Yamaha Motor (UK) Ltd golf-car manager. “Golf cars represent more than a member or guest convenience. In many cases they are a major capital or lease expense and often the first or second largest revenue producer.”
“The Drive is not only a superior fleet golf car,” said Swinden, “for generations, Yamaha has built sports vehicles crafted to exacting specifications. Our new golf car, like our watercraft and our ATVs, will put a smile on the driver’s face. It’s smart for the owner, but it’s also fun for the golfer to drive.”
57 Reasons Why This Is the Best Golf Car Ever Built
To help communicate the key differences between The Drive and the golf cars offered from other manufacturers, as well as the G-MAX, Yamaha’s previous entry in the fleet market, the company has identified what it calls the top 57 reasons why this vehicle is superior.
For instance there’s “Tru-Trak II™”, Yamaha’s fully independent front suspension (Reason 33); The Drive’s first-in-the-industry “Automotive-Style Dash” (Reason 57); and the “ClimaGuard Top™ with Dual Gutters” (Reason 39), offering the largest sun and rain protection in the industry as well as a built-in, no-clog drainage system.
Many more of the featured “reasons” have grown out of engineering expertise based on other Yamaha divisions. Yamaha Golf-Car Company offers an industry first “EnduraDrive™ Transaxle with Internal Disc Brake Technology” (Reason 21), which uses technology adapted from the Yamaha motorcycle clutch pack. Exclusive to Yamaha, it features a fully-enclosed braking system that completely eliminates brake shoes and pads.
The “HybriCore™ Chassis” with a floorboard access panel (Reason 5) features a high strength polypropylene structural matrix floor integrated with The Drive’s robotically welded steel frame. It’s tough, light and rustproof. Batteries are separated from the steel, and corrosive lawn chemicals are kept away from the pedals and other metal parts by an integrated top side protection in the polypropylene structural floor.
For added driver comfort, the “Drive Centre™ Ergonomics” package (Reason 12) offers a number of innovations and improvements to help make the driver and passenger more comfortable. Yamaha engineers delivered more than tee and ball holders – although The Drive has more of those too. They lowered the seat, made it more comfortable with high-density foam, and re-positioned the steering column. Ingress and egress are easy for men and women of all sizes.
A Better Golf Car for Today’s Courses
“Yamaha has always been an innovator”, says Andrew Pumfrey, Yamaha’s divisional manager. “The Drive is no exception. It’s packed with new features that enhance the playing experience while further reducing operating costs. Yamaha engineers are particularly proud of the new electric car. Most courses acknowledge that Yamaha builds the best petrol golf car, but we haven’t done a good enough job of marketing our excellent electric car.”
The Drive features reliable Trojan 12-volt batteries. But batteries are only part of the story behind The Drive’s “IntelliPower System™” (Reason 56). Efficient packaging has resulted in a reduction of vehicle weight by 57 pounds. The combination of less weight, regenerative braking, a 48-volt power system and an industry-first high frequency, high efficiency battery charger means that the cost to recharge has been minimized.
“Our testing indicates that The Drive costs less to recharge than other golf cars.” Pumfrey said. “We’re confident that many golf courses will see a drop in their energy costs after switching to Yamaha.”
Yamaha’s Total Cost of Ownership is lower
“When you look into total cost of ownership,” said Swinden, “you begin to see that not all golf cars are created equal. Golf cars are often seen in commodity terms, but that’s just not the case. This misconception is often the reason many golf course operators consider the brand of fleet they buy to be less important than the monthly lease payment.
“The benefits of a superior golf car haven’t been made clear to many golf course owners and managers,” said Swinden. “Lower maintenance costs, less service down time, higher energy efficiency – these are issues that too often aren’t considered until after the fleet is delivered.”
Swinden claims that The Drive is the first modern golf car to eliminate grease fittings completely. “The elimination of grease fittings is a huge plus for fleet operators. This breakthrough, along with the internal wet brake and legendary Yamaha bumpers, truly puts The Drive in a class by itself in terms of low maintenance,” he said.
Pumfrey adds that The Drive gas car has better fuel mileage than all other major golf car brands. “The expected fuel savings by using The Drive golf cars is just incredible. Our testing shows that the major competitors use between 16 and 33% more petrol per round than The Drive! With today’s high fuel prices, this makes a huge impact on the bottom line.”
Yamaha executives and distributors hope the “57 Reasons” proves this golf car is superior to anything in the industry and will convince golf course owners, and fleet operators to consider The Drive. “If they’ll give it a test drive, we believe they will see for themselves how owning a fleet of Yamaha golf cars can be more fun and profitable,” says Andrew Pumfrey.
For more information about The Drive and all of the “57 Reasons,” go to www.discoverthedrive.com.
Yamaha Golf Car Company www.yamaha-motor.co.uk