Tohatsu Outboard Motors
The company can be traced back to 1922, when the Takata Motor Research Institute began carrying out research into various forms of internal combustion engines. Research and development of high-speed, portable engine generators and radio-controlled generators began immediately; these were brought to production in 1930. During the 1930s and 40s, Tohatsu consolidated its product line and moved its corporate office to Tokyo. Among its products in the 1930s were railcars for the Ministry of Railways.
In 1950, production and sales of motorcycles began. 1955 brought aggressive growth to Tohatsu. Capital increased to 150 million yen and production on a new line of engines started. Sales offices were established in Fukuoka, Nagoya, Tokyo, Sendai, and Sapporo. Dealerships were set up throughout Japan.
In the mid-1950s, the company held the top market share, with 22 percent of the Japanese motorbike market. They also manufactured racing motorcycles and achieved success in Japan and abroad. Financial problems led to the discontinuation of Tohatsu motorcycle production in 1964.
1956 ushered in the production of the first Tohatsu Outboards (1.5 hp). Since then, Tohatsu outboards have served a variety of marketplaces: commercial fishing, military, marine transport, surf life saving, recreation and competition racing. They are the second largest producer of outboards in the world.
Tohatsu produces outboards sold under their own brand, as well as for other companies. For instance, all Nissan outboard engines sold in North America were Tohatsus with a Nissan decal. In 1988 Tohatsu and Brunswick Corporation set up a joint venture named Tohatsu Marine Corporation.
In May 2002, Tohatsu America Corporation (TAC) was founded in, and started its distribution in, U.S., the world’s biggest outboard market.
TAC has been located in Dallas in U.S., its main task being distribution and servicing of Tohatsu’s marine business.