In an interesting departure from tradition, an automotive company is about to become a big name sponsor of a motorcycle race team. The Yamaha Factory Team which has been associated with tobacco sponsorship for the last few years, will be called the Fiat Yamaha Team for the next two years. For the next two MotoGP World Championships, Fiat Automobiles SpA will be the new Title Sponsor of Yamaha, which, starting from this season,. This is the first time the four-wheel and two-wheel worlds have been linked this way and is in no small part due to the mass worldwide appeal of Yamaha’s Italian poster boy, Valentino Rossi, as the team’s lead rider, and the positive effect Rossi’s association will have on the global brand name. The MotoGP World Championship starts next weekend in Qatar and already the new 800 bikes are running faster than last year’s 1000s.

The setting-up of the Fiat Yamaha Team is an implementation of Fiat Automobiles SpA strategy, which is aimed at targeting a younger audience with innovative, accessible products, but also with appealing initiatives and high emotive impact. The Fiat Automobiles SpA sponsorship deal for the next two MotoGP seasons fits into this context, for the MotoGP championship attracts young racing fans like no other. Undisputed icon of the two-wheel circus is Valentino Rossi, who has carried the banner of a victorious Italy on international circuits in recent times.

Fiat and Yamaha have created an innovative cooperation arrangement which abandons the confines of a sponsorship deal pure and simple, to reach out to a broader platform of communication and advertising.

A new logo has been created consisting of the wording “team”, the Italian flag and the Fiat and Yamaha logos, as well as a series of liveries that will alternate on the two works bikes of Valentino Rossi and Colin Edwards. The identity of the two brands thus has an ideal position from which to develop a new graphic and chromatic language capable of relating directly to a dynamic, young public.

Operative worldwide, the sponsorship deal will enable Fiat Automobiles SpA to promote campaigns using the sporting image of the riders and that of the Fiat Yamaha Team technicians. In detail, the two works Yamaha bikes will carry the Fiat logo and the Italian flag on their side fairings, the windshield and the fuel tank. In addition, the two riders’ race suits as well as the clothing of staff and mechanics will be identified by Fiat insignia. Finally, the Fiat logo will be present in the official communications of the team and will be highlighted inside hospitality areas, the pits and on the trucks used for transporting bikes and materials.

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