Tohatsu Corporation
Native name
Private KK
Industry Transportation equipment
Founded Tokyo, Japan (April 1922 (1922-04))
Headquarters Azusawa, Itabashi-ku, Tokyo, 174-0051, Japan
Key people
Isami Hyuga

JPY 182 billion (FY 2014)

(US$ 1.51 billion) (FY 2014)
Number of employees
500 (consolidated, as of 2015)
Website Official website
Footnotes / references

Tohatsu Corporation (トーハツ株式会社 Tōhatsu Kabushiki-gaisha) is a Japanese company manufacturing and selling outboard motors, pleasure boats, portable fire pumps, small fire trucks, pumps for construction and drainage, and refrigeration units for transportation. It also does real estate property management in Japan.


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.[3] 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.[4]

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.[5] Financial problems led to the discontinuation of Tohatsu motorcycle production in 1964.[6]

A Tohatsu Runpet Sports CA2 motorcycle from 1962

Tohatsu Outboards

1956 ushered in the production of the first Tohatsu Outboards (1.5 hp).[7] 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.[8]

A 2007 model Tohatsu outboard

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.[9] In 1988 Tohatsu and Brunswick Corporation set up a joint venture named Tohatsu Marine Corporation.[10][11]

In 2011, Tohatsu and Evinrude Outboard Motors made a deal to make smaller engines ranging from 15 HP and down with Evinrude decals.[12]


  1. "Corporate Profile". Tohatsu Corporation. Retrieved March 11, 2016.
  2. "Company Profile". Bloomberg Businessweek. Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved March 11, 2016.
  3. Walker, Mick (2002). Mick Walker's Japanese Grand Prix Racing Motorcycles. Redline Books. pp. 146–147. ISBN 978-0-9531311-8-1.
  4. "History of the Company". Tohatsu Corporation. Retrieved March 11, 2016.
  5. Walker, Mick (November 1, 2003). Japanese Production Racing Motorcycles. Redline Books. pp. 222–231. ISBN 978-0-9544357-0-7.
  6. Halberstam, David (December 18, 2012). The Reckoning. Open Road Integrated Media. p. 461. ISBN 978-1-4532-8610-4.
  7. Orr, Floyd (2006). Timeline of America: Sound Bytes from the Consumer Culture. iUniverse. p. 77. ISBN 978-0-595-40004-1.
  8. "Tohatsu Corporation - Description". Fish Information and Services. Retrieved March 12, 2016.
  9. Plueddeman, Charles (January 31, 2015). "The Outboard Expert: News from Nissan, Yamaha, Mercury, SeaStar, and MotorGuide". Dominion Enterprises. Retrieved March 11, 2016.
  10. "History of Tohatsu Since 1922 - Chapter 5: Progress". Tohatsu Corporation. Retrieved October 12, 2016.
  11. "Company Overview". Bloomberg Businessweek. Bloomberg L.P. Retrieved October 12, 2016.
  12. Plueddeman, Charles (October 23, 2011). "BRP/Evinrude Announces Deal with Tohatsu for Small Outboards". Dominion Enterprises. Retrieved March 11, 2016.
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