Over the past two years, Honda has been on a roll filling out its product lineup with scooters and motorcycles alike that tune into what Honda used to be all about: practical, affordable two wheelers that made the fun of riding accessible to the masses. A couple decades of chasing Harley left Honda pretty disconnected from its roots, but recently that’s turned around in a big way.
The latest example is the 125cc Honda Grom — a fitting tribute the old Honda Monkey Bike, Trail 70 and Trail 90s of old. While not specifically off-road oriented, the Grom hits that sweet spot of goofy fun and affordability. At just $2,999, that’s fun on a budget.
Recently RideApart attended Honda’s “Grom Prix” intro event and came away with some rather favorable impressions of Honda’s new little fun machine.
12-inch wheels with wide tires and disc brakes front and rear round out an impressively high spec mechanical package that’s then wrapped in swoopy, stylish plastic. That big seat can carry two people and there’s passenger foot rests.
The Grom’s motor delivers a respectable 9bhp, which is good for an indicated 56mph top speed and, wait for it…130mpg fuel economy. The dinky little bike weighs just 225lbs with its 1.45 gallon tank filled.
The idea here is a fun, stylish motorcycle that’s accessible for new, young riders looking for something to carry them around a city or college campus, or experienced riders looking for a pit bike, play bike or just something silly to scoot around town on.
RideApart’s Wes Siler makes a lot of scooter comparisons in reference to the Grom. Like the SYM Symba or Wolf 150, small motorcycles like the Grom often get lumped in with scooters, even though they’re motorcycles in every respect. Personally this doesn’t bother me in particular because I’m a fan of both kinds of bike. Yet the comparison is not entirely inappropriate either in today’s landscape. Given that modern scooters don’t really fit that original scooter formula anymore either (it’s not like a Buddy 125 has interchangeable front and rear wheels).
For scooter fans, the Grom 125 seems to have a lot to offer. It, like the diminutive SYM Wolf Classic 150, would make great urban transport. It’d also make a great first bike for anybody interested in making the jump from twist-and-go to the world of modern motorcycling, and have a lot of fun doing it. It’s also scooter priced, as Siler points out.
At $2,999 the Grom is only $350 more than the 50cc Ruckus scooter, but delivers so much more. It’s a real motorcycle that can keep up with traffic, is a blast to ride anywhere and looks totally unique, because it is.
While I say a Ruckus is every bit as much a “real” bike as the Grom, the logic is sound. Three grand for a groovy little bike that can really tear up the cityscape is a pretty appealing package. That said, I’d happily pay a little more for this same bike as a 250cc machine, but that’s me.
What do you think? Anybody else out there with seat time on the Grom? Do small bikes appeal? Sound off in the comments and check out RideApart’s full review.