Bikes > Motor

The Honda Navi would be the perfect city bike

This cute two-wheeler is simple and very compact

We just know we would look so cute and stylish on the Navi. PHOTO FROM HONDA

The Philippines has no shortage of commuter-bike choices. We have underbones, backbones and scooters in the small-displacement category, and millions are sold every year. And yet, here is a new bike from Honda that looks like nothing else, but is sadly for the US market for now.

The Navi Minimoto is a tiny little bike that harkens back to the original Cub and Grom, and it’s all about very basic, motorized transportation dressed up in stylish clothes. At just 181cm long and with a 129cm wheelbase, it’s about the same size as the locally available Dio, but of course, it looks much more unconventional. Fans of mecha anime will like the angular side panels that make it look like something from Robotech, but there’s nothing futuristic about the mechanicals.

We know it’s tiny and expensive for what it is, and yet we want one. PHOTOS FROM HONDA

The engine is a fuel-efficient, carbureted 110cc unit with an automatic transmission. It has no anti-lock braking system, nor for that matter does it have disc brakes. Drums are used for both wheels, which are sized 90/90-12 for the front and 90/100-10 at the back. The front inverted fork has 9.9cm of travel, while the left side-mounted rear shock has 7.1cm of give.

The electric starter even has a backup kickstart. A 76.5cm seat height makes it manageable for most riders. A tiny 3.78L tank limits its range, but weighing only 107kg, it’s light and small enough to be transported in the back of a pickup truck. A storage bin under the seat is large enough for stowing small items.

It’s not often Honda makes an emotionally appealing bike. PHOTOS FROM HONDA

The last time Honda Philippines had something similar to this was the Zoomer-X, a discontinued model that’s gained a cult following. The Navi is priced at $1,807 (P90,350), which is pretty steep for value-focused Filipinos especially when compared to larger and more practical models like the Click and the Beat.

Still, we’ll wager the Navi would find its own niche here, especially for people who need a bike for short commutes and errands, and who won’t mind paying a premium. It comes in Red, Nut Brown, Ranger Green, and Grasshopper Green.

Bring it over here and take our money, Honda.

Andy Leuterio

Andy is both an avid cyclist and a car enthusiast who has finally made the shift to motorcycles. You've probably seen him on his bicycle or motorbike overtaking your crawling car. He is our Motorcycle Editor and the author of the ‘Quickshift’ column.