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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The Grom is a Honda "mini" bike. Not a scooter with a manual clutch. Not a small sport bike lacking in power. It is a Honda "mini" in the fine tradition of Honda Minis. While the Grom has 12 inch wheels, a tad bigger than the CT70, the bulbous cartoony look of the tires is a dead giveaway to the true lineage the Grom comes from - that and its' engine. I encourage the people that are just getting in to motorcycles and are about to buy a Grom as their first, to do a little research about the 50 year long history of the Honda mini, and to be proud to carry the Honda mini baton forward. Anyone can ride a full size bike, and anyone can ride a scooter, but only people that understand small street driven motorcycles have the balls to ride a Honda mini around town. We are as unique as any other clique of riders.

I have had the opportunity to work on or ride almost every Honda horizontal engine bike that was sold in the U.S. I'm talking street bikes - you know, bikes with license plates and headlights.

These are some I can remember:
S90
S65
Cl70
Xl70
SL70
CT110
CT90
CT70
ZB50
Z50
..and I probably left out one or two. All of these use the air cooled, horizontal single cylinder engine platform that the Grom uses. I have ridden them all, but the last 3 bikes on the list - CT70, ZB50, and Z50s are the traditional Honda mini bike. That is, they run 8" or 10" wheels and an air cooled, horizontal single engine.

The Grom blows them all away. Understand that I am judging this from a mini bike perspective. The one where the rider is just a little cramped, just a little hunched, and just crazy enough to see how fast they can take the corkscrew on 8" wheels. It's not only the fact that the hydraulic brakes, the EFI system, and the electric starter are all modern and incredibly functional and sophisticated that make this bike is the best mini yet. It's also the ergonomics. They are completely fuctional for an average sized rider (I'm 5'9" 200lbs after breakfast) yet just akward enough to remind you you are on a mini motorcycle. The legacy Honda minis were kick starts with puney carburetors. The Grom's EFI and electric start is plush. I almost feel guilty not having to choke and kick it.

If you like quiet, the Grom is for you. In fact the only bad thing I have to say about it is that I cant hear what the engine is doing while test riding, only wind noise. It is not only quiet but it is smoothe. Far smoother than any overworked thumper I have ever ridden. I read somewhere that the cycliner on the Grom is slightly offset from the centerline of the crankshaft giving the piston a greater mechanical advantage over the crank. Whatever. Honda tweaked this part of the historic engine platform for efficiency but I am here to testify that I think it also makes it smoother.

I took the Gromit on a ride through the test track I have developed for testing my other performance mini bikes. An unbroken route of my favorite narrow twisties, flattest straightaways, and residential streets all within a 16 mile loop of my house. A beautiful summer evening and the bugs in my teeth say it all. On a one lane road with two way traffic, I found myself actually laughing out load as I leaned over on a curve trying to scrape the pegs on a tight left hand and then effortlessly flipping it over on the rght side as the road ruthlessly changed directions, where rare oncoming traffic is obscured by a hedge anyway - I easily kept it on the right side of the road while accelerating in third gear, leaning as close to the hedge as I could. Hah this is awesome - a fast but slight motion of my hip and Im back trying to scrape the left peg again. The process repeats to varying degrees for a few miles. On my Vstrom 650 (like an SV650 only taller), that stretch of road is (a different kind of) fun, but requires way more concentration and balls to do it respectfully. The Grom ate those zig-zags like a light snack. My other Honda minis with 8" or 10" wheels and top speeds of over 75mph can take the twisties well too, but they seem less balanced than the Grom and their primitive ergonomics force you to think a lot more when wearing off the chicken-strips in a turn.

People that call the Grom a "turd" are morons. People that dont get mini motorcycles never will. People that do get mini motorcycles usually also own full size bikes and they will always tell you the minis are more fun to ride. You wont be unhappy with a Grom as long as you realize that it is a Honda mini - nothing more, nothing less.
 

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Agreed. I don't have the experience with minis that you do but I am loving this bike.
 

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Im actually bummed that I am going to watch the races all weekend. LOL
 
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I almost feel guilty not having to choke and kick it.
hahaha I'm not the only one who is feeling this way! really awkward in the beginning when i was automatically searching for the kicker!


People that call the Grom a "turd" are morons. People that dont get mini motorcycles never will. People that do get mini motorcycles usually also own full size bikes and they will always tell you the minis are more fun to ride. You wont be unhappy with a Grom as long as you realize that it is a Honda mini - nothing more, nothing less.
AMEN!
 

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I love mini's. I don't mind the jokes and ridicule that comes with it either. People just don't know how to have fun anymore.

Great writeup, I am so looking forward to delivery of mine.
 

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WOW.. :nerd:

first off let me just say that I read a lot of reviews of all sorts of things.. but that right there was probably the BEST written review I have EVER seen.. the words just flow perfectly.. are you a writer? i mean if you're not then you should think about starting.. if this was on Honda's page they would really get the buzz going.. add a few pictures here and there.. (especially the left hand curve pic) and I would think I was reading it from a magazine (20 yrs ago) haha.. wow...

thanks for a great read.. i already know how it feels to ride one.. just waiting on delivery so i can get out and get bugs in my teeth too.. lucky mofo.. haha..
 

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The Grom is a Honda "mini" bike. Not a scooter with a manual clutch. Not a small sport bike lacking in power. It is a Honda "mini" in the fine tradition of Honda Minis. While the Grom has 12 inch wheels, a tad bigger than the CT70, the bulbous cartoony look of the tires is a dead giveaway to the true lineage the Grom comes from - that and its' engine. I encourage the people that are just getting in to motorcycles and are about to buy a Grom as their first, to do a little research about the 50 year long history of the Honda mini, and to be proud to carry the Honda mini baton forward. Anyone can ride a full size bike, and anyone can ride a scooter, but only people that understand small street driven motorcycles have the balls to ride a Honda mini around town. We are as unique as any other clique of riders.

I have had the opportunity to work on or ride almost every Honda horizontal engine bike that was sold in the U.S. I'm talking street bikes - you know, bikes with license plates and headlights.

These are some I can remember:
S90
S65
Cl70
Xl70
SL70
CT110
CT90
CT70
ZB50
Z50
..and I probably left out one or two. All of these use the air cooled, horizontal single cylinder engine platform that the Grom uses. I have ridden them all, but the last 3 bikes on the list - CT70, ZB50, and Z50s are the traditional Honda mini bike. That is, they run 8" or 10" wheels and an air cooled, horizontal single engine.

The Grom blows them all away. Understand that I am judging this from a mini bike perspective. The one where the rider is just a little cramped, just a little hunched, and just crazy enough to see how fast they can take the corkscrew on 8" wheels. It's not only the fact that the hydraulic brakes, the EFI system, and the electric starter are all modern and incredibly functional and sophisticated that make this bike is the best mini yet. It's also the ergonomics. They are completely fuctional for an average sized rider (I'm 5'9" 200lbs after breakfast) yet just akward enough to remind you you are on a mini motorcycle. The legacy Honda minis were kick starts with puney carburetors. The Grom's EFI and electric start is plush. I almost feel guilty not having to choke and kick it.

If you like quiet, the Grom is for you. In fact the only bad thing I have to say about it is that I cant hear what the engine is doing while test riding, only wind noise. It is not only quiet but it is smoothe. Far smoother than any overworked thumper I have ever ridden. I read somewhere that the cycliner on the Grom is slightly offset from the centerline of the crankshaft giving the piston a greater mechanical advantage over the crank. Whatever. Honda tweaked this part of the historic engine platform for efficiency but I am here to testify that I think it also makes it smoother.

I took the Gromit on a ride through the test track I have developed for testing my other performance mini bikes. An unbroken route of my favorite narrow twisties, flattest straightaways, and residential streets all within a 16 mile loop of my house. A beautiful summer evening and the bugs in my teeth say it all. On a one lane road with two way traffic, I found myself actually laughing out load as I leaned over on a curve trying to scrape the pegs on a tight left hand and then effortlessly flipping it over on the rght side as the road ruthlessly changed directions, where rare oncoming traffic is obscured by a hedge anyway - I easily kept it on the right side of the road while accelerating in third gear, leaning as close to the hedge as I could. Hah this is awesome - a fast but slight motion of my hip and Im back trying to scrape the left peg again. The process repeats to varying degrees for a few miles. On my Vstrom 650 (like an SV650 only taller), that stretch of road is (a different kind of) fun, but requires way more concentration and balls to do it respectfully. The Grom ate those zig-zags like a light snack. My other Honda minis with 8" or 10" wheels and top speeds of over 75mph can take the twisties well too, but they seem less balanced than the Grom and their primitive ergonomics force you to think a lot more when wearing off the chicken-strips in a turn.

People that call the Grom a "turd" are morons. People that dont get mini motorcycles never will. People that do get mini motorcycles usually also own full size bikes and they will always tell you the minis are more fun to ride. You wont be unhappy with a Grom as long as you realize that it is a Honda mini - nothing more, nothing less.

that is how I felt with my 1987 Yamaha YSR-50, that was a really fun mini motorcycle to ride, cramp is a understatement and the smile on your face while carving those tight switch back was fun. I'm still waiting for my GROM in San Jose California, hope we here in Northern California don't get rape with high dealer cost like some of the Southern Calif buyers are getting.

yep I have bigger motorcycles also 92 Fatboy 94 Heritage, 99 Kawi ZX6R, and 99 Hayabusa but nothing beats a small motorcycle for the fun factor. Brings back the smiles of younger times on my stingray bicycle or banana seat bicycle.
 

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Between this being my first bike and all the terrible reviews of the tires that come with the Grom, I'm still afraid to lean too far on mine. Your writeup has inspired me to push it a bit more.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Between this being my first bike and all the terrible reviews of the tires that come with the Grom, I'm still afraid to lean too far on mine. Your writeup has inspired me to push it a bit more.
If its your first bike, just be safe and have fun. Don't feel the need to push anything or to prove anything to yourself or others - there is pain and misery in that. You can push when you get your chops up.
 
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