“I used to be indecisive, now I’m on not to sure….”
That is one of my favorite quotes, and it goes a long way in explaining how my approach to motorbikes in the Philippines has changed over time. For those of you who have followed our channel for a while, you’ll probably know that when I first arrived here, I bought a brand new Yamaha YBR125 – a sort of tough, semi-dual purpose motorcycle renowned for its durability and old-school charm. Unfortunately, it was also known for a serious lack of power, which – in emergency situations – can be a bit of a problem; especially when one factors in all of the interesting challenges on Philippine roads.
The second bike I purchased (which we still have) was a Kawasaki Rouser 200NS, a “big” beast of bike with oodles of power, excellent brakes and tight handling. It’s a beautiful bike if one is considering long-distance commuting or going island touring. Unfortunately, for zipping in and out of town on errands, it’s just not practical – it’s big, heavy (319 pounds) and has a horrible turning radius. Not much fun in the face of urban traffic.
In between the YBR and the Rouser, we bought a RUSI automatic scooter which is basically a clone of the Yamaha Mio. The RUSI was great when we first got it – small and light and capable of carrying an enormous amount of groceries. It didn’t have much power and gave us more and more trouble as time went on (mechanical and electrical issues), but I noticed that I myself was using the little automatic scooter more than I was the Rouser 200 NS. Time passed, I used the RUSI more and more, and I finally realized that it was time to get myself my own automatic scooter.
So, it was decision time. I checked out the Yamaha Mio’s (which were nice), the Yamaha NMAX (too big and heavy for an automatic scooter, IMHO), some KYMCO (Taiwanese “2nd Tier” manufacturer) models (discounted because of carburetors and poor gas mileage) and finally hit the Honda showroom where I whittled it down to either the Honda Beat or the Click. After checking all the specs and talking with owners of both, I decided on the Click. Don’t get me wrong, the Beat is also a great little automatic, but I went with the Click for the slightly bigger size and weight, the extra power (11.6 HP for the Click vs. 8.2 for the Beat), the safety features (see below), LED lights, and the cavernous storage area under the seat.
So far, I am quite happy with the Click. It rides very well, has a pleasant suspension and the power is delivered smoothly along the entire power band. Since it is breaking in, I haven’t given it full throttle yet, but in having to negotiate traffic and power past some lollygaggers, I can honestly report that its got a good amount of get up and go. The fit and finish is also very nice as can only be expected from Honda, with the pleasant ride passing on the solid constuction and engineering that went into the little 125cc urban cruiser.
eSP – Enhanced Smart Power – Honda’s engine design that provides higher power with greater fuel efficiency. eSP provides computer monitored combustion also allows for lower emissions. Being a liberal hippy, I kinda like that.
PGM-FI – The liquid cooled engine provides 11.4 horsepower at 8,500 RPM and 11 NM of torque. Fuel efficiency under ESE R40 testing methods is 64.3 KM per liter. Oh yeah, baby!
Idling Stop System (ISS) – When activated, the engine shuts down when you are sitting in traffic for more than three seconds. Once things get moving, simply twist the throttle and you’re off!
ACG Starter – the Click starts with the same generator used to charge the battery while driving. There is no conventional starter motor or no reduction gears. Starts smoothly every time.
Combined Brake System – Activates during emergency stopping – when left brake grasped quickly, 70% of power is transferred to front brakes and 30% to the rear. I haven’t tested this yet, and hopefully never will…
Side Stand Switch – Engine will not start with the side stand down. This is important with scooters as they have little ground clearance and roaring off with the stand down can have disastrous consequences further down the road…..
Bigger Tires – The Honda Click has larger tubeless tires when compared to the Beat or Yamaha Mio.
Key Shutter – Magnetic key FOB opens and closes a little hatch over the keyhole.
Luggage capacity – Under the seat, you’ve got 18 liters of storage space. That’s a whole lot of Pilsens….. It can also store a full-size helmet.
LED Headlights – Honda claims 80% more light intensity and 80% less power consumption when compared to halogen lights.
As for costs, the Click retails for 85,000 ($1,808 USD). The Honda Beat FI runs around 68,000 ($1,466) while the Yamaha Mio FI is around 79,0000 ($1,680). All are great scooters, and if you are looking for a simple, efficient and painless mode of local conveyance, none of them will let you down.
The RUSI Yamaha Mio clone on the other hand…. Well, we’ll leave that one alone for now.
For a pretty exhaustive review of the Honda Click as compared to a variety of other Thailand-centric scooters/underbones, you might want to check out an article written by Jack Corbett. You can read that HERE.
And you can check out the video review I did on the Click below: