OK, so it’s now been a year since I first purchased my new 2017 Honda Click 125i. Having put this pretty little peach through her paces, I now figure it’s time to do an update, noting both the features I like (or love) about the bike and the shortcomings that I have noticed since acquiring it. Note that I already wrote an article on the Click when I first purchased it. You can see that article HERE.
I have lived in the Philippines for four years. In that time I have owned four bikes: Two “underbone” scooters (the Click and a RUSI Yamaha Mio clone) and two motorcycles (a YBR 125 G and a Kawasaki Rouser 200 NS). Before coming to the Philippines, I had always dreamed (ah, those shortsighted Philippine Dreams…) of having a cool off road bike like a Honda CRF 250 that I could blast about the back trails of the Philippines on, zooming down rutted dirt/mud roads and taking in the sweeping vistas at the top of conquered mountains. Soon after arriving in the Philippines, however, I encountered the reality of the situation – I’ve got short legs. Keep in mind that “big” off road bikes are rather tall, and since I was possessed of rather stumpy legs (and a 32 inch inseam), buying a tall off road bike actually didn’t seem all that practical. In fact, crawling up a leggy CRF or XR 200, swinging a leg over the towering beast and then having to lean it when stopped (or with just my toes down) turned out to be a deal breaker. Alas, another shattered Philippine Dream…
Yamaha YBR 125G: As a compromise, I purchased a Yamaha YBR 125 G – the “G” somehow standing for “dual purpose, semi-off road.” The bike came with aggressively studded tires, a front engine guard and brush protectors on the handlebars. The YBR was a good bike and a solid – if under powered – performer. I never had any actual problems with it, but its lack of power (8.4 HP for a 277 pound bike) was an issue, especially when trying to pass cars (or sugar cane trucks) on the national roads (Philippine provincial ‘highways’).
RUSI Yamaha Mio: The next bike I bought was a RUSI Yamaha Mio clone. It was a little automatic, and when I first got it, it was great. Then, after about six months or so, it started to constantly have issues with the electrical and fuel delivery system that required multiple trips to the RUSI repair shop. Say one thing about local unit RUSI motorbikes – they certainly are consistent in their need of constant repairs.
Kawasaki Rouser 200 NS: Somewhere along the line, I was given an offer I couldn’t refuse: A Filipino was going OFW for two years and was selling his nearly new Kawasaki Rouser 200NS for very short money. Having grown tired of my practical-but-underpowered YBR 125, I jumped at the opportunity, buying the Rouser and selling my YBR to a Russian gangster shortly thereafter.
The Rouser 200NS is a great bike for going on long distance cruises. It had twice the power and torque of my YBR and was genuinely a hoot to drive on long trips. Add to that the sheer delight of all that power and the pure sexiness of the 200 NS, and you would think it was a done deal – I had finally found my dream bike. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case.
While the Rouser was undeniably fun, it was also very impractical for the type of riding that I do, 90% of which is running errands in and out of town. With the Rouser’s heavy weight (327 pounds) and horrible turning radius, my sexxay yellow beast saw itself getting used less and less. Daily, I found myself stepping out to the carport and hopping on the RUSI into town instead of the Rouser (that is, if the RUSI would start). Finally, I could not deny the reality any longer – the Rouser 200 NS just wasn’t practical and it would have to go. And given the RUSI’s inherent lack of reliability, I needed something better: A similar type of automatic scooter but one that wasn’t plagued with weekly mechanical and electrical issues. And after a good deal of research on automatic scooters (and legging around to local showrooms), I finally settled on the Honda Click.
Honda Click 125i: Automatic scooters are becoming more and more popular in the Philippines, especially for urban riders. They are light, possessed of decent power, have short turning radiuses and can carry loads of groceries. Technology has also progressed with the automatics, with modern fuel injection proving much improved gas mileage over carbureted models and increased power. The Honda Click is just one example of these new models: A fuel-injected, liquid-cooled, fuel efficient little motorbike possessed of a plethora of safety and performance features than make for what is – to me – the perfect little underbone.
OK, enough background – let’s get into what I like and don’t like about my Honda Click 125i. (Keep in mind that I have had it for one year and have put 6,000 kilometers on it.)
Reliability – It’s a Honda, and as such, it has pretty much turned me into a Honda fanboy. Basically, it’s just been adding oil.I have had no issues with it whatsoever, and the fit and finish of the bike lives up to the Honda reputation. Honda also seems to believe in itself, as their bikes in the Philippines come with a comprehensive two year warranty.
Power – For an automatic scooter the Click has got a good amount of get-up-and-go. Clocking in at 11.4 HP and rolling around at 233 pounds, the Click is possessed of a damn good power-to-weight ratio. Honda chalks this performance increase to its ESP (Enhanced Smart Power) system, which provides increased power with increased eco-friendless in terms of lowered emissions. Hey, being an eco-friendly liberal progressive socialist AND needing more horsepower, that combo works great for me!
Gas Mileage – The ESP fuel injection and engine monitoring system provides for insane fuel efficiency. If you’ve got a Honda Click, you are probably going to be looking at about 135 miles per gallon or about 58 kilometers per liter. And with its 5.5 liter fuel capacity, you’ll be able go around 320 kilometers before having to pull into a service station. Filipinos refer to this thriftiness as ‘tipid,’ and I wholeheartedly agree!
Storage – The Honda Click is the ultimate urban utility vehicle. Underseat storage is the largest in its class, clocking in at 18 liters – big enough for full-face helmet. Add in the space along the floorboard for (literally) piles of grocery bags and running weekend shopping errands has never been easier. I am also a sucker for ‘top boxes’ and have installed a Shad 33 liter box in the back. In total, I have never run out of room on shopping excursions.
Side Stand Switch – You can’t start a Honda Click with the side stand down. It simply won’t happen. And while many other newer bikes now sport this feature, it has to be noted nonetheless just how great this. For as anyone who has had an older scooter knows, there’s no worse feeling then zipping off down the road only to find that you’ve left your kickstand down while trying to take the next corner.
Combined Brake System – When emergency braking, it is always prudent to spread the braking power between the front and rear tires. Well, that is unless you actually want to go flying over the front handlebars. In a true crisis, however, most people don’t think of this and simply jam on both brakes. The Combi System automatically adjusts the brake force during an emergence stop, spreading the force more evenly between both tires. I haven’t yet tested this feature, and I hope to gawd I never do….
Idling Stop System – When activated, the Idling Stop System shuts down the engine after you’ve been sitting still for three seconds. Then, when you are ready to go, a simple twist of the throttle gets you going again. A key part of the Idling Stop Sytem is the alternating current generator (ACG) that Honda uses in lieu of a traditional starter. With the ACG, there are no reduction gears or whiny starts – it just simply zips to life and goes. The LED headlights are also a nice feature on the Honda Click, claiming an 80% higher intensity with a lot more efficient power consumption. The high beams on the Click are actually too bright, but they sure come in handy when you are being borne down on by an oncoming truck or motorbike blinding you with their own highbeams.
OK, so when all is said and done, I could only come up with ONE major negative with the Honda Click, and given that it is an automatic scooter it’s not going to be a surprise….
Off Road Performance – The Click isn’t designed for tackling rutted mountain roads, and its little 14 inch tires don’t provide a lot of traction in wet or muddy conditions. Add in a measly 130 mm’s (5 inches) of ground clearance, and Honda Clicks most likely won’t be winning any Baja Enduro races anytime soon.
Seat Lock – This is a minor gripe, but one that seems to affect nearly every Honda Click. For some reason, it is VERY difficult to lock the seat down – you basically have to lean your entire bodyweight into pushing the seat down until it locks. A minor gripe, but one that should be noted.
Lack of Sexxayness – Yeah, this is a minor issue as well. Compared to the big and sexxay Rouser 200 NS, the Honda Click isn’t going to exactly turn a lot of heads. And by adding the fairly corny looking Shad top box, my Click is now even less of a chick magnet.
But at least I still got my rugged good looks, wit and charm!!
OK, so that’s my one year review of my adorable and incredibly practical Honda Click 125i. If you’ve got something to add, feel free to leave in the comments section below.
Oh, and here’s the video I did on this: