Due to weather and personal circumstances I have been unable to get the scooter out till today. Today was not the ideal day for a first ride. It was drizzling and the temperature was round 12 degrees.
It was not really too difficult to paddle out of the garage. I moved right forward so I not quite standing and not quite sitting on the seat and it was not too hard to reverse out of the garage. So that was better than I expected – but not ideal.
I started the engine and began. As I pulled away it vibrated quite severely but stopped as soon as I was up to walking pace. This was probably due to a cold engine as it did not happen again.
Now I can only compare it against my Suzuki Address 110 (9bhp) and my BMW R65 (50 bhp). The Honda (25bhp) sits right in the middle, and feels like it.
It feels more like the Address to ride, but it easily pulled up to 70mph up a gradient. The roads were wet, and I could see the odd bit of oil here and there so I could not really ride it hard enough to test the handling. I found the very slow speed performance when taking it through the village a little awkward. The power seemed to come on too fast. Maybe this takes some getting used to after the Suzuki
I was a bit disappointed to be honest. I’m not really sure what I was expecting. Maybe I was expecting it to be closer to the BMW. A bit unrealistic as it only has half the power and it’s not much lighter. It feels like a much smaller jump from the Suzuki to the Honda than from the Honda to the BMW.
I love riding the Address, and the SH300 really feels like a higher powered but a heavier and higher Address. I’m not sure, that for me, the downside of the extra weight and height (and complexity) balance out the upside of the extra power. I really don’t need a 80mph scooter. But I need some more miles in nice weather to make the call.
I find it amazing that my wife can sit comfortably on the back of the Address, my BMW R65, and was comfortable on my old Royal Enfield Bullet, my Royal Enfield Himalayan, but very uncomfortably on the SH300 (and not at all on a Vespa GTS. )
I’ll have to fit blocks on the foot pegs so my wife can reach them comfortably without sitting on my part of the seat. They will look pretty horrible.
I thought the Honda would replace the BMW. But then again I thought that about the Bullet and the Himalayan. I think I might be wrong again. I’ll ride it for around 500 miles then decide if she stays or goes. By then it should be warmer and I’ll compare all three machines. The BM is currently under SORN and covid restrictions are in force anyway, and may get stricter soon.
I’m definitely going down to two. My current guess is that it will be the Address and the BMW. If I get to the stage when I can’t ride (or get on) the BM I’ll be down to the Address only.
Re-reading the above – I think the grey sky, constant drizzle, and wet roads coloured my judgment. I need some more miles in nice weather to make the call.