Monkey & Cub! Is It Jungle Frenzy Or Honda’s New-Found Love for Old?

The all-new 2019 Honda Monkey and the 2019 Honda Super Cub show that Honda can do old school. And that they have a soft corner for animals too.

Honda Monkey - Bananas Not Included
2019 Honda Monkey

Honda’s New Classic Lineup

Old is new again. Scramblers and classics with tear-drop fuel tanks are back in style. Brands like Triumph, Norton and Royal Enfield have a stronghold in the “classic” department. But the Brits aren’t alone in this game as Ducati, Yamaha, Husqvarna and just about everyone is trying to cash in on the craze of new bikes with old-school charm. So how could the tiniest bike in Honda’s lineup stay without its classic siblings?

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Honda Grom
Honda Grom

The Grom has company. And there are two new models ready to join the ranks with just as much animalistic urge in them as their names would suggest. The Honda Monkey and the Honda Super Cub will soon go on sale in the American market.

2019 Honda Monkey

The Grom is the modern day monkey bike that has been on sale for several years now. The small bike’s success warranted the return of the original Monkey and it’s finally here – almost.

2017 Honda Z50 Final Edition - The Original Monkey
2017 Honda Z50 Final Edition

The Monkey borrows styling cues from the Z50, which remained in production from 1967 until last year (2017). Back in the day, the Z50’s compact dimensions made the riders look like our ancestors and soon the bike itself earned the nickname of ‘monkey’. Instead of trying to glue the pages of history mentioning the funny name, Honda embraced it and officially christened the new model Monkey.

The old bike’s dimensions and displacement may have been modest, but it was an engineering marvel for the time. The 4-stroke 50cc engine (4.5hp) and came with a 3-speed semi-auto transmission.

The new one’s mechanical bits come from the Grom. That means it shares the 125cc 4-stroke air-cooled, fuel-injected motor (9hp) and the 4-speed manual transmission with the Grom. But despite its modest power output, it flaunts upside-down front forks and disc brakes on both ends. However, the Grom’s mono shock has been tossed out for a pair to retain the vintage aesthetics. Similarly, the fuel tank and the high exhaust port retain the old monkey’s shape.

In terms of tech, it gets a digital dash, LED headlamp with DRL and ABS.

Monkey Price

The Honda Monkey will go on sale later this year in the US as a 2019 model with a price tag of $4,200 for the ABS variant. A $650 premium on top of the Grom’s $3,550 price tag is nothing short of bananas! Because it’s essentially a Grom on the inside, for the most part, it has no right to be that expensive. But that cute styling makes me wanna hope that it’ll someday make its way to the Indian market.

Full Specs – Honda Official Page

2019 Honda Super Cub

Honda Super Cub C125
Honda Super Cub C125

Just like the Z50, the Super Cub started its journey in 1958 with a 50cc engine and is still in production in some form or the other. Just like the Navi, this one will make you ask yourself if it’s a scooter or a motorcycle. The engine is where it would be on a motorcycle and the 17-inch wheels are also adequately large. But there’s an apron bolted to the underbone chassis. Wierd? Huh! Not unlike the Bajaj M80 that brought healthy sales numbers for the company.

Bajaj M80
Bajaj M80

Semi-Automatic Gear

Just like the Monkey, the 2019 Super Cub is also banking on nostalgia to grab the attention. But it doesn’t just have style to justify the price tag. The 125cc engine (9hp) is the same as the one in the Monkey, but it gets a 4-speed semi-automatic. As in, you don’t have a clutch lever but you do get a shifter to scroll through the gears. The front wheel gets disc brake with ABS but the rear makes do with a drum setup. A nice blend of old and new!

Super Cub Price

The Super Cub gets LED headlight, indicators and a digital dash along with a keyless start system. Given the features, the price tag of $3,600 seems reasonable compared to the mini scrambler.

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