Is this the next Honda Ruckus?

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Unveiled at the Bangkok Motor Show this morning, this Zoomer X is Honda Thailand’s take on a replacement for the popular 50cc scooter known as the Ruckus in the US. In production for a decade now, the current Zoomer still looks fresh, largely thanks to its elemental design; exposed frame tubes aren’t covered in any bodywork and two round headlights are as close to “styling” as it gets. This concept ditches that simplicity for plastic cladding around a similar exposed underseat area.

Information out of Bangkok is scarce and Honda’s only official line describes the Zoomer X as “a fun new concept with unusual design, designed to accommodate the lifestyle of teenagers.”

The Zoomer was first unveiled in 2002, going on sale in Japan and America in 2003, before being introduced in Europe over the subsequent several years. The exposed frame design is intended to facilitate user customization, which is good, because it’s nearly impossible to store anything there without the aid of at least a bungee net. Otherwise conventional, the 50cc scooter is limited to 30mph in stock form but can reach 45+ by simply changing pulleys. Performance, practicality and styling mods are extremely popular.

We’re kinda hoping that the Zoomer X is simply a misguided effort by Honda Thailand that won’t impact the vehicle being sold elsewhere. Imposing questionable styling onto such an elemental concept will only ever result in diluting its appeal. There’s already dozens of plastic-clad, enclosed scooters on the market, why homogenize the Zoomer by making it identical to the rest of them?

  • Shaun Lewis

    The new concept looks like a step-through version of a Sachs Madass. I say keep the Ruckus as is. It’s one of the few modern scooters that doesn’t require you to hand over your man card just to ride.

    (I do like the wheels and tires, though. Maybe they could incorporate those into a new Ruckus, without all the cheap plastic.)

  • contender

    The ones I notice seem to have many impracticality mods as well.

    • http://twitter.com/metabomber Jesse

      There was a Ruckus with a stretched swing arm, yoshimura exhaust, and my favorite mod – cattlehorns, in my work neighborhood last summer. I kind of want to meet the rider and shake his hand.

      Not my cup of coffee, but the rider obviously enjoyed the hell out of it.

  • Campisi

    All the Ruckus needs is a 125 cc version that otherwise doesn’t change the formula too much (I’ll do what everyone else is doing and pretend the Big Ruckus never existed). Even the Daelim B-Bone, a bad scooter even by Korean delivery guy standards, is popular here because it apes the Ruckus to some degree. The 50 cc is popular in cities, but a 125 cc could be popular anywhere.

    • http://www.lgdm.fr stempere

      Googled Big Ruckus…
      Can’t be unseen.

  • Toby

    If it’s going to sell in Thailand they better up the displacement… Honda already sells tons of 110-125cc scoots here at ~$1200 brand new, so it’s not like they can offer this as a much cheaper option either.

  • http://cynic13th.livejournal.com/ cynic

    Ruckus!

    I love this scooter, it makes me want to move to the city so I can justify owning one.

    I hope they don’t go all “plastic” on it.