Thursday, April 29, 2010
Honda SS125 1967
The stamped-frame Hondas have grown more attractive with the passage of time, and the SS125 is the best looker among them. I like the efficiency of the layout, but it certainly doesn't rival the best European designs of the time for sheer sculptural beauty.
'SuperSport' didn't translate into any extra power. By the time the SS125 was introduced, the 125 twin was pretty long in the tooth and already making all the power it reliably could. Its 10,000 RPM redline was still remarkable, but all those revs only provided 16 crank horsepower and less torque than a 4-stroke twin was expected to make, especially with a 4-speed transmission.
The stamped steel frame was actually quite rigid. The flexy forks and swingarm, combined with garbage damping units and springs, made it less than sporting.