Adventure bikes are a popular category of motorcycle. An adventure bike is a wonderful way to get around regardless if you’re traveling across the country by highway or fire road. But what if you’re a scooter person? Well, frequently weird Honda has just the thing with its new 2024 Honda ADV160. Honda has already given America an adventure scooter with the ADV150, but this one is better. This new all-terrain scoot has more power, even more butch styling, and oh yeah, if you’re a bit nutty, this one is highway-legal.
Scooters are an underrated form of two-wheel enjoyment. They’re stylish, nimble, and so easy to ride. In my experience, they’re tons of fun, too. In 2019, I took a 1986 Honda Elite 150D on an off-road adventure at the Illinois Gambler 500.
Off-roading a scooter is a different kind of motorcycle experience. You’d think the little things would be terrible, but my Honda got through mud and sand that stopped what should have been far more capable cars. My scooter even rode its way through a flooded trail without skipping a beat. It was a blast and I want to do it again soon.
Clearly, I’m not the only one who likes beating up scooters in the dirt because Honda will sell you a scooter with that purpose in mind.
How Does A Factory Adventure Scooter Come To Be?
Honda’s adventure scooters were the result of a winning design from Thailand. As the story goes, Honda had an internal global design competition between teams in Japan, Europe, Thailand, and Indonesia. The design goal was to create Team Red’s next product. The Thai team won with its X-ADV design. Out of the other end came the 2017 X-ADV (below), a large adventure scooter with a 750cc engine and a DCT.
Sadly, America didn’t get that beast. Instead, on April 1, 2020, we got the ADV150, a Honda PCX-like scooter dressed up like an adventure bike. Yes, Honda chose April first for a real debut! This machine first made its debut in 2019 in Asia.
The ADV150 is more than a scooter with some new plastic. Honda gave the little scooter more suspension travel and a rigid motorcycle-like duplex-cradle steel-tube frame. And that suspension is pretty cute. You got 5.1 inches of travel up front thanks to a Showa telescopic form and 4 inches in the rear with Showa twin shocks featuring remote reservoirs.
Power in the ADV150 (above) came from a 149cc single making 14.8 HP and 9.4 lb-ft torque. This is notable because in many states, we’ll just give California as an example, two-wheelers with fewer than 150 cubes on tap are not allowed on the highway. Honda advertised a top speed of 73 mph, but a realistic top speed is closer to the high-60 mph range. Obviously, the ADV150 isn’t a touring machine.
But! Being able to access a highway is still advantageous for a scooter rider in a city. In cities like Chicago and Los Angeles, the highways often move at far slower than 60 mph, so a scooter rider can hop on a highway and ride with traffic to get to a local exit.
Well, that’s how it could work in theory, because the ADV150 was just a touch too small for something like that. Honda’s latest version of its adventure scooter fixes that.
What’s New With The 2024 Honda ADV160
This scooter has been rumored to be headed our way. It was announced last July for Asian markets, but there wasn’t any chatter from Honda about us here in North America. The folks of Motorcycle.com did some digging and got the next best thing to confirmation of the scooter’s American arrival. Motorcycle.com found that the EPA has certified the ADV160 and other models like a redesigned 2024 Honda Grom.
If you go to American Honda’s powersports website, you’ll find the cute scoot right there. So, it’s here and looks ready for a pint-sized adventure!
The biggest change with the ADV160 from its predecessor is under the plastic. It’s now powered by a 157cc single making 16 HP and 9.8 lb-ft torque. That powers the rear wheel through a CVT belt drive. The extra 1.2 ponies and 0.4 lb-ft probably won’t make a huge difference to your top speed. The important thing here is you now will be able to scoot down the highway. Again, I don’t expect someone to tour on one of these but maybe scoot from one local exit to another.
The other notable change is in its styling and dashboard, which get a minor update for 2024. You also get a higher adjustable windscreen. In terms of technology, the scooter comes with a few gadgets. There’s two-channel ABS and switchable traction control. A 240mm disc mounted to the 14-inch front wheel stops the 294-pound scooter. A 131mm drum attached to the 13-inch rear wheel assists in stopping.
As for how its predecessor off-roads, check out this video from Zack Courts at RevZilla:
To save you time from watching the video, yes, it’ll definitely go off-road. Honestly, you can take any scooter off-road just like I did. People in developing countries ride normal scooters through all kinds of rough stuff and probably not while wearing substantial riding gear. Courts concludes that the ADV150 is not a real adventure bike, but it’s also not just a styling exercise. It really does have some ADV chops and the enhanced suspension travel might even make it a better scooter on the road than Honda’s PCX scooter.
Since the ADV160 is the same machine with a new face and a slightly larger engine, I would expect similar performance. That’s to say that it should be a heck of a fun time to ride. It even has 27 liters of storage, perfect to stow a helmet or some groceries.
Barring dealership markup shenanigans, the 2024 Honda ADV160 scooter can be yours for $4,499 plus a $400 destination charge and a $100 freight surcharge. Honda says the first spicy scoots will hit dealerships in July. This is another one I’d love to swing a leg over and maybe take down a fire road!
(Photos: Honda, unless otherwise noted.)
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