Honda to End its Production of Motorized Bicycles Up to 50cc in Light of New Emissions Regulations; Plans to Focus on Under 125cc Models

Courtesy of Honda Motor Co.
A “Super Cub” motorized bicycles with a 50cc engine

Honda Motor Co. will end its production of motorized bicycles with an engine capacity below 50cc, as it will be difficult for such models to comply with new emissions regulations to be adopted from 2025 in line with international standards.

The decision by Honda, which has the largest share of the motorized bicycles market, is likely to affect other manufacturers.

Honda’s motorized bicycles are best known for its “Super Cub” series, of which Honda has produced more than 100 million units since it began selling them in 1958.

The series is known as the best-selling motorized bicycles in the world. In Japan, they have been used primarily for commercial purposes, such as delivering mail and newspapers.

In recent years, however, sales of motorized bicycles have been sluggish due to the spread of electric-assisted bicycles and electric kick scooters.

According to the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association, Inc., the production of motorized bicycles under 50cc, including those produced by companies other than Honda, totaled about 2.5 million units in 1980, but has declined significantly since then to about 150,000 units in 2022.

Under the new emission standards that will take effect in 2025, it is believed that motorized bicycles with an engine capacity of 50cc or less will have difficulty meeting the standards due to insufficient emission control.

The National Police Agency has indicated that it plans to revise the law to allow motorcycles with an engine capacity of 125cc or less to be driven with a standard car license.

Honda will now on focus on the production of motorcycles 125cc or less, while working out plans to continue production of popular models that will meet the new standards.