You can pretty much do anything with a Honda Grom. It’s a versatile bike that transformed the motorcycle world in record time. But one look at YouTube, the forums, or your local off-road park reveals that some people hooligans think the Grom is a supermoto in disguise.
To find out if there’s any truth to that, we’re going to tackle a debate that’s hotter than whatever Kim Kardashian is doing right now. Really, anything at all. And if you’re wondering what a Grom is, do us a favor and get out.
This is very serious stuff.
Is the Honda Grom a Supermoto?
But like half the Marvel movies, there’d be no story if we took the easy way out.
In the modern vernacular a supermoto is defined as a street legal dirt bike. In that sense a Grom is obviously not a supermoto. The History of Supermoto taught us that the defining quality of a supermoto is its ability to handle both paved and loose surfaces. That’s how this whole style of bike came about in the first place, back when men were men – and even dogs were men. And just like that, the Grom is back in the game.
Check out the full origin story of supermotos:
The Plot Thickens
Watching these three southerners braaap away in a muddy forest is oddly satisfying. Street legal tires do nothing to hold them back, and it isn’t all that much different than watching people ride actual dirt bikes. At one point I forgot they were even on Groms.
It’s the Grom’s diminutive stature that lets them pass low-hanging branches and muddy river bottoms like it’s not even a thing. They aren’t exactly setting any land speed records, but the Groms in this video are on trails that a full-sized supermoto would have trouble with, and their pace is aggressive enough to cause multiple offs.
That pace is possible because the Grom – or the Honda MSX125, if you’re so inclined – has a 124.9cc air-cooled single-cylinder engine with 10 horsepower and all of 8 torques. Sure, a YZ125 supermoto has 40 horsepower but it also weighs 190 pounds; the Grom weighs just 225 pounds, which… wait a second, that’s more. So what gives?
What is it About Groms, Anyway?
So far we’ve learned that a Grom weighs more than a city bus, has as much ground clearance as a Kia Soul (true fact), and has less power than this riding lawn mower. Where’s the fun in that?
I’ll tell you where.
The Grom has a personality you can’t quite describe, an energy that keeps you coming back for more. That soft voice that says “do a wheelie” or “hob that curb to McDonald’s” is the Grom’s spirit speaking to you, and it sounds a lot like that of a supermoto. If you’ve ever ridden one you know exactly what I mean.
Like Aristotle would have said, “the Honda Grom is more than the sum of its parts.”
Engineering. The Honda Grom’s 9.3:1 compression ratio means it can milk 10 horsepower from a 125cc engine. It’s geared nice and low, so while it doesn’t have any highway legs to speak of it does achieve stellar gas mileage on long rides while packing plenty of snap for riding in town. Sounds way more supermoto than lawn mower.
Utility. Groms are designed to carry two people without breaking a sweat, and they’ve been known to hold tons of luggage on some lengthy road trips. Try Portland to Alaska on a Grom on for size.
Customization. Honda left plenty of meat on the bone for customizers. Parts are easy to swap out, tires are easy to come by, and thanks to its wide bars and narrow fairings you’re not likely to cause much damage when you lay ‘er over.
The “Do Anything” Spirit
At its heart a supermoto is a street legal motorcycle that can do anything. Throw on some slicks and set blistering lap times, swap on some knobbies and rip on some trails, or get some road tires and BRAAP on your daily commute. The essence of a supermoto is a “go anywhere” mentality, and that’s something the Grom has in spades.
To some a Honda Grom is merely a fashion statement; to others it’s a way of life. Those who transcend from watcher to participant are rarely left unimpressed, and the popularity of both road racing and off-road adventuring stands as a testament to the dynamic genius that this little bike is made of.
Even if it’s not one on paper, a Grom is a rightful supermoto in real life. Which is why we're flying its flag loud and proud.
The Honda Grom is an Honorary Supermoto
Dirt Legal is proud to award the Honda Grom our first-ever title of Honorary Supermoto.
That has about as much meaning as an honorary doctorate from Harvard, and people wave those around like it’s nobody’s business. While the monetary value of such an illustrious endorsement is too large to calculate, we look forward to Honda formally thanking us by sending however many free Groms they think it’s worth. You’re welcome.
Sure, the Honda Grom doesn’t have a family tree that’s full of street legal dirt bikes. It doesn’t have dirt bike fenders or dirt bike suspension. It comes on street tires and wears a factory license plate bracket. But despite how it looks on paper the Grom is as much a supermoto as any KX or YZ that came before it.
What the Grom lacks in stats it packs in spirit. So the next time your friend with a Grom wants to tag along to the local trails, say “okay” and let the trail sort out the rest.
Of course now that Honda makes an honest-to-goodness factory street legal 450 dirt bike, riding a Grom like a supermoto is really all fun and games anyway.
And with services like Dirt Legal that can make your dirt bike street legal in record time, there’s no reason to confine your dirt bike to the dirt. Let it breathe the free air of the city and stretch its legs on the open road. Get street legal or your money back.
To learn more, click here, call us, or have our people call your people.