HONDA IN­TE­GRA

Motorcycle News (UK) - - This Week -

With very few ex­cep­tions it’s pos­si­ble to see a pos­i­tive rea­son for the ex­is­tence of al­most any­thing with two wheels and an en­gine. Honda’s In­te­gra is, how­ever, one of those ex­cep­tions.

The In­te­gra man­ages to fall into the no-man’s-land be­tween a scooter and mo­tor­cy­cle, thor­oughly fail­ing to sat­isfy ei­ther camp par­tic­u­larly well – which is prob­a­bly why the In­te­gra has, so far, bombed in so many mar­kets.

On the face of it there’s noth­ing much wrong with the In­te­gra. It has the same 745cc liq­uid-cooled par­al­lel-twin mo­tor used in the NC750X and S mod­els. It has the same pleas­ingly easy-to-ride chas­sis (but a dif­fer­ent swingarm), wheels, brakes and sus­pen­sion, too. It han­dles re­ally well for a scooter thanks to the fit­ment of bump-smoth­er­ing 17in wheels and de­cent Bridge­stone T30 sports-tour­ing tyres. And it re­ally can be hus­tled along at a de­cent pace when out of the ur­ban en­vi­ron­ment in which it was de­signed to work at its best.

New for 2016 is an up­dated Dual Clutch Trans­mis­sion (DCT) which now sees the ex­ist­ing D (Drive) mode com­ple­mented by three dif­fer­ent lev­els of the S-mode (Sport) set­ting. Each one from S1 (mildly sporty) to S3 (most sporty) gives a dif­fer­ent rid­ing ex­pe­ri­ence. The big­gest change though is the fit­ment of new Showa Dual Bend­ing Valve sus­pen­sion, which re­ally works well to im­prove the con­trol, damp­ing and sta­bil­ity over the out­go­ing model.

The new full-colour dash is clear and can even be pro­grammed with a per­sonal mes­sage which greets you when you switch the ig­ni­tion on and off. It’s all very nice, easy and the bike is ex­tremely well fin­ished.

But, and ac­tu­ally it’s a se­ries of rather large buts, there is lit­tle rea­son I can see for buy­ing the In­te­gra over an NC750S or X. Maxi scoot­ers should boast large un­der­seat stor­age com­part­ments... the In­te­gra doesn’t. Scoot­ers also need to be al­most main­te­nance-free, while the In­te­gra has a messy chain drive. Plus, the seat is un­com­fort­able, as it puts all your weight through your back­side, and at £8149 it’s shock­ingly ex­pen­sive. So it’s hard to see many of these sell­ing in the UK.

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