Milage: +30,000 Miles
Likes: Fuel efficiency, nimbleness, attention from onlookers
Dislikes: No fuel gauge, headlight bulbs, kick starter

Review: I have over 48,000 Kms on "Black Betty" (she's black and has Betty Boop decals) and other than the usual maintenance items, have replaced the rear tire due to tread depth, and the battery (original lasted 10 years but figured it was time to replace).

The low beam filament in the head light bulb seems to be flimsy as I have replaced 3 bulbs in 12 riding seasons, which in Winnipeg is a little over 7 months. They are expensive too, but the Yamaha equivalent is $12 cheaper and works just as well.

The kick starter gets gummed up with belt dust so needs to be vacuumed every now and then. Also a good idea to change belts every 2 or 3 years for noticeable extra speed and economy.

A plastic gas can fits under the seat after doing some cutting. Use the helmet lock and a dozen links of small chain and underseat storage for tools, maps, rain gear, etc. is lockable. A milk crate fits on the floor board so add highway pegs for your feet and you have lots of low gravity storage for groceries, garage sale purchases and the occasional beer run. You get more stability since you are straddling the bike and not sitting like in a chair. With ingenuity the crate can be cut at an angle and use the bottom as a top and fashion a hinge. (I used bits of chain). Mine is lockable.

In short, it's a great bike. Fun to ride, cheap on gas and very practical. Also a great way to express your creativity with home-made mods.”

Milage: 1000 - 5000 Miles

Review: “Great handling bike. I have added an iridium plug and I’m running synth oil. It’s a little sloppy when kick starting and the mirror placement is a little off. The Ruckus tops out at 40mph stock. Great bike, gets lots of comments.”

Milage: 0 - 1000 Miles
Compact. Quiet. Efficient. Fun
Dislikes: Zero complaints.

Review: This scooter is more fun that I ever thought. If you want fast, keep looking. If want down right fun, this is the machine. I live at 1400 feet above sea level in the Sierra foothills. It goes up and down all of the hills and zips in and out of the little towns. 100 MPG and I am 185 pounds. It does a steady 37 +/- mph on the straightaway and slows down to about 20 mph on super steep inclines but it doesn't stop. No comparison to the poorly constructed Chinese scooters. This thing is a blast. I paid $1400 for it with 806 miles on it. Worth every penny if you ask me. I just sold a Honda XR600. The Ruckus is more fun for city scootin' and can be easily thrown in the back of a truck or SUV. Essentially it is a high quality mini bike. Safe and fun.”

Milage: 10,000 - 20,000 Miles
Great looks, easy to park, great on gas, attention getter
Dislikes: No gas gauge, no storage compartments, no clock

Review: Bought mine brand new in 2008 with 175 miles. Fun to ride around the city. Keeps up with traffic fairly well. Nothing beats the gas mileage. I get almost 100 miles to the gallon. Fill up costs about $3.00. Routine maintenance is pretty inexpensive. Still a great ride after over 15,000 miles. Too bad I don't live in a warm weather state. I'd be riding my Ruckus all year around.”

Milage: 5000 - 10,000 Miles
Looks, Tires, Durability, Headlights, Fuel
Dislikes: Storage

Review: The 2008 Ruckus is the 3rd bike I've had, and definitely, my favorite. First of all, let me say - I am a hardcore rider who is rough on the bike. The first one I got was a Pantera Retro 49cc, it had a nice vintage look, good storage, fairly decent speed, and great on gas. But, it was made with a cheap, weak, plastic or fiberglass body and it did not withstand my tests of durability over a couple of years. I was not too fond of the little tires either. Next, I got a Pierspeed RM50. Had good storage with a decent look, and I great price on the bike. It ran well for ten miles until the governor kicked on - then the thing would not go faster than 25 miles per hour. Ridiculous.... the bike ended up getting stolen. I don't know if I was more angry or relieved that I didn't have to ride that awful bike anymore!

Then I got my Ruckus. I have thrashed this thing around so many times. It takes a beating and still rocks. Because of the steel framing, it's rugged and durable, and because of the look, it's pretty dope. Also with the forums and other websites, it's real easy to fix, maintain, or customize in any way shape or form you'd like. Some guys have put air ride's into theirs. Gotta love the Ruck...

Milage: 1000 - 5000 Miles
Likes: Smooth, Quiet, Good milage
Dislikes: So small that I worry about thief at grocery store.

Review: I got my Ruckus second hand at 200 mi on the odometer. Though I've owned/ridden a number of Chinese scooters, I've yet to own a Honda scooter. When I rode her for the first time, the only thing I could say was "WOW". At that moment, I realized that I got a terrific deal. Though I didn't pay MSRP (being used), I would have gladly paid MSRP for such a well engineered machine. It starts very quiet and perfect the first time, every time. I get a kick showing off to people the starter of the scooter. Riding it, I only hear the road contact noise between the wheel and the black top.

I don't usually ride full throttle and typically ride around 30 mph. I reserve higher speeds for my 650cc motorcycle. I ride this scooter more than I ride my motorcycle for my daily commute, as it is a lot more fun. After putting 1000 miles on it, I can confidently say that I would not recommend the Chinese scooter to anyone unless they can have almost no money, plenty of time, and is a motorcycle mechanic. This scooter is perfect for zipping around town or if you are a poor college students. I was glad to discover in my state I don't have to register a 50cc scooter, nor do I need insurance for it. There are two things I don't like about it. Being small and light, I always worry that some one may lift my scooter if I park it anywhere out of my sight (except my garage). The second one is that I can't find the darn service manual anywhere as they are out of print.” [Note: Get the service manual

Milage: 0 - 1000 Miles
Likes: Looks, reliable start at any temp, large wheels for my dirt road, under seat bin for my mail (made from plastic storage box), huge mod market available, comfort seat, Honda reliability.
Dislikes: Nothing

Review: I am large so I moved seat back and down to be back without being up. I mounted a storage bin under seat made from kitchen storage bin from grocery store @ $5.68. Took off all lights. I use scooter to go out to my mail box and back and to explore woods.

I replaced the air filter with K&N for BIG increase in engine performance, both start, idle and wide open. Have owned motorcycles since age 15 (now 75) and last one was HD Sportster. Have adapted to Ruckus and love the scooter. I am licensed A&P aircraft mechanic and if aircraft engines were this well built there would be no A&Ps.”

Milage: 1000 - 5000 Miles
Likes: Funky rugged looks. Well built. Honda reliability and efficiency. It's fun and it makes you smile because it's not pretentious.
Dislikes: Plastic cover over the exhaust.

Review: Such a refreshing change from most other scooters, let alone other bikes. It has nothing to prove but proves instantly likeable. I live in the UK so it's fuel injected and gives about 145mpg (120mpg US). Totally reliable and built to last. Speed is not important when you're riding around country lanes and it's so beautifully relaxing as you see So much more of the 'world' around you just cruisin'. If it went any faster it would lose all of it's 'charm'. Now there's a word I wouldn't dare use to describe my old Honda X11!”

Milage: 1000 - 5000 Miles
Likes: Nice cruise
Dislikes: After riding 10-20 minutes it fails to start via starter

Review: I have returned to dealer repair shop to install new fuel pump and new battery but still have the same problem with starter (won’t start a hot motor). After cooling down the starter will work. Repair shop declares its the battery. After 3 new batteries in five years it’s maybe time to upgrade.”

Milage: 1000 - 5000 Miles
Likes: Great on gas, Cheap to insure and register, Looks cool.
Dislikes: On inclines, I always wish there were a little more power.

Review: Bought my Ruck brand new last summer. It's been one hell of a ride! Took it to Acadia National Park a few days ago and had a blast.”

Milage: 0 - 1000 Miles
Likes: Rides great
Dislikes: Fuel issues

Review: Struggling here with your reviews. I have had this ruckus for about 1.5 years with 107 miles on it and can not keep it running. I have had it into Honda 3 times they serviced the carburetor I've rebuilt the carburetor twice myself and it's down again. I find it too be a very expensive piece of junk. I am taking it to Honda this week to get it running then dumping it at a local pawn shop.

I would under no circumstance ever buy another Honda.”

Milage: 0 - 1000 Miles
Likes: Huge fun and very practical, easy to handle
Dislikes: turn light switch, headlights power; speedo hard to read

Review: I bought this scooter a few weeks ago to complement my bike. The scooter is for commuting to work and the bike for weekend rides and vacations. Before these two I had a Vespa GTS300.

I already put over 400 km on the Ruck, including a super-long commute ride across (almost) the whole city (Toronto) and a 123-km Sunday ride outside the city. For riding in the city in 50-km/h speed zones the Ruck is just fine. On 60-km/h roads the Ruck is obviously slower than the rest of the traffic (most driver go at least 10 km/h above the speed limit), but these faster roads are multi-lane, so the faster traffic can pass, so it's not an issue. Riding on roads with a higher speed limit than 60 km/h is a pain unless they are multi-lane and others can pass. Even slight hills and noticeable head- or cross- winds slow down the scoot. OTOH, the Ruck can accelerate uphill up to a certain point and can keep up or even beat cars across an intersection (as most drivers don't do jack-rabbit starts).

I see the simplicity and openness of the frame as a bonus. True, one cannot store anything while away, or keep it away from rain, but weirdly-shaped objects can be carried. Putting stuff in a dry sack is an easy way of keeping it dry. With the addition of after-market foot pegs, the riding position is magically transformed from "sitting on toilet" to "sitting on a standard bike", with the feet below the body - much more comfortable. With the feet on the foot pegs the floor board is free to carry lots of cargo. I can easily fit my stuffed backpack there with some room to spare. Plus the space under the seat, of course. I can carry my laptop, safety boots, food and drink for the day, some small tools, and even a jacket on the scooter easily.

In this day and age of relatively inexpensive LED lights, why oh why Honda employs old-style halogens? The headlights give barely enough light to see (they are fine for "to be seen"). Switching to high beams is better, but still - LED bulbs would give much more light for lower
power consumption. This simple and basic scooter is expensive enough to have some decent lighting. Also, the turn signal switch has no "push to cancel". It's just a simple side-to-side slide switch with an "off" position in the middle. It's easy to over-shoot and switch the opposite turn signal on. The speedo is hard to read, though it probably doesn't matter :-)

Oh, did I mention the Ruck is an absolute blast to ride? It's so light and nimble it's like riding a bicycle. It is extremely easy to handle when parking. If you stop on a chew gum and can't motor off, you can just lift the scoot and continue on. I love how the scoot looks and have to chuckle every time I see it. As to the fuel consumption, I'm getting 2.5l per 100 km. That's great, considering the engine runs close to 100% most of the time and the scoot is still breaking in.”

Milage: 1000 - 5000 Miles
Likes: Everything

Review: I am 49 years old. Professionally employed. Live in BC, Canada. Have cars at my disposal. I'm having a great time with this scooter. I bought it primarily as a toy/emergency transportation to use when I'm up at the cabin, maybe let my teenagers ride around on it, etc. Never with the intent of modifying or joining the online scene, etc. But I'm finding that I'm riding it more than I figured and in ways that I would never have figured. I am enjoying scooting as a relaxing way to get fresh air. It's fun and therapeutic! Also, much more practical than I thought it would be.

I don't normally write reviews. I thought to write to share some things that might pertain to you, which I could not find online when I researched the bike, mostly concerning hill climbing. In fact, when I bought it, I figured it was a joke of a bike in terms of power and practicality so I didn't think I would ever use this on a public street! After owning it for some time, I'm thinking that a lot of the negative reviewers are hard core motorcycle or scooter people, who have a set opinion on smaller engine scooters. I'm currently commuting to work from North Burnaby to Coquitlam (Anyone that lives in British Columbia knows the area). I work up at Westwood Plateau so there are huge inclines but the Ruckus handles it much, much better than I expected. I have no problems taking steep and long Coquitlam and Port Moody hills. Traffic volume is low on most of the roads so it’s no problem at all. There are also under-utilized bike lanes if you are feeling pressure from traffic or uncomfortable. You could also just take back roads and avoid traffic altogether. Just keep tires inflated properly and do regular maintenance and you will be happy so long as your expectation is not to speed.

Since I bought mine, I have noticed quite a few people riding these. I've spoken to some on occasion. I've been surprised to see that I'm not the only person in my age demographics who are enjoying a 50cc. some of the people I've met are much older and surprisingly are not riding it strictly for fuel savings. Also surprised to hear that some have hit in the 10's of thousands of kms on theirs and no problems. Some seem to ride all year and have no desire to change to a larger displacement bike despite the hills in the region. One fellow I met lives up at SFU and commutes to Coquitlam every day in the spring-fall months on his stock 2009 ruckus. I guess it depends on your expectations in terms of speed.

Modifications: None actually! All stock now. I'll admit, I bought a lowered seat frame as I was motivated by positive online reviews. I figured that due to my stature, 5ft 8, 168 pounds the lowered seat would allow me more comfort and I could benefit from the performance gains as described online. I installed it and actually did not like it at all despite the ability to corner at higher speeds. I sat too low and I found it was quite uncomfortable sitting with my knees bent so much. Imagine sitting with knees higher than the seat frame!? Perhaps if I were younger, it would be the cool thing to do but it really did not suit me so I went back to the regular seat frame. Lesson learned - can't always go by reviews!

The bike has been reliable so far. I use only non-ethanol fuel. In this region that means 94 octane and so far, I have only found it at Chevron or Esso. In this area, anything less than 94 seems to contain ethanol and it may vary from station to station. These are just my observations despite online advice to use 87 octane (perhaps advice pertaining to those in different regions of the USA).

I look forward to many years out of this bike and passing it to my kids when I'm done!”


Return to the Honda Ruckus main page.