Honda bikes are a customiser’s dream: cheap parts, reliable engines, beautiful bodywork. But with so many options available, how do you choose the right one for you? We spoke to Gemma Harrison, founder of the all-female biker collective VC London, and asked her to pick the six coolest custom Honda bikes ever.
I’ll take a 125cc Honda any day of the week. They’re perfect city bikes: cheap, light and nippy. Not only that, they’re great for a quick trip to the beach. In fact, some of my best-ever summers were spent on a 125cc, which brings me to the first bike on my list: the 2001 Honda CityFly CLR125, built by Dream Wheels Heritage. The enduro/off-road design is amazing, and I especially love the Renthal bars with built-in Blitz mini switches. The chunky Heidenau trials tyres are pretty awesome, too. Believe it or not, this scrambler used to be a pizza delivery bike!
This Gold Wing is dripping with attitude, from the stripped-back bodywork and bold hub to the old-school mods and vintage brakes. Everything from the three-leg headlight to the masterful stitching just oozes class. A vintage Gold Wing is nearly impossible to find in Europe, but the fine folks at Krakenhead went and did it anyway!
I love ’80s Honda dirt bikes, and this CR500 is one of my all-time favourites. It’s a perfect mix of classic Honda styling and modern tricks for the track – a self-proclaimed “barking mad bike” with a 500cc two-stroke that’s been tuned to the eyeballs. Ferociously fast – and guaranteed to make your day.
Marcus Carlsso built this bike in an attempt to subvert the clichéd café racer/street fighter trend – and boy, was he successful. First of all, he chose an unconventional bike to customise: the 2006 Honda CRF450, which he then stripped from top to bottom, including the seat pad (“because seats are for touring bikes”). For the finishing touches: carbon-fibre, 3D-printed panels. Truly unique. I love it.
I’ve got to admit, I'm a sucker for a cub, and this Honda C70 is no exception. It’s basically a motorised bicycle complete with handlebars, basket and a rack for your surfboard. It'll hardly “rip”, but it’s built for lazy rides to the beach and back – and I’m okay with that.
This CB550, like its successor the CB650, is one of the sexiest bikes I’ve ever seen, hands down. If the Deus C70 is an old pair of Vans, then this is black Prada stilettos. The dropped front suspension has made the bike flatter and more streamlined, and it’s been stripped down to the max with painstaking attention to detail. I’d buy it in a heartbeat!