Rare 1981 Honda Motocompo Scooter Pops Up in California With Just 500 Miles

The Honda Motocompo is arguably the coolest scooter of the 1980s. It was sold from 1981 to 1983 and offered as an option to the Honda City. While not marketed in North America, some examples made it to the U.S. If you've been hunting one of these tiny bikes, here's your chance to finally get it.
1981 Honda Motocompo 5 photos
Photo: Barn Finds/Craiglist
1981 Honda Motocompo1981 Honda Motocompo1981 Honda Motocompo1981 Honda Motocompo
Discovered by the folks over at Barn Finds, this Motocompo comes with only 500 miles (805 km) on it, which basically makes it brand-new. And needless to say, it looks sparkling clean on the outside, as well as under the motor cover.

This particular example is finished in Shetland White, one of three colors offered by Honda back in the day. The other two are Daisy Yellow and Caribbean red. It's listed at $4,700, which isn't exactly a bargain for such a tiny scooter, but it's a collector's item you won't see very often here in the U.S.

Honda sold fewer than 54,000 of these bikes from 1981 to 1983, and probably just a few of them made it no North America as grey import vehicles.

Designed as a "trunk bike" that would fit into subcompact cars like the Honda City and Today, the Motocompo features folding handlebars, seat, and foot-pegs. All these fold into the rectangular plastic body, turning the scooter into a box-shaped thing that's only 46.7 inches long, 21.3 inches wide, and 9.4 inches tall (1,185 mm/540 mm/240 mm).

Power came from a 49cc single-cylinder, two-stroke motor rated at just 2.5 horsepower. Top speed? Well, you'd probably need some serious wind in your back to hit more than 25 mph (40 kph).

The Motocompo was marketed in conjunction with the tiny Honda City. The subcompact car's trunk was developed around the Motocompo, so it provided just enough room to fit a folded scooter. As a result, the Honda City was offered with an optional Motocompo in the luggage compartment.

The Motocompo wasn't as successful as Honda had hoped. Honda's initial monthly projection was 10,000 units, but the Japanese company sold fewer than 3,000 per month. But despite its short production run of just two years, the Motocompo maintains a cult status, especially in Japan.

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About the author: Ciprian Florea
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Ask Ciprian about cars and he'll reveal an obsession with classics and an annoyance with modern design cues. Read his articles and you'll understand why his ideal SUV is the 1969 Chevrolet K5 Blazer.
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