You think Transformer, we think foldable fun! You say what the hell, we say “You jealous bro?” For most people who have no idea what this is, we introduce to you the amazing Honda AB12 50 or for short, MotoCompo!
The little “Trunk Bike” was introduced in 1981 alongside it’s Honda City counterpart as a needed accessory for anyone looking to have the complete package of ultimate fun. Only $360 in fun for 1981. Insert *Jaw Drop* Here. Roughly about 47 inches in length and 36 inches in height (in ride mode), this little scooter was extremely small and nimble. The MotoCompo was designed to fit in the rear trunk of a 1st generation Honda City and it worked rather well!
Here’s another pic of the Transformer in the trunk of a Honda City, this time showing how compact it fits in between the hatch and the rear seats! The trunk of the City was actually designed around the MotoCompo giving it that insuperable Hero-Sidekick look !
Any owner of the MotoCompo can tell you that the 49cc “AB12” air cooled engine is extremely peppy and has just the right amount of get up and go for your big butt to be hauled around town. Sure the bike only weighs about 100lbs but it’s quirky box shape and steering is what makes it the head turner out in town. The single speed clutch transmission allowed it the 49cc beast to achieve 2.5hp @ 5,000rpm.
The little scooter endured a crazy advertising campaign alongside the Honda City during the early 80’s, having everything from being featured in music videos to food advertisements, to cartoons. In the past few decades it’s garnished it’s own cult following with being featured in Japanese Manga to even more cartoon shows. Be very lucky to see one of these rolling in the states here as very few were imported since the early 80’s. The internet has opened doors and if your very interested on breaking the wallet, one can be had for about $1500-3000 depending on it’s condition. There are believed to be over a 100 MotoCompos currently in the US and more are still being imported by enthusiasts.
The scooters were sold for only 3 years (’81-83) after sales didn’t equate to Honda’s forecast, the City however sold quite well and continued on for further generations! At the end of it’s run, the MotoCompo only sold 53,369 units by the end of 1983 and was discontinued. We say blasphemy but hey……it’s Honda, they’re always keeping the awesome stuff from us!