Model updates: Honda’s premium sports/GT Forza 125 scooter maintains its place in the spotlight with cosmetic updates adding both to the premium appeal and to improved aerodynamics. The electric screen has an extra 40mm travel, and a USB charger built in to the glovebox adds convenience. Honda Selectable Torque Control (HSTC) is now a feature of the eSP engine, as is EURO5 compliance.
Honda’s Forza 125 was designed specifically for discerning European customers who demand the very most out of their scooter in every respect. And right from its introduction in 2015 it has met and exceeded all expectations, evolving year on year in response to owner feedback, and selling over 60,000 units to date.
Straight out of the crate the Forza 125 hit the ground rolling, proving an instant sales hit thanks to its comprehensive mix of sporty and ‘GT’ elements wrapped up in a distinctive design package. A lively new four valve version of Honda’s eSP (‘enhanced Smart Power’) engine, compact dimensions, sports-oriented attitude and handling ability provided traffic-busting agility around town, while its sit-in comfort, wind protection and strong top end power made easy work of longer-range highway commuting. Add in plenty of storage, premium features front to back, a new sharp-edged design aesthetic and Honda build quality, and the reasons for its immediate popularity are clear.
Fittingly, it’s never stood still, either. In 2018 – maintaining a steep development curve – the Forza 125 received a complete, sporty re-style and rider-focused upgrades that included full LED lighting and electric screen.
For 2021, another Forza uptick rolls off the blocks and onto European streets, with enhanced desirability and practical functionality.
2. Model Overview
Cosmetic updates applied to the front and side fairings, mirrors, rear side panels and engine cover refresh the Forza 125’s styling, creating a sleeker overall look, and improving aerodynamics. The re-shaped electric screen adjusts with an extra 40mm travel to maximise wind protection. And a USB socket replaces the ACC charger.
The chassis is unchanged, but the four-valve water-cooled SOHC engine receives Honda Selectable Torque Control (HSTC) to maintain rear tyre grip. It also gains EURO5 compliance.
The 2021 Forza 125 will be available in the following paint options:
Mat Cynos Grey Metallic
Pearl Cool White
Pearl Nightstar Black
Lucent Silver Metallic
Mat Carnelian Red Metallic
3. Key Features
3.1 Styling & Equipment
- Electric screen now adjusts through 180mm, an extra 40mm, for improved comfort
- Cosmetic updates enhance visual appeal and aerodynamic performance
- Room for two full-face helmets under the seat; new USB charging socket
- Smart Key operation of ignition and (optional) 45-litre top box
The Forza 125’s lines flow back from the electric screen – controlled by a switch on the left handlebar – which for the 2021 update gets a revised shape and an extra 40mm travel to adjust through 180mm. It’s designed both to provide wind protection, with airflow directed around and over the rider’s head, and reduce wind noise.
Stability and comfort at higher speeds – and long distances – can be instantly exchanged for a greater sense of freedom around town, by lowering the screen.
For greater comfort at higher speeds a larger front air duct manages negative pressure in front of the rider, reducing the natural effect of the wind pushing the rider back.
Sculpted for both style and aerodynamic efficiency, the Forza 350’s sharp design lines give a clean, smooth modernity, creating an impression of energetic sportiness and premium desirability. The styling team’s key words of ‘aggressive, technical and powerful’ find expression in a new spoiler-type surround below the headlight, refreshed fairing side panels with a distinctive ‘Z’ design line, and a steeply descending character line for the rear side panels that create a forward-looking, purposeful aesthetic.
Handlebar width remains 750mm as does mirror height of 1125mm, the perfect dimensions for slipping through congested city streets. Seat height is also unchanged at 780mm; there’s plenty of room for two and the riding position cups the rider securely. All lighting is LED.
Two full-face helmets can be stored under the seat, and it’s also possible to partition the storage area to house a helmet and/or rain gear and A4-sized bags. The front left inner fairing pocket is lockable and its internal space can be arranged for the rider’s convenience to hold a phone and water bottle, for instance. A USB socket replaces the ACC 12V charging point.
The Forza 125’s Smart Key – as well as controlling the main ignition switch knob and compartment locking – also manages the optional 45L Smart top box. With the Smart Key in the rider’s pocket the box is unlocked, and automatically locks when the rider walks away. It can also be locked from the key. To maintain the internal volume of the box the actuator mechanism is located in the rear body of the machine.
Instruments present analogue speedometer and rev-counter (with redesigned dials) flanking a digital display that can switch between 3 modes: 1) odometer, range remaining and current mpg, 2) trip meter, average mpg and timer and 3) ambient temperature thermometer and battery sensor.
- Honda Selectable Torque Control (HSTC) applied for 2021
- The engine features Honda’s eSP technologies, plus Idling Stop
- 42.7km/l gives range of nearly 500km between fill-ups
The Forza 125’s enhanced Smart Power (eSP) four-valve, water-cooled SOHC powerplant delivers [email protected] 8,750rpm, with peak torque of 12.2Nm @ 6,500rpm. Bore and stroke is set at 53.5 x 55.5mm with compression ratio of 11.5:1.
From a standing start the Forza 125 accelerates rapidly (0-200m is covered in just 13.3s) while sharp mid-range makes for responsive roll-on performance in the typical 40-60km/h around-town speed range. It will cruise happily around 90km/h and V-max is 108km/h.
An additional technology to boost rider confidence in wet conditions is the addition of Honda Selectable Torque Control (HSTC), which works in the background to deftly manage rear wheel traction. A ‘T’ indicator flickers on the dash when HSTC is actively reducing wheelspin, and the system can be turned off completely.
Honda’s eSP low-friction technologies are found throughout the engine. A compact combustion chamber and PGM-FI fuel injection – fed by 4.7-litre airbox and 26mm diameter inlet duct – optimise combustion velocity and cooling performance. Clever packaging of items like the oil pump (which is built in to the crankcase) help to further heighten the efficiency.
An offset cylinder reduces friction caused by contact between piston and bore, efficiently transmitting combustion energy to the crankshaft. A ‘spiny’ cast-iron sleeve – with tiny surface extensions – keeps in check any distortion of the inner bore diameter. This design lowers tension in the piston ring, reducing friction.
A high-efficiency radiator – integrated into the exterior of the right-side crankcase – employs a small, light fan that reduces frictional losses and lowers drag. Rolling resistance within the transmission unit is reduced by the use of three low-friction main bearings, all designed to deal with the loads they individually receive. The drive pulley features a fin design that lowers air resistance and the follower pulley reduces pressure on the drive belt, cutting transmission losses.
The electronically controlled, brushless ACG starter is an integrated component mounted directly on the end of the crankshaft, serving as starter motor and alternator. It spins the engine directly, eliminating any noise from gear engagement or meshing.
Idling Stop automatically stops the engine running after three seconds at idle when the Forza is stationary and the brakes applied, and re-starts it instantly when the throttle grip is twisted. It’s seamless in use thanks to ACG and the swing-back system that returns the crank to its position before air intake, and a decompression mechanism that negates cranking resistance from compression. It has the functionality to ‘read’ the battery charge and turns itself off to avoid excessive drain. The battery is a long-life YTZ8V unit.
One of the original aims of the Forza 125 is that the trip to the fuel station should happen just once a week for the average user, and a near 500km tank range is possible thanks to the engine’s fuel efficiency of approximately 42.7km/l (WMTC mode) and 11.5-litre tank.
Through the 2021 update the engine cover and swingarm have been redesigned to complement the new bodywork. The engine is also now homologated for EURO5, which from January 1st 2020 introduced significantly stricter engine emissions standards compared to EURO4. These requirements include substantial reductions in permitted carbon monoxide emissions, an over 40% decrease in total hydrocarbon emissions, tougher misfire detection and the introduction of a particulate matter limit.
- Steel frame, 33mm telescopic forks and preload adjustable twin shocks
- Wet weight of just 161kg aids agility and ease of use
- Cast aluminium wheels, front and rear disc brakes, ABS fitted as standard
Unchanged for the 2021 year model, the tubular steel frame that underpins the Forza 125’s chassis provides the necessary rigidity and strength for the broad variety of riding conditions it will face. Sturdy 33mm telescopic forks are matched by twin rear shock absorbers – adjustable through 7-stage spring preload – working through a 1-piece aluminium swingarm.
The Forza 125’s light weight, just 161kg, makes it easy to manage at walking speeds, and easy to park. A wheelbase of 1,505mm provides stability; the steering geometry – 26.5° rake and 89mm trail – delivers nimble steering.
The cast aluminium 15-inch front wheel is fitted with a 120/70-15 tyre while the 14-inch rear wears a 140/70-14 tyre, offering maximum traction and ride comfort. A large 256mm single disc performs stopping duties up front, mated to a 240mm rear, with the benefit of ABS for extra braking control on slippery surfaces.
A range of Genuine Honda Accessories are available for the Forza 125. They include:
45-litre Smart top box
35-litre top box
Rear carrier rack (direct fitment)
5. Technical Specifications
|Type||4 stroke-4 valve liquid-cooled|
|Bore x Stroke||53.5mm x 55.5mm|
|Max. Power Output||11.0 kW @ 8,750 r/min|
|Max. Torque||12.2 Nm @ 6,500r/min|
|Oil Capacity||0.9 litres|
|Carburation||PGM-FI electronic fuel injection|
|Fuel Tank Capacity||11.5L|
|Clutch Type||Automatic Centrifugal Clutch Dry Type|
|Type||Under bone type, steel|
|Dimensions (LxWxH)||2,140mm x 755mm x 1,500mm|
|Type Front||33mm Telescopic|
|Type Rear||Twin shock|
|Type Front||Cast aluminium|
|Type Rear||Cast aluminium|
|Tyres Front||120/70-15 56P|
|Tyres Rear||140/70-14 68P|
|Type Front||256mm, single disc|
|Type Rear||240mm, single disc|
All specifications are provisional and subject to change without notice.
*Please note that the figures provided are results obtained by Honda under standardised testing conditions prescribed by WMTC. Tests are conducted on a rolling road using a standard version of the vehicle with only one rider and no additional optional equipment. Actual fuel consumption may vary depending on how you ride, how you maintain your vehicle, weather, road conditions, tire pressure, installation of accessories, cargo, rider and passenger weight, and other factors.
For more information on Honda Motorcycles UK visit www.honda.co.uk/motorcycles.html
If you would like to receive our headlines daily to your email inbox then sign up to our newsletter
Podcasts Latest Episodes