The product of several ongoing trends in the two-wheeled arena, Honda's concept Elysium is futuristic all-weather mega-scooter.Yamaha started it all with the 250 Majesty, Suzuki followed with a 400 scooter, Yamaha went to the T-Max 500 and Suzuki countered with the Suzuki 650 Bergman we tested in Gizmo 5.Honda's new concept continues the capacity creep for scooters of recent years and trumps them all, being powered by a liquid-cooled 4-stroke flat-4 engine with a low center of gravity and plenty of grunt.

The drivetrain features a new, Honda-developed combined CVT (continuously variable transmission ­ just like the Suzuki 650) and shaft drive. In issue 4, we tested the Benelli Adiva a fully-enclosed scooter with a convertible roof which folds away when the sun shines and can be clipped back in place within a few seconds for when the rain comes. Honda has taken this concept and gone one better ­ it has a electric-powered roof, operated by a single switch. The control console includes a digital speedometer, a satellite navigation system, and a monitor display of the rear view using sonar.

The Elysium is only a concept machine, but Honda has a way of turning its concept machines into showroom models!