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GRIFFON - a fusion of motorcycle and scooter.

GRIFFON - a fusion of motorcycle and scooter.

GRIFFON - a fusion of motorcycle and scooter.

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At the Tokyo Motor show, Honda showed a 750 scooter-styled motorcycle with a retractable roof which it dubbed the Elysium and went to great pains to point out that the bike was purely a concept machine. Significantly, it was powered by a 750 Liquid-cooled flat-4 with power delivered by a CVT - a constantly variable transmission. The bike which Honda showed at this year's Tokyo show seems directly related to the Elysium in that the 750 engine, CVT and much of the basic layout were used as a base, but the retractable roof was gone and the running gear has been redesigned.At the heart of the Griffon beats a horizontally opposed 4-cylinder 750cc power unit equipped with an automatic transmission and the next generation VTEC. This sophisticated power unit gives a low center of gravity and offers superior space utilisation.

In addition to a full-automatic mode, push-button shifting is also available for sportier riding performance (as per the Suzuki Burgman 650 Scooter).

The combination of a large-diameter, rim-mounted front disc brake and "Combined ABS"(ABS + Front/Rear-wheel-linked Combi Brake) makes it easy for even new riders to brake with confidence. For improved safety, a vehicle-distance warning system is also fitted.

Mono-arm suspension is used at the front, and a Unit Pro-Link is used at the rear. One of the most interesting aspects of the Griffon is the use of a Smart Key which allows you to start the engine without inserting and turning the key or to unlock the seat just by bringing the key near the machine.

Because there is no key slot, tampering is prevented, and its electronic ID function helps prevent theft. The chronograph-style instrument panel shows a wide range of incrementally changing information in an integrated display. Want to know what's going on behind you? The CCD camera with rear-view monitor, which can also be switched to the navigation display, is of help here. Inside the front cowl is a stunning LED headlight.

For improved comfort when riding two-up, the trunk space in the front cowl has room for two full-face helmets. A fold-up backrest is also fitted.

About the Author
Mike Hanlon After Editing or Managing over 50 print publications primarily in the role of a Magazine Doctor, Mike embraced the internet full-time in 1995 and became a "start-up all-rounder" – quite a few start-ups later, he founded Gizmag in 2002. Now he can write again.   All articles by Mike Hanlon
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