Riding the Honda Grom with Brian Lopes


From the manufacturer:

“Honda’s 2014 Grom™ is a fresh, new way to add some fun, practicality, independence and style to your life. Fun: This new machine is a blast to ride, offering all the excitement of a full-sized motorcycle but in a package that just about anyone old enough to have a license can handle. Practical: The Grom’s thrifty Honda engine means you can run it on pocket change, and you can park it just about anywhere too.

Independence: With your own wheels, you can bag the bus and forget about having to beg for rides from your friends or—shudder—your Mom. Stylish: Check out the Grom for yourself. And then think of it as a blank canvas, waiting for you to customize it.

The new Honda Grom. Big attitude. Ride one and see.”

The Grom features:

  • 125cc Fuel-Injected Engine, 4-stroke engine
  • Inverted Fork Suspension
  • 12-inch 10-spoke Wheels
  • Combined Projector-Style Headlight
  • Multi-Function Digital Instruments
  • 1.45 gallon fuel capacity
  • Four-Speed Transmission
  • 2-Up Capability (300 lbs total rider weight limit)
  • Hydraulic Disc Brakes (220mm front and 190mm rear)

For more information about the all new Honda Grom, check out all the info at: http://powersports.honda.com/2014/grom.aspx

Interview with Brian Lopes

Being teamed up with Brian Lopes and Sunny Garcia was pretty damn awesome. Fortunately, I was able to remember that I was there to get some kind of mountain bike related content for work and Brian Lopes was willing to oblige. Here is a short interview on the latest happenings with #BrianLopes55

Mtbr.com: When is your next competition?
Brian Lopes: I am doing Mammoth next week! I am doing the Kamikaze Legends race, the Enduro and maybe the dual slalom. I’ll check out the course and see how it looks.

Mtbr.com: When was your last gated event?
Brian Lopes: My last gated event? Wow, that’s a good question, I’m not sure exactly, it’s been a while since I did one. I don’t really practice or ride those bikes very much anymore…

Mtbr.com: Have you been riding the Ripley mostly or do you still ride the HD or other 26″ bikes?
Brian Lopes: It depends on who I’m riding with and what kind of riding we’re doing that determines what bike I take. The Ripley is an awesome bike and I don’t have a lot of experience with other 29ers so it’s hard to make comparisons. But it’s always surprised me every time I ride it even for certain courses and certain types of terrain, where I initially don’t think it will be that well suited or that I’ll like it. It surprises me and handles amazing, definitely exceeded my expectations.

Mtbr.com: Will you be at Interbike at the new digs? (this year, the bicycle industry trade show known as Interbike will be at the Mandalay Bay convention center)
Brian Lopes: I usually go every year. I don’t plan to go all day every day, but it’s fun to hang out and shoot the shit with everybody and see the latest Ibis there!

Mtbr.com: Since we’re here today at this motorcycle event, tell me about your motorcycles. Do you own any street bikes? Your experience with dirt bikes is well known, of course.
Brian Lopes: The only street legal bike I have right now is a Vespa. It’s a Vespa 300 and where I live in Laguna Beach it’s pretty handy, running around town doing errands on.

Mtbr.com: Hard to wheelie one of those, though…right?
Brian Lopes: Yeah. It’s pretty difficult.

Mtbr.com: What other motorcycles do you have?
Brian Lopes: I currently don’t have one but I usually have a dual sport usually a KTM and that’s my go to motorcycle because they’re good for trail riding, adventuring, having that license plate on there always makes it easy to venture out a little more.

The Grom’s are definitely cool and I could see myself having one of these for ripping around town but I can also see myself getting into a little bit of trouble on one too. When bikes are this small and handle pretty good, they’re like little pit bikes for the street…kinda just asking for trouble for guys like me.

Mtbr.com: Switching subjects a bit, you recently had your first child…he’s 3 months old now? Sleeping much?
Brian Lopes: Yup, 3 months old, we named him Maverick. He’s pretty good…obviously I don’t have any experience with it but it’s not too bad. My wife has pretty much got it handled. There are some nights he’s fussy and some nights he sleeps tons. No big deal. Like anything in life you take the good with the bad and the hard times with the happy times and make it all work!

Mtbr.com: Awesome. One last question Brian. If he wanted to go into mountain bike racing or dirt bike racing, which one do you think you would push him towards more?
Brian Lopes: Man, that’s a tough one because, I mean, I grew up racing bicycles obviously and rode motorcycles a lot when I was little but never got into racing them at all. I used to race BMX with Jeremy McGrath and he’s here today and I remember the time when he got out of BMX went to motorcycles and I continued on BMX and no complaints on my end. My career and how my path in life has gone has been great. Jeremy has had huge success in motocross and supercross and fortunately for him he’s never had any super serious injuries. I would say bicycles, I’d try to push him more towards that just from the safety factor. I have a lot of friends that have gotten really hurt on motorcycles and even some good friends that are paralyzed but in the end I’ll let him do whatever he wants really. You can’t keep somebody from doing what they want to do.

Mtbr.com: Right on. Thanks Brian, I appreciate you taking the time for us and good luck in your race next week!
Brian Lopes: Thank you.

Follow Brian Lopes on Twitter: https://twitter.com/BrianLopes

About the author: Gregg Kato

Gregg Kato studied journalism and broadcasting in college while working many different jobs including deejaying, driving a forklift and building web sites (not all at the same time). Kato enjoys riding local Santa Cruz trails. Besides being an avid mountain biker, he is also a motorcycle fanatic. Two wheels, one Passion.

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Wordpress Comments:

  • goober says:

    For Faks sake Gregg with two G’s, HOW MUCH DINERO BRAH???

  • goober says:

    Just read the manufac link.
    3 grand.

  • Ross says:

    I don’t see the appeal of this. Is it just the pricepoint? You can get a nearly new ninja 250 for the same price, and it can go on the highway!

    • Gregg Kato says:

      Hey Ross, as a past owner of a 250 Ninja and having ridden the Grom, I can tell you that they serve two different purposes. The Grom is even easier to ride than the 250 Ninja and is more of a play bike. It’s small, non-intimidating size encourages riders to flog it, and flog it they will. Expect to see plenty of hop-up kits too. Don’t look now, but brand new Ninja 250s are now $4500! A lot more than the $2999 Grom.

  • ChillyMost says:

    Who is Brian Lop?

    • Gregg Kato says:

      Hey ChillyMost, if you mouse over that title bar, it will scroll the full name of the article in that gallery. Not obvious, I know. Character limit cuts off titles there.

  • rain says:

    1989 evening blasts from Monte vista via Redwood Gulch up hwy 9 to Skyline and down Page Mill home. 6 year old daughter and my hair blowin in the wind. . .

    Yes those were the good ol’ daze

    Helmet law ruined motorcycles. Never got over it.

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