Honda 500CBR, SYM 300i Evo, or PCX 150 for touring

Discussion in 'General Discussion / News / Information' started by z28flash, Apr 29, 2013.

  1. z28flash

    z28flash Member

    Hi all. I currently have a PCX150 with some mods and enjoy riding around Chiang Mai. However, I would like to ride to Nan, down to Krabi (going east of BKK), and other places in Thailand, so I have been considering a trade in for one of the new Honda 500CBR models. However, then I lose the useful space under the seat. I do have a trunk box mounted on the PCX, and could also get one put on the Honda, so at least I would have quick access to storage, and I could place some soft side bags when touring. Seems that maneuverability is ok for in city riding.

    Now I have also researched the SYM 300i, and it seems to have sufficient power for touring, lots of storage, and can work well in or out of city traffic. At around 150K, it is about 60K less than the Honda. Granted, not as powerful, but perhaps a more comfortable ride and the ability to shift your feet around.

    Of course, I can stay with the PCX, but although it will cruise all day at 80kph, it starts to get a little wind rough around the 90-100kph, and it tops out at 110 and would not be comfortable at that speed for a lengthy ride (if I'm in an area where that speed or more can be utilized).

    So I've been tossing this choice around for a few weeks, and thought maybe a few members here had some input that will lead me to making a good decision. I can afford the Honda, but the SYM has quite a few nice features, better headlights, better brake/tail lamps, storage, comfortable large farang style seat, and sufficient power. The Honda has more power, no immediate storage, costs more, and really anything over 120-130kph is faster than I will normally go, although having some passing power is always nice. The PCX seems a little small for really long distance touring.

    Any thoughts, recommendations? Thanks!
     
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  3. Ian Bungy

    Ian Bungy Ol'Timer

    z28flash, I would take a look at the New Honda Forza 300cc Scooter! POP Rental has them if You want to try one first? What Bike You choose is up to Your personal Preference and Riding Style. The CB500X is a Real style Motorcycle and You could always fit saddlebags or a Big Top Box? The Others are all Scooters so Your Choice? Either way Enjoy!
     
  4. schackster

    schackster Ol'Timer

    If its a big scooter your considering with good under seat storage you may also want to look at the Honda Forza 300. Its priced at around bht160k. Many of the rental companies now have them so u could rent one for a day and try it out
     
  5. Lakota

    Lakota Ol'Timer

    I don't know anything about the Bigger Scooters, I ride a Honda Click scooter but it's only 125.

    I also have a CB500X. don't ride anything over 120-130 either . but it's just that accelaration for overtaking that comes into it's own. I've found the Cb500X is just as nimble around town as a scooter . The biggest downer for me with the Scooters is the small wheels size. It only takes a bad rain season and the roads are a mess with potholes again. The luggage thing is easy to take care of.
     
  6. SilverhawkUSA

    SilverhawkUSA Ol'Timer

    If cost isn't really a factor, and you want to do motorcycle touring, buy a motorcycle (CB500). I prefer the CB500X because of the riding position and it has the larger seat. I had to google Sym because I never heard of it before. I would be concerned that if I needed repairs or parts on the road, they may never have heard of it either. What makes you think it has better lights, etc? Just because they look bigger does not necessarily make them perform 'better'.
     
  7. Franz

    Franz Ol'Timer

    z28flash you have several options there, of course the new CB500 Hondas, the new Honda Forza 300, a second hand ER6N or NINJA650R or both the SYM 300 or the bigger one with 400 cc. The scooter ones of course have a lot of storage space under the seat and it is easy to fit a topcase. As for the CBR & Kawa storage, well you'll have to fit a topcase anyway as storage on such bikes is limited to a first aid kit, bike papers and tools.
    Instead of considering the SYM300 you should chip out a little more and go for the 400 cc one. Buddy of mine has one and loves to ride it also on longer trips.
    Whatever you buy, resale value of such bikes won't drop very, that should also be worth a consideration.

    Dave, the SYM were & are good selling scooters in Europe, they are taiwanese build and have a 'licensed' Honda engine, meaning it is not the latest engine model but the one before. Here in Thailand they already built up a network of agents in Pattaya for example the same as the Honda agent Niyom Panich. Rode already Dougal's 400 cc one and I was impressed how smooth it is and the storage area under the seat is huge.
    Rgds, FR
     
  8. SilverhawkUSA

    SilverhawkUSA Ol'Timer

    Franz, I stand by my opinion. This is not Europe, Taiwan or for that matter Pattaya. N. Thailand has some of the best 'best motorcycling' roads in the world. Ride a motorcycle. If you just want to site see and are so concerned about storage space, buy a car. They have lots of room also. :)
     
  9. DavidFL

    DavidFL Administrator Staff Member

    You want to go touring & ride "to Nan, down to Krabi (going east of BKK), and other places in Thailand." Its a no brainer - buy a bike with big wheels - the 500 or something similar.
    But a scooter if you want to hang out in the city & do a lot of shopping with regular trips away out of town; but if you want to go touring buy a big bike.
    Storage is not a problem, just put some side boxes on & / or a top box. Please yourself.
     
  10. z28flash

    z28flash Member

    Thanks for all the info. I was on a ride up to Chiang Dao with a group of PCX riders. On the way home, one rider had a SYM, probably the 400. When behind me, his lights actually outshined my PCX lights, and so I could see better. I just got back from looking at the Honda 500F (well, I looked at all three models, lol), but I am used to the convenience of under seat storage for rain gear, paperwork, bungee cords, umbrella, etc. The 400 is about the same price as the Honda 500CBR, and won't be as quick, but I've read a few reports from previous big bike riders that the scooter format is much more comfortable, although the 400 is a touch larger around town. I do like the Honda being a former bigger bike rider, and I know I can install a top and/or side box, but I'm not fond of the look on a motorcycle. Without a top or side box though, there isn't any storage, and as my only transportation, getting groceries or shopping in general will really require at least a top box. Unfortunately in Chiang Mai, the only SYM dealer doesn't have any SYMs on the floor to see, and I really am not sure I want to buy a maxi scooter without at least sitting on it, although the few reviews I have read were favorable. I'll keep researching some as I want to make the proper decision for me, and I do appreciate the thoughts and input.
     
  11. SilverhawkUSA

    SilverhawkUSA Ol'Timer

    Of course the final decision is up to you and we all have different ideas and have offered our personal opinions, for whatever they are worth. But to be honest, it sounds like you had already made up your mind.

    Whatever you get, the important thing is that YOU are happy with it. Good Luck.
     
  12. z28flash

    z28flash Member

    I guess bottom line is you can't truly get both sides of the riding experience. A 500 CBR is different from a scooter, even a maxi-scooter. Both have advantages and disadvantages, especially keeping within a reasonable (for me) budget range. As time is not a problem, I guess just some additional research and maybe a few test rides are in order! Thanks all, and I'm looking forward to some nice long rides!
     
  13. KZ25

    KZ25 Ol'Timer

    I just did a 2,900km trip. I own a '09 Nouvo 135 and a '11 CBR150R. The Nouvo is for everyday use and the CBR I bought to be able to do a one-day 490 km trip from Songkhla to Phuket.
    But - I decided to take the Nouvo and haven't regretted it! The CBR is much faster but also more uncomfortable, and strapping a bag on every morning and taking it off at night is a pain in the butt. The Nouvo is of course slower but goes about 100 km/h top speed, indicated 110, which is acceptable. I hang my backpack over the mirror stalks and stuff a bag with shirts and underwear under the seat. When I arrive anywhere I get to my stuff easily and it is clean and dry. The seat is bigger and I can move around on it.
    I don't like the looks of scooters, the Forza 300 is a good idea but I don't like that phat rear end. I'd buy a Nouvo or a T-Max 300 for 160,000 THB over a CB500X!
    I never liked the look of top boxes or those big side boxes sticking out like on a packed-up donkey, as practical as they may be.
    If the price would be lower the NC700X would be the bike for me - enough storage, I don't need much, enough power and I like the dual clutch. And it still looks and should handle like a bike.
     
  14. Lakota

    Lakota Ol'Timer

    does sound like he's going to get a Scooter :)

    I nearly went for topbox and panners for my CB500x but I have a huge tank bag instead . Alpinestars thing. its like a backpack and because the cb500X tank is so big it fits nicely and isn't in the way. Its sheilded by the windscreen so doesn't cause any drag. I use one strap at the front and then rely on the magnets. one click and its away. Its probably all the luggage I would need.

    test drive one of the Cb500's before you make a decision, remember a Scooter's for life not just for Christmas :-?
     
  15. KZ25

    KZ25 Ol'Timer

    A tankbag would be an option I'd consider, I'd like to see some pics of it, guess I'll google it and check out their website.

    How does that work when you're getting some gas?

    Probably the better idea if you don't travel much - a CB500X with a tankbag for the occasional trip rather than a scooter for every day.
     
  16. Lakota

    Lakota Ol'Timer

    It's a Alpinestars Tech Aero tank bag/ google it. they are expensive oversea's but its expandable from 20 to 30 Litres. I got mine from CR saddlebags.
    it was very reasonably priced, saw one there today but not on the website, so maybe it's the last one.

    30 litres is a lot of luggage and it fits the large tank on the CB500X very well. As for filling up, it's not a Scooter, can't recall the range but it's a lot of Kilometers. Just unclip one quick release buckle and pull it to your chest while the lovely lady does her business with the Hose :D
     
  17. KZ25

    KZ25 Ol'Timer

  18. Dougal

    Dougal Ol'Timer

    Hi z28flash,
    If you are interested in a Sym 400i contact me; I have one in Chiang Mai and you could try it out. May help you make a decision.
     
  19. z28flash

    z28flash Member

    Thanks...yesterday I looked at a Sym 400i but I feel it is too large for my taste. The new 300i Evo looks better in terms of size, and has adequate performance, but Keeway did not have on in stock to look at. Evidently there is a motorbike show at BigC off of the superhighway in Chiang Mai in about 10 days, and Keeway and SYM bikes will be there, so I'll take a look. Unfortunately the money I was going to use for buying a new bike ended up paying income taxes, so I'm not financially ready now for anything. I think Honda will finance me for a Forza, but I think the back side is pretty unattractive, and the SYM has better features. However, Honda told me an improved version will be available in about one month, so that might be interesting. Overall, to me, I believe the scooter is a better alternative to a motorcycle in Thailand, unless you have a car. But we shall see, as Kawasaki just rolled out their naked 250cc, and although the Keeway 250 isn't too powerful, I heard one leaving the shop that had an exhaust note bringing smiles to both myself and my friend's face :).
     
  20. KZ25

    KZ25 Ol'Timer

    Hope it'll be a better-looking one! The Forza looks boring, how about something a little bit more exciting? Not everybody wants a scooter you can go camping with.

    The T-Max 530 has the right looks IMO.

    A sexy, sporty 300cc scooter for 165K is tempting! Yamaha has nothing to offer between 135 and 530cc - what's happening?
     
  21. mikerust

    mikerust Ol'Timer

    Late again.;-)

    SYM are rumoured to be bringing the GTS250Evo to Thailand. The old 250 was 250.6cc so was levied duty as over 250cc (Asean agreement) but the new one although the same is 249cc so less duty. The GTS 300 was only 263cc anyway.

    According to some The Forza puts out 24 hp and the SYM 300 Evo 29hp. This is of course not the whole story about performance but... SO it seems reasonable the the 250 will be up there with the Forza which is 279cc.

    Big scooter vs bike? Depends on the roads and the personality/preference of the owner. Lots of big scooter touring in Europe.
     
  22. madjbs

    madjbs Ol'Timer

    I hired a Forza 300 last week and the thing was great fun, it just needs a little more power for touring the hills.
     
  23. z28flash

    z28flash Member

    Been a little while since I updated this. I ended up purchasing a 2013 SYM 300i for a variety of reasons. One was styling, then comfort, storage room, and safety. The SYM has a large LED tail light, and the front end has eyebrow lights, regular lights, fog lights, and the LED signal lights are in the mirrors and quite bright. In addition I added a CooCase storage trunk that also has some LED brake lights. I road to Phitsanulok and back, at speeds up to 140kph, and the ride was quite comfortable, although I did experience some wind buffeting around the helmet area, so I eventually purchased a higher windscreen that has eliminated that problem. Technically I can store 4 helmets (two under the seat, two in the trunk), but I usually use the trunk and the underseat area holds my rain jacket, small umbrella, towel, and riding jacket. I'm about ready to ride to P'Lok again and then down to BKK, but I am not sure how to avoid the toll roads there. I have found the SYM to be pretty stable, even at slow (near stop) speeds, and it can squeeze through virtually all areas a regular scooter can, plus as the mirrors fold in, I can squeeze through a tight spot at times by doing so, or when parking. I may still get a small motorcycle for the feel, but overall I'm quite happy with the SYM.[​IMG]
     
  24. Ian Bungy

    Ian Bungy Ol'Timer

    Good for You z28flash. It Certainly looks a really Neat Maxi Scooter! What do they cost compared to the Honda Forza? SYM is a very Big Manufacturer and popular in Europe I am Told?
     
  25. z28flash

    z28flash Member

    The new Joymax 300i SYM is 155,000 baht. Usually the Forza is around 169,000 and (IMHO) is not as attractive. Neither bike is a rocket....mine weighs around 196 kilos, so it's heavy, but still accelerates fairly well and can pull the hills. Of course a 500cc Honda will have more power, but will lack the comfort, storage and better lighting of the scooter.
     
  26. jamesadam

    jamesadam New Member

    Hi
    Just thought I would give my 2cents worth. I just did 23 days / 5300kms on PCX 150. Fantastic, never missed a beat from Phuket to Chiang Rai, Mae Sot, Bangkok and back to Phuket.
    http://www.jamesadamsamazingthailand.net/295158284
     

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