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2009 Honda Ruckus Scooter Review

Thursday, June 25, 2009
2009 Honda Ruckus Scooter Review
45+ mph roads are kryptonite to the little Ruckus as it struggles to hit the mid 30's.
After a couple dicey blocks dodging minivans and pickup trucks, I pull over to take stock of the situation. First, I realize the initial five minutes of my maiden Honda Ruckus voyage are five minutes too many. Second, I make the grim recognition that either I turn around and re-run a gauntlet of near misses and sketchy left turns back to the office, or navigate a half-mile stretch of 45-mph surface street to get home.

Anxious, I pull up to the right hand turn and head home - the 45 mph speed limit sign right there taunting me. Traffic is busy, so timing is critical. With a half block gap I wick up the throttle and pin it, slowly spooling up to 20 mph, 25 mph, 30 mph… 30 mph… 30 mph. I see the stoplight ahead – but good lord that’s a long, long ways away...

The Ruckus is abysmal for street riding, unfit for the majority of public roadways.

There, I said it. Not what Honda, or prospective Ruckus owners, want to hear – but it’s the truth. This isn’t the 250cc-powered Big Ruckus of years past. Nor is it a buzzy 49cc 2-stroke powering the bare-boned Honda scooter design. The 2009 Ruckus sources a 49cc liquid-cooled, 4-stroke Single, which is simply too small for real-world roads.

The low-30s top speed severely limit the practical turf a Ruckus is fit to prowl. A lagging throttle and meager acceleration complete the overall poor engine performance. And it only gets worse with the slightest elevation change, as top speeds drop to freakish levels – not even 20 mph in some instances.

2009 Honda Ruckus Scooter Review
The big tires on the small 10-inch wheels do deserve some props, as they deliver good feel and even allow for some mild dirt excursions.
On top of it all, the Ruckus is cold-blooded. During one week-long layover (one of many rider-less gaps, such was the disdain it generated…) the little scoot only started after about 20 frustrated minutes of deft throttling to warm up – even with its internal choke. Oh, and did we mention it’s really, really slow?

As for the reason why such a pitiful motor powers the scooter, our best guess is that some states don’t require a permit or training to operate sub-50cc scooters – making the Ruckus a popular, easy sell. The perverted logic makes less sense the more you analyze it: Give a completely un-roadworthy machine to riders yet to prove their riding ability. In fact, they may be purchasing one specifically to avoid doing so! It used to be sub-50cc scooters were more potent 2-strokes, but now 4-strokes are the default, casting the road-worthiness of the whole class in doubt – at least if the Ruckus is a fair representation.

“After my first few rides I could hardly find the words to describe how disappointed I was,” says Motorcycle USA Dirt Bike editor JC Hilderbrand. “There’s simply no power. Big Red makes a 50cc, 4-stroke dirt bike that will stomp this thing in a drag, and they sell them to kids who aren’t old enough to read. Why would you strap a full-sized adult on it and throw them into city traffic?”  Check out how well it held up in city traffic in our Honda Ruckus Scooter Video.

Stick a 125 or 150cc motor in the Ruckus and this review would be quite different.
2009 Honda Ruckus Scooter Review
Cruising though suburban streets seems to be one of the few safe places for a Ruckus rider with speed limits in the 25 mph range.

At first the Ruckus drum brakes seemed a perfect counterpoint to the anemic acceleration! Coasting stops were met with amused disbelief, but after an adjustment and a modest amount of commuting miles (modest because we honestly avoided riding it) the dual drum units scrubbed in, somewhat. But the overall braking performance almost made us grateful the Ruckus is so slow.

“The brakes are woefully underpowered, not that it matters since it barely gets up to residential speed limits before the next stop sign,” deems JC. “We haven’t formulated a way to accurately quantify the drag coefficient of sneakers, but I would estimate putting your feet down offers an additional 30-50% stopping power.”

At this point, bagging on the suspension and riding position doesn’t quite seem fair – like kicking the little Ruckus on the ground after a bully just stole his lunch money. True, it’s a tiny scooter, with a low 28.9-inch seat and short 49.8-inch wheelbase. And, yes, it feels small in the saddle. The suspension units, a front fork (2.2 in. travel) and rear single shock (2.6 in. travel), aren’t meant for test riders of our size (180-205 lbs). But to be honest, we don’t have many complaints here, as the suspension/riding position is the least of your worries while rolling down the road.

By now compassionate readers are begging for clemency. Stop baggin’ on the Ruckus, right? I mean it has to do something well…

2009 Honda Ruckus Scooter Review
Quick turning is exactly what the Ruckus needs to avoid the angry mobs behind you as you attempt to hit 25 mph before the next stop sign.
“It actually turns quickly, but only if you throw your knee out like a road racer to avoid having the handlebar hit your leg,” confirms JC after riding the lightweight Ruckus (197-lb curb weight – 89 front/108 rear), before adding. “Bulbous tires aid in shock absorption but it still rides like a scooter, not a Caddy.”

The big tires on the small 10-inch wheels do deserve some props, as they deliver good feel and even allow for some mild dirt excursions. In fact, the most fun we had aboard the Ruckus was after I made it home and spun it around in my backyard garden – of course, I was in a euphoric/celebratory mood having survived the treacherous ride home. Lightweight and maneuverable, apt descriptions all. If you never left a parking lot, the Ruckus would rule with absolute authority, parking wherever it pleased.

But back to the negatives… One of the regular perks of a scooter is the built-in storage capacity, of which the Ruckus has zero. Well, you can strap things down or jam it into the open space under the seat, but nothing even close to helmet storage.
2009 Honda Ruckus Scooter Review
2009 Honda Ruckus Scooter Review
Limited storage area could be the deal-killer for many potential buyers looking for a practical real world scooter.

“A complete lack of storage is the next major issue, and the ultimate deal-killer for me,” admits JC. “What’s the point in riding this thing around town if you still have to wear a backpack? The only ruckus this causes is with the owner who wishes they bought something else.”

Enough, enough… Mercy please.

“On the bright side (pun intended), it has awesome headlights,” continues JC. “Considering how wimpy the rest of it is, these Baja-inspired twin beams feel like overkill, but when it comes down to it, there’s no substitute for illumination.”

True, the dual lamps are bright, though you should stop sniffing glue if you compound the safety factor by willingly riding it in the dark.

“Oh, the horn is loud too,” adds JC. “Honda apparently realized after they built this cute little folly, that if riders wanted to stay alive they had better be seen and heard. Well, thanks for that.”

For all its negative traits, we get the Ruckus’ minimalist stylistic appeal – it’s one of the reasons we requested a test unit. That and the promised gas-sipping fuel efficiency, which in our limited mileage registered above the 75 mpg mark.

2009 Honda Ruckus Scooter Review
The Ruckus seems to have found its true calling on the sidelines of the race track as a pit bike.
The Ruckus could shine in limited applications as a micro-commuter. Zippy scoot for the college campus? Yeah, maybe. Ride for grandpappy to roll down the dirt road from farm house to mailbox? Sure, it’ll do that. Be the coolest guy in the RV park? No question. But pit bike is the true calling of the Ruckus and we’d like to believe the majority of them are used in such ancillary transportation functions.

The problem is Honda pitches the $2499 Ruckus (2008 MSRP was $350 lower) on its website as a capable street machine with marketing tags like “it struts onto the urban scene” or that “zipping around town couldn’t be easier.” Trust us, the Ruckus doesn’t strut anywhere, and zipping around could be easier. Much, much easier!
2009 Honda Ruckus Scooter Review
Stick a 125 or 150cc motor in the Ruckus and this review would be quite different.

On a more positive note, Honda is adding more variety to its 2010 scooter lineup with the 100cc Elite and 150cc Honda SH150i. In Europe the Honda SH is an incredibly popular mount, confirmed by a recent trip to Barcelona. Judging from our sidewalk view of the downtown Barcelona scooter GP, the SH150 is a far better street mount for real-world urban commuters.

In fact, we look forward to sampling the SH150 in the near future (provided Honda is still speaking to us…). As for another Ruckus test ride, we’ll pass.
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Comments
Paulgs   August 8, 2013 07:20 PM
i would like to see a ruckus do over 40 please, i pass them all the time on my scooter (and it is a 2 stroke) at 40, 49cc 4 stroke equals 35 to 38mph tops as far as 49mph no way,better check your speedometer is working correctly (most don't) with gps, i have owned a 4 stroke scooter and 38 is really about all they can do, as far as the rest it looks cool, i like the idea of liquid cooling and the ability to hit some dirt roads, but they really should have put disk breaks on it, even the cheapest Chinese scooters have disc breaks, and don't cost 2500, and as far as someone saying it will go 49mph it won't, many 2 stroke scooters can't do that, and they usually have 50-70% more power
ricksruck   May 5, 2013 02:12 PM
you sir are a complete idiot! I bought my 2012 and rode it home 24 mile's and half of that was hill's. top speed stock was 42 , pulled hills at 30. after three months of riding I love it! the ruckus has one of the toughest engines I have ever seen. with a little variator tuning my rucks top speed so far is 49 mph. with a average cruising speed of between 40 and 46. I really hope you don't plan on a future as a writer. your opinion means nothing to so many. and for the record I read this crap before I bought my ruck, and I really hope no one takes you or your little write up seriously because you sir are indeed and idiot .
mcycle   September 21, 2012 04:24 PM
This reviewer is probably a type that preferred the power and speed like the rest of the US male population who would rather ride blazing crotch rockets and power street cruisers instead of a mere toyist scooter.

This is the reason why most of the scooters available in the US are marketed in Asia mostly for female riders, while choices like Honda Airblade, Honda Supra x 125, Honda Wave, Yamaha Nouvo sx, those that target the same type of male population in Asia, are not going to sell here. Those of us who ride scooters in the US are of sensitive types and We like the stylist, the elegant, and the weirds because We prefer it that way ;)

It's all about Marketing and Profits!
mrjowee   May 5, 2012 08:11 AM
This review is spot on with the exception of top speed. The scooter sports lack-luster performance in all categories (except for looks, which is opinionated). It is so slow as to be nearly dangerous, especially considering whom it is marketed to. There is no under-seat utility to speak of. Stopping power is poor. Taller riders will feel cramped, and there is no room for a passenger. There is plenty of room for customization, but the price tag doesn't lend itself well to that fact. The current MSRP of a Honda Ruckus is just a hair under $2,600. Five scooters come to mind in that same under $3k price range; Kymco Like 200i, Genuine Buddy 125, Piaggio Typhoon 125, Aprilia Sportcity 125, and the Piaggio Fly 150. All of these scooters out-perform the ruckus in every aspect. Granted it's not an apples to apples comparison; these are all 125cc or bigger. It's a dollars-to-dollars comparison. In general, they all have front disk breaks, can all hit at least 60mph (two will hit 70), have under-seat storage, seat heights of ~30", and most have room for a passenger.
ThisReviewIsCrap   March 19, 2012 01:50 PM
Ok,I totally agree with most of the others who've posted their opinion of this grossly inaccurate "review". I just bought a 2009 Ruckus, and am highly pleased with it. I owned 2 different Yamaha Zuma 50s (an 02' & an 05') so I was skeptical of the 4-stroke Ruckus since I already knew the power that the 2-stroke had to offer. I found this 2009 with 500 miles on it, and wow! I was very impressed at its power. It's bone stock, and I've found myself passing cars that were in the left lane when the speed limit was 40mph. Its an outstanding ride, and now I'm glad that I went with Honda instead of another Zuma. I will however agree that the brakes could be better. Other than that though, this article is crap.
lovetoruckurface   December 15, 2011 02:43 PM
I made an account just so I could write a response to this terrible review. Either you are a Troll or just a panzy. I would assume a little girl had written this review based on how terrifying your experience was while riding one of these scooters. I agree that it could use an extra 5 mph, I will give you that. But never have I felt endangered while riding my ruckus. Despite the fact that mine tops out at 40 I have always felt safe ( and I ride on 45mph roads frequently ). The fact that you were so far out of your comfort zone while riding this scooter demonstrates your lack of experience. If your comfortable riding, have good defensive driving skills (which everyone should have because everyone should take a safety course first), then these things are good fun. You shouldn't be dodging cars on these scooters since you should always be in the right hand lane ( or shoulder ). Learn to ride a 50 cc, then talk about 125s big boy. I have owned a dozen motorcycles since I first started riding, my most recent being an 848. I've ridden cruisers all over the country. When I am home and I need to hop over to the gym or grab a few things from the grocery store - the ruckus is always my top choice. I've put over 5,500 miles on my 2009 ruck without it skipping a beat. Out of all my motorcycles ( and one scooter being the ruckus ) I have owned, the ruckus never fails to make me smile when I ride it. I've ridden it in rain, snow, on sand, off road - I have even contemplated riding it across the country because I enjoy riding it so much. And what I enjoy most is the fact that I get around 90 miles per gallon. The Zuma's are good fun as well - they are a little better in the turns IMO.
TJVirnig   October 24, 2011 05:03 PM
I bought a brand new 2011 Ruckus and with my patience I rode on it through the summer to complete its break-in (850 miles). Now I can cruise easily in 40 mph zone. After a 600-mile checkup and oil change, its power went down. Found the culprit - it had been overfilled with new oil. Never overfill your engine with the oil! I simply love my Ruckus! Big thanks to Honda for the Ruckus!!!
Piglet2010   October 6, 2011 08:54 PM
Here in Iowa you don't need a motorcycle license for under 50cc, but you do have to fly an orange flippy-flag. Glad I spent the extra $500 for the much more capable Honda NHX110 Elite.
RuckusRay   August 8, 2011 06:35 AM
I just bought a 2011 Ruckus and I ride it everywhere. I am 6ft 200lbs and I cruise at 30mph and still have throttle. I am in the Army, and its great for riding on post. My best friend also has a 2011 and hes about 6'4" and 225 and his tops out about 38, and its bone stock. But like everyone else already said its 49cc, if you are looking to go 90mph by something bigger. The ruckus is perfect for in town driving. So to whom ever wrote the crap think next time you ride/ write about a Ruckus.
philw19642002   July 5, 2011 04:39 PM
I hope Honda never ever deals with this magazine any more. I am going to email a copy of the review to Honda USA Motorsports. Let's see what they (Honda) has to say about your sorry self.I would not let you ride my daughter's trick you would down it.
philw19642002   July 5, 2011 04:36 PM
I do not know how much whoever wrote this review got paid to ditch the Ruckus but they are 100% incorrect. This is one of the best scooters ever invented. 43mph is plenty fast. The legal limit for a scooter is 35mph anyhow. Also the 2011s are 4 stroke,fuel injected and they pulled my 6'5" 225 body around very well. Has more torque then any scooter by far.
If they are no good why do they have 2012s ready for sale but most Honda dealerships can't even keep up with the demand of the Honda Ruckus. Really think! Would you trust anything else but a Honda? I know those Yamaha Zumas are a joke and talking about slow and no torque.So there!! Here is my review of the Ruckus as well as the idiot trying to tell everyone on here that they are junk.
behavingbadly   March 17, 2011 07:37 AM
we have 3 of these ruckus's, and am looking for a fourth, we have as much fun on these as we do our harley's, which we ride a lot, we live in a town where pretty much the speed limit is 25 mph on most every street, and 35 mph on a few, the ruckus is perfect, we can go anywhere, and speed is not a factor, if I want to tear up the streets, I have other options, it's 49cc for crist sake, what the hell were you expecting, we bought the seat risers, cargo baskets, and under seat enclosure for them, set them up like that, they are a blast, and run great, mid grade fuel, and keep air cleaner clean, and gogogogogo
Germonforlife   February 20, 2011 05:26 PM
I bought a brand-new 2009 Honda ruckus , I was able to reach a Speed of 42-43 mph and after a few months I noticed that my max speed had gone down to about 39 and then slowly droped to 34 and will only go about 35 on a hill. Why is this???
Carl -Newbie  January 28, 2011 10:21 PM
Gas prices are crazy! Got a stock 2010 Honda Ruckus... i definitely need to swap out the motor and get some performance pats. Anybody know of any good sites? I live in Orange County and have been going to http://www.drowpsports.com... if any body knows of other sites with competitive prices- keep me posted!
Mikey Joe -Bought the Ruckus  January 22, 2011 12:24 PM
Bought a brand new 2009 Ruckus today... Right out of the store and down the road, it cranked up to 43 mph... Had a gps in my pocket and verified the speed. A little snow and ice cover on the side roads around here, and the bike handled that like a champ. The review is CRAP! First day out, love the bike. 1/22/11
Mikey Joe -Dazed and confused  January 21, 2011 03:54 PM
OK I am 60, slightly disabled, but OK to ride a bike. Live in a small town where most of the roads are cool for mopeds. All I want is something to make it back and forth 6-12 miles a day when I go shopping and to the library, and maybe once in awhile a 25 mile trip to go visit my grandkids...on the cow trails. I could buy a brand new 150cc Chinese moped, delivered 2000 miles to my door for $799 including delivery charge. The Ruckus is $2000 new at the dealer. Reading these reviews is what has me dazed and confused. I hate junk so I was looking at the Ruckus for durability and dependability, and resale value. How can some of you say the thing goes 45 and others say it wont hit 30? I am an ex truck driver, so I know BS when I hear it... problem is I cant figure out which of you are the ones spewing it out. What is the real story here? Should I order the Chinese one? Thanks in advance.
Jim Miller -New Ruckus Owner:  January 4, 2011 02:10 PM
I just bought a 2009 Ruckus on consignment at a Suzuki Dealer for $1,325 after haggling. It has 33 miles on it. I will let you guys know what think in 30 days. this review scared me off a little, i am sure glad I got down to the owner comments at the bottom. If I want to go faster I will get on my KLR 650. This columnist is looking for 45 caliber impact from a 22 caliber..

Joseph -best gas hog out there!!!  October 19, 2010 07:16 PM
I have a 2009 Honda Ruckus and i don't mind it running only 42, it gets me where im going and back home with no problem, yall are just mad cause yall get stuck behind us going 42 until we get to a passing zone, and then im eating your wind but you know what i dont care cause im getting 100 miles to a 1 gallon gas tank, ha ha ha ha ha! So take yall comments and shove them so far up yall ass i dont can hear them./
Baldemar Huerta -Tomos ST FTW  September 29, 2010 12:28 AM
Change the gearing and add a Biturbo, and a Tomos ped will do 37-40. Change the jetting, and it will propel all 250 lbs of me at 45 with adequate tailwind. If you're going to ride 49 cc, you can't ride in the middle of the lane like a motorcycle. You have to ride to the right like a bicycle, and accept that there are times you may have to pull over to avoid congesting traffic. If you want a motorcycle, buy one.
ThunderRuck -Bad Review  September 22, 2010 04:20 PM
After reading this artice there seems to be a strong feeling of bias towards the Honda Ruckus. I ride a 2009 Ruckus daily and I do agree with some of the acceleration issues, but strongly disagree with everything else. Whoever did this review doesn't know what they are talking about. Seems they had their minds made up before the test drive, which was all but 5 minutes as he mentioned. Go to a reliable source on reviews and ditch this smuck who has no idea what he's talking about.
Jim W6LZZ Martin -2009 Honda Ruckus  July 23, 2010 07:48 PM
I just bought a new 2009 Red Honda Ruckus from Berkeley Honda in Berkeley, Ca on 07/02/2010. This new Ruckus had 00000 miles on it. I jumped on it and started out on my way home to Castro Valley, Ca about 22 Miles away. The Ruckus ran perfect and I got it up to 45 with no troubles at all. It was a little slow when I got to a hill but. what the hell...Its a 50cc. I bought this Ruckus to have fun camping, and around our wonderful town and I love it too! I have a big HD road bike to ride as well but, This Ruckus is alot better around Town.
Jim
Jim W6LZZ Martin Castro Valley, Ca -2009 Honda Ruckus has no power......HELP ME!  June 26, 2010 11:53 AM
Hi...Can someone please help me. I went to Berkeley Honda today 06/26/2010 in Berkeley, Ca. I took a test ride on a 2009 HONDA RED RUCKUS and it was real slow with NO POWER at all. It was new right out of the box with 00000 miles on it. If I bought one will get faster as it brakes in?? Does anyone know any tricks to make it a little faster???
Jim
ibhip -ibhip  June 5, 2010 11:43 PM
July 2009, I purchased a Ruckus and have NO PROBLEMO reaching speeds of 40-45-50 MPH all the while enjoying views of the fine city in which I live....Vancouver, BC!
BOB -Keep up the good work is a joke!  May 31, 2010 05:06 PM
Your a joke. This is the first review i have read of yours and be sure it will be the last. Your bias is so obvious its discusting. Your either 400 pounds(In which case unfit to write a scooter review) or knowingly feeding people false info. either way your opion is useless.

You sir. are unfit to make reviews.
Mutha Ruckus -low 30's?  May 19, 2010 08:52 PM
GY6 swap, enough said.
Simms, Jade -Rare?  March 24, 2010 10:01 AM
I just got my 2009 model and I can hit up to 50km no problem, 60 with some time to accelerate and I have hit 70 twice now on a straight stretch. Ive been reading plenty of nasty reviews about this model, but it has served me astonishingly well. Ive had to slow down to not hit the car in front of me more often then I can count. Did I get an accidental freak model or something? jadeus@gmail.com Your input would be welcoming, I'm confused
DIamon -Crank that puppy  March 3, 2010 08:59 PM
My son and myself purchased these for economical reasons and quick hops around a beach community where speeds are in the 25-45 range. I am 330 Lbs so you can imagine that if I am going up a steeper hill it does drop down to 23-25 mph range, but with smaller inclines and flat running I get 39-41 area. For some reason, my sons Ruckus has a slower top speed, even though hes only 190 Lbs?? He can catch me on hills if they are long enough, but I am 3-4 mph faster than him on flats. My wife did clock my speed and the little speedo is dead on. I have 6800 Miles on mine with basic maintenance, but did have to replace tires which set me back 175$.
RuckU -Over 40mph  November 19, 2009 03:59 PM
C3 is UGGGHLY and most Rucks can keep up with it all day long or pass it when slightly modded! All Rucks can at least do 40mph even if you weigh 215+
Griz -Storage on Ruckus  October 29, 2009 02:31 PM
To LABiker 7/09 What are you refering to that I can pick up at An Army/Navy Surplus store to provide additional storage? I'm new to Ruckland. Thanks.
Neil - Atlanta -THE TRUTH ABOUT THE RUCKUS  October 5, 2009 09:05 PM
I agree with the review in that the Ruckus drags up hill and as too slow to keep up with traffic. I put over 2000 miles on my 2008 and I speak the true. I love the mileage. However, this scooter is narrowly tailored for slower, inner-city commutes under 25mph. The review is spot on in recognizing the true limitations of this vehicle. The best thing about the 50cc Ruckus is the cool, "mad max" looks and the fact that there are no licensing and insurance requirements.
chubbyfunkmonkey -30mph.. really?  October 5, 2009 03:37 PM
Uhh... I don't know what you got your hands on but as slow as a ruckus is, all of them do over 30, even the 03-05s which are the slowest of them all. I think you need to go to a dealership and give a couple of them a ride because the newer ones will do 40 plus out of the box and with a lot of work I’ve been to 60mph, flat ground, on my 04. Maybe the problem wasn’t the bike, maybe it was you.
Tony Gray -Im getting one  October 5, 2009 10:01 AM
I was lookin at these at the honda store.i think i am going to get one soon
LSAT flashbacks -The flaw in the argument presented above is MOST like the flaw in which of the following passages?  October 2, 2009 02:23 PM
A. This shotgun we got had the sights mis-aligned, and the trigger was sticky from the dealer. Needless to say this line of shotguns is terribly inaccurate and features poor handling and gummy triggers. It is incapable of shooting small target groups, so we wonder why the manufacturer says it would be good for hunting. For about 1.5x more $ we can get a middle-range rifle that will create small target groups, we can't wait to see how that gun performs.
John Doe -Welcome To The Players Club.  September 7, 2009 10:37 PM
RUCKSTERS UNITE!!! www.rucksters.com www.standardfunctions.com www.ruckuslife.com www.bowlsla.com www.tokyoparts.com www.allthatruckus.com www.battlescooter.com
Noob -O  August 23, 2009 10:52 AM
I dont know who to believe!
Steve - Enumclaw, Wa. -Ruckusrider  August 21, 2009 02:15 PM
I am 300lb, 6'5". The two we have in our family perform like others here. You comment about Big Ruckus of old came out years after the 50cc original. That and your comments of 2 stroke Ruckus illustrates you are imcompetant and cannot hide your menopausal bias towards this scooter.MAKES ME WONDER IF I CAN TRUST WHAT YOU SAY ABOUT OTHER RIDES TOO? YOUR CREDABILITY JUST TANKED WITH THIS ARTICLE!!!
yaris -looks like you got a lemon  August 10, 2009 12:44 PM
looks like you got a lemon, a ruckus, even with some miles ont it, should perform way better than what you got, get a properly working one and re-do your review, it should en-up with a better note...
David Seawell -Ruckus  July 27, 2009 06:38 PM
I rode my ruckus for 26 miles one way. Then had a nice mountain to climb with speed limit up there being 15 and it was going 20mph up that steep incline( the ruckus). I got up there to my destination in 40 minutes. My truck usually takes 32 minutes.
Mark -Much better choices out there  July 27, 2009 08:14 AM
Even if this unit was defective, there's no reason to pay a premium for this thing. Look at Yamaha’s C3. You can get a lot more in another package for less money.
Andy Miller -This guy has it all wrong!!  July 26, 2009 08:47 AM
I have a 2009 Ruck that I baught at the end of 2008. I now have a little over 2000 miles on it.I live on a farm in Pa. First off the reason your engine is slow is because it's new and you haven't broken it in yet. like you have to do with every new engine it takes some time around 1000-1500 miles to be exact. you'll notice the throtle will open up and you will get more response. Second off your right it's NOT a motorcycle and you CAN'T fly down the highway at 60-70mph, but it does usually top out somewhere around 42-45mph. It also gets around 110mpg once again it will take sometime because you haven't broken your engine in yet. Never once did I feel unsafe on the road while on it. Oh and I also use it for rideing around the farm you know, (freshly plowed feilds, trail climbs, mudding) and never once did i think it didn't have any power or it wasn't going to make it. Long story short this guy doesn't know what he is talking about and I would recomend getting one!
David Seawell -ruckus review  July 23, 2009 02:18 AM
I have had my ruckus less than a week. I weigh 205 lbs and the ruckus will hit a top speed of 42mph. My son is 135 lbs and his top speed is 47. I love the machine and can't wait to ride it again. I do live in the country where the speeds vary 35 to 55 mph. I am scared when tractor trailers come up from behind, I move off to the side and let them pass. I drive defensively, not stupidly! GO HONDA, I'll have another anytime.
David Seawell -ruckus review  July 23, 2009 02:18 AM
I have had my ruckus less than a week. I weigh 205 lbs and the ruckus will hit a top speed of 42mph. My son is 135 lbs and his top speed is 47. I love the machine and can't wait to ride it again. I do live in the country where the speeds vary 35 to 55 mph. I am scared when tractor trailers come up from behind, I move off to the side and let them pass. I drive defensively, not stupidly! GO HONDA, I'll have another anytime.
seachelle -30mph top speed?? wrong  July 21, 2009 07:04 AM
Something is wrong with that little red ruck. I cruise around my 25mph roads at 40-45. I'm really surprised I haven't gotten stopped yet. That's right, a speeding ticket on the ruckus. It could happen. :p Or maybe I can go that fast because I'm a '100 lb girl'. lol
Kami no Chiizu -Wow, lot of ignorance in here  July 20, 2009 11:17 AM
First of all, the Ruckus has always been a liquid-cooled 4-stroke. Never has it been a 2-stroke. The top speed of a Ruckus through 2005 model year has been 37-38 mph, while newer ones can get up to around 42-43 mph.

I will estimate the likely cause of the low-top speed is overfilled oil. I've read of several people who came home with a new Ruckus that had a quart of oil in it, when it only takes six-tenths of a litre. Overfilling the oil will result in the sluggishness suggested by this review.

Stop by Ruckus Central, and we'll get help you get your Ruckus running up to snuff. Or stop by Total Ruckus, and get verbally ripped to shreds.
Tsko -Not an accurate review  July 16, 2009 02:22 PM
This review came as a surprise and does not remotely fit into my experience. As others are saying, the Ruckus gets up to 35- 40 mph with ease. I also can push a little over 100 miles per gallon with the city driving I do. Looking nerdy? Really? Lots of people say that the Ruckus looks tough on the road, compared to all of those scooters with tiny tires and plastic curvy panels. The Ruckus rocks!
DetroitBiker -I think LABiker needs some clarification...  July 14, 2009 02:29 PM
There is no such thing as a production "2smoke" Ruckus. Since they began selling stateside in 2002, they have all been 50cc liquid-cooled 4-strokes. And they perform comparably to every other 50cc scooter out there, give or take. I love it when people who have NO CLUE decide to weigh in on a topic they obviously know nothing about. But thanks anyway, you've been tremendously helpful.
Battlescooter -Thank you  July 9, 2009 12:20 PM
Thank you for this review. I'm hoping it will keep more people from buying a Ruckus. I bought my first Ruckus in 2003 as a joke, well I fell in love. Now it's some sort of craze and it's making Ruckus riders cool. It's the last thing I want to be. I miss the days of people thinking I was an idiot for riding it. Thanks again and I'm happy to hear at least one person still thinks I'm a nerd. Sincerely, General Abe
colson -You're comparing storage to what???  July 9, 2009 08:39 AM
If anything I'm able to strap more crap to my ruck by the virtue that I'm far less limited to how it has to go. I can slide a case of beer up from the front side and still have room to slide in my laptop bag down the back and clip it in securely. There's tons of room for storing baggage, but douche bags may be a little too large for this little scoot.
RUCKUS RULES -PERFORMANCE!!!  July 8, 2009 03:08 PM
0 TO 40 IN 22 SECONDS, THAT IS A PRETTY GOOD TIME, I WILL CHECK MINE ON THE WAY HOME FROM WORK!! I THINK MY RUCK WILL DO BETTER THAN THAT BUT THEN AGAIN I HAVE A YOSH, AND SO IT IS SET UP FOR TORQUE AND NOT ACCELERATION! SO WHAT IF THE 4 STROKE MOTOR IS NOT AS POWERFUL AS THE 2 STROKE MOTOR IT CAN GO AS FAST AS YOU WANT WITH MODS THE SKY IS TRUELY THE LIMIT TO WHAT THE RUCK CAN DO!!!!
Jo Borras -WTF!?  July 8, 2009 11:43 AM
I just read this review, and - while I am a DEDICATED Ruckus fan with multiple Ruckii under his belt - I am also in the automotive business, and when a writer gets his hands on a bad tester, he has an obligation to write what really happened. If his Ruckus only went 30, then the Ruckus only went 30. The fact that he should have been intelligent enough to realize there was a problem somewhere and have it checked by a tech is beside the point ...
jerry aka grease monkey -LABiker  July 7, 2009 05:49 PM
????? the ruck tested was a lemon..... bad review....... please try again.....
LABiker -Serious clarification needed  July 5, 2009 10:44 AM
1st off, from reading the comments, it seems like everyone who owns one of the older 2smoke 50cc model Ruckii is chiming in about what a slam this review of the new 4stroke model is. Let's face it, in the quest to meet ever-more-restrictive emissions laws, Honda has chosen to err on the side of long-term production efficiencies. And the folks w/ 2smoke models should just shut the heck up & smile their smug, smug, grins... Valid points in the review are these: The baby Ruckus (vs. it's bigger, younger brother, the Big Ruckus*) has been reborn w/ a new, anemic engine. Everyone who has complained that "it uses the Metropolitan powerplant and that accelerates & top speeds better, blah blah blah..." had better wake up & smell the coffee: the Metro has received similar lambasting in reviews for being a slug compared next to chinese scoots selling for 1/2 its price [& yes, 1/4 its build quality! Fair is fair... ;) ] The Ruckus has no built in storage. The pilot ergonomics are poor. Drum brakes are utterly hopeless (unless they're double-leading shoe. Then they're only hopeless after they've gotten hot!) Counterpoints: The engine can be easily modded to produce better [but still not reasonable] power. The best looking and coincidentally most rugged storage options of choice for the Ruckus can be picked up at any Army/Navy (surplus) store for about $30***, less mounting. Can you say that about any other bikes' hard bags? The entire premise of the "sub-50cc no-license-required" sales segment requires a <3.5hp (under 2.5hp in some locales, iirc) powertrain. ** The "seat mod" to reposition the attachment points for the seat & give the rider more room is one of the earliest mods for the baby Ruckus that made its way to the 'net. Not a hard fix.**** There is no counterpoint for the brakes. Shame on you Honda! Disc brakes are cheaper to manufacture in the 1st place... Thanks for the honest review. Sorry that everyone who has drunk Honda's Kool-Aid is out for your hide. But in all fairness, you can't compare a scooter built to compete performance-wise w/ mopeds with other scooters. * - which is also underpowered & overpriced vs. its competition, but at least it is nominally freeway legal... ** - Unfortunately for manufacturers who are in the habit of quoting power outputs at the gudgeon pin for their sales brochures, this means that by the time the power migrates down the con-rod to the big end, out the crankshaft to the pinion gear, thru the transmission & down the belt/chain/shaft to the rear axle and thru the wheel bearings to the contact patch, you've lost about 1/4 the quoted power to result in the actual ponies on the ground. *** - Ammo cans. At about $10 per can, 2 .50 cal boxes for the rear (welding extra) and an optional .30 cal can mounted on the front forks [warning: this will affect steering feel!] will add the "Don't f!ck w/ me" look to your Ruckus. **** - But ridiculous that Honda still hasn't addressed this at the factory.
RockinRuckusRuckster -Ruckus mods  July 3, 2009 08:48 PM
I don't see what the prob is, guys. It just takes a few mods here and there to get it rolling good. 1: K&N filter: it's not just for the big guys, too. 2: Yosh pipes are ok, but I find that LeoVinci dual pipes from a 1098 add so much more power. 3: The best thing I did to get the most out of this baby was to take out the stock motor and put in a 1098R motor. I know it doesn't sound like much, but this baby flies now!
Scott in Tennessee -Seriously, bad review  July 1, 2009 06:50 PM
I have to agree with everyone who is criticizing this review. I weigh about 210lbs, 6' tall, and on a flat road I can get my 2008 up to about 43mph in about 22 seconds. Up relatively steep hills, it drops down to about 30mph, but it's still good enough. In cold weather (started it once when it was -5 degrees farenheit) it starts just fine (though it needs some warming up). I love my Ruckus. Not saying it's the greatest scooter out there (though maybe if I start to move it away from stock I might think so), but it's darn good enough.
Mark -Mr. Contrary  July 1, 2009 07:28 AM
Yes, Mr. Contrary - for the price of this lawnmower they could buy a used motorcycle of 250cc, or even 500cc or more going back a few years. Since this thing has no storage space, why not? Enough power to keep up with traffic, utility to go highway speed if you want... Some people don't want to get a license I guess? Learning how to ride a 2-wheeled vehicle safetly would not be so terrible. Even if you stuck with the Ruckus/Mart Cart
Mr. Contrary -Antidote for Ruckus  June 30, 2009 09:44 PM
Learn how to shift. Get a motorcycle license. Buy used Ninja 250. Done.
Brian -Ruckus  June 30, 2009 07:35 PM
I don't ride a Ruckus, I ride a Yamaha C3. My top speed under normal circumstances (flat grade, no wind) is about 43 MPH. I ride with several Ruckus riders and they can almost keep up with me. In fact, I pace them regularly at 40 MPH. I know one guy with a 2006 Ruckus with a few mods GPSed out at 56 MPH (this was mostly because he only weighs 140 lbs and I weigh 270). Bottom line is that a functioning Ruckus will take even a good-sized guy well beyond 30 MPH, even to 40 MPH quite easily. I've seen it several times, and yes, these are the water-cooled, four-stroke 49cc engines. That is not new to the 2009 model year. I highly suggest the author rides a fully-functioning model and rewrites his review.
jerry aka grease monkey -ruckus review  June 30, 2009 04:59 PM
your ruckus review = epic fail!!!! i love my ruckus! my ruck rockz your moms sockz! Ha hA !!! totalruckus fo life!!!
Tom Frey -35 mph all day  June 30, 2009 04:29 PM
I bought a 09 Ruckus to throw on the back of the RV. I usually ride my full size cruiser, but for quick trips to the bank, post office etc., I love the Ruckus. I'm 6'1, 225 lbs and this thing gets up to 30 mph fast enough for me. The posted speed is 35-40 around my neighborhood and I have no problem staying with the traffic. Yeah, its not quite like my 100" cruiser, but its certainly not the dog that was written about in this article.
your mom's ruckus - -mark  June 30, 2009 08:29 AM
the point is, if you don't want to believe any of this stuff the Ruckus wingnuts claim about their scooters when i'm lying about stuff like that and you rather believe the article's author, go right ahead. does it look like i give a f#@$!? if you think i am trying to create a positive image about a honda ruckus, you're wrong. right here i will say that Ruckus is the sh#&@tiest, slowest, stupidest, ugliest, the most retarded scooter ever. plus, it's the worst. and it takes it about 200 feet to stop from 30mph, it's maximum speed. how about that for a wingnut claim?
Give it up. - - Review.  June 30, 2009 08:28 AM
We have a ruckus and the only thing it is good for is letting retards and birds sh#@t on it. Seriously what a piece of crap. I bet everyone complaining about this review wears a crash helmet when there not riding. dah dah dah ruckus!!! Yeah!!!
Hash -Huh?  June 30, 2009 06:38 AM
Your oil is probably overfilled, my 08 Ruckus hit 43mph bone stock (still does, rode it today). Something is very very wrong with that bike if it's performing the way the author says it is. I ride my bike in 20 degree weather and it never takes 20 minutes to warm up...more like 20 seconds. Something is seriously seriously wrong.
RUCKUS RULES -YOUR MOM  June 29, 2009 09:14 PM
YOUR MOM YOU DONT KNOW MY MOM SO YOU SHOULDNT TALK ABOUT HER!! SHE RIDES A METROPOLETAN ANYWAY AND IT IS FAST TOO! IF YOU THINK THE 'RUCK IS SLOW YOU HAVE NOT BEEN ON MINE I WILL TAKE IT ANYWHERE DIRT TRACK FLAT TRACK WHATEVER AND SMOKE YOU!! YOU DONT BELIEVE ME I HAVE IT BORED OUT AND POLISHED AND IT IS READY TO RUCK POWER UP THE FRONT WHEEL AND IF YOU DONT LIKE THE BRAKES I MAKE SPECIAL MODIFICANTIONS SO YOU CAN EATMY MELTED RUCK DUST!!!!!!!!!!
Ian -Ruckus  June 29, 2009 07:05 PM
If I didn't know better I might think that members of the Ruckus boards are making a concerted effort to defend their hero. You can't blame Bart if Honda provided him with a turd. He can only review the bike he is given and perhaps in this case it was a bad one.
MRWYATT -hahhahaahahaahha you guys suck at reviews...and wont even respond to our posts!  June 29, 2009 03:20 PM
Ok ok ok, so to start with did you guys review a Zoomer or a Ruckus, and no that isn't a stupid question. I am a resident of the great nation of Englandshire and we have Zoomers here, thats the brother and best friend of the Ruckus. Its exactly the same in every way but with have Fuel Injection instead of a carb... we are also restricted to an amazing 28mph. This sucks, but for a whopping $100 we too can change our variators and add a CDI and reach the break neck speeds of 45mph. The rukus is not restricted so a stock scooter will on average hit 40mph. As many of my comrades have stated your scooter must of been broken, or breaking or a Dolsoe. So on behalf of TR - thats www,totalruckus.com - I invite you Bart Madison to meet up with a few of our members and test out a couple of their scoots both stock and modified. Im sure a member or 2 from the SGV will gladly show you the error of your reviewing ways. Regards
RUCKUS RULES -RUCKUS! - ROCKS!  June 29, 2009 01:13 PM
YEAH THE YOSH MAKES MY RUCK ROCK. LIKE I SAID I PULL CARS AND I GOT A STUMP OUT OF MY YARD TOO, RIPPED IT UP LIKE TINFOIL!! I JUST KEEP SOME STRAPS UNDER THE SEAT FOR WHENEVER I NEED TO OWN SOMETHING!! MY FRIEND SAYS HE JUMPED THE SNAKE R. CANYON ON HIS BUT I DONT REALLY BELIEVE HIM, ITS A LONG WAY FROM HERE. SHARKSKINS NEEDS TO MAKE A FAIRING FOR THE RUCK BECAUSE THE WIND IS A BIG BOTHER WHEN I AM BLASTING AROUND ON THE FREEWAY. NEXT WEEK I AM GOING TO TIE TWO RUCKS TOGETHER FOR !!! DOUBLE THE POWER!!!!!!!!
Steve -Real-World Ruckusing  June 29, 2009 09:48 AM
When my Bandit 1200 was stolen in Fort Lauderdale, I paid cash for a 2006 Ruckus brand new. I rode it to work (8 miles) everyday and all over the place for two years. I spent about $3.50 a week on gas and got $1500 for it when I sold it. I got my more than my fair share of middle fingers form the disgracefully incompetent and reckless drivers of Broward county, but I also had reliable transportation for pennies on the mile. I wouldn't do it again, but the Ruckus can serve proudly when pressed into urban assault service.
Your Mom -This whole article!  June 29, 2009 09:31 AM
You guys must work for Yamaha!
Hue -225 lb..... can do 45  June 29, 2009 09:01 AM
When I first got my Ruck... it hit 40. All the dealers seem to overfill the oil which decreases performance. It finally hit 42. Half to 3/4 dipstick seems to work the best. KN variator, Chanito wind screen, and a low seat, & shaved drive face, will make yer Ruck hit 44-47 no problem. There are alot of mods to do to these little scoots for cheap. These guys definitely had a Ruck that wasn't up to par. The only time I've ever hit 30 is when I put in super light weight roller weights. Hopefully they will read up and post up a response.
Throttle Master -I find your lack of Throttle Mastery disturbing! (Hi TR!)  June 29, 2009 09:00 AM
The Honda Ruckus is the coolest little scoot out on the market, but yeah it's not for everyone, you have to be a little demented to go out into the streets on a little 50cc four stroke water cooled scoot and fight your way into traffic, but there's nothing more rewarding as a rider. If you don't understand that then you need to stay away from doing scooter reviews and stick to "big" bikes. As mentioned by everyone else here, your "demo" model should have gotten you to at least the low 40s. I'm wondering if you didn't let your Kimco sponsors give it the once over before sand bagging your review?? Yeah that's right we're questioning your "journalistic integrity", you guys at motorcycle-usa should get a real scooter enthusiast if you're gonna try to put out some scooter reviews.
RUCKUS! -ROCKS!  June 29, 2009 08:05 AM
RUCKUS RULES: I also weigh 290, but I am a bit short @ 5'5. My Ruckus is only able to do 55-60 with a Two Brothers pipe. I guess I should have bought the Yosh pipe instead. You are right, this review is whacked!!!!!
Smoove -nice review....not  June 29, 2009 07:52 AM
Wow dude. if it's supposed to do 40mph and doesn't go that fast I'd think that something might be wrong with the scooter. Your English degree has served you wrong here making you look like a total NOOB and just shouting your mouth off because you don't know what your talking about. Its a Honda and they don't make crap. You have brought shame upon MCUSA. So go take a look at it again, check the fluids, adjust the brake's and redeem yourself.
RedRucker -Ever heard of a wrench???  June 29, 2009 07:45 AM
30? really? are you sure your not deflating the #s Ive seen a few guys get their rucks from the dealer w/ a full quart of oil (capacity =.6qt) and the throttle cable out off adjustment(not opening all the way). so my question top you would be , do you allways hop on a BRAND NEW bike and take off w/o even doing a one over? secondly , I cant think of another scooter available to the USDM that has as many bolt-on performance parts than the ruckus.Imo the ruckus is a great performing scooter stock ,and only gets better and better w/ every pay-check =D, my ruck w/ some "modest" mods, does an easy 50 on the flats and 55+ on a long enough grade. dont belive it? hit up www.totalruckus.com and ask around =D
Mark -Ruck monkey  June 29, 2009 07:18 AM
On any two wheeled vehicle the speedo is going to be optimistic. What you think is 45mph is 40 max, maybe less. Further, with a tiny engine like this you're getting a huge multiplier out of engine performance if you're a 100lb woman vs a 200pound man. Huge difference. They tested this thing with an average size adult male on it and clearly it was found wanting
Mark -your mom's ruckus  June 29, 2009 07:14 AM
your mom's ruckus, the point is that not even a MotoGP bike is going to stop from 45mph in 15 feet, and you're claiming this little POS scooter does that. Why should anyone believe any of this stuff the Ruckus wingnuts claim about their scooters when you're lying about stuff like that?
Neal -Seriously?  June 29, 2009 06:29 AM
Wow. I'm glad I didn't read this review before I bought my 2009 Ruckus- I might have had second thoughts and missed out on a TERRIFIC bike. I commute about 25 miles round trip every day on mine, and it never misses a beat. Forty-five mph (per speedo) no problem, and 100 mpg every tankfull. And I'm not some flyweight- 170 lbs. I would assume you did a little research BEFORE writing this article (Mr. English degree), Bart- didn't it seem obvious there was something wrong with your testbike? I understand that bikes like the Ruckus aren't for everyone, but this review totally missed the point.
RuckMonkey -Your lack of research offends me  June 29, 2009 02:57 AM
With my bone stock '09 shipped from Colorado (7300 ft. elevation) to Hawaii, I was doing 45 mph STRAIGHT OUT OF THE SHIPPING CRATE. I'm sorry, but I'm a clueless girl and I realize that a bike that is touted by a RESPECTED MANUFACTURER should perform at levels on par with, if not ABOVE the levels stated. As a reviewer of motorcycles/scooters you should be more well informed than this. Additionally, who in their right mind compares two vehicles in completely different engine categories? Would you compare a Honda Rebel with a Yamaha MT01? Your editor must have been out to lunch to allow an article so poorly executed as this to sully the name of a once useful source of cycle information.
Billy Goat -You are a turd sandwich  June 28, 2009 09:03 PM
what you cant get up to speed cuz you afraid of going forty... does you mom also tell you that your going to grow up to be a super hero while she wraps you in bubble wrap... if your gunna knock something how about you stop being a lier and under stand why they made it a 50cc. here ill save you the work you wernt gunna do anyway. some states do require you to get it plated or insured as long as its under 50cc. ps sweet jacket........turd
CHRISTOPHER JAMES -THIS REVIEW IS BOGUS  June 28, 2009 08:28 PM
i am a 6'1" 275# guy riding the Ruckus as a daily commute scooter. i live in Queens, NY and commute to lower Manhattan. like other posters before me here, i can get up to 35-40 mph on the flats, and slight downgrades. admittedly, it is slow going up the Queensborough Bridge, but i am a BIG guy, with at least 20# of added gear in a messenger bag strapped to my back. someone 100# less than I would FLY on this scoot. As others before me have stated, you must have gotten a bad demo, or you are a shrill for an entity wanting to bag this ride. the review is poor; get a grip.
Chris -To whomever it may concern...  June 28, 2009 08:10 PM
..you're an idiot. How can you publish a review of a bike that is clearly having mechanical problems. The Ruckus is slow but not 30mph slow, you should get low 40's stock.
DandyDan -Lame....  June 28, 2009 08:03 PM
Lame review....go borrow another Ruck that isn't busted and you'll get to at least 40mph, do way better than 75mpg and won't have to spend 20 min starting it. If you'd done any research you'd know that your Ruck wasn't performing normally. Take this review down and go do another one with a functional Ruck.
Niles of SoCal -Did you guys read the article?  June 28, 2009 07:22 PM
Its review was stating that the NEW Ruck has a water cooled 49cc vs. the two stroke of yesteryear. I am not familiar with the model too too much,,,,but a two stroke stock vs. a 4 stroke stock will whip the water cooled's ass. Maybe I am wrong. Thats why I just decided to go for the Helix, burgman 650, and a Goldwing 1800
your mom's ruckus -mark  June 28, 2009 06:11 AM
i can stop like that by crashing it into the fat ass of your mom. duh. but seriously, street tires + stock brakes = plenty stopping power. that's a fact.
Sledbrat -The Ruck  June 28, 2009 12:48 AM
Ok, the dude that reviewed the ruck must be a vespa owner. Mine did 40 stock, with a little clutch tuning and some jetting it was 45 on the flats.Any one who reads this should go to total ruckus and ask any one on the fourm how much they enjoy their ruck. I ended up swaping to a 150 in my ruck just due to all the hills I have around my local area. The ruck feels just as stable at 50 as it did at 35. I have no complaints about my Ruck it looks a heck of alot better than another scooter out there. Check it out here http://www.cyclebarngallery.com/gallery/scooterbarn-grandopening/IMG_8111
Mark -Your mom's Ruckus  June 27, 2009 08:10 PM
You can stop in 15 feet from 45mph? How? Crashing into a brick wall?
RUCKUS RULES -BS REVIEW!!!  June 27, 2009 08:09 PM
THIS ARTICLE IS BULCRAP. I WEIGH ABOUT 290 AND I TAKE MY RUCK' TO WORK GOING 60 TO 65 MILES PER HOUR WITH THE GREATEST OF EASE. I ALSO PULLED A SAAB OUT OF THE DITCH WITH IT JUST LAST WEEK BUT THE RUCKUS MIGHT NOT DO THAT STOCK, MINE HAS A YOSH
jerry -Ethan Sullivan  June 27, 2009 01:29 PM
i have yet to see a ruckus that could not get to 38 mph unless something was wrong with it. my 08 ruck hits 43 mph on flats right off the show room floor and i'm 205 lbs. my friend owns a 03 ruck and it hits 38 mph on flats, he is over 300 lbs. when i'm going down hill my speedo hits the temp gauge. i just have to say this article is a farce. i like zumas too...but i love my ruck! peace ---jerry AKA grease monkey
That one guy -yeah but...  June 26, 2009 03:29 PM
yeah, the zuma may be faster but at least the ruckus doesn't look like turd.
Ethan Sullivan -Ruckus  June 26, 2009 12:49 PM
I owned a 2005 Zuma and ridden a 2006 Ruckus and the Zuma kicks the Ruckus in the but in every way, down a hill I only managed 35 on the Ruckus, I could feel some sort of limiter kicking in and not letting the bike go any faster. On my Zuma I averaged 40-42 and down hill I could hit easy 50's. What ever you guys did to your Ruckus to make them hit 40 I would love to know, all the ones I have seen barley do 35.
Honda919Rider -Ruckus Review  June 26, 2009 10:29 AM
Whomever loaned you that Ruckus should be quartered - Using Ruckus's! They'll be OK, but it will teach them a lesson. A stock Ruckus will top out at over 40, earlier versions a hair under 40. Tire pressure must be up, and if it sat for any length of time the pilot jets plug up like nothing I've ever experienced, and that will cause the drivability issues you mentioned. Brakes, you guys need to ride a Metropolitan - the Ruckus brakes are exceptionally good, at least on our 2005 model. The Ruckus is a blast, I'm still amazed you guys were given a lemon and could not make lemonade out of it, then again, you guys must be writers, not riders - Oh, sorry, anyway..... We found our used for $500.00 - it needed a tune up, minor stuff, and it would run circles around yours from what you were saying. Cargo space, what about that handy front carrier, it will hold a can or something with a bungee, it rocks. And the underseat storage is easy to make happen, it takes minimial effort, obviously more than some writers are capable of mustering up. We found a really fancy nice underseat bag, sure, we had to pay for it, but plenty of people are making free ones from all sorts of things - creativity, something else the testers must of been lacking, is something the Ruckus rewards. Oh yeah - as mentioned, oil level should not be overfull, but you know, all of these are minor issues that should of been address prior to delivery for testing. Maybe Honda will learn that the motorcycle-usa boys should be given another chance at testing this machine - Save all the roasting for the $4500.00 SH150i.......
Jeff Berry -Do not anger Ruckus Nation...  June 26, 2009 08:18 AM
Warning: Pregnant women, the elderly, and children under 10 should avoid prolonged exposure to Ruckus Nation. Caution: Ruckus Nation may suddenly accelerate to dangerous speeds. Ruckus Nation contains a liquid core, which, if exposed due to rupture, should not be touched, inhaled, or looked at. Discontinue use of Ruckus Nation if any of the following occurs: * itching * vertigo * dizziness * tingling in extremities * loss of balance or coordination * slurred speech * temporary blindness * profuse sweating If Ruckus Nation begins to smoke, get away immediately. Seek shelter and cover head. Ruckus Nation may stick to certain types of skin. Do not taunt Ruckus Nation.
Pduc -Wow...  June 26, 2009 08:03 AM
...the Ruckus nation seems to be very angry.
Gregory G -Low 30's?  June 26, 2009 03:40 AM
My stocker goes 47 mph with just under $100 in transmission tuning, its very easy to do and very well documented and tested in Totalruckus.com. My slightly modified stock engine 58.1 cc (vs. 49cc) is capable of 60 mph and here's the poof. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eG31IZJ4OR4 I've been riding bikes for 33 years and the ruckus is one of the most fun I've ever owned...so much fun I have 2!
Raptor -Huh?  June 25, 2009 09:40 PM
Most of that review seems to be inaccurate compared to my experience. I've had a Ruck for about two years and 7,000 miles, none of which seemed to be as described above. I'm close to 300lbs, and I average around 35 - 40 depending on conditions (GPS confimed max on mine has been 43.) It's not a sportbike, it's a scooter. Don't expect high-performance, but rarely does anything get farther ahead of me than the next red light. It'd be nice if they imported the "everywhere-but-USA" fuel injected version (aka Honda Zoomer,) but I find the carbed version great for Chicago. No real elevation changes to speak of here, so no lost performance due to improper tune for the altitude. As for storage, well, that depends on what you're looking for. There is LOTS of storage room on the Ruck, IF you know how to load and secure your cargo. Beyond that, there are many aftermarket storage products for the ruck from additonal racks to trunk boxes, underseat boxes, wire mesh to enclose the under-seat area (as shown in the photo, the seat hinges open to allow access to this area,) I've even seen pizza delivery boxes and ice cream coolers custom tailored to fit the Ruckus. I regularly carry about a half shopping cart's worth of groceries on mine. I rode a friend's Zuma 125 a couple times. I'll stick with my nice, reliable Ruckus.
gomi_otaku -motorcycle riders have no balls  June 25, 2009 08:50 PM
If this guy was too pansy to ride less than a mile home, better not come with any of us REGULAR Ruckus riders when we venture out on our NON-MODDED bikes on a 360-mile round trip weekend. yeah, that's right, we rode from Seattle to Portland, not using the highways. And guess what, it was fun! At 44 MPH average, you SEE a lot of scenery, HEAR everything that's going on around you (cows, ball games, approaching sport bikes), experience the smell of flowers and baking bread and the occasional roadkill, and SMILE a helluva lot. I bet you don't get that kind of sensory experience doing 70 on the interstate.
jerry -???  June 25, 2009 08:30 PM
this entire article is an EPIC FAIL! the ruckus tested must have been faulty or someone paid this guy to give such a bad review. my ruckus can hit 43 mph very easily, 37 mph up hill. i easily gets 100 mile to the gallon and in the city it keeps up with traffic very well. i even ride it during the winter and it starts right up in 30 degree weather. i'm a member of a large scooter group here in town, we ride with a variety of different scoots. the ruckus may not be the fastest, but its quality does exceed some of the other scoots. i love my ruck...it never has let me down.
Dan N -Uninformed?  June 25, 2009 06:43 PM
I weigh 280lbs. my ruck easily cruises at the 35-40 MPH range and with me on it it gets 90 MPG, a lighter rider could get close to 110 MPG, Where did this guy get his information?
JC -Honda Metropolition goes 40mph  June 25, 2009 06:34 PM
I have a coworker who has the Honda Metropolitan which is also a 50cc four stroke, and it tops out at 40mph. I imagine it's the same motor, so not sure why the big difference in speed. Are you gorilla sized and had a stunt man stand in for the photos? ;) Sadly, the end of four strokes really killed a lot of the joy of scooters in many peoples opinions. Please, more direct injection two strokes!
Desmo -Comparing Ruckus to Zuma  June 25, 2009 05:36 PM
I think this is a very valid comparison. So what if the Ruckus is only 50cc against the Zuma's 125cc! That's the whole point! For a couple o bucks more, you get so much more bike it's not even funny. Never mind also having underseat lockable storage etc.
Micheal Fox -ABSOLUTE CRAP  June 25, 2009 05:28 PM
Bart, you should look for a new job. This is a horrible review. You are obviously uninformed and ignorant to the specifications of a Honda Ruckus. I own one and your write-up in no way reflects the true nature of this machine. No, it is not a 250cc scooter, but it doesn't claim to be. I could go on, but it's not worth the time I would waste. You failed. Please try again.
Peter -Too Funny  June 25, 2009 05:18 PM
If you guys took a 1198 to the track and it lapped half a second slower than the previous model or clocked two-tenths slower in the quarter, you'd have dug down and figured out what the problem was. Appears you may not have the nadds to finesse the mighty Ruckus. Don't give up; these complex gems take time to reveal themselves to the uninitiated.
Jeff -GPS verified stock Ruckus speed  June 25, 2009 04:28 PM
On my stock 2007 Ruckus, I consistently get 42.3 MPH verified by GPS. Low 30's top speed? Sounds like overfilled oil.
HarryNipples -bad apple  June 25, 2009 04:08 PM
you most certainly had something wrong with your ruck. overfilled oil, and low tire presure are very common from the dealer. with your top speed of 30, and MPG of 75, something is SERIOUSLY wrong. my ruck (after the first oil change :cough:) was going 43mph on any flat level surface. now modified, still with the stock internals, is riding at 52mph... toss in a hill or some tailwind, and i've keped up with traffic in a 55 zone, all while maintaining near 100mpg. the brakes are fine, if you cant lock them up, they need adjustment. and just FYI, the stock tires SUCK!
Jeff Berry -Top Speed  June 25, 2009 03:36 PM
Sure, I understand the optimistic nature of bike speedo's, but I'm supposing a GPS wasn't used in this test, either. My point was just that their test unit seemed much slower than my (and most) Ruckus, for whatever reason. I can hit an indicated 40-42 mph, no prob. They could only get low 30's. That just doesn't seem correct. Something had to be up with their test unit. The fact is, I'm a 175 lb. (ahem...) guy who uses his Ruckus nearly every day on busy downtown streets where traffic speeds range from 30-50, and it does that job bloody brilliantly. The open frame allows it to carry all kinds of stuff a normal scooter couldn't. And with less than $100 in variator parts and air filter, you can easily get another 4-6 mph out of these things. (And it looks better than every other scooter available, IMHO!!) It hasn't replaced my bigger bikes for sheer performance, but for laid bike neighborhood errand running, it's a great choice for me. Apparently, Bart and the other guys didn't feel that way. No biggie. Just hope a bad apple didn't ruin the 50cc scooter cart for them!
Dude in portland -Not sure you guys get it.  June 25, 2009 03:00 PM
So who paid you to write this crap? My 250 pound ass gets around at 42-45mph without issue all day long. And 20 minutes to warm up, eh? Was it stored in igloo? What was the mileage at that point? I am having a HARD time buying that. Go check out Super Street's coverage of this thing. It really isn't meant to be an out-of-the-box solution to your boring commute. It is basically a canvas. The ruckus is to 2009 what the Honda Civic was to 1999: a introductory tuner. Not many are buying this as their primary mode of transportation and even fewer are leaving them bone stock as there is a huge aftermarket parts scene. Also, when you say things like "As for the reason why such a pitiful motor powers the scooter, our best guess is that some states don’t require a permit or training to operate sub-50cc scooters" all it tells us is that you weren't willing to do 4 minutes of google searching. Nice reporting Bart: a guess! And frankly if a motorcycle journalist can't manage what my girlfriend does on a daily basis (navigate a Ruckus around a major metropolitan area in a safe and controlled manner) then me thinks you should find a new line of work. Seriously... never try to ride a bike, the fear may paralyze you. And remember it's a scooter, not a drag bike. Next time you review a scooter you should go into it with that frame of mind.
Chris -Top Speed  June 25, 2009 02:37 PM
Jeff- keep in mind that the speedo on most bikes are liars. You probably don't get 40 unless you have confirmed via GPS.
Your mom's Ruckus -ridiculous is what this article is  June 25, 2009 02:28 PM
First, the max speed of a stock Ruckus is 42-43 mph, and the scooter reaches it quite fast, not like the article's author says. This fact has been proven by countless testimonials of actual Ruckus owners, on the forum called TotalRuckus.com. I personally can cruise at 45 mph with speed going down to about 40 mph going uphills. Second, the brakes are more than enough for the 200lbs machine. I can stop within 15 feet or so from about 45 mph. So again, the article author either was paid to write this evil lies, or just got a bad specimen for the test. Third, lack of storage? Are you serious... I have hauled more groceries on the little Ruckus than any other scooter can carry. Besides, the machine can comfortably accommodate a 24-bottle beer case, plus anything else you consume when drinking beer... What a bogus article.
Mark -Low 30s  June 25, 2009 12:56 PM
The average adult male in the US weighs about 180 pounds, which is what the test riders weighed. Maybe if you're a 100 pound girl or a little guy the performance would be better. The bottom line is, for a scooter to be credible it has to be able to handle the 45 mph roads that are common in urban areas on grocery-getter trips. This thing seems to have very limited use because of its lawnmower-like engine performance. Like the review says, a little kid's dirt bike is a more capable around-towner
Jeff Berry -Ruckus Cost  June 25, 2009 12:23 PM
The whole thing about Ruckus costing too much is kind of misleading. That new $2499 cost from Honda is a horrible move, I admit, but it doesn't accurately reflect what they are actually selling for. I got mine very lightly used for $1100. And all of my local dealers are still selling new 2009 Ruckus' (Ruckii?) for $2000 even. And comparing the Ruckus to a Zuma 125 isn't really fair. The actual cost difference is actually closer to $500-1000 when you factor in true sales prices for Ruckus'. And the Zuma is a 125!! The Ruckus should be compared to its other 50cc competition (Vino, C3, Zuma 50, 50cc Vespa's, etc...). In that regard, it's right in the same ballpark in terms of price, top speed and acceleration. Admittedly, this class of scooter is really only intended for tight, low speed areas where congestion and stop lights don't allow for anything over 40-45 MPH. And in that capacity, they work very well. Add in no need for plates, incredible gas mileage (my Ruck averages almost exactly 100 mpg), and lower buy-in point, and the 50cc scooter class offers a ton of advantages over it's bigger 2-wheeled cousins. OK, sorry for the rant ...but I had no idea the MUSA guys could be so brutal!! After that review, someone had to stand up for Ruckus riders everywhere. We're a fiesty lot!!!
Desmo -Yam Zuma 125 is only a couple o hundred more!!!!  June 25, 2009 11:27 AM
Please test the Zuma 125.
EAB -Agree with Jeff  June 25, 2009 09:14 AM
I have never ridden a Ruckus 50, but basically it's the Metropolitan drivetrain but designed for off road. I have ridden two Mets and both of them started easily and held 35MPH with no worries. The clue here is the cold blooded. Sounds like this unit had something amiss in the drivetrain. As far as the other complaints, it's a 50cc on/off road scooter designed for the campground. I am a firm believer in testing a bike for it's intended purpose. It's like a Gold Wing magazine riding a Rebel 250 and bitching about it's lack touring ability. For the two reasons above, I found the review to be pretty damn worthless.
Jeff Berry -Low 30's top speed?  June 25, 2009 04:57 AM
I think you guys may have gotten a lemon! My stock Ruckus does 40 mph top speed easily, and gets up to 35 in no time. Not exactly a drag racer, I realize, but definitely plenty fast for most stoplight to stoplight urban riding. I have no problem hanging with (and sometimes passing) traffic on my short commute to work. I did overfill my oil just a slight bit once and lost a ton of top speed, and those tires are really sensitive to correct tire pressure. Just a bit too little air and you'll lose even more speed. Maybe worth checking and giving it another go. That being said, can't wait to hear about the SH150i. Keep up the good work!