2021 SH Mode 125

Model updatesHonda’s fashionable SH variant receives a style refresh, LED headlight, next-generation enhanced Smart Architecture Frame (eSAF) and enhanced Smart Power Plus (eSP+) four-valve, water-cooled SOHC engine. New wheels are fitted with fuel-saving tyres. Also now included in the specification is a glovebox with USB Type-A socket, more under-seat storage and Smart Key operation.



  • £3,049 OTR


  • Pearl Jasmine White
  • Mat Techno Silver Metallic
  • Poseidon Black Metallic




  • 1 Introduction
  • 2 Model overview
  • 3 Key features
  • 4 Accessories
  • 5 Technical specifications


  1. Introduction

Since the arrival of the original SH50 in 1984, the enduring popularity of Honda’s SH scooter series has earned it the status of a brand within a brand, relied upon by people all over Europe as an integral part of their daily lives.

During that time, the SH family has constantly grown and evolved, with sales totalling over a million units since its introduction thanks to excellent engine performance and fuel economy plus nimble, sure-footed handling and reassuring stability – from 16-inch wheels – on rougher roads.

On sale in Europe since summer 2014, the SH Mode 125 has broadened the appeal of the SH family to a younger audience. It’s proved a smart scooter in every sense, very much of the moment, with its deft combination of on-trend style, confidence-inspiring performance and low running costs.

Now, for 2021 there’s a brand-new SH Mode 125, designed to reflect the evolving aspirations, desires and expectations of an ever-growing audience of young Honda riders.



  1. Model Overview

A chic refresh enhances the SH Mode 125, led by an attractive LED headlight for its distinctive face. Underneath, there’s a new, lighter steel ‘enhanced Smart Architecture Frame’ (eSAF) and more powerful (and fuel efficient) enhanced Smart Power Plus (eSP+) four-valve, water-cooled SOHC engine. New aluminium wheels wear fuel-saving tyres.

Extra storage space is always a bonus, and under-set capacity is larger. A glovebox has been installed on the left inner fairing, with a USB Type-A socket for charging duties. And Smart Key operation of ignition and seat – from the rider’s pocket – is the premium finishing touch.



  1. Key Features

3.1 Styling & Equipment

  • Redesigned body expands flat floor, increasing leg room
  • New LED headlight smartens the front
  • More room under the seat, USB charging socket in the glove box
  • Smart Key operation of ignition and seat

While the elegant 2021 update adds even more appeal and desirability to the SH Mode 125, with a sharp LED headlight elevating road presence, practical enhancements have not been overlooked. The flat floor – an SH signature, with built-in hook from which to hang a shopping bag between the knees – has been extended 10mm forward, improving leg room. Seat height remains a very manageable 765mm.

There’s also now a glove box on the left, which houses a USB Type-A socket for charging a smartphone. The under-seat storage compartment grows in volume by 0.5L, to 18.5L, and includes luggage hooks for load security.

A Smart Key is also a fresh addition to the SH Mode 125. Kept in a pocket, it controls both ignition and seat locking, adding genuine convenience in support of busy urban life.

The meter panel is laid out so all the most important information is instantly easy to read. A large, dial-style central speedometer is surrounded by Idling Stop indicator and turn signal warning light. A fuel gauge is located to the centre and the odometer, trip meter and clock are housed in a central LCD display; buttons control information displayed.

The main stand is carefully sited at just the right contact area on the ground for the rider’s foot, making it easier to use. In addition, a side stand is standard equipment. Passengers are not forgotten, either. They have a comfortable space plus folding footplates and grab rails integrated into the large die-cast aluminium rack.


3.2 Engine

  • New, more powerful eSP+ four-valve, water-cooled SOHC engine
  • The engine features Idling Stop plus EURO5 compliance
  • And increased fuel efficiency, to 50km/l

The SH Mode 125’s new, enhanced Smart Power Plus (eSP+) four-valve, water-cooled SOHC engine delivers 8.4kW@ 8,500rpm, with peak torque of 12.1Nm @ 5,000rpm. Bore and stroke is set at 53.5 x 55.5mm, with compression ratio of 11.5:1.

Through development the aim was to build on, and improve the formula of the previous design and produce an engine with a well-balanced, easy-to-use power delivery – providing flat, linear torque from low rpm – perfect for urban environments and riders with diverse riding experience. And, thanks to the engine’s improved fuel efficiency of approximately 50km/l, (WMTC mode) plus the new tyres and 5.5L tank, range is approximately 275km between fill ups.

Honda’s eSP low-friction technologies are found throughout the engine; clever packaging of items like the oil pump (which is built in to the crankcase) help to further ensure efficiency. A compact combustion chamber and PGM-FI fuel injection optimises burning velocity and cooling performance.

An offset cylinder reduces friction caused by contact between piston and bore, efficiently transmitting combustion energy to the crankshaft. A ‘spiny’ cast-iron sleeve – with tiny surface extensions – keeps in check any distortion of the inner bore diameter. This design lowers tension in the piston ring, reducing friction.

A high-efficiency radiator – integrated into the exterior of the right-side crankcase – employs a small, light fan reducing frictional losses and lowering drag. Rolling resistance within the transmission unit is reduced by the use of three low-friction main bearings, all designed to deal with the loads they individually receive. The drive pulley features a fin design that lowers air resistance and the follower pulley reduces pressure on the drive belt, cutting transmission losses.

The electronically controlled, brushless ACG starter is an integrated component mounted directly on the end of the crankshaft, serving as starter motor and alternator. It spins the engine directly, eliminating any noise from gear engagement or meshing.

Idling Stop automatically stops the engine running after three seconds at idle when the scooter is stationary and the brakes applied, and re-starts it instantly when the throttle grip is twisted. It’s seamless in use thanks to ACG and the swing-back system that returns the crank to its position before air intake, and a decompression mechanism that negates cranking resistance from compression. It has the functionality to ‘read’ the battery charge and turns itself off to avoid excessive drain.

The eSP+ engine is fully EURO5 compliant.



3.3 Chassis

  • New, lighter enhanced Smart Architecture Frame
  • Stylish new wheels complement the re-style.
  • New tyres reduce rolling resistance and improve fuel efficiency

An advanced, next-generation enhanced Smart Architecture Frame (eSAF) replaces the tubular steel underbone design of the previous model. Constructed from pressed steel it’s 8% lighter and, thanks to carefully engineered rigidity balance, offers good handling feel, with enhanced stability, ride comfort and durability.

Rake is set at 26° 30’, with 69.5mm trail and wheelbase of 1,305mm (from 27°, 68mm and 1305mm). Overall dimensions are compact: (LxWxH) of 1950mm x 670mm x 1100mm, with a ground clearance, at 150mm. Combined with a kerb weight of 118kg, the overall result is an outstandingly agile and user-friendly city scooter.

The telescopic forks feature 89mm travel, the rear suspension – with 5-stage adjustable spring preload – has 75mm travel. The new, 16-inch cast-aluminium front wheel mounts an 80/90-16 tyre, the 14-inch rear wheel a 100/90-14; both tyres are also new, designed to reduce drag and improve fuel efficiency by 4%.

Up front the 220mm hydraulic disc brake links to a rear 130mm drum via CBS, ensuring smooth and evenly distributed braking force at all times, including hard and emergency stops.


  1. Accessories

A range of Genuine Honda Accessories are available for the SH Mode. They include:

  • 35-litre Top box & rear carrier kit
  • Windshield & knuckle visor set
  • Scooter blanket




  1. Technical Specification
Type Liquid-cooled, 4-stroke SOHC
Engine Displacement (cm³) 125 cc
No. of Valves per Cylinder 4
Bore ´ Stroke (mm) 53.5 x 55.5mm
Compression Ratio 11.5:1
Max. Power Output 8.4kW@ 8,500rpm
Max. Torque 12.1Nm @ 5,000rpm
Oil Capacity 0.9L
Carburation PGM-FI electronic fuel injection
Fuel Tank Capacity 5.5L
Fuel Consumption 50km/litre
Starter Electric
Battery Capacity 12V7Ah
ACG Output 570w/5,000rpm
Clutch Type Automatic; centrifugal
Transmission Type CVT
Final Drive V-Belt
Type Tubular Steel Underbone
Dimensions (LxWxH) 1950mm x 670mm x 1100mm
Wheelbase 1,305mm
Caster Angle 26° 30’
Trail 69.5mm
Seat Height 765mm
Ground Clearance 150mm
Kerb Weight 118kg
Turning radius 1.97m
Type Front Telescopic 33mm – 89mm travel
Type Rear Dual-damper unit swing arm. 5 stage adjustment
Rim Size Front 16M/C x MT2.50
Rim Size Rear 14M/C x MT2.75
Tyres Front 80/90-16 inch
Tyres Rear 100/90-14inch
System Type CBS
Instruments Honda Smart Key, USB charger
Headlight LED
Taillight Bulb


All specifications are provisional and subject to change without notice

Please note that the figures provided are results obtained by Honda under standardised testing conditions prescribed by WMTC. Tests are conducted on a rolling road using a standard version of the vehicle with only one rider and no additional optional equipment. Actual fuel consumption may vary depending on how you ride, how you maintain your vehicle, weather, road conditions, tire pressure, installation of accessories, cargo, rider and passenger weight, and other factors.

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