Honda recently added the beginner-friendly Navi to its miniMOTO lineup. While the latest addition was a complete surprise to the U.S. market, we’ve been anticipating a new miniMOTO for some time now. Back in November, 2020, rumors started to swirl about Team Red reviving its Dax/ST50 series as the new Dax ST125. Japanese media outlet Young Machine even followed up those rumblings with a digital render of the rumored mini.
Now, the publication is pegging the production version Dax to launch at the next Tokyo Mobility Show. Canceled in 2021 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Tokyo Motor Show exhibited the latest Japan-built automobiles and motorcycles. The trade show dates back to 1954, but organizers took the opportunity to rebrand the event to the Tokyo Mobility Show during the off-year.
While Young Machine believes the new model will make its debut at the 2022 trade show, it’s unsure if the laidback throwback will feature the new 5-speed transmission found on the Grom and Monkey. Similar to the Monkey, the Dax favors retro styling while benefitting from modern equipment. The Dax, however, is expected to sport a two-up seat for passenger accommodations. Something the Monkey doesn’t tout.
If Honda foregoes the new 5-speed transmission, many suspect that the Super Cub and Trail 125’s centrifugal clutch and 4-speed semi-automatic transmission will make an appearance on the Dax. The system would eliminate the clutch lever and make the Dax much more tractable for beginners. Honda’s heel-toe shifter would likely accompany the 4-speed transmission for easier gear changes.
Honda’s miniMOTO family has remained a successful range in the brand’s lineup, so adding the Dax would be a reasonable next step. However, until Team Red officially announces plans to expand the range, we’ll be waiting for the 2022 Tokyo Mobility Show with bated breath.