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 Honda - MT Elsinore
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Honda D2-492-10-14
Photo ou archives : F-M. Dumas

Capacity : 125
Model : MT Elsinore
Production : 1973 -
Category : (Off Road) MX


125 MT Elsinore – 1973

Honda goes back to the two-stroke

In 1973, Honda, the world's leading constructor and the most ardent protagonist of the four-stroke engine, surprised the motorcycling community by presenting its first modern motorcycles with two-stroke engines, the Elsinore 125 and 250cc range of motocross and Enduro machines.

American Champion

The Honda Elsinore motocross 250, launched in the fall of 1972, was the marque's first two-stroke since the model F of twenty years earlier. It also conformed to Honda's "green" policy of the early 1970s, which was represented in four-stroke form by the SL125 and XL250. The Elsinore marked Honda's return to the two-stroke market in fine style by winning the American 250cc motocross championship.

Short-Lived Variant

If the motocross versions of the Elsinore were eventually developed into production models, the trail/Enduro versions only enjoyed a short lifespan. Honda, doubtless jealous of its image as a company exclusively producing four-stroke bikes, waited until 1980 before returning to road-going two-strokes with 80cc power units while bringing out a new generation of 125cc motocross machines with different (bore/stroke: 55.5x50.7mm) engine measurements from those previously employed. Two years later, in 1982, Honda, whose four-strokes could no longer hold off their two-stroke competitors, at last introduced its first two-stroke trail bike for general sale, the MTX125, derived from the CR of 1980.


Engine: air-cooled 123cc (56x50 mm ) single cylinder

Power Rating: 13hp @ 7000rpm

Valves: two-stroke

Fuel System: carburetor

Transmission: 5 speeds

Suspension: telescopic fork (front); swinging fork with twin damper units (rear)

Brakes: drums

Wheels: 2.75x21in (front); 3.50x18in (rear)

Weight: 212 lb

Maximum Speed: 70 mph

Though it was a perfectly viable design for 1973, the MT125 was nevertheless never sold in Europe, though its 250cc derivative was American motocross champion

Motorcycle encyclopedia Moto Passion, realised by François-Marie Dumas, include almost 2000 photos presented with an exhaustive history of the motorcycles exhibited.

This unique collection has been realised with the participation of many specialists. With many thanks in particular to Yves Campion, Michael Dregni, Didier Ganneau, Jean Goyard, Helmut Krackowizer, Michel Montange, Christian Rey, Bernard Salvat, Mick Woollett, etc

One can order here

  • Original cards on paper (in french)
  • High resolution scans or original documents presented and signed with my name.

Please contact me at info@moto-collection.org for conditions and copyright.

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François-Marie Dumas

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