In 2007, the sales of the Honda CR125’s had dropped more than 40 percent. Honda was no longer promoting the petite smoker through use of its in-house race team or any of its satellite teams. There were no changes that year to the 2007 CR125, internal or external.
This was once a bike that was the greatest 125cc two-stroke engine on the track. For pro racers, red was once the color they all wanted to be on. Greats like Johnny O’Mara, Ron Lechien, Doug Henry and Steve Lamson were household names due to tiny red’s power and grace. But as the years passed and four-strokes became the dominate force, the CR125 was put on the shelf by racers like an old toy.
Average riders didn’t like to ride the 2007 CR125 for one reason, it was hard to ride. It had a short and punchy powerband that was hard to meter on the track. It was a light switch. It was either on, or it was off. Who would want to ride a bike that was hard to ride when there were much better options to choose from? The YZ125 and even the KTM 125SX, at that time, had a much broader powerband making them much more user friendly.
It was a shame that the engine wasn’t user friendly because the bike handled like a dream machine. It was one of the best handling bikes that Honda engineered. Too bad something with so much potential got put on the shelf so soon. We can only dream how a CR125 would look, feel and handle in 2017 if Honda kept it in production and went forward on development.