Back to the Auto Expo and I am sure you remember the red Navi; the one with a raised front mud-guard, front fork protectors, branch busters, motocross like seat, and of course, a proper set of knobby tyres. Well, it was the best-looking Navi on display in our opinion. And, honestly, that concept, will work beautifully in the real world, or should we say the dirt world. Here’s why…
We are still riding the stock Honda Navi. And we have arrived at our favourite off-road trail. It has been raining incessantly, which has made things quite challenging. There are water crossings and landslides have destroyed slippery slopes; rocks and loose mud; and the only two corners I am comfortable with on this trail.
But, here’s the thing, I still had a blast on the Navi off-road. And, if you are one of those who are only just getting into the muddier stuff, the Honda will make things a lot more manageable. For one, it is light and it has a low seat height. So, every time you begin losing that front end, you can just kick the Navi upright without fearing broken bones.
The CVT comes in handy off-road as well. All one has to do is concentrate on the throttle – no clutching or gear shifting involved here. Plus, it has no foot controls leaving the rider’s legs free to do the balancing act when going into corners instead of working the rear brake or shifting gears.
And I never thought I’d say this, but the lack of power actually works in the Navi’s favour off-road. Because you know there isn’t enough grunt coming in via the rear wheel, you are not worried about opening the gas. And opening it early does get its rear to come around, but it does so in slow motion, giving you all the time and control in the world to correct, hold or lose it.
But, of course, it might be a good idea to accessorise the Navi before you head out off-roading. First up, get knobby tyres. Then, get grippier footpegs for when wet, these are impossible to stand and ride on. And stand and ride you must for the Navi’s lack of suspension travel and front-end stiffness can make things uncomfortable over poor surfaces.
So, yes the Honda Navi can off-road, and because when you drop it, which you will, there’s so little to break and it is so easy to pick up, I think I am going to get one just to go trail riding!