Motorcycle Truck: 1982 Honda CT50 Motra

MOTRA!!! No, this isn’t some sort of post-nuclear, 1950s radiation-fed monster from a Japanese sci-fi movie, it’s a 1982 Honda CT50 Motra! See, it’s just a nice, friendly Honda, that’s all.. ahh.. it’s a Honda.. Whew, that was close. This ultra-rare little monster bike will be auctioned off at Mecum’s auction in Las Vegas, Nevada on Friday, January 26th. Just a head’s up that anyone bidding against me will be banned from the Scotty G Oddball Scooter Museum for life (kidding of course) (and, there is no museum like that)..

Isn’t this thing cool?! Come on! No, this isn’t for manly-men who are going to ride this to Sturgis, and I am not going to change anyone’s mind if they already don’t like Japanese motorcycles (or cars) at all. That’s a losing battle and it’s not even worth fighting anymore in my old age. Hopefully we can all agree to just like what we like and maybe a decent percentage of other people will at least find these vehicles that we show here several times a day interesting. We can’t please everyone with every vehicle and since we have viewers from around the world I can’t be the only one here who likes this crazy motorcycle truck!

Uhhhh.. motorcycle truck? Motra. Being ever portmanteau-like, the naming gurus at Honda must not have wanted it to be pronounced Motru – that doesn’t have quite the same ring to it as Motra does. Although, the name does sound perilously close to Mothra. The Motra was made for the Japanese market only and only in 1982 and 1983. That’s just about my personal favorite era for Honda mini bikes or small motorcycles, or scooters or whatever category these things are in. I have a 1982 Honda Motocompo that was made to fold up and be carried around in the back of a Honda City car, and I also just got a pair of 1984 Honda Gyro three-wheel pivoting scooters.. today! I love this era of unusual Honda bikes. This CT50 Motra is definitely on my radar for the January Mecum auction. These little workhorses came in either green or yellow. The CT50 portion of the Motra name isn’t related to Honda’s usual mechanical “family of bikes”, instead it’s related to the Trail Cub CT50 from the late-60s. What does one look like in action, SG? Well, it’s funny you should ask. Here’s a perfect one from the Honda Collection on YouTube.

Unlike my other oddball Hondas, this Motra isn’t a single-speed affair. No, siree, this baby has a 2-stage 3-speed manual transmission, with the second stage being low gears for, you know, climbing trees and things like that. The “truck” part of the motorcycle truck nomenclature relates to this being a pack animal Honda, made for somewhat heavy hauling duties. This bike has a 49 cc four-stroke engine with a rousing 4.5 horsepower. It isn’t much, but with that low gearing you could probably pull your 2018 Honda Accord with this thing. They weigh 170 pounds without gas and oil so they aren’t light, but they aren’t made to be lightweight machines, they’re tough little sons of guns. I’ll be watching this auction very closely. Have any of you heard of the Honda Motra?

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Comments

  1. Jeff Lavery Staff

    Wow. I love it. Never heard of it and looks like a worthwhile auction pursuit. Good luck, Scotty!

  2. Fred w.

    Never new this existed, but it’s pretty cool. Not sure why they wouldn’t equip it with a 70cc. I was always a fan of the “Trail 70” but didn’t like the underpowered foldup “Trail 50” as much.

  3. Wagon master Member

    Reminds me of a relic from a Mad Max movie. So wrong but cool!

  4. Steve

    I have one for sale here in So-Cal. No waiting for an auction!

    Like 1
    • Jesse Mortensen Jesse Mortensen Staff

      @Steve – Please consider listing it here on the site: https://barnfinds.com/sell/ Thanks!

    • Scotty Gilbertson Staff

      I can’t wait to see it, Steve! Thanks again!

    • bahram arian

      im interested in buying your honda motra.
      please contact me at barianone@yahoo.com.

      • Scotty Gilbertson Staff

        Hello, I bought Steve’s Honda Motra in late-2017.

  5. boxdin

    To me 170 lbs is light as my standard CT70 street equip is 200 lbs. But this is a real cool machine.

  6. Whippeteer
  7. Allan

    Looks awesome. Love Honda motorcycles, but can’t find a reason to need this one. One less bidder, during the Auction.

  8. EDWIN F GIBBS

    Love it, if I only had the money.

  9. TBAU Member

    That Honda Gyro is so unusual. ” The front part leans into corners, while the rear drive unit stays flat.”
    Thanks Scotty for showing me (again) something I didn’t know existed.

  10. rod

    Having given up big bikes and only ridden my 50cc Ruckus in the last few years, I gotta say, what you can do with such a tiny bike is amazing. That little scooter will do 42 mph stock and get 100 mpg! But there are lots of kits on eBay to squeeze a few more hp out of them and get them up to 50 mph.
    I took mine trail riding quite often and other than occasionally bottoming out the rear shock (no doubt my big 240 lb butt being the problem not the bike) it was a pretty capable little trail bike for the casual off roader.
    Fell in love with what the wee beast could do and only got my heart broken when I rented it to a guy who killed it and then subsequently someone stole it, thinking it was an operational bike. Ah well, some day I hope to find another…

  11. Mountainwoodie

    Reminds me of the Rupp minibikes of my youth in the late sixties

  12. steve

    I would say the Honda Rukus looks like the Motra, not the other way around!

  13. erikj

    I,ve had many trail 50-90,s. And did the 2sroke dirtbikes. crash and burned,folled plugs on and on. finely went back to a honda90.
    now have a ct110. love it

  14. Scotty Gilbertson Staff

    Auction update: this super cool Honda sold for $4,400!

    Like 1
  15. steve

    Including the buyers premium?
    If not, you smoked it!!!!

  16. Michael

    Here is mine! looked along time for this thing….. got a Motocompo

    Like 3
  17. michelle sanders

    I love it just the type of bike I like, I currently have a c79 Honda passport and gyro c70 runs like a champ gyro needs work but I love them both

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