Sitting 41 Years: 1970 Honda US90

As if driving wasn’t dangerous enough in 2021 – and if you haven’t noticed a real change then you haven’t been paying attention behind the wheel – we bring you this 1970 Honda US90! You have always wanted one and this is the one to have. The seller has it posted here on eBay in Alma, Michigan, the current bid price is just over $1,500 (reserve not met), and there is a buy-it-now price of $4,000.

Frankly, I can’t believe that someone (me) hasn’t hit the buy-it-now button on this one. The original and rare wheels alone are probably worth half that price and a first-year vehicle – car, truck, motorcycle, ATV, boat, snowmobile, plane, rocketship, whatever – is always desirable to collectors. As was the case with a few other seasonal manufacturers, Honda wanted a vehicle to sell when conditions weren’t the best for riding motorcycles.

The early versions such as this example were named US90 as opposed to ATC90 which came a few years later and those are the ones that most of us know. Early examples with these big balloon tires are pretty rare but auctions usually shake out current pricing or values and I would have thought that the bid price would be closer to the seller’s buy-it-now price by now.

You can see that the grips have been changed – they would have been black – and there are a few other small details that can be corrected by the next owner if they want a perfect three-wheeler. Most people would buy it and just ride it as is, which I would do. At least for a while. You can see the thumb control for the throttle on the right side grip, rather than the usual twist grip.

The engine is Honda’s 90 cc (89.5 cc) 7-horsepower overhead cam four-stroke. The seller tells us that the story on this hidden treasure is that back in 1980, it was sidelined for carb work and never got going again. They bought it at some point and got it running and the good part is that they say the tires were never flat, at least since they’ve owned it. It sure looks like a good example of a rare ballon-tire ATC. Let’s hear those three-wheeler stories!

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Comments

  1. Howard A Member

    We’ve pretty much beaten this 3 wheeler thing to death, but for the sake of Scotty, who puts his soul into these posts, what the heck, one more. While the original tires are becoming scarce, due to the lack of any suspension, the tires were supposed to act as the suspension. The low pressure required to do that made for some iffy handling at speed, catching most off guard, it would. Most pumped them up, but newer knobby tires will work fine, better in fact, as the original tires didn’t offer much traction. $4g’s is wishful thinking, and the seller better grab the offer now. Most of these, someone took a tumble and it got stashed in a corner somewhere, “so nobody else will get hurt”, and seem to be coming out nof the woodwork lately. They are simple machines, and I’m finding my Jeep won’t go to many places, well, it will, it’s just I don’t want to break anything, and a ATV( or C), might be the answer. While I don’t care for 4 wheeler atv’s, a 3 wheeler might be okay,,, for a couple hundred bucks, maybe. Can you see me on a 3 wheeler on a rocky trail at 10,000 feet with 500 foot dropoffs on either side? Um,,,maybe not.

    Like 5
    • Stan Partin

      This child killer should be put back in storage forever.

      Like 4
      • Dave

        Back with the lawn darts?

        Like 7
      • Howard A Member

        Sorry you feel that way, Stan, that’s simply not true, and seems to have to be covered everytime one of these comes up. To be clear, if a child got killed, and reports indicate, less than 1% actually died on one,( about 100/year of the millions that were sold) it was the parents fault. Lawyers and media hype had a field day, but the truth is, if someone is going to ride a machine like this, you should be on your own. I spent most of my youth on “death machines” like this, and guess what, I’m still typing here today. I always rode them with the idea, I could get hurt, but it’s a blast so I’ll tone it down a bit, and it got me through all kinds of situations, and I feel I’ve had a lot more fun than someone who never rode these things. https://www.skillsetmag.com/three-wheeler-history/

        Like 7
    • Gary

      Dangerous, yes. The good news is that these have become expensive investment commodities so the chance of a child or drunkard (not that I would care if one of them got hurt) riding it are slim.

      Like 3
  2. Howie Mueler

    Were the very first ones yellow? I thought they were all red.

    Like 2
  3. benjy58

    Ankle breaker, ask me I know.

    Like 4
  4. Dave

    “Driving in 2021…”
    Let me tell you…it is far more dangerous than it ever was. Beginning during the Dale Earnhardt era, a lot of “drivers” began emulating their favorite driver’s aggressive style, often with fatal results. Then, like the CB era before, cheap cell phones resulted in “drivers” with phones glued to their heads blowing through traffic signals and flattening pedestrians and motorcycle/bicycle riders. This continues today. In the past five years unpredictability has entered the mix…right turns from the left lane, left turns from the right lane, and may God have mercy on your soul if you’re caught between a car and a Starbucks, Sheetz, or Wawa. Go straight through a dedicated turning lane? Better expect it if you’re in the middle. I have dashcam video that makes Talledega look like a Sunday drive. If they can do something, that’s exactly what they’ll do. Expect the worst, pray for the best. Speed limits are mere suggestions. Last summer, a civil rights group suggested suspending all of Pennsylvania’s motor vehicle laws in an effort to reduce conflicts between some motorists and police. Legalized recreational marijuana is contributing to an uptick in accidents in states that have it.
    Add in road rage and firearms, and American highways are rivaling anything seen in the movies. I’m glad I retired and don’t have to do field service anymore.

    Like 7
    • Howard A Member

      Whew, feel better, Dave? Not sure what this has to do with vintage 3 wheelers, but I hear ya’ on all counts, except maybe the legal MJ part. Living in a state that has legalized it, and being a truck driver most of my life, now retired for the reasons you mentioned, I can say with all honesty, I don’t think the drivers here are stoned idiots, any worse than places where it’s still illegal. I feel distracted driving, aka cell phone, is a far worse entity. The DAY the cell phone came out(90’s?) I immediately saw a difference in peoples driving, so much so, I could no longer estimate what they were going to do, and got out of driving a truck. Today, I no longer go very far, and pick my driving times carefully, and yes, I too am glad I’m retired from this driving nonsense and wouldn’t drive a truck today without a dashcam..

      Like 7
      • Dave

        Scotty led off with “As if driving wasn’t already dangerous enough in 2021” and I took it from there. Early, analog cell phones made their first appearance in the 1980s and were the providence of businesses because they were expensive to buy and expensive to talk on. They are referred to as “1G”. 2G phones kicked the door open to cheap talk and sales skyrocketed, along with accidents caused by distracted driving. When 3G added texting, it got worse. 4G enabled drivers to stream Netflix on their phones. I used to see them watching last night’s Game of Thrones on my way to work. I’ve read stories that distracted driving is a factor behind the development of self-driving cars, that some people can’t be bothered with actually driving their cars because they’d rather play with their phones. Currently, they buy Teslas for the Autopilot feature, but that’s not a perfect solution, and people are dying because others can’t tear themselves away from their phones.
        Story is that 5G is being pushed to allow cars to “talk” with each other to prevent collisions caused by distracting driving. When two vehicles so equipped approach they determine if they’re on a collision course and take steps to avoid a collision.

        Like 1
  5. Gary

    I’ve ridden three wheelers for years, and yes I’ve crashed them, sometimes very hard, racing them. 200X’s, 250R’s mostly, some Suzuki’s and Kawasaki’s. Worst one was a little 125 Yamaha that had the engine basically under the seat. That pile of crap would damn near flip over setting still. No bigger thrill than being on a water cooled, race motored 250R with flat track tires and a extended axle on a curve wide open in high gear with your ass planted on your heel while you are hanging off the side. Almost better than sex

    Like 5
  6. Jay E. Member

    Agree with most of the comments. Child injurer, definitely. Ankle breaker, FOR sure. Pretty deadly on asphalt. As for the crazy drivers, in our State the courts are so busy that traffic enforcement is virtually non existent. I recall during the gas crunch when 5 over got you a ticket and resultant insurance increase Now I have driven 15 over and get passed like I’m standing still. And stop signs are flat ignored, not even a flicker of brake light. Yellow means floor it. Then there are the illegal LED headlights glaring you into blindness, lift kits that put bumpers to window height and crazy loud exhaust. It has become much worse since texting. And worse still since Covid..Bring back traffic enforcement!!!

    Like 2
  7. Scotty Gilbertson Staff

    Auction update: this one sold for an even $3,000.

    Like 1

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