Stored Since The 1990s! 1973 Honda CT90K4

It’s hard to argue with Honda’s successful line of small step-through motorcycles such as this 1973 Honda CT90K4, or Trail 90 – the company sold millions of them. I have owned one and they aren’t fast or anything that a person would probably ride cross-country, but for what they were intended for, they are fun to ride. This one can be found here on craigslist in impossibly beautiful Monterey, California. The seller is asking $2,500. Thanks to Rocco B. for sending in this tip!

This is a great looking bike. In 1973, all of the Honda CT90s would have come in this color, Mars Orange with gray accent color on other pieces. There were two versions of the CT90K4 available in 1972 and 1973, an X and also a Trail 90 such as the one for sale here. The main difference would have been the tires and gear ratios. A cool feature is the auxiliary fuel tank mounted on the left side under the standard luggage rack.

The one for sale here looks great, I think. The seller says that it is just out of storage where it has been since the 1990s which could be either 21 years or 30 years of being in storage. Either way, that’s a long time and it must have helped to preserve it. I used to see these Trail 90s on the back of motorhomes all the time two and three decades ago, they were great for cruising around campgrounds and on gravel trails.

There was only one seat on this era of CT90. I had an early 1967 Honda CT90K0 with a painted rack on the back and there was an extra seat that could be popped onto it for carrying a passenger. I never gave anyone a ride on that bike and I wish I would have kept it.

The engine is Honda’s 89 CC overhead-cam single with 6.5-horsepower. The bike has a 4-speed dual-range transmission with 8 total speeds. The seller says that it has just 2,000 miles on it and it is very original and it runs and drives. They have included a video here on YouTube. Have any of you owned a Honda Trail 90?

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  1. Brian

    Had one when I was a kid, think it was a 69….cool lil bike

    Like 2
  2. Pat L Member

    This thing has your name all over it Scotty.

    Like 3
  3. Nevadahalfrack Nevadahalfrack Member

    Never owned one, Scotty, but every rancher seemed to have one when they ran out of (or in addition to)their surplus of unregistered old trucks used by the ranch hands to change the sprinklers for the alfalfa fields, as did every farmer for their Heart of Gold cantaloupes (best you’ve ever had!). In the fall you’d see a mule deer buck on the hood of the truck with one of these CT90’s (scabbard on the front forks) on a mount of the front bumper…
    About the only thing that would challenge the off-roading aptitude of a Trail 90 back in the day was a Rokon but those gave up everyday roadability to the Honda.

    Like 8
  4. Sherminator

    My dad had one for cruising around our campground when I was a kid. He sold it before I was able to move up from my minibike, so I ended up with a CB150 in later years. Not a bad upgrade but I still would have loved to ride that little bike…

    Like 3
  5. Winfield S Wilson

    Never had one, but my dad bought us a CT 70 mini-trail when I was 14. It was street legal, if you didn’t mind topping out at 35 mph. After I got my license, I rode it to school my junior year of HS. Sold it to my history teacher that summer, and bought my first car. Another story…

    Like 2
  6. Howard A Member

    By 1973, these had become more user friendly. Original ones had 2 sprockets on the back and was a chore to go from “road” to “trail”, but this has a an updated version, operated by a lever. While crude by today’s standards, in the 60’s, off road hadn’t become what it is today. Off road bikes, like the Rokon Trail Breaker was your only means, and made poor road bikes. This combined both and was a hit until ATV’s with A/C, P/S, heat, stereos, and power ports made them obsolete. I can say from experience, 90cc’s won’t do much for you on the road, but hit the trail, it’s great for off the road. Be advised, with the popularity of off-roading today, be ready for trails, that even my DRZ with 8 inches of suspension, have a tough time with, this, even more so. But for a short ride to your favorite fishing hole in the woods, here you go, Hondas original intent. One of Hondas most popular bikes, I believe.

    Like 5
  7. Mark Mitchell Member

    In the small town where I grew up on the central coast of California, all the old codgers rode these Trail 90’s. No helmets, and lit cigars dangling from their mouths, they cruised the neighborhoods visiting friends and running errands. I guess that I’m in their same age bracket now, and of course, have my own Trail 90. Theis one is being offered by Dodi’s Auto Sales, made famouse for his appearances on Chasing Classic cars. He usually “rents” a junky car to Wayne so he can enter Concours d’ Lemons!

    Like 1
  8. Mike

    We had two of these when I was young, plus a CT-70 and a Mini Trail 50. Our whole family would go camping and take these out too. My mom even dared to ride on the back of one with my Dad. They were perfect for exploring CA fire roads and trails in the 60’s. Brings back a lot of grins!!

    Like 2
  9. lc

    I would be concerned of getting burned by that exhaust being near my inner thigh. OUCH! I did burn my forearm once on the exhaust reaching under one of my Japanese motorcycles after riding it when I was around 19. I ended up having a huge blister mark.

  10. Gator Member

    If you happened to be unlucky enough to drop the bike with your leg under the exhaust heat shield, you would certainly end up with a new and interestingly patterned “brand”.

  11. stillrunners stillrunners Member

    Have 1 or two or three. My earliest is a 1964 C200 – 90 with a buddy seat and is a one owner couple who purchased it as the first mode of transportation as newlyweds. Both their names are on the title and Honda dropped the C200 destination think the next year and they became the CT90 everyone remembers. The early models had the dual sprockets and you carried that extra chain in the tool kit if you wanted to go off road. My 1967 is the last style of the first series – that just keeps on running – and the best trade I every did !

  12. Stephen Coe

    These things were about $400 back then, cool but too pricey

  13. Pat Gill

    one day the only thing left on this planet will be Honda 90s and cockroaches!

    Like 1
    • Nevadahalfrack Nevadahalfrack Member

      And T137 Power Wagons…

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