What are Underbones?
Underbones are a type of motorcycle that is extremely popular and visible so, in Asian & South-east Asian countries. They are small motorcycles that fall in the class of mopeds, rather than motorcycles. Extremely easy to ride, underbones are called so due to their unique design where the body of the motorbike is one single piece. Underbones are not really as powerful as conventional motorcycles, but are slowly gaining popularity as an economical transport vehicle.
Built around a single tubular frame, underbones were mainly designed for economical purposes and generally have from 50cc to 125cc engines. Some scaled up versions go up to 150 cc but this is rare as this category of vehicles is mainly used for transportation. In fact, most underbones still use carburetors as part of their fuel systems. These vehicles have been derived from mopeds and the first underbone was the Honda Super Cub, which is still available today, though most modern underbones are fashioned around the newer Honda Wave.
Known for being reliable, fuel efficient and extremely economical, underbones generally have their fuel tanks situated under the seat. They can go up to 110 to 150 kmph, but are not allowed on most highways in many countries. The most popular manufacturers of underbones are Honda, Yamaha, Suzuki, Lifan and SYM Motors. For beginners underbones are a good choice, as they are easy to handle and do not go very fast. The speed can be adjusted by increasing the engine power and fine tuning the suspension. Since these vehicles are quite basic, understanding the technology behind them and manipulating it to your advantage shouldn't be very difficult.
Many enthusiasts modify their underbones, by getting a custom paint job, adding fancy lights or playing around with the engine. How you customize your underbone is your decision, but understanding that it could be dangerous to add too much power to these vehicles, as they are not designed for high performance, is important. Racing them is also not legal in most countries, so risking it is not a good idea. Instead try and enjoy the simplicity and reliable performance that these vehicles provide. So especially if you are beginner, who especially enjoys working with simple things, be sure to add underbones to your collection.