Honda Philippines Inc. (HPI) just posted a teaser on its Facebook page, which offers a glimpse of the rear wheel of the model that is to be launched on September 23 at the upcoming Honda Moto Fair to be held at Market! Market! In Taguig City.
Based on that and on the caption, “Get ready for a new look,” we could probably say with a fair amount of certainty that there will be no Vision or Lead that is going to be unveiled on that day.
What we’ll likely have is version 3 of the popular BeAT scooter. Normally, this should be a cause for celebration, but this version of the Honda BeAT has been trending in Indonesia lately because of its alleged frame quality issues.
What's the fuss all about?
The Honda BeAT in Indonesia uses Honda’s Enhanced Smart Architecture Frame (eSAF), which is lighter by 10% compared to its predecessor, the good old tubular frame, which is still being used on our current Honda BeAT.
Honda BeAT owners in Indonesia are complaining of premature rusting on their eSAF frames and are also having doubts about their durability.
If you understand Malay, you can watch the MotoFun Indonesia video here:
Our colleagues at AutoFun and MotoFun Indonesia did a thorough inspection of a Honda BeAT unit, and they even used an endoscope to see the condition inside its eSAF frame. Honda maintains that the brown spots found within the frame are silicate residue, which actually strengthens welded joints and helps prevent oxidation (rust build-up).
Indonesia’s Ministry of Transportation also organized an investigative team to address the matter. So far, they found no justification to order a recall or to halt the production of eSAF frames.
HPI attests that it has not received any complaints on eSAF frames that have been in use on the Honda Genio since 2019. The Click160 also uses an eSAF frame, and so far, so good.
Will this eSAF controversy discourage you from buying the BeAT version 3 when it reaches our shores?