After the success of the Z50 and the CT70, Honda wanted a bike that they could sell in the winters in the US market. They launched a small trike called the US90 in 1969. The success was immediate, and US beaches became Honda’s trike highways. In 1971, Honda acquired the trademark ATC, “all-terrain cycle”, and gave it to their three-wheelers. During the following years, some new ATCs appeared with engines going from 70cc to over 200cc.
Other than the three wheels, what stand out the most on the ATC are the enormous tires. During the development of the US90, figuring out the suspension and tires were a problematic decision. American Honda sent Osamu Takeuchi (Chief Engineer for the US90 project) an American amphibious prototype, the Amphicat, a huge machine that featured six 20-inch low pressure “balloon-tires”. The solution was found: the small trike would be equipped with 22 inch low pressure tires that would be able to roll on sand, mud or snow, while also acting as the suspension. Just like the US90, the ATC 70, first released in 1973, used a 4-stroke engine, 4 speed gearbox and automatic clutch. The throttle was positioned at the thumb (like today’s quads) in order to let the rider have precise throttle control even in uncomfortable situations. The ATC is another proof of Honda’s ability to release multi-tasking vehicles that could be used by kids, adults, and workers. Today, it is unfortunately rare to find beautiful ATC examples. You can find more information about Honda three wheelers on ATCtripod or Silodrome.
The ATC featured here is a 70cc model in excellent condition. The red paint seems to be like new, as well as the decals and the seat. Only the front fender has small dents. The seller does not have the title unfortunately, so the “bike” would be sold with a bill of sale only.
Find this ATC 70 in Chino, California here on Craigslist for $2,400.