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EXCLUSIVE First Ride Report: NEW, 2025 CSC Motorcycles Wolf 125 (Part Two)

Updated: Jul 12

Riding the CSC Wolf 125. Is this the TOWN and TRAIL motorcycle you have been waiting for?

 

CSC Motorcycles has been offering “Fun You Can Afford” since 2014 when it introduced the popular RX3 Adventure. Now, CSC Motorcycles is poised to upset the industry again with the new, 2025 CSC Wolf 125. This is an all-road, town and trail motorcycle with similarities to the iconic Honda CT90, which was imported to the U.S. beginning in 1965.

 

Since the 60’s, Honda has sold MILLIONS of small 90cc to 125cc motorcycles around the world. While small motorcycles are the norm elsewhere, Honda has enjoyed a virtual monopoly in the “Mini-Moto” market in the U.S. So the announcement of the 2025 CSC Motorcycles Wolf 125 in North America caused a tidal wave of interest. I was fortunate to be the FIRST to put the CSC Wolf through several offroad riding tests.

FIRST offroad test of the new CSC Wolf 125 in the mountains of the Prescott National Forest.

 

When I learned about the new CSC Wolf 125, I made the immediate comparison to the “Honda Trail 90”. I remember the introduction of the Honda CT90 back in the 1960’s. It was advertised to people who had NO interest in loud, heavy, and bulky motorcycles. It was marketed specifically to people who were NOT bikers!

 

NO leather jackets. NO anti-establishment theme. NO outlaw imagery. And NO interest in loud pipes, souped up engines, or pools of leaking oil on the gravel driveway!


Honda’s counter-cultural message was, “You meet the nicest people on a Honda.” This was the promise of good, clean FUN, not rebellion. Even my MOM wanted one!


CSC Motorcycles is completing the regulatory certifications on this new model. I jumped at the opportunity to ride the first test bike. With temperatures in the California desert pushing 110-degrees, I loaded up the new Wolf 125 and headed to high elevation and my favorite trails near Prescott, Arizona


My first impressions were that of solid construction with attention to the fine details. For comparison, I have owned two CSC RX3’s and a CSC RX4 over the years – plus over a dozen other motorcycles from many manufacturers. The Wolf 125 appeared to be perfect in appearance. All the parts and pieces were precisely aligned. The paint on the frame, silver engine and rear swing arm, along with black rims and accessories was flawless and made a striking package.

 

Walking around, I took note of the standard features on the CSC Wolf 125 that will be included in the $1,995.00* base model: (Note that MANY of these standard features are only available as expensive options on competitive models – if at all!)


  • Step-through frame reminiscent of the original CT90

  • Large, padded saddle. The gas tank is located under the seat. The saddle is unlocked with the ignition key and is hinged to the right side.

  • Rear cargo rack

  • High and wide “enduro-style” handlebars, with dual rear-view mirrors, headlight switch, horn, and engine kill switch.

  • A USB charging outlet is also standard equipment on the handlebars.

  • Electronic dash with speedometer, tachometer, odometer, trip odometer, fuel gauge with low fuel warning light, gear and neutral indicator, battery voltage, clock, turn signals, and high/low beam icons.

  • Zonsen Horizontal 125 engine. This is a single cylinder, 119.6cc, 4-stroke, air cooled, single overhead cam engine that produces 8.74 Hp at 7,500 RPMs.

  • The engine is designed to run on straight 87-octane gas.

  • Fuel is delivered by electronic fuel injection.

  • Similar to the CT90, the air filter is located on the upper left side of the frame, and the air intake is high and protected by the rear rack.

  • The H125 motor includes a semi-automatic transmission, operated by a toe-heel shift lever. There is no left-hand clutch lever. This transmission has a straight N-1-2-3-4 up and down pattern. The drive is via a 428 chain to the rear wheel.

  • The exhaust is via a raised, “dual sport” muffler on the right side, with an approved spark arrestor.

  • The Wolf 125 is equipped with electronic ignition and electric start. The motor also features a kick starter – which turns over the small engine with a very light kick! (In either case, you need to hold the front brake lever to engage the starter.)

  • All lights are sealed, maintenance-free LED’s: headlight, taillight, and front and rear turn signals.

  • There is a front disc brake, plus a sealed drum brake in the rear, operated by the right-hand lever and right foot lever, respectively. (Since the $1,995.00* price point was an important marketing goal, CSC and Zonsen opted to not include either a rear disc or ABS brakes. Both may be available as added-cost options in the future.)

  • The 17-inch wheels have black steel rims laced with spokes to sealed bearing hubs.

  • Both wheels are tube-type with 80/90-17 tires. The tires are what I would call 80/20 tread that are best for street riding, but will allow cruising on gravel roads, as well.

  • Both wheels are well-covered by painted steel fenders.

  • The suspension is basic, non-adjustable spring forks in the front and dual, coil-over shocks in the rear.

  • The Wolf has a standard side stand. It also includes a center stand as standard equipment.

 

*The long list of standard features on the CSC Wolf 125 is VERY impressive! To the base price of $1,995.00, CSC only adds a small pre-delivery fee and documentation charge of $410.00.

You can buy a WELL-EQUIPPED new Wolf 125 motorcycle for less than $2,500! That is less than most scooters with EFI, and less than most electric bikes, even many pedal bicycles! CSC plans to offer the Wolf 125 in your choice of FOUR standard colors: Red, Green, Yellow, or White plus Tan or Green camoflage paint jobs. I don’t believe there is another motorcycle that can compare to the CSC Wolf 125 – so MANY standard features for this LOW price!**

 

The dimensions of the CSC Wolf 125 are:

 

L X W X H (Inches) 75.4" x 30.51" x 40.55"

Wheelbase (Inches) 49.02"

Seat Height (Inches) 30.12"

Min. Ground Clearance (Inches) 5.51"

Curb Weight (Lbs) 225

Fuel Tank Capacity (Gal) 1.2

 

With an expected fuel economy of over 100 miles per gallon, the daily commuter on the Wolf 125 may not need to refuel more than once per week. The backroads explorer will enjoy a cruising range exceeding 100 miles!

 

The small size and light weight makes the Wolf 125 an attractive package for the apartment dweller. It takes up little space in the garage – or in a toy hauler RV.


My Wolf test model was outfitted with nearly every available option – accessories which Zonsen is manufacturing for the Wolf 125, and which CSC plans to install for FREE during the pre-delivery process for each new buyer.


To the base model Wolf 125, the test motorcycle included the following:

 

  • Optional tan camouflage paint. (A $95.00 option.)

  • Locking rear top case, which is large enough to hold your helmet. Available painted to match the cycle.

  • Engine guard

  • Lower engine skid plate

  • Driving lights, connected to a prewired factory pigtail that links them to the high beam switch

  • Center storage rack in the step-through frame

  • Front cargo rack with windshield

  • Raised front fender. This is a plastic, enduro-style fender that is painted to match the frame

  • Larger, Shinko knobby tires (also tube-type) – which necessitate the raised front fender. These larger, more aggressive tires are installed during the pre-delivery process by CSC Motorcycles.

  • Spare fuel storage in the accessory 1-gallon plastic gas can, with locking mount.

  • Also available as an option, but not included on the test bike, were Wolf 125 hand guards.

 

CSC plans to offer a menu of accessories for the Wolf 125 and provide FREE installation to new owners for any options selected during the initial purchase.


SIDE NOTE: Prospective buyers can also anticipate that many of the aftermarket parts and accessories which are available for the popular Honda CT125 will also be adaptable to the new CSC Wolf 125. Likewise, Honda CT125 owners routinely complain about the scant availability of affordable accessories. CSC Motorcycles will have a full inventory of Wolf 125 accessories when the first shipment of motorcycles arrives in Fall 2024. I can’t guarantee that every Wolf 125 accessory will be a perfect bolt-on – but I’m willing to bet that most parts will be interchangeable. For example, Zonsen is already providing a rear passenger seat and foot pegs. As shown below, the CSC Wolf 125 will also be available with optional cast wheels and TUBELESS tires.


Rolling the Wolf 125 around requires very little effort. The lightweight cycle rolls easily on the 17-inch wheels. I was able to roll the motorcycle on and off the rear hitch rack on my truck without using the engine. Driving down the freeway at 75 mph and over the mountains was effortless. The Wolf 125 will make a perfect motorcycle for anyone who needs to transport it by SUV, truck or RV with a standard receiver hitch. No trailer will be necessary.

 

Arriving in Prescott, I unloaded the Wolf 125 for my first lesson in shifting the tiny engine with the toe-heel shift lever linked to the semi-automatic 4-speed transmission. After tens of thousands of road and dual sport riding miles, this simple task required special concentration.

First, the transmission has a unique pattern. From neutral, first gear is one click DOWN (so far, so good.) But second gear is then one more click DOWN. Third and fourth follow additional DOWN clicks.

 

Remember, there is no clutch lever. Also, the tiny 9-horse motor needs to be revved up to over 7,000 RPMs. Then you simply back off the throttle and tap the toe lever DOWN. Super simple.

 

But when you approach the first stop sign you are also faced with the fact that you can’t operate the hand clutch lever. Instinctively, you have been accustomed to pulling the clutch and simultaneously adding throttle to ease the motorcycle into a lower gear. What now?

 

My first downshifts – accomplished by using the HEEL shifter to shift down 4-3-2-1 – were anything but smooth. Honda CT125 and Super Cub riders know what I mean. If you decelerate and STOMP the heel lever into the lower gear, the rear wheel is locked into a lower RPM, but the cycle is still moving at the speed of the higher gear. The bike will shift with a clunk and a momentary CHIRP as the rear tire skids for a second until the little engine catches up.

 

This is embarrassing and unnecessary! (I’m sure it adds wear to the gearing and drive chain, too.) Here is the “secret” that I learned and practiced: When downshifting, HOLD the heel shift lever down and “blip” the throttle slightly, gently raising the engine RPMs. Holding the lever down engages the semi-automatic clutch until you release the lever. By adding throttle, the engine matches the wheel speed as you release the lever.

 

Here is a video that helps to understand this process – common to the CSC Wolf 125 and all motorcycles which share this 4-speed, semi-automatic transmission.



New riders will need to drive around the block a few times or practice their downshifting in a vacant parking lot. OK – now that we know all the features and the operation of the CSC Wolf 125, it is finally time to go for a ride in the mountains. Please continue to Part Three of this series for my riding impressions.

CSC Wolf 125

CSC Motorcycles is based in Azusa, California. CSC is the exclusive importer of motorcycles manufactured by Zonsen in China. CSC Motorcycles specifies the component details for each model and handles the certification for D.O.T. and E.P.A. regulations.

 

CSC Motorcycles specializes in smaller, economical motorcycles that are sold DIRECTLY to consumers. Selling direct to the motorcycle rider saves the consumer at least 15% to 20% on these already LOW-PRICED motorcycles. After delivery to your address, CSC supports the owners with warranties, a full parts inventory, online motorcycle manuals, and video tutorials for common maintenance tasks. For more information on CSC’s direct-to-the-consumer business model and background on Zonsen, please see Part One of this Wolf 125 series.


** There ARE two other motorcycles that are in this same LOW price range. Not surprisingly, BOTH of these models are ALSO from CSC Motorcycles: The TT250 Enduro and the SG250 Café Racer. Both share the same 229cc air-cooled, counter-balanced engine. Both models also have THOUSANDS of happy riders, going back nearly ten years.

CSC Wolf 125

1 Comment


Guest
Jul 09

Looking forward to an AFFORBABLE alternative to the CT125 - and Super Cub street bike!

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