Before we discuss the motorcycle in Grease 2, let’s have a look at the basic plot as a way of understanding how the bike comes into play.
We are taken back to 1961–two years after the cast of the original Grease have graduated high school. It’s the first day of school. Stephanie Zinone (Michelle Pfeiffer), has outgrown immature ex-boyfriend Johnny Nogerelli (Adrian Zmed), leader of the T-Birds. A fresh love interest comes into her life in the guise of Michael Carrington (Maxwell Caulfield) who is a relative of Sandy (Olivia Newton-John). At a bowling alley Stephanie becomes angry with Johnny and kisses Michael. He asks her out only to find that her ideal man must ride a motorcycle; thus he buys one to rebuild. And so, we segue into the bike itself.
Whew, finally there!
Grease 2 Motorcycle: Honda CL77 Scrambler
The bike that Micheal buys–therefore, the motorcycle in Grease 2–is a Honda Scrambler. The exact year and model are hard to decipher. The bike appears to be a Honda CL77 as best we can tell. The CL77 was also known as the Scrambler 305. It was built as an off-road-ready version of the more commonplace Honda C77 Dream and CB77 Super Hawk. The bike’s production run lasted from 1965 to 1968. Of course, this is a bit of a movie “goof,” as the film is supposed to be set in 1961.
All scramblers are altered from their street bike cousins. In the case of this bike, high exhaust pipes were used along the left side to allow for additional ground clearance. Additional frame strength came in the form of larger tubing with a front downtube that ran all the way through to where the starter box would have been in the sport bikes. Scramblers did away with the electric starter to allow for additional frame clearance and a lower wet weight. Other modifications included a smaller fuel tank, fork boots, 19-inch front and rear wheels, universal tires, handlebars with a cross-brace, and shortened fenders.
Interested in bikes like this? Check out more Custom Scramblers here!
The biggest change was the larger engine. Where the base model sport bikes were powered by a 250 cc engine, the CL77 featured a 305.4 cc overhead cam parallel twin powerplant with a redline of 9000 rpms, an extreme contrast to the low-rev bikes of the time. The power of the engine was nicely complimented with a louder exhaust note achieved by using straight pipes with internal baffles.
Thanks for the information on `Cool Rider’s bike! I’m one of this world’s oddities – a HUGE Grease 2 fan. I even wrote a storybook-like `Fan-Script’ of the movie, using plain, unformatted DVD subtitles as the basis, then filling in all of the details myself, or using some info found online. I even had help from one of the film’s Girl Greasers, the pretty `nerd’ girl with the long braids, her filling me in on which dancer was which.
Anyway I came up with an apocryphal backstory for Cool Rider’s bike. Though it was in reality a ’65 Scrambler, I made it up that it was a ’55 Scrambler that had once belonged to the Cycle Salvage Yard manager (Played by Grease 2 cameraman William N. Clark). And my theory why Cool Rider / Michael had made the Dead Man’s Curve jump was because it was an extremely fast – and light – motorcycle. I may be off abought it being light, but I am aware that the Honda Scrambler was fast.
Very nice article.
I was 10 years old when I first saw Grease 2 back in 1984. I just so happened to watch that before I saw the original Grease, so I am also a huge fan of the movie. It’s what got me into riding motorcycles. Is there any way I can read your fan script?
That’s exactly what happened to me brother. Safe riding!
Seems like the bike used during the song “Love will turn back the hands of time” is a different one, maybe a Yamaha XS650???
Yes, I indeed see that is about a 1979 Yamaha XS650 Special! I have had four of them over the years in the 1979-1981 range.
Hello Mr.Coffey I would like to read your article as I worked for Lakewood cycle salvage at the time of the filming of Greese 2 and helped build all of the wonderful motorcycles that were used in the film . I would also love to try and fill in any gaps in information that you might have .
Its great to find somone involved in the building of the bikes. I myself am building/ have built Michael’s Bike from the film and have managed to figure out every part to make it an exact replica exception the front wheel and its bugging me. Have you any insight on what it might be from. I can tell its an 79 XL 500 brake but not sure what the hub is from. Currently im using the 500 hub but changed the rim to a 21″. It would be great to know so i can change it in the future.
Hey you said you worked on the bikes used in the film is there anyway you can tell me what bikes were used to make the honda cool rider?
thank you grease 2