The Honda Dio was introduced in Japan in January 1988. The name is derived from the son of Venus "dyonisiac"[clarify]. It is now manufactured and assembled in India by Honda's HMSI subsidiary, from where it is exported to UK as the Honda Lead. The Dio is equipped with cushioned seats and also a spacious under the seat storage box.
The Japanese Dio was equipped with the two-stroke 50 cc AF18E single-cylinder engine with electric start. It is superficially similar to the USA-only Honda "Elite S".
Later versions in some markets were equipped with a 102 cc air-cooled, four-stroke, single-cylinder, OHC engine with both electric self-start and kick start. This model was not exported to the USA.
The Indian version has a 6-litre (1.3 imp gal; 1.6 US gal) fuel tank, of which one litre is reserve, and the Japanese version has a 4-litre (0.88 imp gal; 1.1 US gal) fuel tank with no reserve.
In 2012, HMSI launched a new Dio at Auto Expo in India. It has a new 110 cc engine, which also runs Honda's Activa and Aviator. It also has a new look and new headlight.
The 2013 HMSI Dio had claimed improvements in fuel efficiency and combined brakes.