2010 HONDA FIREBLADE
The motor was made lighter and more compact, using a separate sleeveless cylinder block that aided rebuilds in racing. A new head configuration added power while shedding weight, with shorter valve lengths. Titanium intake valves shaved off half a kilo towards a total of 2.5kg lighter than the previous bike’s motor. New forged pistons were 1mm wider, with a 1.5mm shorter stroke, meaning higher revs and a faster pickup. This led to the best midrange hit still not bettered even today! It also got a slipper-clutch. Mass centralisation was the key for this model. A (then) new four-piece cast aluminium frame saved weight and increased rigidity. It’s 300mm slimmer, featured a new steering head cast for the ram-air. The swingarm was 11mm longer. Suspension remained as the previous bike, but fork span was down by 10mm and offset was upped by 2.5mm for a faster response. Monoblock calipers were new for more power and less weight, along with lighter wheels. There is a version that comes with Honda’s C-ABS system, too.