NAKED BLADE ON THE WAY
There’s a new CB1000R in the works and it could be the one we’ve been waiting for
The current CB1000R is nearly 10 years old, which is almost geriatric in the fast-moving world of super-nakeds. But rumours from Japan suggest that Honda will unveil a new one at this year’s Milan show in November. The current CB1000R uses the guts of a 2007 Blade, which puts out 130bhp. While that might sound plenty, it’s weak when compared to the 160bhp Yamaha MT-10, or the 165bhp from BMW’s S1000R. Assuming it takes a de-tuned engine, frame and suspension from the Blade, we’d expect it to pack around 155bhp but also be significantly lighter than the competition – close to 200kg wet. The current CB1000R is also lightyears behind with its electronics package, so logic would dictate that it inherits the new Fireblade’s fly-by-wire throttle, torque control, wheelie control, traction control and an optional quickshifter/auto-blipper. We also think the styling is due a huge update, with the Hornet-based looks of the current bike looking a little tired. Our artist’s impression (right) is much more radical in its style, carrying over the angular themes Honda showed us last year with their CB1100TR concept, while also giving a little retro nod with the single round headlight. At the time Honda were adamant that the CB1100TR was just a bit of fun from their design department in Rome, but both the Africa Twin and X-ADV started as concepts from the same studio. The other question that remains is whether Honda might follow the CB1000R with a sharper and more aggressive SP version, like they have with the Blade, to further take on the MT-10 SP. For now, they’re staying tight-lipped but based on previous release patterns, we expect to see a new bike at the EICMA show in November.