A harder-edged version of the retro CB1100 at last appears, yet it could have been so much more
Honda launch a revamped retro with very desirable forks and brakes
IT SHOULD HAVE BEEN the long straw.yet, while this correspondent was lurching around Catalunyan mountain roads on the new CB1100RS, the editor (unannounced, and caught unawares by such an unexpected pleasure, it should be recorded) was swapping yarns with none other than Fast Freddie Spencer in the PS Peterborough Portakabin®.anyway…
Honda, woefully slow to respond to other manufacturers’ gleeful wonder at modern bike buyers’ love of all things neo-retro (ie BMW andyamaha), have at last decided to market a bit of heritage.what heritage they have – and how apologetically they’ve brought it to market.
The CB1100R concept bike (remember that?) should have been made metal as soon
as it appeared, to such unequivocal acclaim, way back in 2009. But no.
Instead, in Spain, we, a large section of the modern, and neo-classic press, were treated to a five-bike model year 2017 extravaganza. This included the CB1100EX, a revamp of the original air-cooled 11, and the RS, a halfway decent effort at rekindling the glory years, in semi-silhouette form at least, of Honda’s 1980SAMA triumphs. No title for Freddie back then, but an undying legacy of precociously loose rides, a decent number of wins, and a number 19 CB750 in silver and blue that remains immoveable still in the mind of anyone who ever saw him work it.
So, the CB1100RS packs the same 80bhp engine as the cooking version, it wears considerably more presentable cycle parts, though in reality not that much more effective, running gear.and it costs £11,139 (the EX £10,765).
Since these bits will be available as officially listed spares it may interest prospective hot-cb builders that Showa gold-anodised rwu 43mm forks with radial monobloc four-pottokico calipers and 310mm floating discs will now be on a microfiche (or whatever a microfiche has now become). Friendly dealers might be able to assist a builder, otherwise breakers (assuming enough sell) will be the go-to.
It’s almost painful to witness how Kawasaki milked the Lawson trip via various ZRX versions and how Honda stood idly by and let a back catalogue of Spencer wonderment go by the wayside. Only a dedicated big-h, big-four subculture has kept the RSC/HRC flag flying.
Go to the Honda website (assuming you’re enabled) and have a gander at the latest CB re-enactment. It might upset you, but at least there are some distant rumblings of tribute – and perhaps more importantly – some bits to be had. Sorry to have missed you Freddie. My loss.
“The CB1100R concept bike should have been made metal as soon as it appeared way back in 2009”
Dig those Showas and radial Tokicos. Best bits