CB gets fruity
Honda middleweight gets Neo styling and more power
Honda middleweight gets a Neo makeover
The CB650F was always a good bike, if a little ordinary, but the charge into what Honda call their Neo Sports Café look that first appeared on last year’s CB1000R has reached the 650. The similarities to the 1000/300/125 that are already in dealers are clear to see, but that’s not a complaint; this is the funkiest middleweight CB since the underseat-pipe Hornet.
It’s not just a cosmetic slap and tickle. There’s a new frame, tank and other changes mean that the CB has ditched 6kg of mass, while the engine has sprouted another 1000rpm at the redline via some fuelling and mechanical tweaks, resulting in a 5% power boost at peak and a smoother and stronger torque curve.
The riding position hasn’t gone unfettled either. Now more aggressive in terms of rider positioning, the bars have drifted forward and down (13mm and 8mm), the footpegs have moved back and up (3mm and 6mm), while the seat height remains at a sensible 810mm.
The 1.9kg lighter frame has, Honda say, a stiffer headstock and more flexible side sections to give better torsional control with a new preload and rebound adjustable 41mm Showa SFF fork looking after the front end. The main braking hardware is also new, comprising Nissin four-pot radial calipers and 310mm discs at the sharp end. The wheels are also new, there’s more gas flow from the bigger bore exhaust, and an attractive all-new LCD dash that’s shared with the CB500 family.
FAST FACTS 649cc inline-four 94bhp and 47ftlb O 202kg (kerb) O £6999
Sharper, lighter and funkier; meet the new CB650R