What the Suzuki GSX-R750 was to lightweight sportbike performance in the mid-’80s, the CBR900RR was to lightweight sportbike performance in the early-’90s. Prior to the 900RR, the premier performance bike was of 750cc displacement where OEMs fought an ever-escalating battle for showroom sales figures and National and World Superbike racing glory.
Prior to the 900’s arrival, literbikes were ponderously large and overweight horsepower missiles such as Yamaha’s FZR1000 and Honda’s own CBR1000F. The 900 combined the lightweight handling performance of a 600/750 with the horsepower of almost literbike displacement. With a claimed dry weight of 407 pounds, the 900 was fractionally heavier than the company’s own revolutionary CBR600F2 a year earlier. Today’s CBR1000RR is a remarkable machine, but it owes everything it is to Honda’s very first double-R sportbike, the CBR900RR.