Best Value Motorcycle of 2013

Kevin Duke
by Kevin Duke

Honda CB500F

What to say about Honda’s new standard that hasn’t already been spelled out? Low MSRP? Check. Solid package? Check. Great mileage? Check. The CB500F is, quite simply, a spectacular value.

The CB500 platform contains the most affordable bike released in 2013 from a major manufacturer, the CB500F. The F’s classic aesthetics and a more neutral riding position should appeal to a wider audience than its brethren (the athletic R and the tough X), and its simple and tasteful style isn’t as polarizing. Factor in all the amenities and modern technology a commuting rider could want – ABS is only a $500 mark-up – and you’ve got yourself a bargain bike with room to move.

The CB’s closest rival is likely Suzuki’s SFV650 – a bike with a base MSRP of $7999. Surely, Kawasaki’s Ninja 300 is a great little sportbike that expands the 250 class, but even it starts at $4799, just $500 less than the CB500F.

For anyone who’s ever tried to get a buddy, sibling or spouse into motorcycling, the CBs are diminutive but powerful enough for a newbie of any size to handle, and large enough to grow with them as they gain experience and confidence. Now that’s real value. You won’t get more for your money at any showroom in 2014.

Read More:
2013 Honda CB500F And CBR500R Review – First Ride
Six New 2013 Honda Models Announced For US
2014 Honda CTX700/N Review
2013 Beginner Sportbike Shootout – Video

2011 Honda CB1000R Review

Best Value Honorable Mention: Aprilia RSV4 R APRC

Best value doesn’t necessarily mean the lowest price, but rather what you get for your dollar. In the case of the Aprilia RSV4 R APRC, for $13,999 you can own an exotic European literbike for less than the cost of a Kawasaki ZX-10R ($14,299) or Yamaha YZF-R1 ($14,290).

The Aprilia RSV4 is one of our favorite sportbikes because of its razor-sharp handling. Its V-Four powerplant, while not the heaviest hitter in the class, still pumps out an impressive 160 horses to the wheel while emitting one of the sweetest exhaust notes ever to be pumped out of an engine. Couple that with the APRC package which includes traction, wheelie and launch control, plus one of the best quick-shifters in the business, and the RSV4 R is competitive even with bikes twice its price.

Read More:
2013 Aprilia RSV4 R APRC ABS And RSV4 Factory APRC ABS Review
2012 Yamaha YZF-R1 Vs. 2011 Aprilia RSV4 R APRC – Video
2012 Aprilia RSV4 Factory APRC Track Review
2010 Aprilia RSV4 R Review

Best of 2013

Kevin Duke
Kevin Duke

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3 of 4 comments
  • Joseph Joseph on Aug 22, 2013

    The "'Aprilia RSV4 R APRC" link in the article actually goes to the Ninja 300 page.

  • Alex Tsinos Alex Tsinos on Aug 22, 2013

    I'm shopping for a new bike and like what the CB500F has to offer. In Canada, the msrp is $6299 inc. ABS. However, I came across the three following models listed at $5,995: 2013 Suzuki SVF 650, the 2013 Suzuki GSX 650 F and the 2013 Kawasaki Er-6n. Both Suzuki's include ABS but this option is not available on the Kawa.

    I suspect that Suzuki and Kawasaki are slashing prices to prevent Honda from gaining too much small-mid-displacement entry-level market-share.

    Using the msrp, I'd have to agree with you that the Honda is the best value of the bunch but using current street prices, which would you recommend as the best value bike between the models listed?

    • Kevin Duke Kevin Duke on Jan 04, 2014

      If you've been riding for awhile and consider performance an important asset, any of the three 650s you mention will be a better value than the CB500s.