You’ve heard the adage a lot if you’re a consistent Motorcycle.com reader – it’s more fun to ride a slow bike fast than a fast bike slow – and with our recent Lightweight Sportbike Shootout we’ve gone ahead and proved it. By now we’ll assume you’ve already read the shootout, seen our conclusions, and also drawn your own; but what exactly do these three motorcycles look like at speed around Laguna Seca? This is your chance to see for yourself, as we’ve captured a quick lap aboard all three bikes, courtesy of Yours Truly.
Honda’s known for its iconic lineup of CBR sportbikes – the CBR600RR and CBR1000RR are two of the most legendary sporting motorcycles to ever grace a racetrack. Look deeper into Honda’s product lineup however, and you’ll find Team Red has a host of other models also wearing the CBR nameplate. Here, we’ll take a look at the CBR500R. A 471cc parallel-Twin, the 500R represents a stepping stone to the bigger, badder CBR models – or does it? After spending some time with it, here are five things you need to know about the 2018 Honda CBR500R.
It’s getting to be a bit silly what’s passing for a lightweight sportbike these days. In the beginning, it made sense: You had the Kawasaki Ninja 250. And, well, that was it. It only took twenty-odd years, but the other manufacturers eventually took notice that building small bikes to entice new or returning riders was probably a good thing for the industry, and hence, started building little bikes of their own. Honda came around with the CBR250R…just as the competition upped the ante again. Kawasaki pushed the bar with the Ninja 300, then Honda made a weak attempt to follow suit with the 286cc CBR300R. Yamaha then jumped in the game, shoving displacement rules out the window with its 321cc R3 – but not to be outdone, the brash Austrians (via India) at KTM one-upped all of them with the 373cc RC390.
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in June 2017. Since then, a number of other good beginner motorcycles have hit the market, so we’ve decided to update this post with some of the newer options available for new riders. The list of is available below.
A full fairing with supersport styling provides a sharp look that’s unmistakably CBR, along with aerodynamic lines that slice cleanly through the air while helping to shield the rider from the worst of the elements. A sporty riding position places the rider in a comfortable, dynamic seating stance that’s ideal for mastering curves without being overly cramped when it’s time to commute across town or out on a weekend journey.
The International Motorcycling Federation (FIM) and promoter Dorna announced a new entry-level racing class that will join the World Superbike Championship in 2017. The new Supersport 300 World Championship will open a new avenue for developing young racers while also giving manufacturers a venue to showcase their small-displacement sportbikes.
From EiC Duke’s initial ride of the littlest Duke in Thailand, we knew this small KTM was going to be special and it is. From the pointed profile of its front Pirelli to the tail-end bark from its 40-horsepower 373cc Single, this one does nothing to let down the family name, and on top of that, it’s one dollar less than 5,000. And that’s including ABS.
Last month we brought you the Top 10 Most Anticipated Bikes of 2016. For February, let’s take a look at the most affordable new bikes of 2016, because, well, a lot of the bikes in that other list are pricey: XDiavel, Brutale 800, Super Duke GT … you get the picture. There already exist a lot of motorcycles in the sub-$10k price category, and here’s 10 more new models joining that list. From retro to modernistic, cruiser to sportbike, on-road to off, there’s a little something for everyone in this list.
There’s no reason not to be outside, behind the handlebars if you’re a female motorcycle enthusiast. It’s estimated that more than 12 percent of motorcycle riders are female – and this number is going up. For some, riding a bike is a high-adrenaline alternative that saves on gas, but for others, it’s a way of life and a passion that brings them inner peace, freedom and empowerment.
Honda’s 500cc middleweight duo, the naked CB500F and the sporty CBR500R, fill a mid-size displacement gap between smallish 250cc beginner bikes and larger 600cc supersport weapons. Similarly priced at $5,799 and $6,299 for the F and R, respectively, the bikes represent reliable and fun transportation that’s also economical and attractive. Introduced last year, the CB500F and R have struck a chord with the eco-minded younger generation that are also image-aware and price-conscious.
Less than a decade ago, the motorcycle market was experiencing unbridled success. Manufacturers were updating their sportbikes every two years, and the cruiser market was blazing hot with riders who sought personal freedom via riffs on the V-Twin archetype. Motorcycles sold at unprecedented levels, especially to a baby boomer demographic that was absolutely flush with cash, credit, and/or home equity.