Honda’s CB1000R quasi-retro streetfighter is an EICMA surprise, but it’s also flanked by two smaller siblings which pack similar looks into a smaller package. Plus, they have some pretty sweet technology touches for the small-capacity motorcycle space.
Introducing the Honda CB300R and CB125R.
The looks are adapted from the larger CB1000R and that is a very good thing. In a trend we’re seeing this year from Husqvarna, Ducati, and Honda, retro cues are being fused with more modern finishes to create something that is both readily familiar, and refreshingly new. The small Honda streetfighters pick up this theme with their creased tanks, round headlights, and sharp lines.
The steel-trellis frame is all-new for this model and seems to be shared between both, however, we will be asking Honda for clarification on this. Both bikes feature a 41mm upside-down fork, preload-adjustable monoshock, and front four-piston brake caliper on a floating 296mm disc. The rear brake is a single-piston caliper on a 220mm disc.
Both bikes do have different powerplants.
The CB300R utilizes the same engine in the CBR300R we get in the United States, which is good for 31 hp and 20 pounds-feet and has a six-speed transmission.
The CB125R uses the same engine as the overseas-only CBR125R, which makes 13 hp and 7.3 pound-feet and has a six-speed transmission.
The most unique touch has to be the ABS unit. Both bikes feature an inertial measurement unit to intelligently distribute braking force between the front and rear brakes. This should not just add to safety but is a big differentiator in a class of bikes that is becoming increasingly crowded and competitive.
No word on if either bike is slated to come to the United States. But my vote would be the CB300R over the 125 having the best chance. And really, every good streetfighter needs a sidekick, and the CB1000R and CB300R would be a one-two punch on dealership floors. So many streetfighter puns, so little time.
Don’t forget to check out the rest of our coverage of all the new motorcycles released at EICMA this year!