Motorcycles 2021 Honda CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP MC Commute Second Review
Leon Haslam: Honda Fireblade has "much more potential" than the new Kawasaki
© Motorsport Images Does the Honda CBR1000RR-R Fireblade have what it takes to be a WSBK winner? Kawasaki reacted to the new superbikes of the competition and sharpened the ZX-10RR for the WSBK season 2021. The new Ninja has more reserves on the engine side and has a new fairing that is supposed to press the front wheel to the ground ( more info ). At the Jerez test, the 2021 Kawasaki first encountered the superbikes of the competition. World champion Jonathan Rea set the fastest time.
The modern-daysegment has become increasingly track focused within recent years. Nearly every manufacturer with skin in the game has created a homologation-special model built to push the envelope of production-level performance on the racetrack. The 2021 CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP is latest entry into the category.
But while built to conquer World Superbike competition, each of these machines are deemed road legal and available to purchase by the average consumer. And we’ve got a commute to the Motorcyclist offices to do. So why not let the Fireblade loose on public roads?
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Editor’s note: We’ve covered the Fireblade SP’s racetrack performance in theand special edition at Thunderhill Raceway Park. This article describes our experience of the Honda on the day-to-day street grind.
Thumbing the starter button on the right-side handlebar brings the Fireblade SP to life, barking out an exciting inline-four growl from the OE-equipped Akrapovič exhaust. Honda’s deep-rooted racing heritage is obvious while settling into the cockpit. The rider triangle is tight and aggressive, as you’d expect on a racetrack-focused machine. Footpeg position is placed up and back resulting in an aggressive lower-body stance, while the clip-on handlebars are pushed forward into a flat, wide position that’s awkward for our 5-foot-7-inch tester. It’s a tiresome position for the daily commute, but a favorable stance to hustle the CBR through the backroads or around the racetrack.
2021 Honda CRF300L Rally First Look Preview
Honda’s 2020 CRF300L Rally is lighter, more powerful, and better equipped.At its heart is the same 286cc single powering the 300L, designed to provide more midrange power and pull than the outgoing 250L thanks to changes in the intake and exhaust systems. Gearing is changed, shortening first through fifth gears while sixth gear is taller for better cruising performance. The cooling system is optimized to keep temps low in a variety of on- and off-road conditions, and a primary balancing shaft helps to reduce engine vibration. The Rally also gets a slip and assist clutch for smoother downshifts and lighter clutch pull.
At the heart of the Fireblade SP is a 999cc inline-four engine with serious inspiration from Honda’sMotoGP replica racer, right down to the bore and stroke configuration and finger-follower valve train. Prior to real-world testing, we first ran the CBR on our in-house Dynojet 250i Motorcyclist dyno, recording horsepower and torque measurements. The Fireblade recorded a peak 165.4 hp at 12,000 rpm and 74.6 pound-feet of torque at 10,600 rpm, with an incredibly linear power delivery from 7,000 to 12,000 rpm before reaching its 14,200 rpm redline.
The high-revving race tune of the CBR is addicting, if you can keep it spinning above 7,000 rpm. A strong hit of power lifts the front wheel off the tarmac, while the three-level wheelie control system keeps it in low-flight trajectory as the CBR accelerates away from a stop or curve. The bidirectional quickshifter makes for near-seamless gear changes through the Fireblade’s six-speed gearbox. It’s a remarkable experience that keeps the daily commute so entertaining.
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We discuss our five favorite 2020 motorcycles reviews.This year, Motorcyclist published 45 MC Commute review articles and videos from all of the major motorcycle manufacturers in the US. This equals over 18 hours of published video content viewed by over 4.5-million people. Having ridden so many motorcycles, it’s tough to narrow down the list to just our favorite five. Tune-in to see our selections in alphabetical order.
Handling is delightfully neutral for being a superbike too. The Fireblade tips the Motorcyclist scales at a ready-to-ride 445 pounds. Little body language is required to flick the Honda to its side, but remains composed in every case. It’s sharp, and quickly carves corners. The semi-active Öhlins NPX fork and TTX 36 shock do a superb job of finding a balance between supple small-bump compliance for county road imperfections and big-hit support for the G-out sections of twisties. Three settings are available for semi-active damping changes—Track, Sport, and Rain—with each targeted for specific riding situations. Manual settings, which freeze damping changes and act as conventional suspension, are also available. Brembo Stylema brake calipers and radial master cylinder bring the Fireblade to a quick halt with excellent feel.
Perched behind the handlebars is a 5-inch TFT dashboard, displaying all vital riding information and access to the Fireblade’s electronic rider-aid suite, including the aforementioned wheelie control and suspension settings, as well as adjustable traction control, engine power, and ABS functions. A larger display would be appreciated, while an easier menu navigation would reduce headache. The fairing offers sufficient wind protection in a relaxed riding position and a calm pocket of air while tucked in.
Honda Gold Wing Tour Gets a Touch-up for 2021
Riders spoke, and Honda listened with its 2021 Gold Wing Tour motorcycle.The Gold Wing will be available in five variations in 2021: standard ($23,900), DCT ($29,300), Tour ($28,300), Tour DCT ($29,300), and Tour Airbag DCT ($32,600). The revisions Honda announced impact its Tour models, owing to the fact that these three come with top cases and passenger backrests standard.
The Honda CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP undeniably belongs to the racetrack. Sharp handling, strong power delivery, the latest electronic rider aids combine for ultimate superbike potential. But that’s not to say the Honda won’t offer a ripper of a commuter machine. You might just hope that the commute ends at the nearest race circuit.
2021 Honda CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP Specifications
|Engine:||999cc, DOHC, liquid-cooled inline-four|
|Bore x Stroke:||81.0 x 48.5mm|
|Motorcyclist Measured Horsepower:||165.4 hp @ 12,000 rpm|
|Motorcyclist Measured Torque:||74.6 lb.-ft. @ 10,600 rpm|
|Fuel System:||Fuel injection w/ 52mm throttle bodies, 12-hole injectors|
|Clutch:||Wet, multiplate slipper clutch|
|Frame:||Aluminum twin spar|
|Front Suspension:||Öhlins NPX Smart EC fork w/ electronically controlled preload, compression and rebound damping; 4.3 in. travel|
|Rear Suspension:||Öhlins TTX 36 Smart EC shock w/ electronically controlled preload, compression and rebound damping; 5.6 in. travel|
|Front Brake:||Brembo Stylema radial-mount 4-piston calipers, 330mm discs|
|Rear Brake:||1-piston caliper, 220mm disc|
|Wheels, Front/Rear:||17 x 3.5 in. / 17 x 6.0 in.|
|Tires, Front/Rear:||Pirelli Diablo Supercorsa SP V3; 120/70-17 / 200/55-17|
|Seat Height:||32.6 in.|
|Fuel Capacity:||4.3 gal.|
|Motorcyclist Measured Wet Weight:||445 lb.|
Honda teases new interior design philosophy .
The brand's "simplicity and something" theme aims to makes its vehicle cabins more human-centric and less cluttered.By eliminating the complexity of its cabins, Honda designers are hoping to enhance the driving experience. This is in keeping with the brand's "Man Maximum/Machine Minimum" principle, which aims to maximize interior space by minimizing the size of a vehicle's mechanical components. Accordingly, the cabins of the company's upcoming vehicles should be cleaner and friendlier than they already are.