Honda CB1000R Review
What Is It?
The 2008 Honda CB1000R is a naked style bike which was totally re-designed for 2018.
Engine: 998 cc Inline Four, 123 bhp
Economy: 35 mpg, 130 miles
Seat Height: 828 mm
Wet Weight: 217 kg
What Is It Like?
|✓||Style, handling, great all rounder, real world power, cool wheels|
|×||Economy, ground clearance, funky headlight, heavy|
I was working as a same day courier in April when one evening I spotted a good looking bike being ridden in an upright position.
It was a 2017 in gold. The following morning I got a pick up and saw the bike from the previous evening parked in the Director's bay. I took a pic and sent it to a mate who said it was a CB1000R.
I thought it was going to be out of my league but googled the reviews anyway when I got home. Liking the reviews I then started scouring through the second hand prices and there was a 2010 with a few upgrades for sale advertised on Gumtree for £5,650 only 10 miles away, with 4,500 miles on the clock.
I decided to view it and said I'd buy it after only sitting on it. The bike looked like new with additional short levers, extended wing mirrors for better visibility, Engine protectors, a G&G exhaust (no baffle), carbon mudguard and rear hugger. It had to be comfy as I couldn't ride bent over and needed the more upright position.
My mate rode pillion there and then rode it back for me until I sorted out insurance. He was totally impressed with the performance on the ride back and said he would want one! His ride is a Fireblade 1000 of which the same engine is used in the CB1000R but de-tuned.
My current ride at the time was a Z750S and I had tried a friend's Z1000 of which I didn't notice the difference that much. Well, first try out of the CB1000R and it was totally different performance to the Z! Definitely putting a smile on my face from the word go. Acceleration is about 3 secs 0-60, a standing 1/4 mile in 11.3 secs! I did have a go once at the 0-60 but the front wheel rises almost straight away so trying to get the power down at a drag race would need practice. We rode down to Cornwall this year to one and if you could hit around 12 secs you'd be putting in a pretty respectable time.
My CB Thou had been bought from a local garage & had been serviced recently! At least it had a new rear Battleaxe which I believe is the recommended tyre. As the standard reviews say, it is an easy bike to ride straight off if moving up to the Thou bracket. Careful on the throttle and it won't bite you in the arse. Although I am 6'2" and 15 stone ish - I can just open the throttle full once the bike is moving in most gears without any drama. Coming out of a corner you will make the front wheel light if over enthusiastic but the rear stayed planted. On a straight the front wheel will go light as well but its no problem.
Having had a TDM and a Z I don't ride in a sports bike style but more lively cruiser style not over revving the engine etc. My mate is always telling me to drop down another gear for an overtake. The CB1000R will definitely give more confidence in a car or truck overtaking situation especially when dropping down a couple of gears. Noticing the power around 7 to 9000 revs and keeping it up there you'll be accelerating better than most vehicles on the road. Somehow Honda manage to get the power and acceleration out of their bikes. I tried my mates CBR600 and even that accelerated better than my Z riding it the same. i.e. accelerating in highish gear from moving off a roundabout.
The CB1000R I think is probably an ideal commuter and a bike that can be ridden lively at the weekend. The longer stroke and different gearing, despite having the same Fireblade block, will enable slow acceleration from 40mph in top gear and can therefore be ridden without too much gear changing if wanting a cruise out. Or more frequent gear changing and hitting the power band will give a livelier ride but without the top speed of the Fireblade.
One thing I'd say to watch with any bike is the mapping with after market exhausts. The fuel consumption seemed high or I seemed to be fuelling more frequency than my mate on the Fireblade! I had checked when we had a long steady run and got about 10.8 miles to a litre. The Z would chew the rear tyre in 2000 miles and do 10 miles to the litre! The CB1000R has done over 3,500 miles with the same riding style and probably more fuel consumption. I will be replacing the the Battleaxe with a dual compound Michelin 2CT to see how that performs.
G&G say that there is no remapping required but when we had a ride to Sammy Millers from Devon one of the other chaps said he could smell fuel from my exhaust, as well as hearing it lol. I bought a cheap generic baffle to put in which hasn't changed the fuel consumption but has made the exhaust more socially acceptable lol. It is held in with one Allen bolt so can be removed easily. I was under impression that the sensors would monitor and sort out the fuel delivery which doesn't seem to have happened. The next resort will be to take it for remapping if I'm going to leave the G&G on it. I wouldn't go on what any exhaust manufacturer claims but to check it out independently. I bought some exhausts for another bike I owned and had nothing but hot running problems despite what they said.
For me re-mapping won't be for performance as I think there is enough performance for me as is, it will be to make sure that the correct fuel delivery is going into the cylinders so as not to cause damage or problems.
For touring or generally going to the shops I was looking at luggage and trying to put on some panniers I used on the TDM. There's a picture where some Oxford ones are just hung on the bike. The G&G exhaust is low, out of the way and it looks like the bike will be able to take most generic panniers but with a frame to prevent them from swinging around. I don't think wheel clearance will be an issue although having a standard exhaust maybe.
The brackets for the Puig screen, although stated for 2011 up, didn't fit the 2010 model. The holes had to be elongated slightly and a washer added. Although by utilising the current handlebar brackets by supplying longer bolts it is an easy addition to do and a nice touch with the CB1000R decal. It didn't appear to make any difference where fuel consumption was concerned by deflecting the wind effect but does provide some protection from the body area despite it's size. I am just over 6ft though.
So if anyone is thinking of moving up from a 600 or 750 to a thou then I would think a second hand Honda CB would be a good choice. You have the re-assurance of build quality and Honda performance. I personally think that the CB Thou is a good all round bike which can be docile and manoeuvrable in town or become an animal out on the twisting roads. Like any bike, if you treat the throttle with respect and care you won't get bitten. Think you're Rossi and you may be paying a heavy price!
- Martin F, 2018
How Does It Compare?
- CB1000R (2018 On): The completely new model with neo-retro styling