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Honda CBR600F Sports Motorbike Review

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MCN overall verdict rating is 4

Honda Europe was asked to produce a modern-day version of its famed CBR600F, the bike that helped kickstart the 600cc supersport arena in 1987. With blessing from Japan, the CBR600F ABS is the finished article. And very good it is too by being easy to ride, comfortable, good looking and can be ridden quickly very, very easily. It’s keenly priced, too, because it’s built in Italy, but mainly because it’s built utilising the tried and tested CB600F Hornet chassis.

Engine

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

A tried and trusted unit with roots dated back to 2007 when it first appeared wedged inside the supersport CBR600RR. Honda then took the motor and detuned it for less horsepower but added a smattering more bottom and midrange rasp. As used in the Hornet 600 and several other Honda middleweights, the engine is perfect to provide everyday ease of use with enough top end punch to have fun and experience high rpm supersport power. Gearbox, top end and all the bits in between are nigh-on mortar-proof. Electronics and decent fuel injection give clinical throttle response to make it one of the easiest bikes to ride.

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

Very balanced bike to ride on open roads. A slight heavy front end feel at slow speeds gives excellent feedback to boost confidence. Front and rear suspension units are adjustable for rebound damping and spring preload but only ever need to be touched when carrying luggage or pillion, or both. Considering the CBR is a level entry sports machine it can dance the back road boogie in a very controlled way. Brake it, lean it and fire it out can be done with no complaints from the chassis. The seating position is a blessing from the gods. It isn’t full on spinal column-snapping supersport-style, nor Billy Bolt-Upright. The clip-on style handlebars are positioned perfectly to match peg and seat height for a comfy seat for many, many miles.

Equipment

MCN rating rating is 3
Owners' rating rating is 4

Gizmo-wise the CBR is sparsely decked out – but this is reflected in the price. The CBR does have a recognised safety feature of Combined-Antilock Braking System (C-ABS), which is becoming a standard feature on Hondas and it works without being intrusive. The one-piece headlight unit is cool to look at the but it is just a headlight.

Honda CBR600F ABS (2011-2013)

Detail Value
New price £7,349
Dealer used prices
£5,220 (2011) - £7,400 (2014)
Private used prices
£4,810 (2011) - £6,660 (2014)
  View full used price info
Engine size 599 cc
Power 100.6 bhp
Top speed mph
Insurance group 14 of 17
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 4 rating is 4.5
Engine rating is 4 rating is 4.5
Ride & Handling rating is 3 rating is 4.5
Equipment rating is 3 rating is 4
Quality & Reliability rating is 4 rating is 4.5
Value rating is 4 rating is 4

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

If the Hornet is anything to go by then the CBR will be perfect – although built in Italy it still falls under the same strict quality regime of the Japanese factories. If you’re not convinced about Italian mechanicals lasting, don’t worry - the CBR’s engine is built in Japan and shipped to Italy. MCN’s first ride of the CBR showed the bike is well put together with no flappy bodywork and the usual quality fasteners.

Value

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 4

Honda is hoping the CBR will sell in volumes and has priced it accordingly. Even so it is not as cheap as we’d hoped for – Yamaha’s XJ6 Diversion F ABS is only £6999 – but considering the rising cost of raw materials and poor currency exchange it isn’t so bad, specially when the bike is as good as everyone expected.

Insurance

Insurance group: 14 of 17

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Model History

1987-2006: Honda CBR600F
2011 – reintroduction of new CBR600F ABS

Other Versions

Specifications

Top speed mph
1/4-mile acceleration secs
Max power 100.6 bhp
Max torque 47.2 ft-lb
Weight 194 kg
Seat height 800 mm
Fuel capacity 19 litres
Average fuel consumption mpg
Tank range miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group 14 of 17
Engine size 599 cc
Engine specification Liquid-cooled, DOHC, 16v four-stroke in-line four. Six gears
Frame Aluminium spine frame and swingarm
Front suspension adjustment Adjustable for preload and rebound damping
Rear suspension adjustment Adjustable for preload and rebound damping
Front brakes 296mm twin discs with 3-piston calipers
Rear brake 245mm disc with single-piston caliper
Front tyre size 120/70 x 17
Rear tyre size 180/55 x 17

See all Honda CBR600F motorcycles for sale

Honda
CBR600F

2650 miles

£5,750

Honda
CBR600F

1516 miles

£6,195

Honda
CBR600F

1500 miles

£7,495

Honda
CBR600F

23700 miles

£2,695

Honda
CBR600F

22605 miles

£1,195

Owners' Overall Rating rating is 4.5(20 reviews)

  • Dear Anon

    Anonymous

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Glad you like the bike ,you got a real bargain there, I will get myself a hugger in the new year, I have the blue and white one which reminded me of the BMW HP SPORT look wise anyway. Skidmarx are planning to bring out a higher screen for our bikes in the new year if you can wait that long, I have just bought a cargo 3 in 1 tank bag and it is great for keeping windblast at bay, keep safe now the winter is here , let us know how you get on with the bike the longer you have it taff

    06 December 2011

  • Dear Anon

    Anonymous

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Glad you like the bike ,you got a real bargain there, I will get myself a hugger in the new year, I have the blue and white one which reminded me of the BMW HP SPORT look wise anyway. Skidmarx are planning to bring out a higher screen for our bikes in the new year if you can wait that long, I have just bought a cargo 3 in 1 tank bag and it is great for keeping windblast at bay, keep safe now the winter is here , let us know how you get on with the bike the longer you have it taff

    06 December 2011

  • CBR 600F ABS 2011

    Anonymous

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Ok, Ive had mine for 2 weeks now and can report that the bike is superb. Firstly, I bought mine pre-registered and after 2 weeks of feining disinterest and haggling, ended up with a new bike (red/white) with 360 Honda heated grips, Honda hugger, tankpad, free 600mile service for £5400! Without a doubt, the hugger provides not only an important functional role, but also balances the look of the bike. As an engineer I was firstly struck by the quality throughout bike, and was therefore equally disappointed with the design oversight that leaves a small gap between the tank and side panel, but I wont let this minor point spoil my pleasure. And the budget-imposed Hornet mirror lugs have already been sufficiently scorned elsewhere. From the first press of the start button the engine runs with the smoothness of an electric motor. The engine is a perfect balance of restraint and responsiveness for commuting (below 5K) and brutal power for whoohoo smiles above this. The seemingly perfect balanced weight and engine control makes dawdling along in traffic a synch, and its honestly as docile, easy and controllable as riding a bicycle. But then you open the throttle and at 3K the exhaust starts to sing, just a little, but builds gradually to an adrenaline pumping sound that WILL make you want to go faster. Ahh the temptation to dance with the devil, this bike is not for those with poor self control. But however you ride, 50+ mpg is easily achievable and the on-screen meter will let you know average and instantaneous readings should you need them. Front brake alone is mediocre (Im told it will improve with miles) but combined back/front use is impressive and confidence inspiring. Suspension and frame are more than adequate to absorb the worst of Britains roads with minimal fuss. Im 5foot 8 and find the riding position fine, but I do wonder if those with longer legs may find the position a little cramped. The standard screen is very comfortable for non-motorway speeds but ducking behind it does provide a comfortable cocoon when needed. A raised screen is on my Xmas list. What more can I say. Go see it in the showroom - the italian design influence is much more impressive in the flesh. Go sell you mother and buy one, you wont regret it.

    01 December 2011

  • 9,000 miles in since july

    gareth evans

    Average rating rating is 4

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    Got my bike in July and just cant keep off the thing, only one niggle, I would like a higher screen to keep some of the windblast off put a double bubble screen on which is fine but still get a fair bit of cold hitting my chest. Get an average of 55mpg out of it doing all types of riding, put some nice blue wheel trims on the bike heated grips two new b021 tyres. I am going to try and get at least 100,000 miles on this bike to really see what its made of

    24 November 2011

  • Balanced

    jovee

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Engine

    Bought one for my gas and heating business to run up and down the M6 at busy periods for small jobs. The Honda cbr600f 2011 doesnt excell at any one thing yet it all comes together to do everything brilliantly??. A little slow below 5000rpm but then comes alive or is it me being used to v twin monster bikes. Comfort is second to none for a "R" bike and you could nod off but not adviseable. Beautiful italian design to front end and looks better in the flesh. 0-60 is 4.2 and top speed is over 140mph apparently. ABS a nice touch too. To sum up. The Thomas more of bikes, does everything right.

    03 November 2011

  • Excelent

    Cent

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Bought this back in August, my previous bike was ER6F, the bike is so easy to ride, i am 52 and i wanted somthing sporty but rasonably comfortable, in the past 5 years i have had shoulder and elbow surgery, so there was no way i was going to get an RR. The bike is smooth and agile, the brakes are excelent and the biuld quality is very good. I have almost done a 1000miles riding to work (60mile round trip) on A roads and motorways and a few pleasure trips here and there, it now ready for winter hibernation. My ER6F i bought new its the mk2 it was good but not as good as the CBR660F it has inferior brakes less power and not as smooth, it also felt niggly on bends and didnt seem as good in cross winds on open roads e.g. Motorways country exposed A roads. Overall the CBR is far superior to ER6F, it not a superbike or even an RR but it is an excelent road bike both in and out of town that puts a smile on my face and i guess for most of us thats what matters

    18 October 2011

  • Very good

    Anonymous

    Average rating rating is 5

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    I am extremely happy with mine. Having owned a ER6f (2011), a 650 Bandit (2008) and a 600 fazer S2 (2007) I can now say that in my opinion this is by far the best bike out of the lot. Yes, it is a bit more money than the others mentioned but the extra quality of the bike by far exceeds the extra cost. I am in my mid 40s so I didn't want an RR model, but neither did I want an OAP bike. This is the best of both worlds. It handles well, it is fast enough for most people, it is reasonably comfortable and the quality of the build is just superb considering the 7k price tag. I particularly like the fully adjustable suspension and the light and easy handling. The only niggle is that the fuel gauge is a little difficult to read. I would recommend anyone thinking of buying one to take their deposit with them to the dealer on the day of the test ride, as this will save them the time and trouble in returning to the shop to buy one the very next day. It's that good !

    07 October 2011

  • Love It

    bigcrules

    Average rating rating is 5

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    Just love it

    27 July 2011

  • honda cbr600f 2011

    gareth evans

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    Absolutely fantastic bike so easy to ride looks good does what you want. Mine does 54 mpg ridden between 75-80mph on motorways ,so good on fuel ,can bungee my rucksack using the grab holes at the back and hooking some of the bungee hooks on the lower part of the frame, works brilliant. got mine last week done 300 miles already cant keep off it, its great fun.

    10 June 2011

  • Just right !

    ginz

    Average rating rating is 4.5

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    I rode the CBR 600 F yesterday. Wow. . . they have jusr got it right. Forget all that about it being a Hornet with a fairing etc. Where did the Hornet come from any way ? Yes, that's right, a CBR 600 without a fairing. The wheel has turned full circle. The MCN review is inconsistent, they praise the bike and then mark it down on points./. bizare ! Any way it's light, it handles, it goes smoothly and progressively and it has great build quality. No, it's not a Fireblade or an R1. Nor does it pretend to be but I'll tell you this; It will; put a smile on your face and that is what it is all about. I cane back from my test ride and bought one, I pick it up tomorrow, SORTED !

    19 April 2011

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mobit

mobitsays

The GPZ600R was first supersport - not the CBR

MCN Overall Verdict   " CBR600F - the bike that helped kickstart the 600cc supersport arena in 1987 "

Wrong MCN - That would be the GPZ600R in '85

 

19 June 2012 01:08

kebian

kebiansays

Had a go on a demonstrator today...

Had a go on a demonstrator today and put a deposit down right away. I'm picking it up next week :) Wicked bike.

13 January 2012 22:27

Piglet2010

User's Badge

Piglet2010says

Honda CBR600F

I would consider buying one if Honda would sell it to me, but this is yet another bike they are not bringing to the US market.  Of course, with the poor sales of the NT700V Deauville (just bought a new 2010 on a very good deal, since the dealer wanted to open up floor space for 2012 models), we are even less likely to see European Hondas left of the pond.  Riders in the US are mostly immature adults who only wants toys, and the faster, gaudier, and/or louder the better.  Then they only ride a few hundred miles a year, since the bikes are too uncomfortable and impractical. : (

Guess I will have to look at the Kawasaki Ninja 650 instead.

19 October 2011 04:22

nomadxl

nomadxlsays

modification

hi guyz, any idea if i can use the fairing of this model for the cb600 hornet? as a modification i mean..it would be awesome upgrading instead of buying the new one :)

16 October 2011 03:58

grummitt

grummittsays

Honda CBR600f

Bought a 2011 model in August this year. Previously rode a 1995 CBR6 and what a difference. The new model is responsive, easy to handle and what a ride!! If you are looking for a reliable, asthetically pleasing bike then this is the one enjoy!!!!!!!!!!!!!

28 August 2011 18:47

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