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Honda CBR1000RR FIREBLADE Sports Motorbike Review

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MCN overall verdict rating is 5

Honda has given Fireblade fans a reason to smile. With its classy Öhlins suspension, Brembo monobloc brakes, blueprinted engine and drop-dead gorgeous HRC paintjob, the SP is the most desirable Blade in its 21-year history. With its improved handling, braking performance and grip, the SP is destined to be a faster-lapping, easier-to-handle track day bike than any previous model. And all the sexy bits make it a far better road bike, too, thanks to its smoother engine, plusher suspension, stronger brakes and taller double-bubble screen.


MCN rating rating is 5
Owners' rating rating is 5

The standard old Blade’s engine is a little gruff, so at low speeds you really notice the beautiful smoothness of the SP’s blueprinted motor. Then there’s the engine’s easy grunt, flexibility, the typically glassy-smooth Honda throttle response and the way the Blade SP rolls obediently into corners with the lightest touch on the wider, lower, bars. Did I miss the lack of rider aids? Unless you have the talent of a top racer you are never going to get the Blade to misbehave and you never miss not having electronic aids, although a quickshifter would be nice…

Ride and Handling

MCN rating rating is 5
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

Some of the changes to the 2014 Blade models are so minor you would be hard pushed to notice them back-to-back, but the SP gives you so much more confidence and feel through the rear tyre when you are at full lean. When you are flying along, wide-eyed and pumped full of adrenalin, you really notice the things that make the SP special: the new suspension, brakes, tyres and a bigger screen to hide behind down the straights. The 2013 Blade was always a nicely balanced, easy-to-ride superbike – with the SP there is all this and more.


MCN rating rating is 5
Owners' rating rating is 4.5

Lacking and electronic aids such as traction control or fuel modes, but it does have Öhlins suspension.

Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade SP (2014-current)

Detail Value
New price £14,999
Dealer used prices
£11,390 (2014) - £12,840 (2014)
Private used prices
£10,250 (2014) - £11,560 (2014)
  View full used price info
Engine size 999 cc
Power 178 bhp
Top speed 186 mph
  MCN ratings Owners' ratings
Overall rating is 5 rating is 5
Engine rating is 5 rating is 5
Ride & Handling rating is 5 rating is 4.5
Equipment rating is 5 rating is 4.5
Quality & Reliability rating is 4 rating is 5
Value rating is 4 rating is 5

Quality and Reliability

MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 5

The Blade is extremely well built with an almost faultless reliability record.


MCN rating rating is 4
Owners' rating rating is 5

The Blade SP is more expensive than the S1000RR and RSV4 R, but on a par with the MV F4R and cheaper than a basic Panigale.


Insurance group: n/a

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Model History

2014: Model introduced

Other Versions

ABS costs £600 more while the basic Fireblade is £11,999 or £12,599 with ABS.


Top speed 186 mph
1/4-mile acceleration secs
Max power 178 bhp
Max torque 84 ft-lb
Weight 199 kg
Seat height 820 mm
Fuel capacity 17.7 litres
Average fuel consumption 42 mpg
Tank range 130 miles
Annual road tax
Insurance group of 17
Engine size 999 cc
Engine specification Four-stroke, liquid-cooled DOHC, 16v inline four
Frame Aluminium perimeter
Front suspension adjustment Öhlins 55mm inverted forks, fully adjustable
Rear suspension adjustment Öhlins fully adjustable rear shock
Front brakes 2x320mm discs. Brembo four-piston radial monobloc calipers
Rear brake 1x220mm disc, Nissin single-piston caliper
Front tyre size 120/70ZR17
Rear tyre size 190/50ZR17

Owners' Overall Rating rating is 4.5(2 reviews)

  • CBR1000RR SP review

    Doug McDougal

    Average rating rating is 4.5

    Show Details

    Ride and Handling
    Quality and Reliabilty

    Excellent Bike for the money. Very smooth riding bike, and handles much better than the standard CBR. Leans nicely in the turns, and makes me look like a better rider than I am. I was somewhat disappointed in the suspension and brakes - better than stock, but I was hoping for a full track suspension. The Ohlins is a reworked road and track version and is not height adjustable. I like the bike, and it is worth every penny. The extra cost is well worth it. I am getting it track ready. HRC ECU, change out air filter and exhaust, Power Commander, quick shift, dyno tune. Swap shifter. Swap handles for a better look. swap out stock Ohlins with track Ohlins, swap brakes. Change Chain and sprockets. My builder (Jett Tuning) states the bike will produce 175 at the rear wheels when running race fuel, 170 on premium gas, with an upper rpm limit of 14,500.

    27 May 2014

  • Best Blade Ever


    Average rating rating is 5

    Show Details

    Ride and Handling
    Quality and Reliabilty

    Early days to comment on reliability but Quality is usual Honda high standard and I expect reliability will be same. Gorgeous looking and fantastic ride and with limited numbers should hold value well.

    17 April 2014


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CBR1000 RA

I cannot speak for the SP but the RA is incredible. I have been riding it for a week now in all conditions (apart from snow) and it can be very forgiving if your sensible with the right wrist. On a 150 mile run in soaking, down pour, conditions the bike felt completely planted which made me feel very safe. Today in wet and oily conditions the bike fishtailed a wee bit when the bike launches itself at about 3000 in second; but again it didn't bite me it was a gentle warning to let off a bit. In the warm and dry the bike comes into its own with gentle front wheel lift off even at speed, amazing grip. In the hot and sticky (18°C ish) I got a bit too confident and the bikes front jumped up and booted me right in the chest but at least the bikes temp never rose above 106°C and that was stop start city riding as well.

Fuel economy can be very good or very bad; depends on the fun being had. I have found on the motorway I get the best average miles/litre at 67mph in 4th. With the dials fluctuating between 13 and 16 depending on the gradient. I also found that over a distance of 62 miles with an average speed of 132mph (ranging from 120mph to 174mph) the miles/litre was 6.5 (this was obviously not on a public road). Drag stripping the bike I was getting 1 mile/litre in 1st and average of 3 miles/litre over the mile. The bike easily does an 11 to 12 second quarter and if your good you could probably get it sub 10. A conventional fuel gauge would be nice but really once I read the book fully the multiple fuel trip screens is actually more useful; with the 'average mile/litre' screen used on long runs by setting a target range for the distance you need to cover and sticking to it, the 'fuel consumption' screen I use in the city when petrol is always nearby, the miles/litre screen I don't really use, and obviously trip A is useful to see the miles covered since a refuel and trip B to rest at maintenance points or what ever.

Down sides to the bike... I can't show the Trip A distance covered and the average miles per litre at the same time; a minor but annoying thing. You can see the total miles covered and Trip A but that involves some maths which when your freezing and soaking isn't really ideal. The plastic tank cover is scuffed and scratched already all around the legs area, the crotch area and the belt over hang area if your the sort to have a belt overhang. I'm scared to look and see how much a new one is. Invest on a cover for the tank plastic! On wet days, when the bike has reached temperature, it is best to keep moving at least slowly; if you stop water vapour will rise up from the radiator and mist your visor, the dials and on occasion the wing mirrors. This is more a failing of my body than the bike but the seat is like a park bench after 40 minutes or so. The clock doesn't do 24 hours.

Upsides to the bike... its doesn't lurch under braking and with the ABS is unbelievable in the wet; plus when you crank it on there is no ABS rattles or sounds it just brings the bike to a controlled stop, it goes into corners at any speed with next to no conscious movement, it flicks from left to right and back again like a flee on a trampoline. It has very handy tacho lights which although can be set to change up points in the rev range do offer some protection when your reaching the redline and are too focused on the road ahead. Everything about the bike is precise. There is a built in lap timer which could be handy. The size of the speedo is great and the horizontal tacho. You can show the seconds on the clock, not really necessary but my OCD loves that. There is no electronic interference, its pure mechanical which really shows off the skills of Honda.

30 April 2014 08:09

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