First pictures: 2003 CB1300 / Hornet 600

Published: 02 December 2002

These are the first pictures of Honda’s new CB1300 and updated Hornet 600.

You can see more pictures and read the new Hornet’s full spec in the latest issue of MCN, out Wednesday, December 4. You’ll be able to read about the CB1300 in the December 11 issue.

The CB1300 is similar to the Japan market-only CB1300, but with a 4-2-1 single exhaust rather than the double exhausts of the CB1300. It also features Honda’s H-VIX exhaust valve system to boost low-down torque.

It’s aimed squarely at Suzuki’s big-selling GSX1400, but despite giving away 100cc to the Suzuki, Honda’s machine is 9kg (19.8lb) lighter than its 228kg (502lb) rival. It’s expected to match the Suzuki in horsepower - 100bhp to comply with Japanese, French and German power limits.

The CB1300 will be priced around £6000 to match the £6149 GSX1400,

With more power and, crucially, a longer range the new Hornet 600 promises an even bigger buzz than the old model.

While the Hornet was already a big seller, Honda has listened to owners and tweaked the bike to make it even more appealing.

One major gripe was the poor tank range, with its 16-litre tank the original machine, updated slightly in 1999, barely passed 90 miles before running on to reserve.

The new bike sports a 17-litre tank. Not a huge improvement, but Honda reckons it means owners will see a 10 per cent increase in range before the new fuel light, replacing the old, hard to reach, reserve tap, comes on.

The CBR600-derived motor sticks with carbs, but gains a hike in power, up from a claimed 91bhp to 95bhp.

The ride has also been uprated, with stiffer springs and revised damper settings up front with a similar tweak to the rear shock.

The look of the bike has been freshened up, too and reflects the more modern look of its bigger capacity sibling, the Hornet 900.

The Hornet should be priced at around £4300 complemented by a half-faired version for around £500 more. Both the CB1300 and the Hornet are expected to go on sale in the Spring.

Click on the link on the right to tell us what you think of the new Hornet 600.