CF MOTO 650MT (2019 - on) Review

At a glance

Owners' reliability rating: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Annual servicing cost: £200
Power: 60 bhp
Seat height: Medium (33.1 in / 840 mm)
Weight: Medium (481 lbs / 218 kg)

Prices

New £5,499
Used £5,500

Overall rating

Next up: Ride & brakes
4 out of 5 (4/5)

It is easy to write-off the CFMoto 650MT as just another cheap Chinese bike that shouldn’t be considered over a more premium Japanese equivalent.

However, in the world of the commuter where every penny counts, the MT is worth a second look. Unlike some Chinese brands, CFMoto have an expanding UK dealer network and an established spares supply, which is reassuring – not to mention a two-year warranty.

Although some will always shun Chinese bikes, those that ignore their prejudices and try out the 650MT may well find their minds changed. It is a really pleasant and good-looking middleweight.

Ride quality & brakes

Next up: Engine
3 out of 5 (3/5)

After 264.5 miles aboard the CFMoto with no major fuss or drama, we reach our destination  without any aches or pains, which is testament to its long-distance comfort. In the bends, it also feels quite sporty and engaging, without sacrificing practicality. One missing screen knob aside, it has all gone to plan.

Cornering on the CFMoto 650MT

Engine

Next up: Reliability
3 out of 5 (3/5)

The 650MT is powered by a motor that bears more than a passing resemblance to Kawasaki’s ER-6 parallel twin, but it’s lacking in grunt. Maybe CFMoto have had to strangle it to meet Euro4 or maybe they’re just playing it safe.

In top gear it feels lazy and also devoid of the mid-range punch you expect on a parallel twin, so much so you really have to work its gearbox to compensate, often dropping as low as third to overtake cars doing 50mph, which leads to a frustrating ride.

CFMoto 650MT parallel-twin engine

Altering the power mode does nothing to cure it either, and swapping from 'Touring' to 'Sport' during our ride does precisely nothing... aside from alter what is written on the dash.

Also adding to the frustration is the throttle, which has way too much turn in the twist-grip. That said, the brush guards give you loads of confidence to attack small gaps!

Reliability & build quality

Next up: Value
4 out of 5 (4/5)

When a Chinese company launches a new bike under its own name, there is a knee-jerk reaction of distrust from the buying public.

However, there are a few things that you should know about CFMoto. Yes, they are a Chinese company, but they are also a huge global business who alongside their bikes make quads, ATVs and other motorised vehicles.

When it comes to their two-wheeled side, CFMoto are serious players and as well as employing KISKA design to style their models (the same firm KTM work with), alongside their own bikes they build engines for KTM.

They have 20 UK dealers, but are looking to expand this to 40 by the end of 2020. To put that into context, KTM have 37 dealers, Triumph 49, Ducati 30 and Honda 78.

So hardly a flash-in-the-pan company and one that can certainly afford to invest in their bikes, which is the impression you get when you look at the 650MT. There's also a two year warranty, too. 

That said, despite the impressive CV, during our ride, the CFMoto's screen adjuster knob did come off. 

Value vs rivals

Next up: Equipment
4 out of 5 (4/5)

The CFMoto is great value. Priced at £5499, it represents a saving of £1600 over a standard Japanese-built Honda NC750X, which is a chunk towards an annual fuel bill. It's also £300 cheaper than CFMoto's own 650GT

Although it lacks traction control, the 650MT still delivers 50mpg as well as coming with an all-day comfortable riding position and even crash bars and pannier mounts as standard.

Equipment

4 out of 5 (4/5)

Styling-wise the 650MT looks fresh and cool and in no way cheap. You get fully-adjustable inverted forks, twin front wavey discs, engine protection bars, pannier mounts as standard, a USB port and even an adjustable screen. True, the dash is a bit basic, but it still has all the necessary info.

CFMoto LCD dashboard

Specs

Engine size 649cc
Engine type 8v DOHC parallel twin
Frame type Tubular steel diamond
Fuel capacity 18 litres
Seat height 840mm
Bike weight 218kg
Front suspension Fully-adjustable inverted forks
Rear suspension Monoshock, fully-adjustable.
Front brake 2 x 300mm wave discs, two-piston calipers. ABS
Rear brake 240mm disc, one-piston caliper. ABS
Front tyre size 120/70x17
Rear tyre size 160/60x17

Mpg, costs & insurance

Average fuel consumption 50.1 mpg
Annual road tax £93
Annual service cost £200
New price £5,499
Used price £5,500
Insurance group -
How much to insure?
Warranty term Two years

Top speed & performance

Max power 60 bhp
Max torque 45.8 ft-lb
Top speed -
1/4 mile acceleration -
Tank range 200 miles

Model history & versions

Model history

2019 – Model introduced in the UK

Other versions

650NK – Naked version
650GT – Sports touring version

Both use the same basic engine and chassis

Owners' reviews for the CF MOTO 650MT (2019 - on)

1 owner has reviewed their CF MOTO 650MT (2019 - on) and rated it in a number of areas. Read what they have to say and what they like and dislike about the bike below.

Review your CF MOTO 650MT (2019 - on)

Summary of owners' reviews

Overall rating: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Ride quality & brakes: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Engine: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Reliability & build quality: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Value vs rivals: 5 out of 5 (5/5)
Equipment: 4 out of 5 (4/5)
Annual servicing cost: £200
5 out of 5
05 March 2020 by Steve

Year: 2019

Annual servicing cost: £200

I've been riding for a long time and have owned plenty of different motorcycles but the CFMOTO was my first Chinese bike. I used to ride a Yamaha Virago 550 which was when the CFMOTO 650 caught my eye. The styling is very nice and you can't believe it is Chinese built. The price was a massive factor for me, a big saving and great value for money. I can't fault it. I have covered over 5000 miles in my first 12 months and have no complaints at all, I'd certainly buy a CFMOTO again.

Ride quality & brakes 5 out of 5

Rides just as well as my brother's Versys 600 but cost a lot less. Happy to be getting on my CFMOTO and heading out for a ride.

Engine 5 out of 5
Reliability & build quality 5 out of 5

No question of quality as after more than 5000 miles, I have nothing to complain aobout!

Value vs rivals 5 out of 5

Service kits available with the new filters and oil, very good value and readily available.

Equipment 4 out of 5

Nothing fancy but who wants traction control on bikes these days? This is just pure riding, no fancy bits. Comes with decent tyres. Full pannier set included with mine which is great on the longer rides. Can easily take them off with a couple of clicks.

Buying experience: An ex-demo, sold on first ride out.

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