MCN Fleet: CB500F beats R1200RT in A1 commute

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If you had the choice between Honda’s CB500F and BMW’s R1200RT for a hefty, dual carriageway based commute, you’d be daft not to choose the RT.

A seat resembling an armchair, plenty of wind protection and even a stereo to keep you entertained on the monotonous stroll down the A1 each morning. I won’t lie, whenever I see Senior Road Tester Adam Child cruise past me with ease while I’m hanging on to the bars at anything over 70mph I’m certainly envious of his comfort.

However, aside from all its comfort and luxury, the RT has one major flaw. Something we found out on an innocuous trip to work last Monday morning. There had been a multiple vehicle crash on the A1, just outside Stamford which is about 11 miles from our Peterborough office. The road had closed for a bit before one lane was opened shortly after,  but the lengthy tailbacks had already formed.


There was probably three or four miles of it, in both lanes. I smiled as I slowed down and slipped into the middle of the vehicles and filtered my way through on the CB500F. Now, you know what it’s like filtering through stood still or slowly moving traffic, the gaps vary. Some had plenty of room, others, especially between HGVs, were a little hairy.

Chad however, had a problem. At nearly a metre wide, there was no way the RT was going to fit through a lot of these tight gaps and he ended up having to sit in the traffic and wait. The result, I arrived at the office having been delayed by just ten minutes, while Chad rocked up some 45 minutes later (having both left home in enough time to arrive for 9am).

While the RT is without doubt a better motorcycle for a long distance commute, if its size restricts filtering doesn’t that defeat one of the best points about being on two wheels? Nice work, CB500F. 

Looking for the perfect two-wheeled companion? Visit MCN Bikes For Sale website or use MCN’st=8 %22%3EMCN’s> Bikes For Sale App.

Oli Rushby

By Oli Rushby

Former sports reporter covering British Superbikes, World Superbikes and road racing