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Buying advice: Honda insurance and running costs

If you're considering buying a Honda motorcycle then there's a couple of things it's important you should know before you hand your big wad of cash to the seller.

Things like running costs and insurance group are often over looked when thinking about buying a new bike.

Here, MCN gives you the lowdown on the five best-selling Hondas.

Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade

Insurance group: 17

Quality and reliability:
Honda invented the words ‘quality’ and ‘reliable’. The Honda Fireblade is the machine against which the competition is judged when it comes to build-quality. All the controls are solid and operate with an oily perfection.

MCN overall verdict:
The big news for the 2009 Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade is its revolutionary electronically-controlled Combined ABS system. This makes the Honda Fireblade the world’s first ever ABS-equipped superbike. Why would you ever want a bike without it?

Honda CBR600RR

Insurance group: 15

Quality and reliability:
The CBR600RR is as rugged as a Tonka toy and built with the breathtaking precision of the finest Swiss watch. The build quality is superb.

MCN overall verdict: The C-ABS version doesn’t detract from the enjoyment of riding MCN’s supersport 2008 machine of the year, and it feels just the same to ride as the standard Honda CBR600RR, even on the track.

Honda CB600F Hornet

Insurance group: 11

Quality and reliability: Considering the price Honda hasn’t let the build quality of the Honda CB600F Hornet drop. Like the old Honda CB600F Hornet it feels solid and secure and should last, the old Hornet was renowned for its reliability as couriers in London proved.

MCN overall verdict:
It shares the old Honda CB600F Hornet's qualities, it's easy to ride; great handling and fun. The new Honda CB600F Hornet should appeal to wide audience with its new Italian funky styling.

Honda XL1000 Varadero

Insurance group: 13

Quality and reliability: Build quality of the Honda XL1000V Varadero is generally very good. The only weak areas appear to be the exhaust system, which rusts quite easily and a dodgy sidestand cut-out switch – which was fixed via a factory recall.

MCN overall verdict: In theory: the Honda XL1000V Varadero is a great idea; take the funky Firestorm motor and put it inside an adventure touring chassis. But the result didn’t live up to that and the Honda XL1000V Varadero hasn’t matched the success of the BMW R1150GS.

Honda VFR800

Insurance group: 14

Quality and reliability: Anyone who has owned a gear driven cam VFR will wonder why Honda went back to camchains on this V-4 cylinder engined Honda VFR800 V-Tec. Apart from that, the Honda VFR800 V-Tec looks built to last 100,000 miles, but does need some expensive servicing along the way.

MCN overall verdict: The Honda VFR800 V-Tec, is a beautiful thing and rides, goes and handles superbly too, but the Honda VFR800 V-Tec's variable valve timing caused some controversy - it's clever, but is it really necessary? 

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