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Some very unusual FireBlades

Published: 23 September 2001

Updated: 19 November 2014

Here’s a paradox of human nature: You want the same thing as everyone else, only you’d like it to be slightly different. Marketing types latched on to this years ago – the Re-mix, the Special Edition, the Director’s Cut. With bikes it’s no different and for some people a personalised number plate will do. But for others, that’s just a start…

When it was launched a decade ago, the Honda CBR900RR FireBlade was so radical it not only changed how riders perceived sports bikes, but revolutionised motorcycling as every manufacturer designed its own new models. Instead of going for all-out power, Honda looked at the relationship between power and weight. It seems obvious now, but the real " eureka! " moments always do with hindsight.

When the first twitchy, flighty, lean and lithe FireBlades turned up in British showrooms, people fell over themselves to get their hands on one. It was a legend before the public had even managed to sign up for the HP.

Within a couple of years it became a huge seller – unprecedented for a flagship sports bike with a big price tag. Over the years, Honda softened the FireBlade, but it still remained popular even when new bikes like the R1 and GSX-R1000 took the title of ultimate superbike away from it.

With so many on the road it was obvious that some owners would be desperate to make theirs a little different to all the others. What wasn’t so obvious was the extremes they would go to, to make their vision of the perfect FireBlade…

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