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Honda launches CB1300R

Published: 12 August 2001

Honda is launching the CB1300R in Japan at the end of the month.

Based on the Japan-only CB1300 Super Four, the CB1300R will be sold in limited numbers to celebrate Honda’s 500 GP victories. Initially only 250 are to be made, but – as with any new model – if the bike proves popular you can expect Honda to keep the production line rolling.

It has a water-cooled inline-four in a traditional steel backbone frame. The white, red and blue paint scheme brings back paddock-jacketed memories.

They couldn’t get away with fitting split-rim Comstars in 2001, so instead Honda had to settle for painting the 17-inch alloy wheels authentic gold. Authenticity continues with the frame too, it’s powder-coated red. The overall effect is similar to the 1983 CB1100R. Even the generator cover is powder-coated gold.

Thankfully, it’s only the looks of the machine that stay in the 80s.The twin piggyback Showa shocks look the business. They’re adjustable for pre-load and damping, as are the beefy front forks. The brakes are four-piston Nissins gripping 320mm semi-floating discs – identical to those found on this year’s Blade.

The standard model punts out an awesome 88ft/lb of torque and just over 100bhp. The torque peaks at just 5000rpm and the power at 7500rpm. Its closest rival is Suzuki’s new GSX1400 which produces a comparable 97bhp and 93ft/lb of torque. But the limited edition R-model will come with a 4-2-1 titanium exhaust system as standard. This should boost power to nearly 120bhp and provide enough oomph to shrug off the 254kg dry weight.

The standard machine costs just £5,500 in Japan, and the R-model weighs in at £6000. Unfortunately these price bear little relation to the ones we would see in Britain. Exchange rates, shipping costs and more links in the retail chain may see the bike’s price rise as high as £7000 before it hits a UK showroom floor.

So you want Honda to bring this bike to the UK? Follow the link, right, to have your say.

More on this in MCN, on sale August 15, 2001.

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