VIDEO: the Honda CBR600RR returns to UK showrooms

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It’s official, 600cc supersport bikes are back in Blighty, with Honda announcing a UK return for their CBR600RR following its departure from the range at the start of 2017. And this time it’s got wings!

Joining the incoming Kawasaki ZX-6R in a rejuvenated mid-size sportsbike class, the new CBR retains its trademark 16v DOHC 599cc inline four motor, but now gets a six-axis IMU for lean sensitive electronics, full colour TFT dash, rider modes, ride by wire throttle, and the option of an exotic HRC race kit.

Reintroduced as a model in Japan and Thailand in 2021, the latest Honda CBR produces a claimed 119.4bhp at a heady 14,250rpm and 46.5lbft of torque at 11,500rpm – tipping the scales at 193kg wet.

Honda CBR600RR - side static

Coming with a slipper clutch and quickshifter as standard, the CBR is also controlled via an advanced electronics system – said to be derived from the MotoGP-inspired Honda RC213V-S and CBR1000RR-R Fireblade superbike.

Honda CBR600RR - no rider main image

This means you get nine-stage lean-sensitive traction control as standard, plus anti wheelie and rear lift control for when you’re really hard on the anchors. Honda has also included cornering ABS, three fixed riding modes, and two customisable set-ups – all controlled via its colour TFT display. The quickshifter can also be adjusted in three stages.

Considering the last 600RR to grace the UK still had a cable throttle and an analogue rev counter, this is quite the glow up, with every aspect of the intake, combustion, and exhaust also undergoing significant development since then to help meet more stringent Euro5+ emissions rules.

Honda CBR600RR - front shot

Housing all of these changes is a twin-spar aluminium frame and swingarm, suspended by fully adjustable Showa 41mm big piston forks, plus a fully adjustable Showa rear shock.

To aid the front four-piston radial calipers, there’s also a new Nissin ABS modulator and ECU, which works with the IMU whilst also carrying 2.5kg less timber than the previous combined ABS system. 

Also designed exclusively for the CBR600RR is an electronic steering damper, which works with the ECU and essentially applies greater damping force the faster you ride. This is all shrouded by modern bodywork featuring winglets – said to improve corner entry stability and cornering while accelerating.

Honda CBR600RR - rear static

To fully make it your own, two optional extra packs will also be available for road bikes, including everything from rear seat covers, to tank pads, and 15-litre tail bags, to heated grips. The track only HRC race kit also includes a new wiring harness, race exhausts, suspension upgrades, and more.