Motorcycles

Honda CBF designing a V4 superbike, so it's released this CB-F concept

Honda CBF designing a V4 super...
Honda has presented another retro concept at its "Virtual Motorcycle Show" booth
Honda has presented another retro concept at its "Virtual Motorcycle Show" booth
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Honda has presented another retro concept at its "Virtual Motorcycle Show" booth
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Honda has presented another retro concept at its "Virtual Motorcycle Show" booth
The magnificently-named CB-F pays homage to some of Honda's great nakedbikes of old
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The magnificently-named CB-F pays homage to some of Honda's great nakedbikes of old

Motorcycle companies have given us some magnificently silly model designations over the years. The Yamaha Empty One and Tedium spring to mind. Then there's the Honda Dullville, the BMW K1200 Arse Port, and the Suzuki Intruder and Gladys, while France chipped in with the MBK DooDoo 125. As far back as 1912, you could go and buy yourself an Abingdon King Dick, so this is by no means a new thing. Indeed, it's a proud tradition at this point, a tradition to which Honda is submitting an entry for the text-message generation.

It's perfectly timed; in these stressful times of global peril, many, if not most of us, CBF. This kind of situation can have us wondering why we'd ever BF to begin with, and when we're going to have any Fs to G in the future. Honda's CB-F concept captures the tone of the moment we're living in.

I'm starting to accept the fact that the glory days of motorcycling are in the past. The manufacturers seem keenly aware of this; retro-styled bikes dominate their sales charts, harking back to the before times, when you could ride fast and free, shirtless, with your moustache trailing in the wind, clutching a cigarette in your bug-filled teeth and stopping only to call people names you're not allowed to any more.

Honda has leaned into the retro thing too; the CB4 cafe racer concept and Monkey Bike remake are examples, and there's a certain stately old fogeyness about the CB1000R nakedbike launched in 2017. Perhaps not enough to tickle the requisite number of Benjamins from the fat wallets of the aging Boomer market, though, so the CB-F is designed to hark back to the CB750F standard bikes Honda was making between 1979 and 1985.

I'm only 43, so I don't have any fond motorcycling memories from that era. By the time I was into bikes, the CB750 was already a tad stale for my tastes. You'd see 'em doing the rounds as courier hacks and commuters. It never seemed to me the kind of bike you'd want to honor with a tribute. But apparently it was quite the icon in its time, one of the original UJMs (Universal Japanese Motorcycles) that revolutionized the biking world. An ancestor, obviously, of the 2002-model CB900F Hornet that became my first real two-wheeled love affair. Quiet little 1997 Honda VT250C Magna, we don't talk about you, and for good reason.

The magnificently-named CB-F pays homage to some of Honda's great nakedbikes of old
The magnificently-named CB-F pays homage to some of Honda's great nakedbikes of old

The new CB-F concept pays tribute with a rock solid paint job and tail section taken straight from the '82 model, as well as a much spunkier exhaust than the CB1000R. But otherwise it pretty much is a CB1000R, with that big, proud 1,000cc Fireblade engine in the middle pretending it hasn't been neutered down to a socially acceptable amount of horsepower, like Superman's mum sending him out of the house in kryptonite underwear.

The CB-F was to be launched at the Osaka and Tokyo motorcycle expos this year, but we all know what happened to those. So Honda's holding its own little virtual expo online, complete with an actual expo stand they've built and filmed in 360-degree VR so you can pretend you're somehow the only person at EICMA this year.

Will this become a production model? Sure, you can dream. Stranger things have happened, and if this gets enough older bikers excited then in might just become a thing. Or it might not, particularly if Honda CBF building it.

Source: Honda

7 comments
FranYetso
I realize, as a writer from Great Britain, your understanding of things 'murican may be a bit light. That said, this and about 5 other bikes from the late '70's and early '80's put big sport bikes on the map in the States and eventually over there too. 5 GP champions won championships on those bikes prior to GP. Relevant bikes my friend!
CAVUMark
The bike I have been waiting for ever since I sold my Yamaha XS-11.
joeblake
You've forgotten the gorgeously sleek Aprilia Firstus. Very rare. They only make one per year.
Martin Hone
Confused by the headline Loz. I was looking for a V4, but no, it's a boring online four, though I really like the styling. So refreshing after all the angular plastic that hides the engine these days.
Martin Hone
Oh, Fran Yetso..... Loz is a dinkum Aussie. I guess your comment still stands :-)
Matty E.
So Loz had a love affair with an '02 CB900F, and this bike has nicer wheels, a nicer tank, a better tailpipe conffig, and 100 more ccs. Altogether a solid mprovement.You'ld think he could honestly appreciate that. But no, apparently that wouldn't be kewl enuff for old Loz. So, he *must* pen some unfunny condescending gibberish to maintain his kewl-ness cred. Even if it is a far better looking bike than the angular Transformer crap the mfrs have been shoving out for too many years. The classic looking bikes are still the prettiest and most sensible designs. If I didn't still enjoy immensely my sparklingly beautiful blue, versatile, nimble, and solidly powerful 1993 Nighthawk 750, I might be tempted.
nick101
I remember the V-4s, they were certainly cool looking, I hope they come back.