Comparison test Honda CBF 1000 against Suzuki Bandit 1250 S

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Comparison test Honda CBF 1000 against Suzuki Bandit 1250 S
Rossen Gargolov


Comparison test Honda CBF 1000 against Suzuki Bandit 1250 S

Comparison test Honda CBF 1000 against Suzuki Bandit 1250 S
We are the people

It couldn’t be more democratic: every year, the motorcyclists’ guild votes directly on what is important to them by means of a sales contract. Most recently, the Honda CBF 1000 was very popular. Now the big bandit has renewed itself programmatically.

Stefan Kaschel


The consistency with which Honda reacted to what was going on in the country is actually logical. On the one hand because it almost guarantees success, on the other hand because Suzuki had shown how it worked years ago. Take a large-capacity engine from the shelf, knit a simple but functional chassis around it, provide the whole thing with contemporary technical features and keep the price as low as possible. This not only works like sliced ​​bread, but also ensures a piece of social justice, because large parts of the population are allowed to participate in the prosperity of displacement and technological progress. The result: In addition to gaining market share, you also gain image.

The fact that Suzuki bridled the horse the other way around this time and gave the existing chassis a simple, functional, contemporary and above all large engine is not surprising in view of the continued popularity of the predecessor, but speaks for a keen sense of the Suzuki managers when it comes to the concerns of the majority go. A very central point: Anyone who expects too much financially from the people in the country will quickly lose sight of it. That is why Suzuki relied on the old recipe for success in terms of price. As low as possible and cheaper than the competition.

So if it were only about the financial side, the bandit would be clearly ahead in the electorate. 8735 euros for the new 1250 S to 9290 euros for the Honda CBF 1000, both including ABS ?? these are no worlds, but in this price segment, where every euro is counted, an important word. Especially since with the Bandit you get everything that the competitor has to offer. And in both cases that is well above the social assistance rate for driving dynamics.

If you just look at the displacement of the new Suzuki engine, you could even see a trend towards decadence. 1255 cubic centimeters that is not only almost 100 cm3 more than the old air / oil-cooled unit, but also represents a house number even among designated big bikes. A few years ago it was considered an exotic displacement giant, and even today a unit of this power is sufficient ?? measured 108 PS and a torque plateau like the Sierra Nevada ?? to honor every small car.

Given these excesses, the 1000cc Honda engine is almost tiny. However, this does not prevent him from being able to do exactly what everyone wants, namely to provide the required power at any time and at any speed as calmly as possible. This applies without restriction, because five-digit speeds are definitely not part of the requirement profile in view of the powerful cubic capacities and the exclusively civilian use.

The huge surge of torque that the Bandit engine washes over the drive train just above 3000 rpm may still seem more tempting. But if this goes hand in hand with a long translation, it is like lowering non-wage labor costs in order to raise direct taxes at the same time. There is not much left in the wallet or on the rear wheel. On the contrary: the Honda (see measured values) does the obligatory pull-through measurement in the last gear a little faster than the new Bandit.

Well done, not only political but also marketing professionals know how to attract customers, especially since every disadvantage has an advantage. Keyword »overdrive«. Anyone who succeeds in selling the new sixth gang of the Bandit under this banner has already won. After all, the power of the displacement is enough to push the 1250s almost to Honda level even in the last gear. In addition, the Bandit is always traveling at the same speed with significantly less speed than the CBF. And whoever downshifts one or better two gears on the Suzuki seriously shows the competitor where Bartel gets the must.

To interpret the Honda as a weakness in the program would still be too short-sighted. Because the wise reluctance with which your former athlete’s heart was upgraded to 98 hp bears fruit in all matters of everyday life, beyond the mere measured values. Most noticeably, of all places, where the Suzuki is not that well sorted. The throttle response is rough on her despite two throttle valves, while the Honda, contrary to the brand habit, implements the marching order almost tenderly regardless of the speed.

It is precisely this characteristic that, in combination with the even power delivery, makes handling the Honda unit so mass-compatible. Even the vibrations in the middle speed range cannot change that, while the Suzuki-Dickmann demands more concentrated work on the throttle, but runs smoothly, at higher speeds even smooth.

The Honda can still win the popular sport of “easy curve swinging”. Clutch, brake, lean angle change: everything is very easy to do, the chassis also shines with exemplary neutrality, and not even the shock absorber was noticeable on the test model (unlike on previous test machines) due to its poor response. The fact that the ergonomics are in no way inferior to the qualities of the domestic wing chair and can be adapted to the driver with the height-adjustable seat and window makes things even better.

In the political discourse, the Suzuki parliamentary group would now, at the latest, interrupt. With the objection that the bandit bench is also variable, namely in two positions. And that it is by no means more uncomfortable for her to do what is right. For long-legged people, the Suzuki even offers a better alternative, because they don’t bump their knees at the ends of the front fairing like on the Honda. The more acute knee angle is therefore to be tolerated, especially since the cladding of the Bandit S does not offer more, but less turbulent wind protection. In that regard, the CBF 1000 Despite the height-adjustable pane, this is an unreasonable health policy that many interested parties should really be baffled by.

Yes, but one will object on the Honda side. That is true, it is true
but only if the driver is negligent with his health and does not wear earplugs. Incidentally, what Suzuki is offering passengers in the second row is also of little use to public health, because the footrests are placed further back and therefore less favorable compared to the predecessor. On the other hand, there is an exemplary arrangement at the CBF. Which is true again.

At this point we hide ourselves from the group in order to concentrate on the driving dynamics. Because although comfort and suitability for everyday use are often neglected in the debate, the following applies in the case of the Bandit and the CBF: Where there are no fundamental differences in day-to-day matters, it is again the driving pleasure that makes the difference. And it is precisely in this regard that the new Bandit has grown significantly in terms of its systems. Responsible for this are the noticeably tighter spring elements, which could make a decisive contribution to better feedback and more stability without unduly reducing comfort. As a result ?? and especially in the interaction with the powerful engine ?? the new bandit is much more crisp than its predecessor. And also as the CBF.

The fact that the conjunctive is used here and cannot speak of better in relation to the Honda is due to two things. On the one hand, their gentler interpretation will definitely find friends among more thoughtful natures. On the other hand, the Suzuki suffers from the tire choice because the mounted Dunlop D 218 thwarts the chassis efforts not only in terms of feedback, but also in terms of steering precision and self-steering behavior. Frequent adjustments to the handlebars are necessary to stay on course.

This is of course all the more important as the Honda sails around bends of all kinds with exemplary neutrality thanks to its narrow 160 mm rear tire. Even notorious troublemakers will hardly find any starting point for criticism here. If anything, then it is the lack of lean angle that the CBF can be criticized for, because first the footrests and then the main stand put on. But hand on heart: Specialists will not be frightened by a little chip removal, advanced users use the angled notches as a trophy, and everyone else can gratefully accept the scratching as an early warning system.

For the optional ABS of the Honda, as with the Suzuki, this applies without restriction to all interest groups. Regardless of whether in combination with CBS as with the CBF or conventionally with the Bandit: The anti-lock devices are not noticeable in normal operation and are as reliable on the spot in an emergency as the CSU parliamentary group on Ash Wednesday.

What does this mean for everyone wrestling with a purchase decision? That you basically can’t do much wrong. Suzuki Bandit 1250 S or Honda CBF 1000 ?? it’s like the SPD and CDU in the grand coalition. In principle, both have the same offer and try to sharpen their profile at the edges. A bit more robust, stronger the Bandit, a bit more supple the CBF. In one respect, however, the comparison with the governing parties is flawed. Both Suzuki and Honda will not disappoint their voters, on the contrary, they offer exactly what broad groups of buyers expect from them. This is an achievement that cannot be credited enough over here or there these days.

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Technical data Honda CBF 1000 – Technical data Honda CBF 1000

Water-cooled four-cylinder four-stroke in-line engine, two overhead, chain-driven camshafts, four valves per cylinder,
Bucket tappet, wet sump lubrication, injection, ø 36 mm, regulated catalyst-
generator, alternator 344 W, battery 12 V /
9 Ah, hydraulically operated multi-disc oil bath clutch, six-speed gearbox, O-ring chain.
Bore x stroke 75.0 x 56.5 mm
Displacement 998 cm3
Compression ratio 11: 1
Rated output 72.0 kW (98 PS) at 8000 rpm
Max. Torque 93 Nm at 6500 rpm
landing gear
Bridge frame made of steel, telescopic fork, ø 41 mm, two-arm swing arm made of steel, central spring strut with lever system, adjustable spring base, double disc brake at the front, ø 296 mm, three-piston floating calipers, disc brake at the rear, ø 240 mm, three-piston floating caliper, composite brake system, ABS.
Cast aluminum wheels 3.50 x 17; 5.00 x 17
Tires 120/70 ZR 17; 160/60 ZR 17
Tires in the Michelin Pilot Road test «B ??

mass and weight
Wheelbase 1480 mm, steering head angle 64.0 degrees, caster 110 mm, spring travel f / r 120/120 mm, seat height * 785 815 mm, weight with a full tank * 252 kg, payload * 193 kg, tank capacity 19.0 liters.

Warranty two years
Service intervals every 6000 km
Colors blue, orange, black, silver, red
Price ** 9090 euros
Additional costs 200 euros

Technical data Suzuki Bandit 1250 S – Technical data Suzuki Bandit 1250 S

Water-cooled four-cylinder four-stroke in-line engine, two overhead, chain-driven camshafts, four valves per cylinder, wet sump lubrication, injection, ø 36 mm, regulated catalytic converter with secondary air system, 400 W alternator, 12 V battery /
10 Ah, hydraulically operated multi-disc oil bath clutch, six-speed gearbox, O-ring chain.
Bore x stroke 79.0 x 64.0 mm
Cubic capacity 1255 cm3
Compression ratio 10.5: 1
Rated output 72.0 kW (98 PS) at 7500 rpm
Max. Torque 108 Nm at 3700 rpm
landing gear
Double loop frame made of steel, telescopic fork, ø 43 mm, adjustable spring base, two-arm swing arm made of aluminum, central spring strut with lever system, adjustable spring base and rebound damping, double disc brake at the front, ø 310 mm, four-piston fixed calipers, disc brake at the rear, ø 240 mm, single-piston floating caliper, ABS.

Cast aluminum wheels 3.50 x 17; 5.50 x 17

Tires 120/70 ZR 17; 180/55 ZR 17

Tires in the test
Dunlop D 218 front »T«, rear »N«
mass and weight
Wheelbase 1485 mm, steering head angle 64.7 degrees, caster 104 mm, suspension travel f / r 130/136 mm, seat height * 790 810 mm, weight with a full tank * 254 kg, payload * 221 kg, tank capacity 19.0 liters.

Warranty two years
Service intervals every 6000 km
Colors blue, red, black
Price 8590 euros
Additional costs 145 euros

Comment engine

All attention: the new 1250 bandit-
The aggregate is a remarkable machine that combines beefy characteristics with smoothness. Unfortunately it is gamble
the resulting advantage with poorer manners in response and load change behavior as well as the
Long translation. Likewise
There is room for improvement in terms of the stiff coupling and the
loud, hard-to-shift gearbox.

Winner engine: CBF 1000

Comment chassis

The bandit did a good job of revising the chassis. The leisurely interpretation gave way to a more pointed coordination with larger reserves, without the comfort having suffered unduly. With regard to the steering behavior and the feedback, however, you have to make compromises, because the first tires prevent better results here.
In this respect the Honda scores,
which is also much more manageable.

Winner chassis: bandit 1250 S

Comment everyday

This chapter ends almost undecided. Up front you are well accommodated here and there, the pillion rating goes to the Honda. Anyone besides the pillion
still want to transport plenty of luggage is due to the higher
Payload is better served with the Suzuki, and the Bandit also has advantages in terms of range. Both have a main stand, in terms of workmanship the Suzuki is just ahead.

Winner everyday life: bandit 1250 S

Comment security

There are no fundamental differences here either. The brakes are satisfactory, the ABS works unobtrusively. When braking with a pillion passenger, the Suzuki is noticeably more stable,
Handlebar slapping is not a problem for either
big topic.
Winner security: Bandit 1250 S

Comment cost

What the Honda loses in consumption, it plays back in inspection costs and maintenance. Both are definitely the cheapest way to ride a big bike.

Winner cost: tie

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