Honda CB1000R Black Edition roadster test


Gentleman Rider

4 cylinders of 998 cm3, 145 hp and 104 Nm, 214 kg full made, 14,499 euros

Honda has always known how to develop emblematic models, like the CB 900 Bol d’Or or the Big One. The CB 1000 R is in this line, with an original and sporty style, 30 years after the CB 900F. The Honda CB 1000 R appeared in 2008, taking over the engine of the sporty CBR 1000 F and its 125 hp for 217 kilos. The roadster was largely revised in 2018, moving to the world of neo-vintage, while still based on the engine of a sports car, in this case the CBR 1000 RR of 2006. The roadster is thus always more powerful. , less heavy and modernized.

In 2021, Honda is refining its naked model, changing its aesthetics and covering everything with electronics and comes in a final black livery, Black Edition version. We try this refined Geisha on a sunny track in the Montpellier region.

Honda CB1000R Black Edition roadster reviewHonda CB1000R Black Edition roadster review


Motorcycle with character, the Honda CB 1000 R is the flagship of charming roadsters. Between retro style and cutting-edge technology, the machine combines refinement. Its style models a certain timelessness, sculpts the classic to bring out an icon with solid genes, all in an ultra-contemporary aesthetic. Elegance is his profession.

The CB1000R adjusts its aesthetics with a new LED headlightThe CB1000R adjusts its aesthetics with a new LED headlight

Its long 16.4 liter tank with wide curved and flat shoulders is a major component of its design. However, for 2021, the manufacturer brings a little more visual dynamism to the roadster. So the front led optic is now tilted, almost forming a drop of water surrounded by daylight. Likewise, the already very reduced casing of the machine is made more slender. Aluminum radiator protection plates and air box covers are made more compact. The rear buckle, a beautiful piece of aluminum foundry, is made more fluid and energizes the ultra short stern. There is an attractive, thick and well-cut rider seat, followed by a passenger folding seat of the same type, but much smaller. The streamlined stern concludes with an attractive, sloping semicircular light. Lower, the deported plate holder usefully reduces its volumes.

The skin is even more slender on this 2021 versionThe skin is even more slender on this 2021 version

Beam frame and two half-cradles support an imposing engine block with elegantly crafted surfaces and volumes. A screamer specialist, Honda houses a highly successful sports 4-cylinder within its roadster. The 998 cc block (75 × 56.5 mm) has 2 ACT, 16 valves and its pistons are forged. This heart now develops 145 hp at 10,500 rpm and 104 Nm at 8,250 revolutions rpm. The clutch is now assisted and limited slip. In addition, on our test model Black Edition, an up & down quickshifter accelerates the pace of riding. The big breath of the CB flows into a 4-1-2 set whose particularly stylish silencer has two asymmetrical superimposed outputs of the most beautiful effect.

The 4-cylinder passes Euro 5 by developing 145 hp and 104 NmThe 4-cylinder passes Euro 5 by developing 145 hp and 104 Nm

Reduced electronics manage this cavalry. The circus of fleas has not put its legions on the CB 1000 R. of course, a grip of the throttle ride by wire manages the acceleration and four piloting modes (Sport, Standard, Rain, User) direct the injection (answer engine), HSTC traction control and engine brake. These 9 variables ensure a dynamic à la carte. And that’s all. Honda prefers to deliver a dynamically accomplished machine, always true to its Total Control credo where humans faithfully feel their steed.

For this, the rigid frame is joined by a proven cycle part. At a short wheelbase (1455 mm), the roadster combines a fairly open column angle of 25 ° and a trail of 100 mm. General agility, but a stable and more relaxed front end. The front axle receives a 43 mm Showa BPF fork with differentiated adjustment preload (right) and compression and rebound (2 screws on the left). The shock absorber of the same brand is adjustable in the same way, by ratchet for the first, by a screw at the base for the hydraulics. We would have appreciated a remote wheel for preloading. It manages the movements via an aluminum single-sided arm reinforcing the neat style of the machine.

The aluminum single-sided arm reinforces the style of the roadsterThe aluminum single-sided arm reinforces the style of the roadster

The 17-inch aluminum rims with 7 split spokes fit Michelin Power 2CT + tires in 120/70 and 190/55. To stop them, four-piston Tokico radial front calipers attacking 310 mm discs. The rear clamp grips a 256mm fret and the whole is under ABS control. Another safety feature, the self-retracting LED indicators now also act to warn in the event of emergency braking..

The 7-spoke rims are fitted with Michelin Power 2CT +The 7-spoke rims are fitted with Michelin Power 2CT+

In addition to the changes made to the base version, the CB1000R also comes in a Black Edition with a completely black livery, this is the one we are trying. Even its aluminum parts are tinted. This version is also distinguished by its nose screen, its seat cowl and therefore its standard quickshifter. And it is besides this Black Edition which arrives first in France, from the month of March.

The Black Edition is adorned with additional equipment, including an up & down quickshifterThe Black Edition is adorned with additional equipment, including an up & down quickshifter

To demonstrate the quality of finish of its CB 1000 R, Honda claims that the machine would have only 6 plastic covers. It is true that the big roadster is very well finished. Aluminum, painted or raw metal surfaces, arrangement of elements, integration…. there is hardly a lack of taste. The whole makes up an attractive machine with a refined style. However, in full black version, it lacks contrast in my opinion. I prefer the colored versions with more elegant finishes. Finally the beauty contains its weight, displaying 213 kilos on the scale, 214 for the Black Edition (because of the additional equipment).

In the saddle

The CB 1000 R sits at 830mm, but the low crotch arch reduces the feeling of height. Without excess, the footrests are a bit set back and height contained. The induced position is dynamic, but without being radical and the flexion of the legs acceptable. Positioned in this way, the bust tilts naturally, placing the wrists in reasonable support on the large, variable diameter hanger.

The driving position is dynamic, but not drasticThe driving position is dynamic, but not drastic

Neoclassical roadster, the CB 1000 R is therefore sensitive to technology. It adopts a new 5-inch color TFT screen with four types of displays. My favorite ? The fourth, large tachometer integrating in its center the tachometer. To its left, the fuel gauge, to the right the engine mode engaged and its assistance levels. Below, the many information of consumption, partial trip, odometers…. etc. And at the top, clock and engine temperature. The whole is controlled from the left stalk via several push buttons and joysticks. Intuitive, the interface is above all very ergonomic. The electronic aids and piloting profiles are thus easily adjusted. The motorcycle is also connected through its HSVC system which allows you to use voice control by connecting your smartphone and your motorcycle, for navigation, music … The saddle also hides a USB-C port for recharging a phone or powering a GPS.

The CB adopts a new 5-inch screen now connectedThe CB adopts a new 5-inch screen now connected

In the city

Full, the voice of the CB 1000 R recalls that its breath is that of a powerful tenor. The sportiness of the block is immediately noticeable and charms the ears of fans of four cylinders. But no abruptness on board. This roadster is not one of those who play bad bikes. Strong, broad-shouldered, he knows how to tame his strength and his temper. Ultra flexible clutch, precise gearbox and even shifter on our model are close to excellence. And in the service of His Mechanical Majesty whose availability is astonishing. You could keep 6 almost anytime. Injection and throttle grip are perfectly calibrated and make the boiler obey the millimeter. Polite and torquey, the Honda block works wonders in urban development. We also discover all the quality of balance of the machine. Its handling is obvious and the CB can effortlessly navigate the traffic of the boulevards and the narrow streets. A very correct turning radius and large, vibration-free mirrors convince.
With such a machine, we will not be satisfied with the city cage. The perceived dynamic promises make you want to discover the dark side of the CB 1000 R.

The flexibility of the engine and transmission is very suitable for the cityThe smoothness of the engine and transmission is very suitable for the city

Motorway and expressways

With the tip of the boot, the shifter adds up the gears while the Honda screamer roars. Under its air of quiet strength, the roadster hides 145 horses that demand to get out of their stalls. His breath worsened the crew in an almost endless push towards the horizon. At 9,500 laps, we are close to 230 km / h in an absolute serenity provided by the unfailing rigor of the cycle part. Well, it’s blowing and we do a little, a lot, the flag. We will not go looking for the red zone at 11,500 laps. But the potential is mind-blowing, even with a helmet.

The 4-cylinder holds the legal motorway at a low 5,300 rpm, more than 6,000 rpm from the red zone ...The 4-cylinder holds the legal highway at a low 5,300 rpm, at over 6,000 rpm in the red zone…

Legally, the boiler displays 5,300 revolutions, the atmosphere on board is therefore devoid of painful vibrations and the general comfort is very good. What to imagine pleasant connections between two sessions of games. The stimuli remain supported at this regime and quickly achieve a saving exit.


It’s beautiful, it’s classy, ​​but now we’re going to have to move the pistons in the cylinders severely; which is not sexual. And on the handlebars of the CB 1000 R it brings a lot of fun! The roadster quickly turns into a smart machine, but always hyper precise and predictable for an overall efficiency of driving exciting. As with any machine from the manufacturer of Hamamatsu, it is first and foremost the obviousness, the neutrality and the precision of the chassis that seduce. The CB enters turns with a rare naturalness. If the machine is agile thanks to a contained wheelbase, it is also stable in curves with its fairly open steering (25 °). In fact, the front axle is placed on the angle of its Power 2CT +. Their pointed profile is fully suited to this dynamo-progressive behavior of the Japanese. I would still have preferred a smaller width of the rear casing. Responsive to the support of gloves and boots, the roadster benefits from a good lever arm from the wide handlebars placed low enough. Enough to easily adopt a sporting position; its high ground clearance and set back footrests encourage attack.

Precision and efficiency are the key words of the CB1000RPrecision and efficiency are the key words of the CB1000R

Between strength and finesse, the CB takes full advantage of quality damping. The elements filter the imperfections of the bitumen and send the information back to the steering gear. The only concern is that the factory setting of its suspension is very comfortable. On the crumpled up at high speed, the machine moves more than reason. But while remaining perfectly healthy. Good quality, its components adjust effectively and significantly improve the reactions of the Honda. In particular mass transfers. More front and rear preload and more braked rebound are necessary for a more enjoyable, engaged ride.

The widely adjustable suspensions adapt perfectly to the imperfections of the asphaltThe widely adjustable suspensions adapt perfectly to the imperfections of the asphalt

Led at high speed, the CB tows badly on the intermediates and the effective range of its boiler is extra-wide. From 5,000 to 10,000 rpm, it’s a tsunami of torque and power that sweeps over the asphalt. And the hoarse and ample soundtrack of the airbox and the exhaust boost the revivals. Almost omnipresent, the couple heat the Auvergne rubber which gives complete satisfaction in terms of grip. In addition, the traction control works perfectly to prevent you from slipping too much. It tows badly, but in full control, and the machine likes to lift its front end under the assault of its four-cylinder. Agile without being lively, the CB 1000 R favors efficiency over the face. But her big heart displays an attractive personality. Linear in its accelerations, the mechanics are however very demonstrative.

The 104 Nm of torque gives the engine an attractive personalityThe 104 Nm of torque gives the engine an attractive personality

We can then count on Tokico calipers and leading ABS management to slow the machine down at all times. Powerful and remarkably flexible at the lever, the elements provide optimal decelerations. Perfectly balanced, the machine does not stiffen when the brakes are engaged on the angle. The gears stack at the shifter and the clutch engages it all carefree, leaving the machine in the desired axle. Finally, the adjustable engine brake allows you to configure the evolutions according to your wishes. This motorcycle is a tool of precision and charm.

Braking, clutch ... difficult to find faults in this well-made mechanismBraking, clutch … difficult to find faults in this well-made mechanics

At a more relaxed pace, its homogeneity makes it a comfortable frame and always attentive to the least of your requests..


Honda remains true to its reputation with the chassis of this CB 1000 R. Neutral and precise, it relies on a reasoned chassis making the machine as agile as it is controllable. The quality damping reinforces the overall efficiency on the handlebars and the serenity of the evolutions.

Front suspension sits on a 43mm Showa SFF-BP forkFront suspension sits on a 43mm Showa SFF-BP fork


Perfectly calibrated for the roadster, the system ensures decelerations always under control. The front calipers deliver an impressive force and the opposing clamp also ensures a perfect and efficient modulation in curves..

Tokico radial calipers pinch 310mm discs up frontTokico radial calipers clamp 310mm discs up front

Comfort / Duo

Quality cushioning and thick, ergonomic seats give the CB 1000 R an almost unexpected comfort on this type of machine. In addition, the riding position is not radical. However, the wrists heat up a bit at the end of the course. We were unable to test the passenger seat, replaced by a hood.

The comfort is surprisingly good for this type of machineThe comfort is surprisingly good for this type of machine


With 6.8 liters raised on average during hard driving, the 240 km of autonomy is easily achievable. In quieter evolution, the computer admitted 5.8 units…. Enough to make beautiful trips.

Honda CB1000R Black Edition video test


Sleek, elegant and original, the Honda CB 1000 R is a connoisseur’s motorcycle. Without aesthetic exuberance or outrageous mechanics, it is a fairly rare machine in the segment. Its power remains controlled and controllable just like its electronics. Honda relies less on chips for the efficiency of its roadster than on the remarkable balance and precision of its CB. Efficient and demonstrative, the Honda remains restful, because it is easy to take along, docile. Real qualities on a daily basis as well as on a dynamic trip. The CB 1000 R charges 13,099 euros 14,499 euros for our test Black Edition version. Very relevant values.

Honda CB1000R Black Edition claims 14,499 eurosHonda CB1000R Black Edition claims 14,499 euros

We will oppose him the Suzuki Katana, just as comparable in charm, efficiency equipment. The Japanese woman asks for € 13,699. Another contender, the Triumph Speed ​​Triple S, at € 14,050. Sportier, the Englishwoman is remarkably efficient and well finished. Also, the BMW R1250 R claims 15,100 € for its charms. Finally, the Yamaha MT-10, € 13,999, offers an even more dynamic set.
With its strength under control, the Honda CB 1000 R is the perfect friend. Always present, conciliatory, considerate, efficient, attractive and refined. Wink and it’s party time. The big roadster personified is a certified modern machine of character, a sure bet for your future biker.

Strong points

  • Aesthetics of character
  • Build quality
  • Full TFT screen
  • Personality and engine availability
  • Precise and agile part-cycle
  • Quickshifter up & down (Black edition)
  • Fork adjustable in any direction
  • Homogeneous suspensions
  • Sufficient electronic assistance
  • Powerful and flexible braking

Weak points

  • Non-adjustable clutch lever
  • Black version a little sad

The technical sheet of the Honda CB1000R

Test conditions

  • Itinerary: winding roads with variable surfaces, dry.
  • Weather forecast: sunny, from 7 ° to 15 ° C
  • Mileage: 180 km
  • Problem encountered: ras

Test equipment

  • HJC Rpha 70 Helmet
  • Dafy All One Apex Jacket
  • Jean Vanucci Armalite
  • Vanucci Tiffoso Boots

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11 thoughts on “Honda CB1000R Black Edition roadster test

  1. Fantastic weight gain. I have

    Owns the first Lacerda 650 GT in 1968 (of the 52 built).

    Weighed over 220 kg dry …

  2. Ducati connecting rods, gearbox 5, Suzuki pistons then Wiseco, replacement of the primary transmission by a chain, modification of the crankshaft, modification of the frame, disc brakes in the front then in the rear … apart from the color Orange, the two cylinders clearly visible, is it still really a Laverda (motorcycle that I admired when I was young).

  3. It’s more a Laverda or rather it’s a Laverda without its flaws. If the same went out in series it would try more than one….

  4. "It’s been 20 years since the last Laverda left the brand’s factories, but the brand still has its fans around the world and especially in Australia, especially for its racing success."

    Fortunately there are fans! I went to the Sunday Ride Classic, 3 years ago, now, I believe … And the Laverda were if not in honor … at least honored by their owners, so many were they and exposed to visitors.

    Fortunately there are collectors who allow us to rub shoulders with these old glories, because it feels good, strengthens our biker culture, and, it remains a pleasure to see them run on the circuit..

    Moreover, on this subject, do not hesitate to go to the Motorcycle Museum of Marseille, located on 4 floors of an old flour mill..

    You will spend a privileged moment there!

    This will also allow you to discover French competition motorcycles, created by the Nougier family for itself, which competed in the ’50s /’ 60s..


  5. The Laverda is bullshit, I say it, shouts it, proclaims it, howls it to the moon and to whoever wants to hear it, for decades. It is only the journalists of the motorcycle press who did not realize it! When I read that a two-cylinder Laverda can beat a GSX-R, and on the track again !, I rejoice. Thank you Mr. Cathcart, continue to spread the good word among the lost sheep.

    As for the Nougiers, obviously and unfortunately, I have never driven one, but the history of these French and artisanal 4 cylinders makes you dream.

    Come on, mass is said, grab your Japanese girls and you will see how better life is.

  6. Ah Laverda, she will always be a beautiful Italian in the memory of bikers in the 60’s and 70’s. It is one of the legendary: Ducati SS, MV750, Moto-Guzzi V7 … Generation passion! Already at the time I remember that she made me dream, even if I was riding Japanese for reason. An anti-show, pure and tough motorcycle. Black full leather and Cromwell helmet mandatory … one of those machines that you never forget! Green, Orange or Yellow, choose your color! 😍✌️

  7. No justified excuse ?

    Let’s start with the price, at a low motorcycle 1000 to 2000 € more than an Aprilia V4 or a KTM 1290, an autonomy still so ridiculous, and a reloading time still so desperately long ….

  8. obviously we would always like more. A little more autonomy and a faster full recharge.

    But it’s really nice to read that an electric can be something other than a utility slug. A real alternative to thermal roadsters, with different sensations but always fun and a big foot on the handlebars.

    that makes you optimistic for the future: even if we go towards zero emissions, the pleasure will always be there. Thank you !

  9. Owner of a 2015 sr, I am ULTRA disappointed with the removal of the standard "raclette cable" type socket, many locations do not have a charging station while there are still basic 220 sockets in car parks!

    So you always have to walk around with the conversion cable which costs 500 € and takes up a huge space!

    The immense strength of zero was that it could be loaded no matter where.

    Added to that, the range is no better than my current Zero, which already offers me fabulous driving sensations … we’ll wait for the next one!

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