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Classic Motorcycles – The Honda CBX1000

The 70s had seen the Japanese bike manufacturers engaged in a battle with themselves in trying to outclass their rivals in terms of raw power. This was often at the expense of handling and the Honda CBX1000 was no exception to this, although it has to be said that handling was surprisingly good for a bike of this size.

The CB1000 was not the first inline six cylinder machine. That was the Benelli 750Sei which appeared in 1972. However, the Benelli never really caught on, and the Honda was something of a surprise when launched in 1978. The problem for Honda was that after their initial groundbreaking CB750 in 1968, their competitors had come back at them hard with big 1000cc machines.

First it was Kawasaki’s Z1, then Yamaha’s XS1100, Suzuki’s GS1000 and Kawasaki’s Z1000. The CBX1000 appeared and outclassed all of them. The engine was an in line six with 24 valves and six Keihin carburettors, producing 105bhp and a maximum speed of 135mph. The bike was something that one either loved or loathed. Almost ridiculously wide, the width was actually not as wide as it might have been if not for Honda’s use of thin casings and hollow components. Read More »

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