Honda CB1100 C-ABS (2013-current): A short ride on a heart-stealing bike.Engine: The air cooled fuel injected four cylinder, five speed, 1140 c.c. engine, delivers 84 bhp / 7500 rpm and 9.46 kgm / 5000 rpm (69 ft lbs/5000 rpm) torque, claimed figures. The engine is new, which is the first multi-cylinder air cooled by Honda after 20 years. ‘he bike was intended for Japan and Australia so far, although from 2013 it is exported to many countries around the world.
The sound of the engine is discreet, probably the finest air-cooled soundtrack heard so far, which starts to remind of classical music! The operation of the engine isnĘt simply soft, itĘs a velvet one. Some riders could wish for a louder engine sound, however the editor wouldnĘt like anything else than this voice of the Honda CB whispering.
Thus as soon as the engine starts, the rider gets into an intense nostalgic mood, which becomes an instant relax. At this very short time provided for the ride, the notes and the camera were kept into the jacket and were brought out reluctantly at the end, for a brief moment. The urgency to notice and write down any bike characteristics was spontaneously suppressed and the ride was carried out just to fulfill the senses.
Having ridden about 280 bikes for the requirements of this website, there were only very few times that the editor got into that mood, that of an irresistible feeling. Thus the extremely limited time and the change of mood, resulted to the scarce characteristics of this bike which can be seen here. As an example there in no actual data for the visitor of the website to read or compare to other bikes specifications. Comparing the operation of the engine with the really soft twin-cylinder one of the Kawasaki W800, which also belongs to the new-retro category, the four cylinder Honda power mill manages to pinpoint the edge of the category.
The engine is very tractable indeed, there is adequate traction from as low as 1000 rpm, provided always in a really friendly manner. On normal conditions the torque is superb, there is instant power everywhere. Rider could use solely the low-middle spectrum of the powerband, while the engine response is very linear.
Riding position: The saddle is relatively low, 795mm – 31.3 in, which will be adequate even to comparatively short riders to step a firm foot on the road. The rider is placed in and over the bike, the riding position provides a slight alert. Thus the torso of the rider is relatively inclined to the front, while the handlebar is high and wide.
The weight of the bike is 248 kgs kerb (547 lbs), while the sensation provided is that of a comparatively heavy bike. The dimensions of the motorcycle are normal for a 1000 new-retro bike.
On the road: The steering geometry is old fashioned, that is a 1490 mm wheelbase, 27˚ rake and a 114 mm trail (58.66 in, 27˚, 4.49 in) . A 41 mm fork is equipped at the front and there are twin shocks at the rear adjustable for spring preload. The front end feels relatively soft while the two shocks provide average firmness.
The tires mounted were Dunlop D205 with dimensions 110/80-18 at the front and 140/70-18 at the rear. Probably these tires are intended to the Japanese market.
Riding the CB the handlebar makes a decent lever to change direction. The CB is a superbly balanced motorcycle and the effect of the weight disappears as the ride begins. The bike is neutral throughout the turn. The suspension provide good comfort to the rider, which is enhanced also by the 18 inch wheels. The C-ABS brakes consist of twin discs at the front together with two pots calipers and a rotor at the rear together with a single pot caliper. The braking provided is very user friendly with quite good feedback, given the character of the CB.
Comments: ‘he CB is an absolute motorcycle which that will trigger the senses of the rider, even if she is static. The chromed mudguards, with the base of the tail light being a single piece with the rear fender make a superbly nostalgic garnish on the main dish. The round headlamp, the twin shocks, and the green light on the dials also create a decent mood.
It seems that like in the case of the VFR1200F, Honda spent many hours at the design, evolution and production of the bike. It also seems that the complete know-how, character and the unsurpassed build quality of the big Hondas from the 70Ęs are concentrated in this motorcycle. Thus the use of plastic is really limited in the case of the CB 1100, which boasts elaborate build quality and finish.
The result is stunning. As an example the editor would like this bike better than a perfect example of an old CB restoration. Happily enough the editor owns a 1952 R51/3 and Bmw hasnĘt produced a replica of that, although no one never knows…
‘he ABS as an extra becomes a reasonable choice even for the committed retro fans, in order to eliminate the chances of crashing the bike. Because the CB fulfils the needs of a ride or a decoration at that corner of the living room. The available colors are white, red, black.
Price C-ABS: 12500 §