Rather than new models or a radical V4-powered Fireblade as widely tipped, Honda showed up at the EICMA motorcycle show in Milan with a range of updated CB models including a more off-road-oriented CB500X (pictured).
2019 CB models
Honda’s mid-sized CB range has been very popular in Australia for years, especially the more recent 500 models.
Leading the charge with desirable updates is the 2019 CB500X all-roader now with better dirt capabilities.
It features increased suspension travel, more clearance, a 19-inch front wheel and a more aggressive tyre tread.
Meanwhile, the CBR650R replaces the CBR650F with more power, updated “Fireblade” styling, 5kg weight-loss, a more sporty riding position and a new LCD instrument panel.
The CBR500R also looks sportier redesign and the engine has been revised for better response in low-to-mid-range revs.
CB500F and CB650R now come with an assist/slipper clutch, a more powerful twin-cylinder engine and and cafe-racer styling.
The 2019 Fireblade gets an upgrade in its electronics package.
For example, traction and wheelie control are now separate so you can adjust them separately; ABS now has less intervention above 120km/h for 15% more deceleration; and the ride-by-wire throttle reacts faster for more engine braking and power delivery.
But that’s it for the updates, unless you consider new paint. The base model comes in black and silver or red and white, while the SP tricolour has darker blue accents.
We may have to wait another year for the rumoured V4 model.
There is no word yet from Honda Australia on when these updated models will arrive in Australia or pricing.
We expect they may hold off until floor stock is cleared.