Honda seems to have fallen weak on its ‘Fs’ as the latest 600cc offering added to its line-up will now join the ‘R’ line. The Japanese automaker unveiled the all-new CBR650R for the upcoming model year at the EICMA this week.
The new CBR650R falls mechanically in line with its naked sibling CB650R, featuring a four-cylinder 649cc DOHC 16-valve engine with higher revs than its previous iteration. Apart from that, the engine also gets the Honda Selectable Torque Control that manage rear wheel traction along with a slipper/assist clutch.
The engine is mated to a six-speed transmission starter layout with the cylinders canted forward 30°. An assist/slipper clutch is a new addition and eases upshifts (with 12% less lever load) while managing rear-wheel lock up under rapid downshifts
The bike gets new intake and exhaust along with cam timing change and increased the compression ratio. This calls for a 5 per cent peak power boost.
The steel diamond frame is updated for 2019 with pressed (rather than forged) swingarm pivot plates; it’s 1.9kg lighter than the previous design and uses twin elliptical spars with a rigidity balance specifically tuned (stiffer around the headstock and more ‘flexible’ in the spar sections) to deliver balanced handling characteristics with high levels of rider feedback.
The new CBR650R sheds 6kg compared to its previous version increasing the power-to-weight ratio by 8 per cent. It also gets the new 41mm Showa ‘SFF’ USD fork, radial-mount four-piston brake callipers and brand-new instruments.
The new iteration takes design cues directly from its litre-class sibling CBR1000R Fireblade. This calls for new aggressive lines around the upper front fairing. Honda claims that the new model also features a host of ergonomic improvements, seating the rider more forward and downward.