Very easy to ride
Bought new July 2014- 2014 CBR500RA Black (ABS model) just done 2000km. A really nice bike to commute on the freeway. Plenty of merging and passing power, moves from 100-125kph in quick time to pass. Sits steady and comfortable on 100kph @ 5000. OTD- $7500 all up with 6months rego. Great all round bike, looks good, very smooth clutch/gears, Honda quality,all through. Only one thing to suggest- recommend upgrading OEM exhaust- (fitted R77 Yoshimura) no power gain, but the 500 will sound much deeper with a good slip on or full system.
Loads of Fun!!
I've had my bike just over a month now and have put approximately 1400kms on it. The seating position is extremely comfortable and the engine is smooth and sweet with more than enough power to get your blood pumping. If you choose not to squeeze the throttle, the bike is an extremely smooth cruiser. I have found the suspension to be fine even though it is a basic setup. Everything on the bike is of typically high Honda quality with a solid feel. I can't say enough good things about this bike. I can fly through twisties and it pulls strongly from almost any speed. I have enough trouble staying under the speed limit on this so can't imagine how difficult it would be on a 600cc or 1000cc bike. The best thing about this bike is that you really get to use what it has, moving through the gears and opening the throttle wide when you want to go hard without ever worrying that it is going to flip you off mid corner. It's also super stable in high winds and the farings give good protection. The gearbox and clutch are super-nice also. Get one, you'll love it too!!
The looks, the torque, comfortable seating, smooth power delivery, heaps of fun...
Don't love the single headlight and high beam, it looks like a globe is out but common on many bikes nowadays.
Excellent Lams Approved bike with a fantasic price to match
This bike is an amazing bike for a learner or novice rider to step onto. The power is very easy to be in control of but it still has enough power to scare you if you twist the throttle hard enough. Coming from a WR450 dirtbike I'm not one bit dissapointed in this bike. It is fantasic on fuel, has stunning looks a real head turner, the option of abs, twin cylinder fuel injection, comfortable ergonomics, long service intervals. And the price was very hard to turn up, I would recommend this bike to anyone whom is interested in a cheap reliable bike that can do everything.
Poor positioning of the indicator switch.
Not sure what '[name removed]' is talking about, as the CBR is easily the fastest and more torquey than either the 400 or the Ninja 300, producing 11 more horsepower at the rear wheel than the Ninja.
It looks great, is a great fit and is economical. Of course, at this price it's got some limitations and that is the lack of suspension adjustment, so it might not be as flickable in some cases.
Overall its a great choice for a beginner, or a rider who has been off the bike for a while, wanting to have a bit of fun without breaking the bank, and as a commuter it is a better choice than a scooter as you can take it out for a run in the twistys on the weekend.
Great look, comfortable
Lack of suspension adjustment
All Show - No Go
This bike was a bitter disappointment. It certainly looks great and comes with modern equipment, but that's all folks.
The setup is rather basic overall and the power is lacking.
It produces a half decent amount of torque but no power, which takes away any sense of drama. Almost felt like I'm on a moped, with power delivery liner but totally boring.
Do yourself a favor and spend the extra $2k for a CB400, cause it will absolutely run rings around you. Or spend $2k less and buy a 300 Ninja, which will still wipe out any 500CBR.
Too Expensive, Slow, Slower, Slowest
Great bike for the money, best of the LAMS
I bought this bike after studying and test riding every LAMS (Learner Approved Motorcycle Scheme) bike available in mid-2013. This included contenders like the Kawasaki Ninja 300, the KTM 390, and Hyosung GTR650 (among others - this set stood out from the rest). Each of these other bikes has their strengths and weaknesses, you should also test them to see if the characteristics of one suits you more than another.
So what I like about the Honda 500. Firstly, it looks like a bigger capacity bike, with tyre sizes as wide as you find on 650cc bike. The other best looker out of my test set is the Kawasaki 300, but while it seems to look alright from the side, the rear tyre is narrower and when sitting on it the bike appears narrow looking at the dash. While we're looking at the dash, the Honda's is clear in all lighting conditions, whereas I had trouble with the bitsy lights on the Kawasaki in strong daylight.
I think I'll dispense with too much talk concerning suspension. LAMS bikes are built to a price and savings have to be found somewhere. Almost universally the suspension on LAMS bike is thus basic. Read that as non-adjustable forks and a rear only adjustable for preload as being the norm here. I found little difference in the suspension for all them in my testing. The Honda's performs well and predictably. I've pushed it around pretty hard without anything unsettling happening - about as good as you get in this category. The rear swingarm looks very plain on the Honda, which isn't bad as I think the one on the KTM 390 looks ugly - and better plain than ugly! The styling of the rest of the bike covers for the swingarm, which remains inconspicuous.
Apart from the looks, what sold me was how the engine felt riding around out on the street. In this scenario, street riding - where you would most likely spend 95 percent plus of your time on the bike - riders typically use the middle of the rev range. Sure, on a fast take-off you might let it scream, but fact is it is in this middle zone where you will be for the vast majority of the time. The Honda builds some serious torque from this region up. That translates to a bike that feels grunty and pulls strongly just going around regular corners - which means you can have fun, everywhere. Merging onto a highway, and opening up to approach peak revs (8500rpm), there is a delightful snarl and it is not lacking on power. It does 0-100km/h in around 6 seconds, which if you come from driving a car, will blow you away. The nearest contender, the Kawasaki 300, by contrast feels like a small capacity bike at middle revs (it's power delivery happens later, from 9,000rpm to 13,000rpm). I couldn't realistically see myself riding around the streets doing 9,000+ revs all of the time in order to have any fun. Sure, when you wring the Kawasaki's neck it gets up and goes .. but every Kawasaki 300 I've seen out on the road isn't being ridden anywhere near peak revs, so I rest my case.
The gearbox and clutch work well, shifting positively and easily every time. The six gear ratios follow a natural incremental progression, so you can make full use of all six. My car has a six-speed gearbox, but fifth and sixth on it are really just overdrive cruising gears, that I hate as they are good only for saving petrol. The KTM 390 has a very tall top gear, that they use as a selling point, but which I use as a reason to avoid.
The single disk brake front and rear provide good feel and have no trouble slowing the bike. As a complete package everything works capably. Yes you can get better running gear, but that bike will cost you more than double what this one does.
No problems with the seat or riding position, which is leaning angled forward for average height riders. The very minor ergonomic quibble I might have is the position of the indicator switch. It should be just to the right of my left thumb. Instead, a large grey horn button is there, with the indicator switch tucked down underneath it. It takes some getting used to, having to search down below with your thumb, but after a while it becomes second nature. Better off around the other way, but yes only a minor thing.
Mirrors are well placed and big enough. On others, they are odd shapes and set on a narrow support and can be difficult to see around your own body. No problem here.
Tyres seem up to standard, Dunlop SportMax D222's. My bike's only just run in (500km) and I've taken it to reasonable lean angles (just off knee down) and the tyres offer good grip.
The service interval is every 24,000km. I'm going to be changing oil more frequently than that, but what it shows is Honda's confidence in the quality of their product. Compare this with Hyosung's service interval for example, and you'll get the picture.
On the road, the dealer gave me a price three hundred dollars less than what you see advertised. The quality of ride, the look and the feel of riding it, this is supremely great value bang for you buck.
Supreme bang for your buck, Big bike looks, High quality, Long service interval, Damn fun to ride
Indicator switch could have been positioned better
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