Model updates: Honda’s versatile middleweight sports bike continues to carve out a strong following. Specification includes 41mm Showa Separate Function Big Piston USD forks, high-revving four-cylinder engine, HSTC, assist/slipper clutch, underseat USB Type-C socket and LCD display. Both paint options receive visual updates for 22YM.
Honda’s fully faired CBR650F, launched in 2014 alongside the naked CB650F, provided a healthy slice of four cylinder middleweight performance, very much at the sporty end of the ‘sports touring’ spectrum. In 17YM it received sharper styling, highlighting the engine more, plus a peak power boost, Showa Dual Bending Valve front fork and revised Nissin brake calipers.
For its 19YM evolution the CBR650F became the CBR650R. The upgrade from ‘F’ to ‘R’ indicating an even more potent shot of sporty ability designed to be explored, used and enjoyed on the street.
In the process of its transformation the CBR650R became, deliberately, a rare breed: a four cylinder sports bike that provides similar pleasure, enjoyment and adrenaline to an RR machine, yet with enough practicality – and sensible running costs – to make it a viable option as day-to-day transport in addition to weekend fun.
It’s a direction that’s been well received. In its 19YM debut year, the CBR650R was the second best-selling sports bike in Europe. For 21YM, continued its development curve with user-driven detail improvements and a major upgrade for the front suspension.
For 22YM, the CBR650R – the best selling sports bike in Europe in 2021 – gains updates to both colour options.
- Model Overview
The CB650R received a significant refresh for 21YM. The major news was application of 41mm Showa Separate Function Big Piston (SSF-BP) USD forks – high quality suspension that really elevates the bike’s handling ability.
EURO5 compliance for the engine was achieved with no loss of top end power; other detail improvements included improved visibility for the LCD display and USB Type-C charging socket under the seat. The headlight reflectors, side panels and rear mudguard were all also updated.
The 22YM CBR650R will be available in two colour options:
Mat Gunpowder Black Metallic – with new orange highlights
Grand Prix Red – with updated graphic treatment
- Key Features
- Showa Separate Function Big Piston (SFF-BP) USD forks
- Four-piston, radial-mount front brake calipers and floating discs
- 120/70-ZR17 and 180/55-ZR17 front and rear tyres
The CBR650R’s steel diamond frame uses pressed swingarm pivot plates and 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. Rake is set at 25.5° with trail of 101mm and wheelbase of 1,450mm. Kerb weight is 208kg.
Showa’s Separate Function Big Piston (SFF-BP) 41mm USD forks offer high-quality reaction. A pressure separation damper in one fork tube and spring mechanism in the other deliver high damping performance and lighter weight. Together with the use of a larger sized piston the result is increased feel, bump absorption and control. Adjustable for 10-stage spring preload, the single-tube monoshock operates directly on the curvaceous gravity die-cast aluminium swingarm.
Four-piston radial-mount front brake calipers work 310mm wave-pattern floating discs, and are paired with a single-piston rear caliper and 240mm disc. The ABS is a two-channel system.
Cast aluminium wheels mount 120/70-ZR17 and 180/55-ZR17 front and rear tyres.
3.2 Styling & equipment
- Minimal panels and rear mudguard/number plate mount
- LCD display easy to read
- USB Type-C socket under the seat
With its four-cylinder power unit clearly on display the CBR650R’s wrapping ramps up the pure sporting appeal; dual LED headlights emit a penetrating, uncompromising stare and the upper and lower fairings blend muscularity with slim lines and angles.
The seat unit, too is compact and truncates the rear of the machine, adding to the hard-edged sense of purpose. Trim side panels accentuate the minimalism, as does the steel rear mudguard/number plate mount.
The aggressive riding position starts with clip-on handlebars that mount beneath the top yoke, matched to rear set footpegs. There’s also a USB Type-C socket located under the seat, for easy charging of a mobile device. Seat height is set at 810mm.
Stylish, easy-to-read LCD instruments include Shift Up, Gear Position and Peak Hold indicators.
- 70kW peak power, 63Nm peak torque with 35kW A2 licence option
- Honda Selectable Torque Control (HSTC)
- Assist/slipper clutch
- Full EURO5 compliance
The 649cc, DOHC 16-valve engine is tuned to create the purest, most enjoyable mid-sized four-cylinder performance possible, with the classically fast ‘pick-up’ through the rev range and hard-hitting, high-revving top-end for which Honda’s in-line’s fours are renowned. Peak power of 70kW arrives @ 12,000rpm with peak torque @ 63Nm delivered at 9,500 rpm. An easy 35kW conversion is available for A2 licence holders. EURO5 compliance required revisions to the ECU, cam lobes, intake timing, exhaust pipe, catalyser and silencer, as well as the addition of a crank pulsar.
Direct cam actuation makes for a compact cylinder head; bore and stroke is set at 67mm x 46mm with compression ratio of 11.6:1. Iridium spark plugs are employed and twin air ducts – either side of the fuel tank – feed the airbox and produce a throaty intake roar.
Asymmetric piston skirts minimise bore contact and reduce friction. Ferrous spines on the outer surface of the cylinder sleeves reduce oil consumption (and friction) with improved heat transfer and a silent SV cam chain reduces frictional losses by using a Vanadium coating on its pins. Internal water channelling from cylinder head to cylinders does away with most of the exterior hoses.
The engine uses a compact internal architecture, stacked six-speed gearbox and starter layout with the cylinders canted forward 30°. An assist/slipper clutch eases upshifts while managing rear-wheel lock up under hard braking and rapid downshifts. Honda Selectable Torque Control (HSTC) manages rear wheel traction; it can be turned off should the rider choose.
Fuel consumption of 20.4km/l (WMTC mode) gives a range of over 300km from the 15.4L fuel tank.
A range of Genuine Honda Accessories are available for the CBR650R:
Front mudguard panels, side covers, seat cowl (aluminium parts or aluminium inserts)
Tank bag and seat bag
Tall screen – clear or smoked
- Technical Specifications
|Type||Liquid-cooled 4-stroke 16-valve DOHC inline-4 cylinder|
|Engine Displacement (cm³)||649cc|
|Bore x Stroke (mm)||67.0mm x 46.0mm|
|Max. Power Output||70kW/12,000rpm|
|Carburation||PGM-FI electronic fuel injection|
|Fuel Tank Capacity||15.4L|
|Clutch Type||Wet, multiplate disc|
|Dimensions (LxWxH)||2120 x 750 x 1,150mm|
|Type Front||41mm Showa Separate Function front Fork Big Piston (SFF-BP) USD forks|
|Type Rear||Monoshock damper with 10 stage adjustable preload, 43.5mm stroke|
|Rim Size Front||Hollow section 6-spoke cast aluminium|
|Rim Size Rear||Hollow section 6-spoke cast aluminium|
|Tyres Front||120/70ZR17 M/C (58W)|
|Tyres Rear||180/55ZR17 M/C (73W)|
|ABS System Type||2 channel; hydraulic dual disc 310mm front, hydraulic disc 240mm rear|
|INSTRUMENTS & ELECTRICS|
|Instruments||Digital speedometer, digital bar graph tachometer, dual trip meter, digital bar graph fuel gauge, gear position and upshift indicator, digital clock|
# Please note that the figures provided are results obtained by Honda under standardised testing conditions prescribed by WMTC. Tests are conducted on a rolling road using a standard version of the vehicle with only one rider and no additional optional equipment. Actual fuel consumption may vary depending on how you ride, how you maintain your vehicle, weather, road conditions, tire pressure, installation of accessories, cargo, rider and passenger weight, and other factors.
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