Honda recently launched its all-new 2020 Africa Twin Adventure Sports in India. The Japanese company wants to further expand its Indian portfolio with four new 500 cc motorcycles.
A new media report says that Honda is planning to launch four new 500 cc bikes in the country within a year. These bikes would include Honda Rebel 500, Honda CBR500R, Honda CB500F, and Honda CB500X. At present, Honda doesn’t have a single 500 cc motorcycle in India. Its most only middleweight offering is the CBR650R.
Honda Rebel 500
The Honda Rebel 500 isn’t a brand-new model. It is already on sale in various international markets. However, when launched here in India, it will be Honda’s first cruiser-type motorcycle in the country. The Rebel 500 has a 471 cc liquid-cooled, parallel-twin engine with DOHC setup. It produces 45.5 PS and 44.6 Nm and has a 6-speed transmission. Some of the Rebel 500’s key features include alloy wheels, blacked-out styling, wide tyres, slipper/assist clutch, etc. It is being anticipated that when launched, the Rebel 500 would attract a price somewhere in the INR 4.5-5.0 lakh* range.
Perhaps, we wouldn’t mind seeing the more affordable Rebel 300 as well at a later stage. What do you guys think?
The CBR500R is a fully-faired sportbike with aggressive styling. A motorcycle like this should be received very well by the Indian audience. It shares the 471 cc parallel-twin engine with the Rebel 500. Some of CBR500R’s key features are stainless steel exhaust, digital instrument cluster, LED headlights, aluminium Y-spoke cast wheels, etc. Honda is expected to price the CBR500R in the INR 5.0-5.5 lakh* range.
So we have had a cruiser and a sportbike, and now comes a naked streetfighter. It is kind of a stripped-down version of the CBR500R with some minor design changes like a different headlight, upright riding posture, single-piece handlebar, etc. All the underpinnings are the same. It could be priced below the fully-faired bike.
With its CB500X, Honda will try to reach out to people who seek an affordable yet capable tourer. The CB500X would most likely be a road-biased model with touring-friendly features like a long windscreen, upright and relaxed riding posture, comfortable long seat, etc.
Initially, Honda would bring in the aforementioned 500 cc motorcycles into the country via the CKD route. It would analyse the response they get in our market and if everything goes fine it would consider manufacturing. Apart from the aforementioned models, Honda would also launch its litre-class, track-oriented CBR1000RR-R Fireblade in India.