Honda wisely did not invite me to the US launch of the CBR1000RR-R Fireblade SP as I’m just not fast enough on the track to make use of something as purpose-built as this. But they were kind enough to lend me one to take to show off at my track day on Monday, so I’ll spin it up for a couple of sessions and even commute with it for a few days, as well. What do you want to know about it?
Everyone’s already made the pirate jokes about how many R’s are in the name so I’ll stay away from that, and as mentioned above I’m not quick enough to approach the limits of what it’s capable of, but if there’s something that you want to know about it that you haven’t already gleaned from the first ride stories at other publications, let me know! All I’ve done with it so far is commute from home to work once, and I can report that:
– of the new wave of bikes with wings, it’s one of the better looking.
– there’s a butterfly valve in the exhaust that switches over at 7k rpms or so, and it goes from somewhat docile to absolutely biblical.
– for a bike that costs $28,500 (plus $450 destination charge), there’s too much plastic.
I got the chance to do a trackday at Buttonwillow with the CBR1000RR recently and even though it’s probably one of the slower literbikes out in the market, it’s still fast (duh) and I think it’s the easiest to ride, which means that I actually end up going faster on it from a lap time standpoint.
When I think back to events where I’ve been able to sample multiple literbikes at a trackday back to back, I’ve felt like the Ducati Panigale V4 was almost too much to handle (at my skill level) and bikes like the Yamaha R1M/Aprilia RSV4 Factory struck the best balance of capability and approachability.
The Fireblade SP is supposed to be a big leap forward for Honda, so I look forward to giving it a shot even if it’s at a track I’ve never been to before (Chuckwalla). Check out what Honda has to say about their most specialized sport bike in years (maybe decades), then let me know your questions down below!