Mitsuyoshi Kohama, who penned the Honda CB1100A concept that made its debut at the 2009 Tokyo Motorcycle Show, took four years to convince his superiors that a classic, honest-to-goodness bike powered by an air-cooled engine was still relevant in today's power- and technology-driven motorcycle industry.
It may be too soon to tell whether Kohama was right or not, but you have to admit that the new 2013 Honda CB1100A
hits all the right notes with retro styling that vividly calls to mind the first big 4-cylinder Hondas.
Following the positive reaction to the show bike, the Japanese manufacturer decided to launch a production version in many countries around the world, including Canada.
More advanced than it looks
The new 1,140cc inline 4-banger in the 2013 Honda CB1100A uses a much more sophisticated cooling system than its ancestors thanks to state-of-the-art casting techniques that slim down cooling fins to just a 2 mm thickness. It also benefits from a 335-mm wide oil radiator mounted near the steering pivot point.
Featuring electronic fuel injection, this DOHC engine is definitely not a powerhouse, but it manages to crank out 90 hp at 8,500 rpm and 67 lb-ft of torque at only 5,000 rpm. Expect great flexibility for easy, cruiser-style riding in the city.
The 2013 Honda CB1100A is built on a conventional, double-cradle frame with four solid and two rubber engine mounts. It's mated to a 41-mm fork up front, as well as a pair of preload-adjustable Showa shocks in the back.
The braking system is unquestionably the most modern part of this classic bike. The dual 296-mm front discs are linked to the single 256-mm rear disc as part of Honda’s acclaimed Combined Braking System (C-ABS). Oh, yeah: Don't forget the triple-piston Nissin calipers up front!
Offering a genuine feel and the easygoing character of vintage motorcycles, the 2013 Honda CB1100A continues to wow fans at bike shows across the country as it prepares to make heads turn on the road this summer.