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2007 Honda CBR125R First Impressions


by Pascal Bastien ,

Power delivery is very linear up to 7,500 rpm. Beyond this point, the engine provides a surprising amount of boost given its small displacement. Low-end torque is sufficient to allow quick, easy take-offs; however, you have to climb all the way to 6,000 rpm to enjoy a noticeable gain. In addition, you must keep the tach needle between 7,000 rpm and the redline (slightly under 12,000 rpm) to reach the powertrain's full potential. The engine loves higher revs and does not produce any more vibrations than larger-displacement four-cylinders. Impressive!

The CBR125R uses a close-ratio six-speed transmission perfectly designed for the targeted customers because of its smooth, accurate and friendly shifts. The clutch is also easy to modulate and requires little effort.

The CBR125R delivers a very suitable performance.

The most user-friendly on the market

With such a highly rigid frame, the CBR125R has nothing to envy to its bigger sisters. The stiffness can be felt as soon as you hit the first corner: the bike handles with uncommon precision. As a rider, you get an immediate response from the steering, regardless of how much you're leaning. The road behavior remains predictable and little intimidating, which greatly enhances the fun of riding this small racing machine. At very low speeds, the CBR125R proved to be easier to handle than a CRF 100 and also easy to maintain upright. The natural ride and feel are made possible by a sophisticated electronic management program using an air intake control valve. This system minutely controls the oxygen feed to ensure smoother dynamics at idle and improved throttle response across the whole range.

The suspension of the CBR125R is very well calibrated: it never seems too harsh and does not induce excessive bodyroll. Meanwhile, the brakes are comprised of a 276-mm front disc with dual-piston calliper and a 220-mm rear disc with single-piston calliper. Even after several hours of intense track testing, the braking system of this 118.9-kg featherweight still delivered solid results.

Outstanding ergonomics
The CBR125R features a comprehensive instrument panel: speedometer, tachometer, coolant temperature gauge and fuel gauge. The 125R model offers a standard seating position that is far less "extreme" than that of the larger CBRs. What's more, the reasonable 776-mm seat height should help beginners feel safer and more confident.

The ergonomics are flawless.

The CBR125R was designed for customers seeking an affordable, modern and stylish motorcycle that's also very fun to ride and little intimidating. No other bikes with similar displacement can claim to offer as much as this Honda. It becomes even more interesting when you consider that its dimensions are close to those of a motorcycle with midsize displacement. The CBR125R offers phenomenal handling and is by far the most user-friendly sports bike on the market.

Photo Credit : Honda
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