The ultimate buyer’s guide to the CBR600RR written by the people who actually own the bike...
Running costsLike so many fuel injected Hondas, the CBR600RR runs rich as standard and this means poor fuel consumption. Owners report anything between 22 and 55mpg but the average figure was 37 giving about 110-120 miles between fill ups. Not brilliant for a lightweight, aerodynamic middleweight.
A properly set up piggyback ECU like a Power Commander will give better fuel consumption and more power too, especially if a non-standard exhaust and/or air filter is fitted.
Insurance is high for a 600 – Norwich Union group 15; the same as an Aprilia Tuono 1000 so get a quote before you buy.
TyresCommon sizes (120 front, 180 rear) means all the best modern tyres fit the RR. The most popular choice in our survey was Pirelli’s Diablo Corsa. Michelin Pilot 2CTs also get the thumbs up from plenty of owners. Dunlop D208s are liked by some but not others (and have been superceded by the superior Dunlop Qualifier) and Bridgestone BT014s have fans as well.
A handful of riders use Bridgestone BT 020 / 021 – sports touring rubber which they say gives stable year round performance and more miles than more racy rubber.
Front tyre life varies between 2,000 and 10,000 miles with track day nutters and racers getting less. The average is 5,400. Rears life is typically shorter at 1,800 to 10,000, average 3,800. Use that rubber well!
ConsumablesGenuine Honda brake pads are by far the most popular and no-one’s got a bad word to say about them. EBC HH are the most common aftermarket pad (they’re cheaper than genuine Honda items) and they get good reviews from those who have fitted them. A smattering have tried Carbone Lorraine, SBS and Ferodo and they’re happy with them too. It seems the set up is so good any pads work well, even ‘03/’04 bikes with non-radial calipers. Visordown recons the genuine Honda pads will be kindest to the discs.
Chain and sprockets seem to last pretty well – but if a bike gets ridden very hard or wheelied a lot they can need replacing in under 10,000 miles. A very common modification is altering the sprockets for better acceleration (larger rear and/or smaller front) as the bike lacks low down power, especially the earlier models.
Continue the Honda CBR600RR Buyer Guide
Matt Rogers, a 26 year old from South Yorkshire who works in the construction industry has spent over £2,500 modifying his 2003 CBR600RR.
"I planned to keep it standard when I bought it but the guys I ride with were all fitting different parts on their bikes and I ended up doing it too.
"I’ve fitted a Yoshimura RS5 exhaust – just the can but I’m planning to get the down pipes soon. It’s also got a B&C race air filter and a custom mapped Power Commander. When the bike was standard it felt a little flat but with those it’s definitely a bit better.
"I’ve also got an Öhlins steering damper with Harris fitting kit, Technoflex double bubble screen, Harris tail tidy, stem plug; well almost everything I can get from the Harris catalogue really. I had Harris rearsets but I took them off as I preferred the position of the standard Honda pegs. I’ll get the headers this winter along with Dymag six spoke magnesium wheels and wavy discs and then it’ll be finished. Probably.
"I could have bought a bigger bike with all the money I’ve spent but I wouldn’t want to. The guys I ride with have 750s and 1000s and my 600 is much quicker into and out of the corners than them. They always want to try mine."
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