Honda CBR1000RR Fireblade (2008)

Manufacturer
Category
Price
£9299
Available from
2008
As fast as hell but has the feeling of Honda reassurance.
Do you really need 160bhp?

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Submitted by OpsMan on Thu, 13/08/2009 - 06:28

Overall Review

The bike is right for my needs and to be able to find so many accessories other than Honda's own very highly priced ones is great, I have fitted since owning a Renntec Sports rack (5 minutes to install or remove) HEL Brake Lines, MotoGrafix Number board and Angel eyes, Renthal Dual compound race grips (love the feel and grip of these) had the wheels powder coated in gold to break up the black. The bike came with Powercommander, Akarapovic slip on, carbon hugger, double bubble screen, R&G tail tidy and an HRC tank protector. To give some people a reason as to why I changed bikes etc I was racing Minitwins 3 years ago at Cadwell had a big off at Cadwell and recieved multiple fractures in the wrist, fractured skull and dislocated ankle ligaments. The wrist was the problem with the Ducati due to riding position being pure racer and the Triumph although fun just not a good replacement as well as dropping valves within the first 40 days :-( The bike brings a big smile to me and the Mrs who loves it, and shouted some expletives as we hit 15* MPH with ease, so big smiles all round from me and Mrs. As far as ongoing testing etc I have fitted rack, panniers and tank bag ready for a break away this weekend to see how she feels fully laden ready for Scotland trip soon :-0 this will be a test for the versatility of the bike, if it does not live up to my expectations for trips will just have to buy a second bike for that specific purpose.....

Strengths

After owning a Ducati 1098 for 18 months and hating every minute of it I decided at the ripe old age of 46 maybe it was time to go naked, bought a Triumph Speed Triple new had problems got bored swapped it in for a 1600 mile old black 2008 Blade and what a fantastic decision that was. The Blade suits my style of riding the Mrs loves the pillion position and it handles fantastic in traffic or not. It all just slots into place. with the 2 other bikes recently owned I had to buy special tools but with the Honda no such silliness. Love it 10/10 so far real test Scotland trip with luggage for two

Weaknesses

Plastic Tank cover why oh why? apart from that no other failings as yet but I am sure I will find some. Not a gripe against the blade but why do we always have to replce brake lins, screen and exhaust? Why cant the manufacturers add these as options like BMW are looking to do....

Rating Breakdown
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Brakes
Handling
Comfort
Build Quality
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Submitted by Beardo on Tue, 15/12/2009 - 12:56

Overall Review

I changed up from a CBR600F recently and the 'Blade makes the 600 feel heavy, slow and cumbersome. It's so beautiful to ride, it has good low end punch which is great for commuting, handles like a dream in all situations(even blustery side winds don't unsettle it) and acceleration although brutal is pretty even. I have just put BT016s on it and that has given the bike so much more feel than the OE BT015s. You might say, "who needs 160BHP?" but you don't have to use it all the time, but it's there when you want to use it, and if you use it to power out of a bend, then wow! That's the reason for the bike being how it is! That drive out of corners is the thing you don't get with the 600. I can't wait to get it on a track and to take it up to scotland on a tour. Some might say it is a focused race bike and too uncomfortable, but I find it very comfy, more so than the 600F and I'm 6ft 80Kg. It took a liitle time to get used to it but it feels so right now, it's the way I like to ride, I don't think I would feel right sat upright. If you have any doubts take one for a test ride. So if you want a bike that is as good in traffic as it is on the open road, get a new blade. If you want a bike that is much of a pleasure to ride as it is to look at, get a new blade! I will report on the track and touring ability, but I'm sure it will excel in both area's.

Strengths

Fantastic handling feels like a 600. Great all-rounder bike. Honda reliability and quality.

Weaknesses

Can be a handful in wet conditions for inexperienced riders.

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Overall Review

Top notch well pleased with it and anyone would be pleased if they bought one.

Strengths

The whole package.... mainly the nice lump of an engine which has great torque and makes pratting about easy. Silky smooth suspension and chassis which doesnt require much tweaking from one track to another. Powerful mono bloc radial calipers and radial master cylinder. No unnecessary features such as ECU switches thats what the throttle is for.

Weaknesses

A bit quiet as standard (full arata shorty system, PC5 and air filter sorted that) and the pillion cowl rubs on the rear fairings which is very un-honda like fair enough you cant see the rubs when fitted but no other bikes I have owned suffer from this.

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Overall Review

The best Blade ever. The most sensible litre bike on the market from the perspective of all-round performance, handling and resale value. Surprisingly economical for all that performance - I am averaging 45+ MPG overall. Try matching THAT on an R1....... Can be taken on a touring trip with luggage, then thrashed around a track without complaint. Perfect!!

Strengths

Light, nimble, neutral-handling on the correct tyres (Bridgestone BT 016's or Pirelli SuperCorsa Pro's work very well) and flattering for any rider. Cornering angles achievable on the CBR are extreme. The engine is a torquey, revvable unit with ample acceleration available in all gears. And once broken in, the quality of the gear change is very good. This bike is definitely faster than it looks or sounds - I have done track days on my 2008 Blade at Brands, Cadwell Park and Almeria, and not much went past me. In fact, it out-dragged a flat-out 1098 Ducati on the back straight at Almeria.

Weaknesses

No gear indicator - on a £10K machine? Fit an Acumen unit for £60. 1. No braided brake-lines! 2. The exhaust can/cover finish is poor, & the exhaust flapper device is annoying cos there are 2 steps in throttle response/engine note before full power and noise is achieved when accelerating. Solution? Full Yoshimura R-77 stainless steel/CF system (£850) plus PC3 (£300) 3. The standard rear hugger is a pathetic plastic joke. Budget £100 for an after-market CF one. 4. Some Blades use a litre of oil/1K miles, so check regularly. 5. I used to think it was pug-nosed, but the looks grow on you.

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Overall Review

A friend recently said to me - "forget sports bikes, speed limits and police cameras have taken all the joy away". I thought about that hard - what is the use of 190+ BHP when you cannot use it on UK roads?? What you really need is sufficient power coupled to a nimble chassis. Where do you get that? The Fireblade. It makes so much sense on the road. Useable torquey engine, great nimble chassis and excellent Honda build quality. Its not about doing 160+ MPH, its about the thrill of a good twisty and accelerating out of roundabouts and corners. Who need traction control and engine maps - if you need them on a sports bike - don't get a sports bike (not least for the road). Yes, it gets a bit uncomfortable after 100 or so miles of riding - but the pleasure comes when the road twists and bends. This bike was designed for that - and that it does!

Strengths

Handling Useable Power Build Quality Torque MPG

Weaknesses

Not much - maybe a gear indicator?

Rating Breakdown
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Brakes
Handling
Comfort
Build Quality
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Overall Review

When i first got the bike i thought it was too low geared and was always looking for 7th gear, but after living with the bike on the road for the first couple of weeks it started to feel just right!. The engine makes so much power at any revs that your never in the wrong gear as such, and with the smooth gearchanges at high or low revs its not an issue. In all honesty i'm only ever using 2/3's of the full rev-range on the road with the odd bit more for fast overtakes etc, so my MPG count can be anything between 45MPG and 55 MPG and my average works out to 48 MPG which is excellent with althings considered. The comfort levels are good with the E-cushion seat for 3 hours and more in the saddle. The original Honda seat was painfull within an hour. Have had this bike for over 5 years now and have no plans to change it but, one bugbear i have with this model is the complicated removal of the fairing sides for cleaning etc and also the chinese puzzle that is the bellypan removal for oil/filter changes.Not a major gripe but something to think about if you like to clean the front and sides of the engine and maintain the bike properly.

Strengths

Very light and flickerble yet secure on the road making it feel easy to ride fast or slow. Using Bridgestone T30's on it after 2 sets of BT023's and it corners and brakes no different to the set of BT016's i put on the bike after the original BT015's it came with.[BT015's were only average]This bike snicks up and down the gearbox with no effort at all using the ultra light cable clutch which i much prefer over my previous RR6 hydraulic unit that i could feel grating on the gears. The bikes done 35,000 miles now and feels like new still with no backlash within the drivetrain to report.

Weaknesses

The engine did use a small amount of 10-30 semi Castrol oil between oil changes.Doing most of the servicing myself i was doing 6,000 mile service intervals rather than Honda's 4,000 mile becuse the bike was getting long runs only and i thought if 6,000 mile services was good for the R1! Why not the RR8!.Anyway i was using about 250ml of oil in 6000 miles[which was a splash now and then. And at 18,000 miles it was fully run-in and stopped using oil altogether. Don't want traction control or abs brakes but sometimes i lose count of which gear i'm in so a gear indicator would have been good.

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