Honda Motorcycles and Scooters India (HMSI) has just launched the CB 300R, a street naked sportsbike that is its new flagship offering in the big volume premium motorcycle segment. The CB 300R is priced at Rs 2.41 lakhs, ex showroom Delhi. 22 Honda dealers across India have already been taking bookings for the new motorcycle, and deliveries will begin soon. The motorcycle is assembled in India through the completely knocked down (CKD) kit route.
The Honda CB 300R is similar to the CBR 250R in that it uses a similar frame and engine geometry of the latter. However, the single cylinder, liquid cooled motor has been bored out to 286cc, and now makes 31 Bhp of peak power at 8,000 rpm and 27.5 Nm of peak torque at 6,500 rpm.
A six speed manual gearbox is standard, and so are disc brakes equipped with dual channel ABS. There’s a segment leading inertia measuring unit (IMU) which distributes braking of the ABS.
The Honda CB 300R also dumps the full fairing, for a much cleaner, ‘street fighter’ look and stance. The result in a much more nimbler looking motorcycle that will be at ease on city streets. There is a round retro-style LED headlamp up front and higher set handlebars to make for a relaxed riding position. The footpegs continue to be rearset though, and this gives the rider a sporty riding position. The motorcycle gets an LCD instrument cluster that’s packed with information.
The Honda CBR 250R’s conventional telescopic front forks have been swapped with upside down units from Showa while the rear suspension is handled by a gas charged monoshock that comes with 7 step adjust-ability for pre-load. The best part of this motorcycle is its light weight of just 147 kilograms. This should make it a very quick motorcycle that’s also very easy to handle even for beginner riders.
Currently, the motorcycle is offered only in two paint schemes: Matt Axis Gray Metallic and Candy Chromosphere Red. Ground clearance stands at 151 mm while the tank capacity is rated at 10 liters.
The Honda CB 300R will take on the BMW G 310R and the KTM Duke 390 – two other sporty naked street bikes that are on sale currently in the Indian market. The KTM Duke 390 produces a lot more power and torque (44 Bhp-37 Nm) than the CB 300R, but is slightly costlier, at Rs. 2.43 lakhs. The BMW G 310R, which makes 34 Bhp-28 Nm, is even more pricier at Rs. 2.99 lakhs, ex-showroom Delhi. This makes the Honda CB 300R attractively priced, especially as Honda has a reputation for building reliable and fuss free motorcycles.
Sporty naked motorcycles make more sense than fully faired motorcycles on Indian roads, where space is always at a premium and parking is often a big problem. Such motorcycles can be used effortlessly for city commutes, and also for weekend riding to nearby riding roads. For those who like touring, a fly screen can easily be added to such motorcycles, which will give them additional wind protection and make high speed riding a lot more comfortable.