Review: 2014 Honda CBF 1000 F - Tourer with a Big Heart & Long Legs
Posted at 02:00:00 PM
File under Product Review Honda
Author: David Morcrette
Location: Paris, France
Since this is a translation directly from French, some of the colloquialism may seem a bit strange at times, for which I apologize. It's not easy to translate. Any mistakes below are mine, and mine alone.
Tourer with a Big Heart & Long Legs
Presented in 2006, the CBF 1000 didn't have what it takes to thrill the crowds with its outdated lines. But under an ungrateful song, she hides an excellent motorcycle, easy to comes to grips with and particularly effective with its engine block coming from the CBR 1000 RR . Completely revised in 2010, the roadster has taken the aesthetic codes of the brand's sportsbikes offering a more aggressive line, while being able to elegantly equip it with solid matched luggage bags and a top box to take biker and pillion very far. So simple evolution or revolution?
As much as the first model of CBF 1000 was directly inspired by the CBF 600 - the streamlined roadster of the brand - the CBF 1000 F- the new vintage is inspired directly from the CBR 600 - the brand's sportsbike - especially the headlights, much more sharpened. The integrated front indicators in the semi-fairing also help to give the impression of a sportsbike of which a small part of the fairing was removed.
At the most, the whole thing is less compact than sportbikes but with a more touring design. The panniers and top box for long trips confirm an undeniable touring trend with an eye pleasing and global harmony, a real invitation for pleasure, especially in its red livery, which was not available in the initial delivery in 2010.
Still based on the motorization of the 2007 sportsbike CBR 1000 RR Fireblade and its 4-cylinder 998 cm3, yet the CBF 1000 F has been completely reworked to offer tourque, recovery and flexibility at low rpm with a maximum torque reached at just 6,500 rpm. However, the maximum power is provided at 9,000 rpm. The single rectangular Monobackbone beam is made out of aluminum and uses that the CB1000.
In The Saddle
At first sight, the CBF 1000 F gives an impression of a tall motorcycle, closer to an off-road bike than a roadster. But once in the saddle, she proves to be lower than most roadsters, despite a saddle height of 795 mm (adjustable over 15 mm). But with the narrow saddle, a 1M70 biker can place feet perfectly on the ground. The chest bends down forward significantly so that the hands cling to the handlebars. The position appears less straight than on an off-road bike but feels particularly natural and without pressure on the wrists. The thighs enclose particularly well the fuel tank, giving an excellent riding position, safe and pleasant, even when the pace is accelerating.
Under the eyes, there is a huge central analog rev counter with the red zone at 10,000 rpm, as if the importance is given to the engine rpm, not speed, that Information is relegated to the dial's left side. While in the right digital display, there is the on-board computer with a dual tripmeter, 5 bar fuel gauge, an indicator of instantaneous and average fuel mileage remaining. It all proves very readable, even in bright sunlight. The only difficulty is the positioning of any GPS on the handlebars, which then makes the view of the left or right digital screen impossible. You must then memorize the speed, according to the engine rpm, center, which is still clearly visible.
The hazard warning is on the right lever and handles well. The mirrors are standard in their shape providing excellent rear vision, without showing the biker's jacket and are therefore very effective.
The CBF 1000 F snorts in a muffled sound, Honda mode. First, second, the gearbox is particularly soft and pleasant, with a capacity to resume from low revs, including the last gear. The bike is simple and instinctive to take in hand, even for the inexperienced rider with an easy engine and superb handling, even exceptional in view of the displacement. Better, we completely forget her 245 kilos, she feels so light.
In The City
The CBF 1000 F is capable of riding at 30 kph in last gear at only 1000 rpm. With a little touch of the throttle and without flinching or snorting, the engine climbs to 2000 rpm to ride at 50-60 kph. While accelerations are not violent but nonetheless present, allowing nevertheless to slip naturally and effortlessly into traffic. Despite a fully fueled weight of 245 kilos, the tourer feels lighter than some 650 cc roadsters, with a maneuverability that will make many motorcycles blush. Suddenly, she slips into town and doing lane splitting without difficulty, unless the panniers have been mounted. Because the panniers are particularly bulky with a large carrying capacity, on the flip side they expand the 780 mm slim figure of the CBF. And then the width is more like a Gold Wing and requires special attention if you do not want to rub the bodywork of the cars. With this, all engine revolutions are possible, from the lowest in the last gear, to the highest in first gear. The first one is able to climb briskly to more than 100 kph and thus too much in the city. However, the CBF distills some vibrations beyond 4000 rpm but we change quite easily and naturally the gears, to switch between 3rd and 4th gear, especially since the gearbox is particularly pleasant to use in daily rides.
On The Motorway
The CBF 1000 rides as naturally on the motorway as she felt comfortable in the city, leaning back at just 5000 rpm (ie at half the engine revs possible) to 130 kph. However, 1000 rpm higher, she is still only at 170 kph (160 real kph) with a real willingness to go climb higher in both revs and speed. And at this rate, the protection of the windshield (adjustable in 4 positions) is excellently good, and better, it does not generate swirl or turbulence on the helmet, allowing you to cruise quietly for hundreds of kilometers without fatigue. Only the fuel consumption will rise above 6 liters per hundred at this rate, only allowed on certain European motorways. Long curves are then swallowed with ease and with exemplary stability. However, if the rider has been a little too optimistic, the trajectory corrects naturally and effortlessly, providing a general sense of ease and comfort, reducing greatly the ride, which requires no effort.
Secondary and Country Roads
A home in the city and equally in her element on the motorway, the CBF 1000 rides naturally on small country roads to take curve after curve, able to swallow them at an equally impressive rate. With a torque available at very low revs, she could almost take hairpin curves in last gear with a pillion, but in daily use we prefer to go down two gears to remain above 5000 rpm. Easy, handy, the curves are taken effortlessly and help accelerate the devilish pace, including with a pillion, with a high enough ground clearance requiring you to need to push hard before having your center stand scratch the road. In fact, the curves are taken by themselves, the CBF going obediently and easily to where the eye is looking, entirely instinctive. In the end, we forget completely the need to anticipate a particular turn.
The 240 mm rear brake disc works hard, with a soft pedal that sinks easily and without feeling and relative efficiency, except that of possibly sitting up a little the motorcycle in a turn; blame the single piston? In contrast the front brake provides an excellent feeling and an awesome power with its dual 296 mm disc and three-piston calipers, able to plunge the motorcycle on very heavy braking. However, it is not violent and it is accessible to the beginner, further helped by an excellent ABS that does not trigger lightly and thus allows you to forget it in everyday use.
The first impression given by the saddle is firmness. Without the wooden saddle feeling of a sportsbike, it is more like the comfort of a roadster than that of a tourer. And yet, kilometer after kilometer, it is forgotten by both the rider and pillion. The suspensions particularly blur the defects of the road and the saddle only complements the overall comfort for rides of more than 500 kilometers in a day without necessarily generating tiredness or the need to rest the rider's and pillion's posterior.
The 5 bars fuel gauge drops a bar regularly, exactly every 50 km. However, the average consumption is more in the order of 6 liters (very close to 5.43 liters announced by Honda), both from the onboard computer and consumption checks at the pump and, irrespective of the speed, including sustained motorway speeds. Reserve fuel indicator is turned on around 250 or 260 km. With a 20 liter tank, the CBF 1000 thus allows more than 320 kilometers, it is quite capable of doing it in one go, within the comfort for its rider and pillion.
The panniers (33 liters each) and top box (45 liters) do offer no less than 111 liters of storage, all that with a perfectly trimmed interior therefore allowing you to store all your stuff and to remove it easily at the first stop. Made in light gray nylon with black zip slides and "Honda Wing" black logo, these expandable panniers bags of 21 to 33 liters, also have an adjustable shoulder strap, plus a handle grip and an A4 size front pocket.
Note that we can accommodate two integral - and even modular - helmets in the top box. The single key for luggage (top box and panniers) also facilitates the general handling.
The pillion is properly installed and can easily get on the bike. The right foot is quite close to the exhaust, and can easily turn into a melted rubber shoe / boot on said exhaust.
The first version of CBF 1000 was an unattractive, already old and outdated when it was released, which served despite the fact that this was already an excellent machine, good at doing everything and foremost particularly easy to handle with an already flexible engine and superb handling. The new vintage of the CBF 1000 F does not contradict these primary qualities and adds the modernity and style expected of a modern motorcycle, trendy and able to carve the road in comfort. The luggage integrates especially well both at the color level as with the bike's design and really transforms the tourer in a road vessel. And even if the model increased nearly €1,500, now €10,949, it is more than ever a reference from the segment, ultimately at the same price level of dual-sports closer to tourers but with easier handling. Then there remains the style ... more tourer with the CBF.
|Strong Points||Weak Points|
- Ease of handling, behavior
- Front Brake
Via: Le Repaire Des Motards