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Honda CB1000R 5Four – Modern Mechanicals With Retro Endurance Racing Looks

Based on the production Honda CB1000R previously tested by MD, the CB1000R 5Four is a retro-look machine offered through Honda UK dealers.

The CB1000R 5Four was largely designed by Guy Willison, a British motorcycle designer and builder who frequently appears on British TV. Honda UK calls it “an homage to the sheer beauty of classic endurance racing Hondas, built on a base of contemporary Neo Sports Café style.”

Although the changes are largely cosmetic (details are on the Honda UK website), the bike is fitted with a Racefit Growler X titanium exhaust. Cosmetic changes include the headlight cowl, and the elimination of the unsprung license plate holder found on the stock model. The CB1000R 5Four also features a solo seat made of leather, custom brake and clutch levers and billet mirrors.

If you can get a Honda UK dealer to send you one, it will set you back roughly £17,000.

Now, here is Guy Willison’s description of his creative efforts on the CB1000R 5Four:

“Now here is an already fabulous bike crying out for the 5Four treatment. An obvious starting point? The rear. The 5Four tail tidy has no exterior bracketry so the lines are clean. We’ve also fitted a slim LED rear light enabling the number plate to be mounted as high as possible revealing the whole of the rear tyre. The 5Four composite fairing has been designed to flow with the existing lines of the bike and offer some respite from the elements for the rider and carries an individually numbered Limited Edition badge. Each bike comes with a fantastic Racefit titanium Growler X exhaust to enhance the single sided swingarm and beautiful new for 2021 spoked wheels; we’ve also fitted black adjustable dog-leg levers with anodized red adjusters and billet mirrors. The supple leather seat has been hand-stitched in the trademark 5Four diamond-padded pattern and, for the paint, we’ve brought the Works Hondas of old bang-up-to-date with stunning candy red, blue and pearl white. The tank also wears a lovingly hand-painted Honda racing logo. We’re so proud of the CB1000R 5Four – and it’s as good to ride as it is to look at!” 

2021 HONDA CB1000R 5Four

25 Comments

  1. Tommy D says:

    I had the black 2018 and it looked elegant and I was hoping it to be a rip snorting 1000cc bike. NOPE! Honda dumbed down the first three gears performance through the ECU tuning. Even with TC off and in full power mode the bike delivered soft power in gears 1-3. Put the bike in 3rd and at 35mph open throttle wide open. Then put bike in 4th at 35mph and open throttle wide open. In the higher gear at the same speed the bike pulled harder in 4th. Sad as it handled better than any bike in the naked class.

  2. Frank says:

    It Honda wanted it to look retro, they should have put in an air-cooled engine.

  3. Wes says:

    Wow…Honda has my attention for the first time since 1985.

  4. Neal says:

    I’ve never seen a CB1000R in the wild. I’ve shopped them once or twice because they look pretty good but its expensive, heavy, and soft for a sportbike.

  5. Nancy says:

    Wow. I really like the looks of the bike. Sad that I can’t get this bike here in India. I’d love to own one looking at its specs and performance. Even if it comes to India I might need some more savings to buy it.

  6. Jim says:

    That fairing is not “retro” it’s just ugly.

  7. Grover says:

    That 1/4 fairing looks very odd on the front of this bike. Nix that fairing and replace the exhaust system and you’re good to go.

  8. Jeremy says:

    There is nothing any more retro about this than the current CB1000R, but I like it.

  9. EZMark says:

    This is going to flop hard.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Finally A little sanity in motorcycle styling.

  11. Ralph G. says:

    Retro is my 2021 Royal Enfield Interceptor 650. This Honda is retro only in the addled mind of a Honda Motor marketing pitchman. The CB-1000 of recent manufacture; now that was retro.

    • Foster says:

      Exactly why I left the Honda brand after 55 years. My choice, as an aging old codger, was a Royal Enfield Meteor 350. Three hundred pounds lighter than my ’96 ST1100 and it looks like a motorcycle, as opposed to the butt ugly Honda Rebel 300.
      Honda has been losing its way for about a decade now.

      • Dave says:

        What if I told you that Honda makes several other models of motorcycle, other than the Rebel 300? There’s even a couple that use the same 300cc engine!

        They’ve lost their way to being the #1 motorcycle company in the world.

        • foster says:

          I am aware of what Honda makes Dave. In the small displacement class, I wasn’t wanting a pretzel making crotch rocket 300, or that butt ugly Rebel.

          A bang for the buck comparo puts the Royal Enfield way out ahead too.

  12. Gene says:

    Sure is pretty

    • Max says:

      I agree. Everything has these great big cat boxes anymore. Not great, but if that’s the complaint one couldn’t buy any bike these days.

  13. Gary in NJ says:

    I wouldn’t call it retro, maybe retro inspired. I would call it a good looking modern bike. Long live the UJM.

  14. Nick says:

    A neat bike, especially the frontal treatment and losing the silly low number plate. All that’s needed is for the exhaust can to be finished in black ceramic. Of course, it won’t be long before it dulls down anyway.

  15. Jan Janowski says:

    My Brother had a 750-4… It was a Beautiful thing…

    Not so this… Sorry

  16. todd says:

    The only thing I see as “retro” is the sticker on the tank.

  17. Pauley says:

    Agreed, Mickey. I’d add that whole exhaust system ruins the otherwise nice lines.

  18. mickey says:

    looks pretty good until they lean left and you get a full view of the cat.