Honda CB Hornet 160R naked compact sportsbike has been showcased in India ahead of its launch which is expected this festive season (September to November). The motorcycle is aimed at taking on brisk selling Yamaha FZ series and Suzuki Gixxer.
Positioned as a sportier alternative to CB Unicorn 160, Hornet is essentially a watered down version of CX-01 concept which world premiered at New Delhi Auto Show in February last year. The styling is characterized by an edgy headlamp with minimal fairing (which incorporates aerodynamic fins at the lower side), dual-tone front mud-guard and a high-mounted handlebar.
The edgy character is retained in profile as well. The muscular fuel tank sharp extentions, a black centre piece and accentuated knee recesses. The frame is concealed by black plastic side cowls while a silver tailpiece, stubby silencer, single piece seat, split grab rails and a signature X-shaped LED taillight round off the design.
Engine and gearbox
Honda CB Hornet 160R is claimed to be powered by a 160 cc engine but no further details have been released as of now. We suspect the motor to be the same 162.71 cc single-cylinder air-cooled carbureted unit which also does duty in CB Unicorn 160. The motor pumps out 14.5 bhp at 8,000 rpm and 14.67 Nm of torque at 6,000 rpm which are at par with rivals. A 5-speed transmission with 1-down-4-up shift pattern transfers the drive via chain.
Frame, suspension, tyres and brakes
Just like its bikini-faired sibling, CB Hornet 160R is underpinned by a tubular diamond frame which is suspended by conventional telescopic front fork and semi-loaded rear mono suspension. The 17-inch multispoke alloy wheels appear to have 17-inch diameter. While the front tyre is expected to be of same size as its sibling (80/100-17), the rear tyre is fatter (probably 130 mm wide section).
Both front and rear wheels are retarded by a disc brake each. They are governed by Honda’s CBS (Combi Braking System) which automatically deploys front brake even if only the rear pedal is pressed by the rider.
Competing with well established rivals require a comprehensive features list and Honda has got it covered. Be it fully digital instrument console, front and rear disc brakes, tubeless tyres, electric starter, meaty rear tyre and maintenance free batteries, CB Hornet 160R has got it all.
As mentioned earlier, Honda’s snazzy compact naked sportsbike will go head on against Yamaha FZ series, Suzuki Gixxer and upcoming Bajaj Pulsar 150 NS. It remains to be seen whether HMSI will dish out a semi- or fully-faired derivative of Hornet to rival Fazer and Gixxer SF or not.
Honda CB Hornet 160R is estimated to be priced between INR 75,000 – 85,000 (ex-showroom). This price bracket matches that of its rivals and is sure to attract good amount of attention from prospective customers.
Honda managed to sell over a lakh units of CB Unicorn 160 reasonably quick and CB Hornet 160R with its sportier appeal is expected to be an even bigger hit.