Officially Official: 2012 Honda CBR1000RR / Fireblade

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Breaking cover over a month ago, the 2012 Honda CBR1000RR is now officially official according to the Japanese motorcycle manufacturer. Confirming the fears of some Fireblade enthusiasts, the new Honda CBR1000RR gets only some basic tweaks for 2012, namely revised suspension (including Big Piston Forks), new 12-spoke wheel design, and smoother fuel-injection mapping. This news puts to rest claims that the 2012 Honda Fireblade would be receiving ride-by-wire throttle control for the next model year, despite the fact that World Superbike has changed its rules to allow the Castrol Honda team to use the technology starting at Imola (which is already showing some positive results for the struggling squad).

Likely still grappling to get to its feet after the devastating T?hoku earthquake and tsunami back in March, Honda, like the rest of the motorcycle industry, is also still recovering from the recent recession as well. With the global economy on the verge of double-dipping on its economic trouble, Honda has clearly held-off on bringing a new superbike to its 2012 line-up. As such, refinements to the company’s popular sport bike are the name of the game for the next model year. Instead of re-hasing the press release into prose, here’s a bullet-pointed list of the changes made to the 2012 Honda CBR1000RR/Fireblade.

New for the 2012 Honda CBR1000RR/Fireblade:

  • Unit Pro-Link® rear suspension features a new, patented Balance-Free Rear Shock from Showa that incorporates a unique double-tube design featuring a damper case plus an internal cylinder for more responsive damping and a smoother, better-controlled damping action.
  • The new 43mm fork incorporates Showa’s latest Big Piston Fork technology with a larger damping volume to effectively reduce the hydraulic pressure generated as the fork legs compress and extend. The result is more precise action during the initial stroke and smoother damping action, for improved handling, enhanced front-end feedback and a more solid feel during hard braking.
  • New 12-spoke cast aluminum wheels provide more consistent rigidity. Together with the new suspension, these wheels offer improved feedback for the rider.
  • New layered fairing design creates a large pocket of calm air around the rider to improve comfort while also helping draw air through the cooling system. An integrated chin spoiler in the nose also reduces aerodynamic lift to improve handling.
  • Multi-function LCD instruments communicate all important information plus the option of four readout modes for tachometer display, lap timer, five-level shift indicator, gear position indicator and more.
  • New revised fuel injection settings give the CBR1000RR a more linear response, particularly at smaller throttle openings.
  • Revisions to the optional electronic Combined ABS create a new bias toward sporting/track riding conditions during rear brake application.
  • New Red and Pearl White/Blue/Red colors join Black. (C-ABS model available in Red only.)

Debuted simultaneously at  the Le Mans 24 hours round of the Endurance World Championship in France, and at World Superbike’s stop at Imola, Italy this weekend, the 2012 Honda CBR1000RR will retail for $13,800 (base), $14,800 (ABS). The US market will finally get the Honda red/white/blue racing livery, while the ABS model will come only in Honda Red.

2012 Honda CBR1000RR (European Photos):

Source: American Honda & (Photos)