Bikes

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP – Proving Patience is a Virtue

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The wait is over. The most anticipated motorcycle of the INTERMOT show is here, the 2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP.

We have seen the spy photos of this new superbike, we have seen leaked details on this superbike, and we’ve mused endlessly about this new superbike. And now, we can finally replace that conjecture with fact.

First off, the rumors were true. The 2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP sheds a massive 15 kilograms off its bulk, which translates into a 441 lbs mass at the curb. Power has also been increased by almost 11hp, for a total of 190hp at the crank.

Honda says that these two figures combined mean a 14% increase in the Honda CBR1000RR’s power-to-weight ratio. That’s pretty astounding, when you consider that under the new fairings is still mostly last year’s bike.

The power increase comes from a higher compression ratio on the superbike’s inline-four engine, in addition to a revised cam timing. Weight reduction comes from ample use of magnesium (engine covers) and titanium (muffler and fuel tank).

The chassis has been refined as well, with the balance of the frame tweaked and the swingarm stiffened. Brembo brakes have been added (naturally), and a new radiator design means the bodywork can be much narrower than before.

As impressive as that is, Honda’s master stroke though might be the inclusion of Öhlins semi-active suspension on the 2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP, which sets a new bar amongst the Japanese motorcycle manufacturers in the liter-bike space, and more favorably pits Honda against the European brands.

Obviously aiding that fight is the fact that Honda has brought a full electronics suite to the 2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP, which includes a traction control system and engine braking management. At the center of that is a five-axis inertial measurement unit (IMU), as was rumored.

As you can tell, Honda has done a great deal to refine and build upon its current superbike design to stay relevant in the sport bike game. Though, today’s news confirms our previous suspicion that the 2017 Honda CBR1000RR would not be an entirely new design.

While it will remain to be seen how consumers respond to today’s evolution sans revolution, on the race track Honda is leaving even less to chance. Accordingly, a second model will be available for racers and track enthusiasts, the 2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP2.

The limited-production Honda CBR1000RR SP2 is being offered with competition in mind (don’t call it a homologation special), and it features larger valves and lighter Marchesini wheels that are made from forged aluminum.

The big question now for both of these machines is price. Honda is carefully using with its new Fireblade the “SP” designation, which in the past has been a more premium model in Honda’s lineup.

As such, we would expect the 2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP to continue to command such a premium, even more so in regards to the 2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP2.

While the MSRP remains “TBD” according to American Honda (expect a price tag south of $20,000), we do know that we can expect to see the new Honda CBR1000RR SP in US dealerships by March 2017, with the Honda CBR1000RR SP2 in dealerships by May 2017.

You can get them in any color you like, as long as its the HRC Tri-Color paint scheme. Expect to see a base model Honda CBR1000RR debut later this year, at the EICMA show in Milan, Italy.

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

2017 Honda CBR1000RR SP

Source: American Honda

As always, Asphalt & Rubber will covering all the new bikes debuting at the INTERMOT and EICMA shows this year. Be sure to follow our coverage for the most recent news and photos.

Jensen Beeler

Despite his best efforts, Jensen is called one of the most influential bloggers in the motorcycle industry, and sometimes consults for motorcycle companies, whether they've solicited his expertise or not.

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