Our friends across the pond got a surprise today, as the Honda CRF300L Rally broke cover for the European market.
Rumors of the bike coming for the 2021 model year have been pretty rife the past few months, so perhaps “surprise” is the wrong word to use here, and of course the Euro5 regulations have pushed for a number of “new” bikes to debut in Europe.
Still, the bump from the 250cc machine to the 2021 Honda CRF300L Rally is a welcomed sight for this small-displacement machine.
In addition to the extra cylinder displacement, the Honda CRF300L Rally sees a revised air intake, inlet cam timing, and a new exhaust system.
This makes for more peak horsepower and more torque across the rev-range. As such, we see a peak power figure of 27hp (20.1 kW) and 20 lbs•ft (26.6 Nm) of torque.
The butt dyno will feel a bit more “umpf” than what the numbers show, however. This is because Honda has shortened the gearbox ratios, save for 6th gear, which is now taller and better suited to highway cruising.
There is also now a slipper clutch, a new swingarm, and more lateral flex in the chassis. Longer travel suspension helps increase the ground clearance figure (275 mm), and the new rider position should be more comfortable for longer trips.
That is a smart move from Honda, as the CRF300L boasts a larger fuel tank as well (12.8 liters), which will extend the riding range.
Honda says it has also made several changes to reduce the vibrations coming to the rider (rubber mounts in the seat and footpegs, and the handlebars have internal weights).
Lastly, the 2021 Honda CRF300L Rally sheds 9 lbs from the 250cc version, for a curb weight of 337 lbs (157 kg). Crunching the numbers, this is a 13% improvement on the bike’s power-to-weight ratio.
There is no word yet on pricing in Europe, though we would expect a modest price increase to the machine. There is also no word about whether the Honda CRF300L Rally will be coming to the USA, though we would say the chances are good.
Source: Honda Motor Europe