1981 Honda CBX 1000 Super Sport Motorcycle
Although Honda had enjoyed success with six-cylinder motorcycles on the track as far back as the 1960s, it wasn’t until the late 1970s that the Japanese manufacturer developed a six-pot road-going machine and the new CBX Super Sport helped re-establish the company's position at the forefront of motorcycle technology, competing with domestic and European rivals for the title of the ultimate superbike. A stressed member of the chassis, the twin-overhead camshaft in-line motor featured a line of six Keihin carburettors and Honda rated the unit at a mighty 103 horsepower, while the six-into-two exhaust system looked equally impressive. A five-speed gearbox, Comstar alloy wheels and a huge 5.3 gallon fuel tank were all part of the specification sheet, while massive 276mm twin rotor disc brakes up front and a bigger 296mm single disc at the rear kept all that power (not to mention the CBX’s hefty weight) in check. Performance was certainly impressive and the quarter mile time of 11.36 seconds (at 117.95 mph) superior to any other superbike of the day. In 1980 Honda updated the model with air-adjustable front forks, black Comstar wheels and new colours and added a new frame-mounted fairing and detachable saddle bags for the first time the following year, making the CBX more of a sports tourer. Other detail changes included adjustable Pro-Link rear suspension in place of the coil-overs and internally vented front brake rotors to cope with the extra weight. In the CBX’s final year of production, 1982, a rear passenger handle was added and a new Pearl White colour adopted. The respected Cycle magazine described the CBX as a "breakthrough for the Japanese motorcycle industry" and praised its design, concept, and performance.