2015 CBR500R Sport Bike / CBR Motorcycle (CBR500RF)
With the introduction of the CBR500R, Honda boldly redefines the middleweight class and infuses a whole new level of excitement for sport riders in search of superior value along with great fun. The CBR500R delivers plenty of performance to all sport riders, including riders moving up from the sporting, entry-level Honda CBR250R & CBR300R models, as well as more experienced riders who will appreciate the CBR500R’s light and nimble handling. Credit its thoroughly modern, torquey 471cc parallel-twin DOHC engine that’s wrapped in a great-handling chassis featuring a full fairing spawned from Honda’s much-acclaimed CBR600RR and CBR1000RR. This aerodynamic bodywork also provides significant advantages in air management for added rider comfort, along with a low drag coefficient and effective engine cooling. A sophisticated chassis with Pro-Link® single-shock rear suspension, stout 41mm fork, sporting 17-inch wheels and a 320mm wave-style front disc brake and 240mm rear disc help round out a package that looks as good as it rolls. With the CBR500R seat height coming in at only 31 inches, it opens up the possibility for many riders that normally can’t touch the ground with both feet on current sport bikes.
2015 Honda CBR500R Performance Details:
- 2015 CBR500R Horsepower Rating: 49.6 HP at 8,500 RPM
- 2015 CBR500R Torque Rating: 31.7 lb ft TQ at 7,000 RPM
- 2015 CBR500R MPG Rating: 73 Miles Per Gallon
- 1. Introduction
- 2. Model overview
- 3. Key features
- 4. Overview of Features & Benefits
- 5. CBR500R Development Story
- 6. Accessories
- 7. Technical specifications
The fully faired twin-cylinder CBR500R provides an excellent first big sports bike experience for those newer riders while also appealing to experienced riders looking for a great value alternative to larger sports bikes. The CBR500R is part of a newer family of motorcycles from Honda that includes the naked CB500F and adventure sports CB500X.
Sharing a common frame and engine,the three machines each have a distinct feel and character and feature a riding position and design that is tailored, and will appeal to, a wide variety of riders, with adaptable abilities that cover a range of uses from commuting and sports, to touring.
While the CBR500R, CB500F and CB500Xare focused in different directions they areall physically easy to manage, and deliver all-round practicality matched to excellent efficiency. As true middleweights, blessed with lightweight agility and an engaging power delivery, above all, they are also enjoyable to ride in every scenario.
Honda has a motorcycling history that goes back over 60 years,and in 1957 released the 247cc Dream C70, powered by its first parallel twin cylinder engine. Through the 1960s the DOHC CB450 twin regularly outperformed larger capacity rivals and the new CBR500R proudly carries the CB suffix (with an extra dash of race-inspired R) and proves the point that – sometimes – less most certainly can be more.
Fast, frugal, affordable and fun, the CBR500R offers a great entry point to the world of sports motorcycles, with high a build quality plus pride of ownership that will last.
2015 Honda 500cc Model Variations / Options:
- 2015 CBR500R (Click for Review)
- 2015 CB500X (Click for Review)
- 2015 CB500F (Click for Review)
While the CB500F, CBR500R and CB500X are focused in different directions they are all easy to manage, and deliver all-round practicality matched to excellent efficiency. And blessed with lightweight agility and an engaging power delivery they are also enjoyable to ride in every scenario.
2. Model Overview
The CBR500R’s performance will give anyone looking for their first sports bike an exhilarating ride on a twisty, winding road – or even racetrack. It works equally well in urban environments and is a motorcycle designed to be ridden, and thoroughly enjoyed, by people of all shapes and sizes (especially smaller riders who can sometimes be intimidated by physically bulky motorcycles) thanks to clever ergonomics.
Its DOHC twin-cylinder fuel-injected engine produces 49.6 HP (35kW) (making it ideal for A2 licence holders moving up a class) and returns an impressive 71 MPG.
The steel diamond frame and high quality suspension – 41mm telescopic front forks matched to Pro-Link rear monoshock – provide confident, precise handling as do 17-inch cast aluminium wheels and wide 120 front, 160 rear radial tires. Wave-pattern disc brakes provide powerful, yet easy to control stopping power, and ABS is available as an option.
2015 Honda CBR500R Model Options:
- CBR500R ABS (Anti-Lock Brakes)
3. Key Features
3.1 CBR500R Chassis
The CBR500R’s 35mm diameter steel diamond-tube mainframe is light and strong, and has a tuned degree of yield that gives plenty of feedback to the rider as road surfaces change. The shape and position of the engine mounts, and the frame’s rigidity balance, have also been carefully optimized to reduce vibration.
Wheelbase is 55.5 inches (1410mm) and rake and trail are set at 25.5°/102.6mm giving nimble, yet reassuring steering. Mass centralization, with the engine in very close proximity to the swingarm pivot point, delivers turning agility, and optimum front/rear weight distribution ensures stability. CBR500R curb weight comes in at 425 lbs. Seat height is low at 30.9 inches (785mm), making the CBR500R very easy to manage and its sporty riding position will comfortably accommodate riders of varying heights thanks to a high handlebar position.
Overall dimensions are 2075mm x 780mm x 1060mm, with 155mm ground clearance. The fuel tank holds 4.4 gallons (15.7L), including reserve, and combined with the engine’s excellent fuel economy gives potential range of over 300 miles (420+ km).
The 41mm telescopic front fork, with 120mm stroke, delivers a compliant yet controlled ride and gives a great connection to the front tire. Pro-Link monoshock rear suspension features optimized leverage ratios and 9-stage preload adjustment for the rear shock. It works with a rigid swingarm, constructed from 70mm x 30mm box-section steel. Final drive is via 520 sealed chain.
Lightweight, 17-inch cast aluminium wheels employ hollow cross-section Y-shaped spokes. Front wheel width is 3.5inch with a 120/70-ZR17 tire, rear wheel width is 4.5inch with a 160/60-ZR17 tire. A single front 320mm wavy disc and two-piston brake caliper is matched to a 240mm rear disc and single-piston caliper. ABS is an option.
The comprehensive dash features a digital speedometer, digital bar graph tachometer, odometer, dual trip meters, clock, plus digital fuel level gauge and fuel consumption. HISS (Honda Intelligent Security System / Not available in USA) is built in to the ignition, and the headlight features a single 60/55W H4 Halogen bulb and multi-reflectors. There is space under the seat to store a U-lock.
3.2 CBR500R Engine
The CBR500R’s engine is a next generation power unit, looking to the future in both performance and environmental terms. The DOHC, 8-valve liquid-cooled parallel twin layout was chosen because of its light weight, all-round ability and flexible usability.
Bore and stroke is set at 67mm x 66.8mm; the crankshaft pins are phased at 180° and a primary couple-balancer sits behind the cylinders, close to the bike’s center of gravity. The primary and balancer gears use scissor gears, reducing noise. The crank counterweight is specifically shaped for couple-balance and its light weight allows the engine to spin freely, with reduced inertia. PGM-FI fuel injection provides superb throttle response and peak power of 49.6 HP (35kW) arrives at 8,500rpm, with 31.7 lb/ft (43Nm) torque delivered at 7,000rpm.
The ‘triangle’ proportion of crankshaft, main shaft and countershaft is very similar to that of Honda’s four-cylinder RR engines, making for a very compact unit. The six-speed gearbox also mirrors that of its RR cousins, allowing for a short engine, and uses the same gear change arm structure and link mechanism. A deep sump reduces oil movement under hard cornering and braking; oil capacity is 3.4 qt (3.2L). Flow analysis of the cooling system through CAE (Computer Aided Engineering) maximized efficiency and allows the use of a physically smaller, and lighter, water pump.
The DOHC cylinder head uses compact roller rocker arms; shim-type valve adjustment allows them to be light, which means lower valve-spring load and reduced friction. A silent (SV Chain) cam chain has the surface of its pins treated with Vanadium, reducing friction with increased protection against dust. Inlet valve diameter is 26.0mm, exhaust valve diameter 21.5 mm. CFD (Computational Fluid Dynamic) was used to maximize gas flow efficiency – the route from airbox to exhaust pipe was made as straight as possible, and a plate in the airbox separates the air flow to each cylinder.
Bore size of 67mm is identical to that of the CBR600RR. CAE was used to ensure the pistons have the optimum balance between weight, strength and rigidity. The shape of the piston itself was based upon those used in the CBR1000RR. Friction is reduced by the addition of striations on the piston skirt (a finish that increases surface area, introducing gaps in which oil can flow for better lubrication). As with the CBR600RR and CBR1000RR, an AB1 salt bath process, used after isonite nitriding, forms a protective oxidization membrane.
The crankcase uses centrifugally-cast thin-walled sleeves, and the same bore interval as the CBR600RR helps them be as compact and light as possible. Careful attention has been paid to their internal design to reduce the pumping losses that can occur with a 180° phased firing order. Using the same internal relief structure as that of the CBR1000RR, the oil pump features improved aeration performance, with reduced friction and allows use of a simple oil pan.
The engine itself acts as a stressed member, reinforcing the frame’s rigidity with four frame hangers on the cylinder head. The Matt Axis Grey Metallic finish on the crankcase and cylinders finish adds depth, complementing its taut overall styling.
A secondary air injection (AI) system is built into the cylinder heads, while an oxygen sensor and catalyser inside the 2-1 exhaust ensures the CBR500R’s emissions are extremely low.
4. 2015 CBR500R Features and Benefits
- – Sportbike riding position keeps the rider balanced in a comfortable, dynamic seating stance.
- – All-new 471cc liquid-cooled parallel-twin DOHC engine is thoroughly modern in design and produces a broad power spread for enjoyable and economical riding.
- – The four-valve cylinder head design incorporates a roller rocker arm for a more compact layout along with reduced friction.
- – A shim-type valve adjustment system allows incorporation of a lighter rocker arm setup that, in turn, allows for a lower valve-spring load to further reduce power losses through engine friction.
- – Programmed Fuel Injection (PGM-FI) continuously monitors several variables to ensure the correct fuel mixture is delivered for the existing riding and atmospheric conditions for crisp throttle response throughout a wide variety of riding conditions.
- – Engine counterbalancer and 180-degree crankpin reduce engine vibration for superior rider comfort.
- – Preloaded, scissors-type gears for the primary drive and engine counterbalancer gears help reduce engine noise.
- – Diamond-shaped 35mm steel tube frame is lightweight and rigid for responsive sport handling.
- – Big 41mm front fork with 4.3 inches of travel returns a plush yet controlled ride.
- – Sophisticated Pro-Link single-shock rear suspension offers nine-stage spring preload adjustability and 4.7 inches of controlled travel.
- – Lightweight cast aluminum wheels, 120/70-17 in front and 160/60-17 rear, return sporting feel and handling traits.
- – Front 320mm wave-style disc brake and 240mm rear provide strong stopping power.
- – ABS version available for enhanced braking characteristics in less than ideal conditions.
- – Instrument display features speedometer, tachometer, odometer/A&B tripmeters, fuel gauge, clock, real-time and average fuel consumption.
- – 30.9-inch seat height helps build rider confidence.
- – Transferable one-year, unlimited-mileage limited warranty; extended coverage available with a Honda Protection Plan.
5. Honda CBR500R Development Story (Including CB500F / CB500X)
There’s a whole new generation of young riders looking to enter the sport of motorcycling on bikes that are fun to ride, nimble and easy to handle, affordable and economical to operate, plus distinctive in appearance. For this set of buyers, Honda has hit a grand slam by creating a trio of modern-era 500cc machines that redefine the middleweight category. These three bikes take aim at three popular styles of bikes that resonate with their own identity, yet all are filled with Honda quality and value, through and through.
First, there’s the CBR500R, a lightweight and nimble middleweight sport bike that’s just right for riders moving up in displacement categories, as well as for experienced riders who just love riding a great-handling bike. Next, there’s the CB500F naked sport bike, a great choice for independent-minded riders in search of a mid-sized entry-level bike with extra attitude, but one that’s also a great daily ride. And there’s also a middleweight adventure-style bike, the CB500X, a bike that follows the lead of the popular NC700X introduced in 2012. For riders who want to add a smaller, lighter and eminently affordable adventure-style bike to their lives, the CB500X is just the ticket.
Each of these brand-new models has its own look and personality plus a tie-in to larger bikes in the Honda lineup, and they also share that distinctive, high-quality Honda feel. Despite their unique appearances, these three bikes share the same basic chassis components and engine—a smart move, since sharing common elements helps reduce development and production costs, resulting in a markedly lower consumer price point.
As its name suggests, the CBR500R features full bodywork much like that found on the potent CBR600RR and CBR1000RR Honda sportbikes. Sportbike riders, whether well established in the sport or still developing their motorcycling skills, always prize the excellent handling traits that come with a light and responsive mount. And the new, lightweight and nimble CBR500R absolutely delivers in that department—there’s plenty of well-rounded performance on tap here. It’s just the right size for sport riders moving up from the entry-level Honda CBR250R, but even experienced sportbike riders will appreciate the handling characteristics of this 425-pound bike. Its aerodynamic bodywork provides significant advantages in air management for added rider comfort, along with a low drag coefficient and effective engine cooling, rounding out a package that looks as good as it works.
Naked sport bikes form another distinct category of motorcycling, one that fosters the image of independence and non-conformity. And that’s especially true with the CB500F, a bike that looks like a first-cousin to the liter-sized CB1000R. This modern and sporty 500cc naked bike not only carries a full load of attitude and style, it also delivers plenty of performance and versatility. Tipping the scales at only 420 pounds, it’s got everything you need, and nothing that you don’t. Whether it’s used as a daily commuter machine, an affordable weekend ride for backroad day trips, or a bike for hanging out at the local gathering spot, the CB500F serves as a great option for just about any kind of street use. Its comfortable, neutral riding position and slim profile let riders feel right at home in the saddle. For a bike that’s affordable, stylish and fun, it’s tough to top the new CB500F.
We all understand that half the fun of motorcycling is the mental escape it provides when you’re tied down at the 9 to 5 job. For riders who love to dream about getting far away on a ride, the middleweight CB500X is a fantastic option that follows in the tire prints of the recently introduced and highly acclaimed NC700X adventure-style bike. This is a bike that begs to travel new roads and discover new sights, a fun-to-ride motorcycle with an extra dose of versatility. The compact windscreen can be adjusted in height, and it also has a comfortable adventure-bike seating position, plus a larger-capacity fuel tank that has been carefully shaped to allow the rider unrestricted movement. It features a longer-stroke 41mm front fork that produces 4.9 inches of travel, and a wider handlebar allows for easy steering inputs. And while this the CB500X works well for longer-range adventure tours, it also serves as a versatile ride to fulfill those everyday needs too. For riders seeking a little more adventure in their lives, the CB500X delivers on that idea at a very affordable price.
Regardless of market placement, all three bikes share an all-new engine and Honda’s engineers decided that a sleek parallel twin would serve best to generate sufficient torque in the low-rpm range to produce the kind of fun, easily accessible powerband that is a hallmark of all three bikes. And so this series of bikes became 500cc liquid-cooled parallel twins with a bore and stroke configuration of 67 x 66.8mm. The stroke of 66.8mm was the maximum possible, given the compact engine dimensions the engineers had also set as a priority. The 7mm bore interval in this engine is the same as the bore intervals in the CBR600RR; this tight distance results in a compact—and light weight—engine.
The valvetrain incorporates four valves per cylinder actuated by dual overhead camshafts. The intake valves measure 26mm in diameter, the exhaust valves 21.5mm, and narrow valve stems help reduce reciprocating weight and engine friction. This DOHC configuration was chosen for higher performance; it gave the engineering team greater latitude in developing the shape of the combustion chamber, the shape of the ports and the layout angle of the valves, while also allowing the use of lighter valves. Careful attention was paid in particular to creating a markedly straight-line flow from the air cleaner through the intake ports and out the exhaust pipe to maximize efficiency.
The cylinder head design also incorporates a roller rocker arm for a more compact layout along with reduced friction. The choice of a shim-type valve adjustment system allowed incorporation of a lighter rocker arm setup that, in turn, allowed for a lower valve-spring load to further reduce power losses through engine friction. The cams are driven by a silent-type cam chain for reduced engine friction, and the surfaces of the cam-chain pins are treated with vanadium for lower friction and increased toughness. Compression ratio is set at 10.7:1, and to reduce piston noise and friction at the relatively high top engine speeds slated for these bikes (redline is 8600 rpm and rev-cut occurs at 9100 rpm), the short 67mm piston features asymmetrical skirts that are the same length but differ in width. Using technology applied to the CBR600RR, striations on the piston skirts aid oil retention for better lubrication, and the piston pins and connecting rods are also treated with a friction-reducing special protective coating. The 180-degree crankpin design and an engine counterbalancer help smooth operation, and preloaded scissor gears are used for the primary and balancer gears to reduce gear whine/engine noise. All in all, a sophisticated package.
A six-speed gearbox complements the power output of this engine, and the triangulated layout between crankshaft, mainshaft and countershaft is very similar to that of the four-cylinder CBR-RR engines, which aids in creating a very compact unit. Engine weight, at 116 pounds, is laudably light. In addition, the gear-change mechanism uses the same gearshift structure and gearshift link design used in the ultra-high-performance CBR600RR and CBR1000RR sport bikes to yield high-quality shifting action and feel.
Honda’s Programmed Fuel Injection (PGM-FI) system delivers the appropriate fuel mixture according to existing riding and atmospheric conditions for crisp throttle response. A pair of 34mm throttle bodies feed the engine, with the injectors located within the throttle-body assembly. All of this technology helps give all three 500s an especially responsive, revvy nature and a high-quality feel.
The engine hangs as a stressed frame member housed in a monocoque frame evocative of Honda’s MotoGP racing machines. The cylinder head features four solid attachment points for engine hangers, which allows the rigidity of the engine to add to chassis rigidity. Such a design lends itself to a more simplified frame shape, yielding a more lightweight and compact chassis. The resulting frame is a diamond-shaped unit with a 35mm steel tube main member, and the final design is significantly lighter than other comparable designs, which adds greatly to the handling prowess of all three bikes.
The CBR500R and CB500F share the same wheelbase of 55.5 inches, while the CB500X spans 55.9 inches between axles. The X model also has one degree more steering rake than its two siblings (26° 5′ versus 25° 5′), and its 41mm fork yields 4.9 inches of travel in contrast to the 4.3 inches of fork travel with the other two bikes. All three share the same Pro-Link® single-shock rear suspension system, which offers nine-step cam-style spring preload adjustability and 4.7 inches of travel. Thanks in part to this slightly taller suspension setup the CB500X seat is slightly taller at 31.9 inches, versus 30.9 inches for the CBR500R and CB500F. Even so, the CB500X seat is perched nearly an inch lower than that of the larger NC700X adventure-style bike, which makes it distinctly more friendly feeling for riders with shorter inseams.
All three models share the same lightweight cast aluminum wheels, a 120/70-17 front and 160/60-17 rear. These wheels follow the designs used for the latest CBR600RR and CBR1000RR wheels. The brake setups are likewise identical among all three 500s: a twin-piston caliper and 320mm wave-style disc up front, and a 240mm wave disc in back. The front brake in particular offers excellent stopping power and feel. The wave design reduces unsprung weight and it also offers excellent heat-dissipating qualities. ABS is an option with all three bikes and the ABS systems are independent, not linked, between the rear and front brakes.
So there you have it: three different bikes, three different riding experiences for three different kinds of riders. But all three bikes are lightweight, nimble and fun to ride, and each one possesses a level of quality and sophistication that makes it a fantastic value for the money.
6. Honda Genuine Accessories / CBR500R:
Honda Genuine Accessories
Sport Screen, Color-Matched Passenger Seat Cowl, Carbon Fiber-Look Front Fender, Carbon Fiber-Look Lower Headlight Cover, Carbon Fiber-Look Rear Tire Hugger, Carbon Fiber-Look Tank Pad
- Front Fender
Stylish carbon style front fender adds a performance look to your ride.
Part#: 08F85-MGZ-J00; SRP: $79.95
Approximately one inch taller than the stock screen, it provides added rider wind protection.
Part#: 08R70-MGZ-D00; SRP: $129.95
- Mid Cowl Headlight Trim (Carbon Style)
Carbon Style Trim Accents add a performance look to your bike.
Part#: 08F89-MGZ-J00; SRP: $54.95
- Passenger Seat Cowl (Red, Black or White)
Custom-shaped, color-matched seat cowl replaces the stock passenger seat for a more aggressive look.
Part#: 08F71-MGZ-J00ZG (Red), 08F71-MGZ-J00ZH (Black), 08F71-MGZ-J00ZJ (White); SRP: $212.17 (Red), $149.95 (Black or White)
- Rear Tire Hugger
Adds style and protection to the undertail from getting damaged by rocks and debris.
Part#: 08F70-MGZ-J00; SRP: $119.95
- Rear Carrier
Provides extra storage. (Cannot be used to mount rear trunk.)
Part#: 08L70-MGZ-A00ZA; SRP: $259.95
- Tank Pad (Carbon Style)
Made of real Carbon Fiber, this Tank Pad helps to protect the fuel tank from scratches.
Part#: 08P61-MEJ-800: $41.95
Honda CBR500R Accessory Warranty: Because we’re so confident in the quality of each of our Honda Genuine Accessories, we’re pleased to offer one of the best warranties in the industry. One-year warranty begins on the day accessories are purchased by the customer.
7. 2015 CBR500R Technical Specifications