BMW Motorrad Spezial

Mugen Honda CB1100

Honda CB1100 customized by Mugen
Mugen is effectively the ‘official’ Honda car and motorcycle tuner, with headquarters close to Honda’s own R&D facility north of Tokyo. So it’s no surprise that the first tweaked Honda CB1100 has a discreet Mugen logo at the back. The mods include a 70s-style bikini fairing in silver and a stubby black megaphone-style exhaust system, replacing the standard chromed item. There are also two new seat unit options, both with a more streamlined rear section, black passenger grab handles, and slightly smaller fenders front and back—also painted black.

Honda CB1100 customized by Mugen
The engine should get a little extra pep from that new exhaust, but no other mechanical mods are reported. It’s probably because the motor is a new design for Honda—an air-cooled DOHC inline four—so Mugen can’t employ the go-fast parts it’s developed for other Hondas. With 87 hp on tap, the stock CB1100 is not short of power, though. And the Mugen exhaust should free up a little more: a trip to the dyno will no doubt put the engine closer to the magic 100 hp mark.

Honda CB1100 customized by Mugen
The pretty CB1100 has attracted a huge amount of attention already, and that’s despite uncertainty over whether or not the bike will be released in the USA or UK. The big question is: will people buy it? These mods might just be enough to tip me over the line…

Honda CB1100 customized by Mugen
Honda CB1100 customized by Mugen

  • its the quarter fairing that does it for me – but then i am putting one on my new bike – old is new

  • Yes, I would buy one… I’ll have to win the lottery first, but I would buy one.

  • i’ve been nagging honda australia for a whille now over this bike. hopefully we get to see it soon!

  • Kozzy

    Have they issued a price estimate?

  • francois

    WTF? They couldn’t go with spokec wheels? Why would they recreate the ugliest wheels ever?

  • kossy, on the honda japan website, pricing starts from 950,000 yen. a little more for ABS.

    francois, spoke wheels usually means running tubes. that’s what triumph and ducati have to do on their “retro” bikes anyway.

  • Hiwatt Scott

    Not digging the fairing and side covers being a different color from the tank. That’s just me. However, I have no problem with the wheels, and I was never a fan of the old Comstar wheels.

  • That is all round fugly.

  • sgeechee

    There are spoke wheels which do not need to be run with tubes. for example, some of the (fugly…) BMW GS`s have that option.
    And I would love if the CB1100 R concept could also be shown here….it`s a shame they don`t build it.

  • Kidchampion

    My not fugly GS has cross-spoked wheels, which allows tubeless tires.

  • Phil

    Nah…its just a boring UJM from the 80’s….GS1000S,XS1100S,XJ650/900 etc etc.

  • mingh

    Imagine you walk out of the bar, and on the kerb are this one, a guzzi V7 cafe, a ducati 1000 sport and a triumph scrambler, (not even mentioning real classic bikes like guzzi lemans,Triumph trident, Norton commando, Benelli Sei, Laverda Jota, Ducati Darmah, BMW R90S to name a few of the era this bike seems to refer to) does anyone reckon this bike will get a single blink?

    CB=Completely Bland

  • Dave Matthews

    My first road bike in 1976 was a 400F If I had to money I would order one this afternoon. And the first thing I’d do is paint it the blue my 400 was. I would try to avoid what happened the first time I took it for a ride in the Adelaide Hills though, that is fall off ! (nothing serious thankfully)

  • Derek Larsen

    “that’s despite uncertainty over whether or not the bike will be released in the USA or UK. The big question is: will people buy it?”

    First off, that’s painful to hear as an American–we’re used to getting what we want when we see it. Secondly, the bigger question is will Honda (and the other Asian/European manufacturers) realize that not every American consumer thinks motorcycles are thirty thousand dollar playthings for dumbass baby-boomers who wanna pretend they’re Hell’s Angels. They might claim a bike like this (or my fave unobtainable bike, the VTR) won’t sell, but that’s because American retailers and distributors won’t even bother to try. But given the displacement, they might do a limited release in select markets.

  • Nick

    I am surprised that a modern motorcycle company would release a ‘retro’ bike that looked so poorly thought out and finished. This site is testament to the talent of so many small operators out there who could design a better looking and more saleable version of this bike.
    It is a nice departure drom the DN-1 and Fury that Honda has vomited out recently.

  • Trav

    87 hp out of 1100 cc’s…. that’s fine, and I know why it’s tuned that way.. but the only reason they didn’t uprate the power with internal mods is that they didn’t WANT to. An air-cooled inline 4 as a ‘new design’ for ANY of the big 4 manufs is a joke.. who writes this stuff. I realize it’s a new produced (essentially ‘designed’) engine.. but like they don’t know how to get more out of it.. yea.

  • TRS

    Hell For Leather magazine has done a good numbers comparison of the “standard” CB1100 against other retro styled motorcycles.

    Ideally, I’d have one with 750cc. But this bike could take my wife and I on a 3 hour plus trip (which will do regularly) with ease. I don’t need 100bhp on the highway. Just a quality machine (Honda), with comfort (no back breaking handlebars), UJM looks (there’s not many you can buy new anymore) and good brakes (with ABS)!

  • montrealnow

    Huh? It looks somewhere between an 80s Yamaha XV920 and 750 Seca, except not as interesting and probably heavier. Why can’t anybody make a “standard” using modern tech that looks simple and nice and is relatively light? The modern rider gets a choice between a hyperports bike that’s like driving an F1 car on the street, or a porky cruiser disco-bike, or a ponderous overstyled barge of a standard.

    E.g. the Hinkley Bonneviles weigh 75lbs more than an old cast-iron Meriden paintshaker, and are 6 inches longer. Nice bikes and all, but they could have been lighter than the old ones, with the same geometry and more power.

  • Ammerlander

    There used to be DKW-motorcycle with a red tank and an otherwise black paintjob that was known as the “Blutblase” (blood blister).

  • pushrodmofo

    I like it – especially the wheels. :) The black exhaust on this Mugen version looks better than the chrome I think.
    And by “new design” I don’t think he meant a new type of engine that they’ve never done before – he meant this is a newly designed motor, not an existing one they’ve dusted off.

  • sgeechee

    @Kidchampion: No offense, just my 2 cents…don`t like the newer GS`s.

    @Trav: I recently read an article `bout this engine in a german motorcycle magazine, and it seems that there are indeed some new tricks/patents added to this “old” aircooled, inline-4 style. If you want it, i could try to find it again…and maybe translate it :)

    @Chris Hunter: Thanks for the tip! And in general for running such a nice site, with a great variety of bikes and styles.

  • Shawn

    No way, no matter what you do its not the CB1100R. Honda, please give us the R version!

  • TemporaryCitizen

    I want this bike! Holy crap.

    This better come to Australia.. seriously. Or at least let us import and register one here.

  • The fact that’s hard and costly in aftermarket is putting in high comp pistons and also fiddling with valve timing which sort of malarkey, so why does not Mugen make it happen eh? 100bhp can be a perfect rating for guys, specially from something big and fat with cafe racer pretensions.

  • Jim Dandy

    Nice,…but I will keep the Bonneville T100

  • big ted

    I like it, …many of those above who don’t like it probably think the Sheene Icon bike with it “Insect superbike look” design is beautiful, yech!! Not everyone wants or likes “superbike” looking bikes with their high pointy rear fenders, yeck!

    99% of bikes being built for the last twenty years all look alike, …. they all look like insect or transformers inspired superbikes. (except for the ubiquitous ugly Japanese V=Twin cruisers).

    Thankfully a few companies like Triumph, Moto Guzzi and now Honda are once again building “standards”. Not everyone fantasizes about being a Rossi…………..

  • big ted

    P.S. I much prefer Honda’s own version of this bike than Mugen’s as represented above.

  • Rossco

    I will be seriously considering one once I see it (in Aus) – it is begging for customisation and I think it would make an awesome street tracker with a few cuts here and there

  • well, it’s coming to australia. here’s the link to the press release (but whoever the author was, really stuffed up with the name and photograph).

  • neil

    would be a great bike with spoke wheels and a more reto seat and tank ,but i may still buy one .

  • Jeff S.

    Overall I like this bike, but I would have liked a tail end like the 80’s 750,900, and 1100F. Kawasaki made a retro bike as a tribute to the 80’s GPZ/KZ bikes and they kept the design true to the old bikes, but updated the air cooled inline four to a liquid cooled. I wish honda would have done this with the new 1100. I have a 1982 CB900F and it makes 89 HP stock. I am disappointed with the power in the new CB1100. I guess a guy can buy it and modify it big time. A good header and jetting should make a world of difference. Not sure if I would buy one, but overall it looks nice.