The 2011 Honda XR 600 is shaping up to be one of the most powerful motorbikes in the 600cc class. While the release date is yet unknown, much speculation has been made about the redesign of this motorbike.
Here's what we know so far.
The weight of the bike has been dramatically lowered compared to the previous years model. How has this been achieved and does the bike still maintain the same power to weight ratio as older models in the 600cc series.
Firstly, all enamels on the frame of the bike have been changed to a plastic. This is a dramatic step away from motorcycle design but we think they're onto a winner here. We've seen this change in motor vehicles and this will be one of the first motorbikes to use plastic in place of enamel in the manufacturing process.
A new addition to the series is the carbon shaft. Carbon shafts have generally only been available on high powered motorcycles that fall into the 1000c or above category. Some enthusiasts have complained that this is not a necessary addition to lower powered motors but it's just another step forward in lightening the total weight of the bike.
The main complaint about this change is that by adding carbon shafts to the engine, the Honda XR series will be seen differently; from the traditional affordable bike to a more expensive one.
Still, carbon shafts provide better fuel economy so the added cost upon when first purchasing the bike will mean further savings throughout the life of owning it and this is a better trade off.
Lastly, the Honda XR series has lowered CO2 emissions by 12%. It's just another step forward towards motorbikes that are green friendly and it's a welcome change that doesn't sacrifice any power in the process.