Autocar

Here’s what the revived Honda Hornet will look like


The iconic Honda badge will find its way onto an upcoming middleweight naked.

Honda has revealed design sketches and a teaser video for the revival of its Hornet nametag on an upcoming middleweight naked bike.

If you’re of a certain age, then the Honda Hornet nametag is one that you’ll be quite familiar with, and probably remember rather fondly. It’s a badge that was seen on a Honda middleweight naked for a number of years, before being retired in 2013. Now, though, it’s all set to make a comeback. At EICMA 2021, Honda showed a rather vague-looking concept motorcycle, and expressed its desire to revive the Hornet name.

In the latest development, the Japanese manufacturer has shown design sketches of the upcoming Hornet, giving us an idea of ​​what to expect from the bike. The last Hornet was powered by a 600cc inline-four cylinder engine, but in a video released by Honda, the upcoming Hornet sounds like it will be powered by a parallel-twin motor. With the name it’s carrying, we expect this to be a mid-capacity engine in the 650cc to 750cc range.

The middleweight twin-cylinder space is one that’s gaining popularity at the moment, with big players like Yamaha, Kawasaki and Aprilia all selling naked, sportsbike and adventure bikes built around parallel-twin models ranging between 650cc and 700cc. Honda also has mid-displacement twins at the moment, but these are 500cc models (like the CB500X and CBR500R) which are noticeably down on power and torque compared to the competition.

With the revival of the Hornet, Honda seems poised to enter the thick-end of the middleweight segment, placing a model between the CB500F twin and the CB650R inline-four. If this bike shapes up to be what we expect, then its competition will come from bikes like the Kawasaki Z650, Yamaha MT-07 and Aprilia Tuono 660.

As for the sketches themselves, they quite closely resemble the concept we saw at EICMA, with a sharp and edgy look characterized by angular tank extensions and a low-mounted headlight. Worth noting are an upside down fork, a tubular frame and a monoshock, as well as a stubby side-slung exhaust end-can.

It’s quite likely that the Hornet will be followed by more styles of motorcycle built around the same motor, with the most likely candidates being a fully-faired sportbike and an adventure tourer. We could see the new Hornet in the flesh sometime towards the end of this year.

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