Honda working on a 400cc twin, a strong India probable

| May 23, 2012 | 9 Comments

The stakes are getting higher by the day in the Indian two wheeler bazaar. The CBR250R pushed the goalpost for the rest of the field, but didn’t quite enthrall the enthusiasts the way it was expected to. Also, the advent of the Pulsar 200NS would mean some more attrition from Honda’s 250, and a further reduction in the already dwindling sales. The thing is, the mainstream Indian bike enthusiast’s aspirations have shifted to more performance than what the 250 singles currently on sale could muster. That fact, along with a growing affinity of the global bike market towards smaller engined, less intimidating  motorcycles has made Honda work on a 400cc twin, reports Young Machine, a Japanese magazine.

The new 400cc bike, to be called the CBR400R will be positioned between the CBR600RR and the CBR250R. The magazine has also published an artist’s impression of the bike on its cover page.

The new bike will be powered by a parallel twin, which will be developed from the same family as the CBR250R’s single. Peak power output from the engine is expected to be 50bhp, double that of the 250R. That figure spells ‘Bulls-eye’ when you talk about the requirements of the Indian bike enthusiast. A capability to reach a genuine 200km/h, a balanced riding posture, reasonable ground clearance, sporty styling and a price tag that doesn’t make fun of us Indians’ diminutive salaries – that’s the recipe for success in the segment that Honda eyes, especially in the Indian context.

CBR400R

The CBR400R- as illustrated by Young Machine Magazine.

With the recent launch of the Dream Yuga, Honda has made its serious intentions about the Indian market very clear. And don’t be mistaken, for they want to be seen as leaders not just in the bread and butter commuter segment, but also in the performance bracket, to have that desirability halo levitating right above their head. There is, indeed a very strong possibility of the aforementioned bike making it to India, as Industry sources close to us have unequivocally revealed that the Japanese major is readying something above its 250cc offering for the Indian market.

Another reason why we think that the new 400cc has a strong possibility for India is that the Indian rivals Bajaj are extremely upbeat about the 350cc Pulsar which is expected to be built on top of the similar engined KTM 350, due in 2013.  Honda is currently the leader in terms of affordable performance with its 250R, a position it wouldn’t want to concede, especially in the light of its reinvigorated commitment to India as a growth market.  

The earlier gen CBR400RRwas a gem of a bike. We did a comparo of the machine with a Ninja 250R, elsewhere on the site, and the Honda simply blew its opponent away. We strongly believe that a rider friendly, well priced and well stylized 400 twin is the need of the hour for the Indian bike enthusiast. And if it’s coming from a brand like Honda, the success could almost be guaranteed.

Has the real Indian bike enthusiast outgrown the 180s and the 250s of the world? Would the CBR400R be the right product for India, or there still aren’t enough volumes in the segment? What do you think? Do let us know.

Via: Young Machine Magazine

Category: News

About the Author ()

Dyed-in-the-wool motoring enthusiast and internationally published writer. Been around for a bit to be clued in about the latest happenings in the world of crankshafts and pistons. Movie buff, Steve Jobs worshiper, wanderer and philosopher who loves his scotch. Follow Amit on Twitter @amitchhangani for the freshest auto news, opinions and other random ramblings

Comments (9)

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  1. Well I am ready to pay twice the price of the 250 for this.. Don't expect more but then again I doubt honda will make that mistake.. But seriously honda needs to upgrade their quality.. It should feel premium and not cheap plastic.. Honda should also offer a normal abs as well the c-abs is too borin.

  2. Am sure something is cooking at the Honda factory- and as usual is the case, they don't go about doing spy testing etc. The CBR250R is one case, it appeared in the news undisguised and months later it was selling down here. Also as Motoroids had revealed in their news earlier- a 500 or a 600 is DEFINITELY on the cards. The 400 definitely looks a great prospect for the Indian market- but still I'll wait for a 4 pod or else a second hand 600RR ;).

  3. A 4 cylinder India made bike, without 110% tax, is what India misses. CBR 600F, Honda? Listening?

  4. on a different note…whatever happened to the crf250l :(

  5. Vibhur Choudhary says:

    m really excited to see the new dazzeling cbr modle of honda…..and will wish to bye one :)

  6. I am waiting for 400cc to 600 cc bikes from Honda. Though I am not satisfied with my CBR250R, I am interested in buying Honda bikes as they are reliable bikes in the market. When is CBR600F is coming to india. I like to do long rides on these bikes.

  7. Tulaja Jasti says:

    i cant change u mama …:(

  8. Suresh Ghanta says:

    For long rides you need a cruiser type with at least 750CC. Try the Honda Shadow. The Kawasaki concourse 14 is awesome with 1400CC.

  9. Ravi Singh says:

    Price the 400 cc bike under 2 lacs and they will see record sales. Local manufacturing is the only way to do it. becasue above 2 lacs its really not where mass is going. 1-2 lacs is the section to exploit and uplift indian riders into.

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