Honda Motorcycle & Scooter India recently announced the commencement of dispatches of its H’ness CB350. Honda unveiled the CB350 last month and managed to surprise all of us with the package. The CB350 has Royal Enfield Classic 350 in its crosshair and will battle it out with the upcoming Meteor 350 as well. Celebrating the roll-out of H’ness-CB350, a special line-off ceremony was conducted at Honda’s manufacturing plant at Manesar (Haryana).
The Honda H’ness-CB350 DLX retails at a special starting price of INR 1.85 lac (ex-showroom, Gurugram, Haryana). Available in two variants, DLX and DLX Pro, the latter retails at INR 1.90 lakh (ex-showroom, Gurgaon). These prices are introductory and could be hiked in the future.
As far as looks go, it does look like a proper retro cruiser. Honda has gone all retro when it comes to its styling but this thing doesn’t belong to the ’80s as it features some modern design bits as well. Honda has included a round LED headlamp setup with the package. The Pro version is available in dual-tone paint options, two-unit horn, and Honda Smartphone Voice Control System. The motorcycle was developed over a period of two years where the Honda India team was in the lead. The bike is made in India and manufacturing is 90% localised.
The CB350 is powered by a 348cc air-cooled single that churns out 21bhp and 30Nm. The long-stroke engine features a balancer to keep vibrations in check. Honda has particularly focused on its acoustics and that is pretty evident because the H’ness CB350 does sound like a proper thumper. Its 5-speed gearbox is assisted by a segment-first slipper clutch which will make the gear shifts smoother while reducing clutch lever operation load ensuring less fatigue. This new motor rests in a split half-duplex frame that is suspended by a chunky telescopic fork and twin shocks. It tips the scale at 181 kg. Anchoring the motorcycle is a large 310mm disc brake up front and 240mm rear disc providing adequate braking performance which is further assisted by dual-channel ABS.
The Honda Highness cruiser bike also comes with Honda Selectable Torque Control. It helps in maintaining rear-wheel traction by detecting the difference between front and rear wheel speeds, calculating the slip ratio and further controlling engine torque via the fuel injection. Its ground clearance stands at 166mm which will see the CB350 deal with the bumps without any hassle. It can hold 15-litres of fuel.
It might look retro but it packs some modern features such as Bluetooth-enabled navigation, telephony, music control and LED headlamps. It also comes with Honda Smartphone Voice Control System which allows the rider to connect his smartphone with the motorcycle via Bluetooth through HSVCS application.
The instrument cluster is a semi-digital unit where the speedometer has remained old-school and the digital display carrying the baton of all-things modern. The digital display includes a gear position indicator, Bluetooth indicator, fuel gauge, two trip meters, a clock and all the required tell-tale lights which also include a Battery health monitor, HSTC, ABS, side stand indicator with engine inhibitor, ECO indicator.