The new Honda CB350RS is based on the same platform as the Honda H’Ness CB350, so it shares the same engine, chassis and other cycle parts.
Honda Motorcycle and Scooter India (HMSI) has updated its CB series portfolio with a brand new member in the Honda CB 350 family. The new Honda CB350RS joins the Honda H’Ness CB 350, and shares the same engine, chassis and other components. However, the CB350RS looks stripped down, lean and sportier, with the minor cosmetic changes that the bike gets, compared to the H’Ness CB350. We take a look at the noteworthy changes and what the new Honda CB350RS offers in the mid-size 350-500 cc motorcycle segment.
Also Read: Honda CB350RS Launched At ₹ 1.96 Lakh
Sportier Design, New Components
There’s no mistaking that the Honda CB350RS is the sportier variant, but still looks more or less similar to the Honda H’Ness CB350 it is based on. Just a glance at the profile reveals a sportier stance than the H’Ness CB350, with revised riding position, and some differences in the body panels. The tail light design is new, the fenders have been redesigned, and there’s a new ring around the LED headlight, and the tail light design is also new. Thankfully, HMSI dropped the cheesy “Highness” name this time around. The CB350 also gets a skid plate, black smoked front and rear fender and a newly designed grab rail. The CB350RS will be offered in two colours – Radiant Red Metallic and a dual-tone colour scheme called Black with Pearl Spots Yellow.
Also Read: Honda H’Ness CB350 Review
Slightly Different Ergonomics
According to HMSI, the RS in the CB350RS stands for “Road Sailing”! And it’s got a sportier riding position, with the overall stance of the RS being slightly sportier than the H’Ness, and the riding triangle has also been changed. How the forward leaning position has been achieved, we will get to know once we get to touch and feel the bike, and hopefully ride it soon. The height of the handlebar seems to have been changed, to match the sporty riding stance, as well as new seat design.
Same Engine and Chassis
The engine is shared with the H’Ness CB350, so the 349 cc, single-cylinder, air-cooled engine produces 20.8 bhp at 5,500 rpm with 30 Nm of peak torque at 3,000 rpm. The engine gets a 5-speed transmission, along with a slip and assist clutch, which should make for a light feel on the clutch lever, and also easy and quick shifting. The CB350RS also gets traction control system, in the form of the Honda Selectable Torque Control System (HSTC), which helps prevent rear wheel slip caused by abrupt throttle grip operations. The HSTC is switchable, and helps maintain rear wheel traction by detecting differences between front and rear wheel speeds, calculating the slip ratio and further controlling engine torque through the fuel injection system.
Different Tyres, Less Weight
The Honda CB350 features alloy wheels with wide pattern tyres, and the rear wheel employs a wider 150 mm rear tyre, on a 17-inch size rear wheel. On the H’Ness CB350, the rear wheel is of 18-inch size, and the tyre is of 130 mm width. The tyres also have a different block pattern, something closer to dual-sport usage, for better grip on all kinds of riding surfaces. The CB350RS also gets marginally more ground clearance (168 mm) compared to the H’Ness CB350’s 166 mm ground clearance. It also gets a skid plate, for under-engine sump protection. The CB350RS is also 2 kg lighter than the H’Ness CB350, and it’s longer and wider as well, although the wheelbase and the seat height are the same as the Honda H’Ness CB350.
Also Read: 2021 Jawa Forty-Two Review
Price & Competition
The Honda CB350RS is available in just one variant, and in two colours, priced at ₹ 1.96 lakh (Ex-showroom). The Honda CB350RS will go head-to-head against the new Jawa Forty-Two, as well as the Benelli Imperiale 400, and the Royal Enfield Meteor 350.