This month sees the launch of the awesome new CBR600RR in Honda dealerships across the UK.

At a glance, Honda’s new CBR600RR looks very similar to last year’s bike. But it’s actually all new, and riding it proves the ‘07 bike is significantly better overall.

You could have argued that the outgoing model was good enough to stay in production unaltered, but in the hard-fought supersport class it was time for a change. Anyone buying the new bike will be more than pleased with the progress made with the way it rides. It’s quite a bit more fliuid, responsive and positive than the ‘06 bike and rding it faster is actually a fair bit easier.

The biggest and most noticeable difference between the two bikes is the way the new bike handles. With an all new frame and swingarm which features a slighter steeper head angle, and a 20mm shorter wheelbase, the ‘07 bike feels much lighter on its feet and steers appreciably more quickly. A fair bit less effort is needed to heave the bike into and out of corners, and excellent suspension and tyres make sure it always stays bang on the chosen route.

There’s no doubt the claimed reduction in dry weight of a massive eight kilos, bringing it down to a class-leading 155kilos, also has a profound effect on the way the new CBR can be manhandled more easily. Handling-wise, this machine will make a brilliant trackday bike, even in standard trim.

Hauling the Honda up from very high speed couldn’t have felt safer thanks to the new brakes taken from the Fireblade. There’s always stacks of power to kill the pace, but it’s their progression and feel from the front end that’s just as important to the feeling of security.

The new motor is equally impressive. A fair bit lighter, and a lot more compact, the inline four has improved the handling by helping with the mass-centralisation, and the way it so smoothly delivers its power. It only makes another 3bhp more than the current bike with its claimed 118bhp maximum occuring another 500rpm higher up the rev range, but it’s the fuller and more smoothly delivered surge that’s the real secret behind the manageability of the latest engine. Gone are the old motor’s extra kicks at 7000 and 10,000rpm, replaced by a much more linear and seamless build up.

Overall, the whole package along with the updated looks put the CBR back to the top of the pile. In fact, the current World Supersport Champion, Sebastien Charpentier thinks the new bike is "formidable" even in standard form. And you can’t really get a better vote than a World Champ’s can you?

Price: £ 7,499
Performance: 170mph (est)
Power: 118bhp @ 13,500rpm
Dry weight: 155kg

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