Honda H’ness CB350 and Rivals: Comparing Specification

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How the New Honda H’ness CB350 goes up against its Rivals in terms of specification.

 

 

The New Honda H’ness CB350 launched recently will go up against some of the best selling motorcycles in the 300-350cc segment like the RE Classic 350, Jawa 42 and Benelli Imperiale 400. And here is the full specification comparison of the four motorcycles.

 

Overview

 

Honda has finally launched the Honda H’ness CB350 and with this, they have entered the 300-350cc retro-modern segment in India.

The segment that was long dominated by Royal Enfield, as it was the only player in this space and also they starter the segment back in 2008. But over the last 2 years, other brands have launched their own modern classics in order to take on Royal Enfield which is still the segment best seller. Some of these offerings include Jawa 42, the Benelli Imperiale 400. And now comes the Honda H’ness CB350.

 

Royal Enfield is also preparing for a new Classic 350 and Meteor 350 that probably will be a much more direct rival to these motorcycles. But until they make a debut nothing much can be said about those motorcycles.

 

Now all that we need to know is how the New Honda CB350 goes up against its rivals in terms of specifications. 

 

Honda H’ness CB350 and Rivals: Engine

All the four motorcycle uses BS Fi engine and that is the only common thing about their engines.

Honda H’ness CB350 is powered by an all-new engine that is specifically made for India. It is a single-cylinder, air-cooled, 348.36cc, Fuel injected engine. It produces 21.1hp at 5,500rpm and 30Nm of torque at 3,000rpm. It is a long-stroke engine to suit the motorcycle’s character and is pared to a 5-speed gearbox. Honda has also included an assist and slipper clutch as standard.

Honda H'ness CB350 And Rivals: Engine

Honda H'ness CB 350

RE Classic 350

Jawa 42

Benelli Imperiale 400

Engine

Single cylinder, 348.36cc, Fi, Air-Cooled

Single Cylinder, 346cc, Fi, Air-cooled

Single Cylinder, 293cc, Liquid cooled, Fi

Single Cylinder, 374cc, Fi, Air-cooled

Power

21.1HP @5500RPM

19.1HP @5250RPM

26HP

21HP @6000RPM

Torque

30NM @3000RPM

28NM @4000RPM

27.5NM 

29NM @3500RPM

Transmission

5-speed
with slipper and assist clutch

5-speed

6-speed
with slipper clutch

5-speed

Power-to-weight Ratio

116.57 HP/tonne

97.94
HP/tonne

154.06 HP/tonne

102.43 HP/tonne

 

From the table above we can see that the Honda H’ness CB350 makes power slightly more that Benelli Imperiale 400 and Royal Enfiled Classic 350. However, the torque figure is highest in the segment that should give it a better low and mid-range and effortless ride at lower RPM.

The Imperiale 400 is powered by a 374cc, single-cylinder engine that produces 21hp at 5,500rpm and 29NM of torque at 4,500rpm which is close to the power and torque figures made by Royal Enfield Classic 350- 19.8HP and 28NM or Torque. While talking about The Jawa, its engine has a totally different characteristic and produces 27HP and 28NM of torque from its 293cc engine. 

Despite having the smallest displacement engine in terms of power and performance its the segment leader. The Jawa is the only motorcycle here that has an engine with a short-stroke architecture and features more modern technology like a DOHC(Double Overhead Camshaft) and liquid-cooling. Also, it is the only bike in the segment that has a 6-speed gearbox, while the other 3 gets a 5-speed gearbox.

 

Honda H’ness CB350 and Rivals: Design

 

With the H’ness CB350 Honda has done a great job on the design front. It takes design inspirations from the old Honda CB bikes. It gets round LED headlamp, and old school led taillight unit, a beautifully shaped 15-litre tank, chrome fenders, a chrome exhaust and the Y-shaped alloy wheels which give it a proper modern retro look.

Don’t need to say how a Classic 350 looks, its the bike that started the segment. The timeless design makes it the best selling bike in the segment. But now it needs an update as for more than 10 years(which is long in automotive terms) the Bike has not got any more design update but its working well for Royal Enfield.

Like the Honda, Jawa 42 model is heavily inspired by the brand’s classic bike, the 42 is more affordable and has slightly modern and urban looks with matte-black elements that replace the chrome parts. Also it is the only bike in the segment that gets twin exhaust which was a classic Jawa design element.

The Imperiale 400 is also a reinterpretation of old Benelli bikes produced in the 1950s. And this can be seen by the classic design of the tank, round headlights, flat seats and some chrome parts. Both the Benelli and the RE classic 350 gets a sprung seat for the rider(just like yesteryear motorcycles) and rubber knee pads on the tank.

While the Jawa 42 and Benelli Imperiale 400 uses less chrome the Royal Enfield stands out and still uses tons of chrome where ever they can, but there are some colour schemes where you can get blacked out engines and exhaust.

Also the Honda is the only bike to come with only alloy wheels, while the Classic 350, Jawa 42 and Benelli Imperiale comes with wire-spoke wheels as standard. The Classic 350 also get the option for alloy wheels with some models.

 

Honda H’ness CB350 and Rivals: Chassis

 

Like the engine, the chassis on the Honda H’ness CB350 is a totally new unit. Honda calls it a semi-double-cradle frame and has a telescopic fork at the front and hydraulic shock absorber at the rear. The swingarm is a box-type unit. 

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The chassis used on Jawa 42 and Benelli Imperiale 400 is also double-cradle frames and both bikes use telescopic fork at the front and twin gas-charged shock absorbers at the rear. While the Classic 350 gets a single down-tube frame. Suspension duties are taken care of by telescopic fork at the front and twin gas-charged shock absorbers at the rear.

Honda H'ness CB350 and Rivals: Specs

Honda H'ness CB350

RE Classic 350

Jawa 42

Benelli Imperiale 400

Weight

181Kg

195Kg

172Kg

205Kg

Ground Clearance

166mm

135mm

NA

165mm

Wheelbase

1441mm

1390mm

1369mm

1440mm

Brakes(F)

310mm Disc

280mm Disc

280mm Disc

300mm Disc

Brakes(R)

240mm Dics

240mm Disc

153mm drum/
240mm Dics

240mm Disc

Suspension(F)

Telescopic Fork

Telescopic Fork

Telescopic Fork

Telescopic Fork

Suspension(R)

Twin Shock Absorbers

Twin Shock Absorbers

Twin Shock Absorbers

Twin Shock Absorbers

Tyre(F)

100/90-19

90/90-19

90/90-18

100/90-19

Tyre(R)

130/70-18

120/80-18

120/80-17

130/80-18

Fuel Capacity

15 Litres

13.5 Litres

14 Litres

12 Litres

While the new Honda H’ness CB350 uses the same wheel sizes as Classic 350 and Imperiale- a 19-inch front and 18-inch rear, but the Jawa gets a configuration of 18-inch front and 17-inch rear. The tyre widths differ in all the bikes and you can see that in the table above.

On the braking front, the Jawa and Royal Enfield get 280mm single discs, while the Benelli gets a slightly larger 300mm disc and the CB350 features a 310mm disc which is largest among all. At the rear, the Honda, Royal Enfield and Benelli get disc brakes the Jawa has an option for a 153mm drum brake. 

Dual-Channel ABS is offered in all the bikes but the Jawa gets Dual-Channel ABS with only the twin disc model.

In terms of weight as mentioned above in the table, Jawa is lightest with a kerb weight of 172kg, which is 9kg lighter than Honda H’ness CB350, 23kg lighter than the Classic 350 and 33kg lighter than the Benelli Imperiale 400. That said no doubt the Jawa 42 is the fastest of the line as on paper.

 

Features

 

Japenese are known for technology and when it comes to motorcycles they have the top-notch tech in their hands. This can be seen the way Honda has equipped the H’ness CB350. It gets Honda Selectable Torque Control (HSTC) and Honda Smartphone Voice Control (HSVC) system(in only DLX Pro Variant), also gets full LED lighting(1st in the segment)and a side stand engine cut-off.  The HSTC is nothing but a basic traction control system and adjusts the engine torque. This system can be turned ON/OFF by a switch on the left side of the meter. 

While the HSVC feature helps the rider to pair his smartphone to the console via Bluetooth and when connected the rider can operate the system to access calls, navigation, music playback and incoming messages. To connect there is HSVC app. This is also a segment 1st feature.

While in terms of the console the Honda H’ness CB350 gets a semi-digital unit with various other indications. Like a gear position indication, time, fuel gauge and average.

While the Benelli gets a twin-pod layout that features a large RPM meter (the only bike to get a rev counter) and speedometer and a small digital display for the odometer and other basic features like fuel gauge. The Jawa, uses a single-pod semi-digital unit that is placed offset. The analogue unit shows the speed while the small digital display is used as an odometer and fuel gauge. The Royal Enfield Classic 350 is still very basic in terms of  instrument console among all the four. It only gets an analogue gauge for the speed, along with a conventional odometer but misses out important things like a fuel gauge. Wish you luck if you forget to check the fuel level.

 

Verdict

After going through all the specifications Honda has done a great job with H’ness CB350 and it looks promising on paper. Though it may not have a more high tech engine like the Jawa 42, but has enough power to take on the other two. In terms of other features, undoubtedly it comes on top with many segment-first features. Talking about design it look great but that is totally subjective but I like it though Jawa 42 will be my 1st choice when it comes to looks and design. Also with a price tag of around Rs 1.90 lakh, Ex-showroom for the base DLX variant may be sold it makes a good bargain.

Honda H'ness CB350 and Rivals: Prices

Bikes

Honda H'ness CB350

RE Classic 350

Jawa 42

Jawa

Benelli Imperiale 400

Price

Rs 1.85 Lakh(DLX)
to
Rs 1.90 Lakh(DLX Pro)

Rs 1.70 Lakh to
Rs 1.86 Lakh

Rs 1.65 Lakh(Single Channel ABS)/
Rs 1.74 Lakh(Dual Channel ABS)

Rs 1.74 Lakh(Single Channel ABS)/
Rs 1.83 Lakh(Dual Channel ABS)

Rs 1.99 Lakh
to
Rs 2.11 Lakh

Ex-showroom Prices Delhi

But Royal Enfiled soon will be making debut of the Meteor 350 and the new Classic with new engines and cradle frame chassis and than things might get more interesting.

 

Let me know in the comments section below what you think about the new Honda H’ness CB350 and which bike would you go for among the four.

 

Also See:

Honda H’ness CB350 Launched at Rs 1.85 lakh Ex-showroom

 

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