While the Super Cub has certainly cemented itself in motorcycle history, it’s not the only influential Honda bike. The CB750, for example, was the first motorcycle called a ‘superbike.’ Then there’s the GB500 Tourist Trophy, which previewed the modern café racer trend by over a decade. This week’s Bring a Trailer bargain, though, is more of a cult classic: a 1994 Honda CB1000 Super Four.
The 1992-1996 Honda CB1000 Super Four was an early naked bike—and it was a ‘Big One’
If the Honda CB1000 name sounds familiar, it’s because the Japanese company sells a modern homage, the CB1000R. The current CB1300 was also influenced by the original CB1000 Super Four, Bennetts reports. And while the bikes have gotten more powerful and capable over the years, they still mostly follow the original recipe.
Back in the early 1990s, the naked bike segment was just starting to unfold. Ducati arguably kick-started it with the first Monster, Cycle World reports. However, Kawasaki, Yamaha, and Suzuki were also starting to experiment with fairing-less standard bikes, Rider reports. And at the time, Honda didn’t have a competitor.
But the Japanese company did recognize that not everyone wanted to ride a hardcore, track-focused sportbike. However, that didn’t mean Honda engineers couldn’t use some sportbike technology to make a more casual, ‘all-around’ machine. And that machine was the 1992 Honda CB1000 Super Four, aka ‘the Big One,’ Bike-urious reports.
For its time, the Honda CB1000 Super Four was rather big. It has a liquid-cooled 998cc inline-four taken from the CBR1000, albeit detuned to 97 hp and 62 lb-ft, Motorcyclist reports. Plus, instead of a six-speed transmission like the CBR, the Big One has a five-speed transmission. And at 578 pounds fully-fueled, the Honda CB1000 Super Four is on the heavy side, The Bike Market reports. However, it’s about 30 pounds lighter than the CBR1000 and has a longer wheelbase for stability.
The wheelbase stretch means the Honda CB1000 Super Four isn’t as nimble as the CBR, Rare Sportbikes reports. And the power cut meant in-period reviewers were disappointed with the acceleration, Bike-urious reports. However, the naked bike’s adjustable remote-reservoir Showa shocks deliver a comfortable ride, Rider reports. And while a bit ponderous, the CB1000 Super Four “has precise steering and bank-vault stability,” Motorcyclist reports. Plus, while the 32” seat height might be tall for some, the bike’s overall ergonomics are solid.
The 1994 Honda CB1000 Super Four on Bring a Trailer
Overall, the 1994 Honda CB1000 Super Four currently listed on Bring a Trailer is stock. The only modifications are a Supertrapp exhaust and Superbike-branded handlebar grips. The aluminum passenger grab bar, knurled footpegs, and the two stands, center and side, are factory standard features.
This 1994 Honda CB1000 Super Four is also in great shape, with 20,670 miles showing on the odometer. The only real flaws are some blemishes near the grips, which Bring a Trailer reports are from fitting the aftermarket ones. And both the tires and the oil have been recently changed.
Speaking of maintenance, the Honda CB1000 Super Four’s engine does have four carburetors. But valve adjustment is made slightly easier by the fact that it uses screws rather than shims. And the naked bike is new enough to not have classic-style ignition, Motorcycle Specs reports.
It’s a classic and rare retro-styled motorcycle bargain
As of this writing, this 1994 Honda CB1000 Super Four is listed on Bring a Trailer at $4250 with three days left in the auction. Given its age, condition, and rarity, that’s an extremely reasonable price.
While the Honda CB1000 Super Four didn’t sell in huge numbers, it’s rare to see a US-market example like this. Although Honda made it from 1992-1996, MCN reports, it only sold the bike here in 1994 and 1995. And as of this writing, the only two other CB1000s listed on Cycle Trader are more expensive.
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