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Honda CB350 Highness.

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  • [Ownership Thread]: Honda CB350 Highness.

    This is more of a first impressions on my CB350 after about 200kms of riding it in the city mostly.

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    Here is Yuki (snow)

    I have tried to cover as much as I can, please ask away for any questions you might have and I will try to answer them.

    ENGINE

    Gem of a 350cc engine.

    It is a simple design to keep the maintenance costs in check while not compromising on other aspects.

    I assume it is a 2 valve SOHC as Honda hasn’t mentioned, but it is still smooth, has enough power for daily city use and highway rides. Honda has got the basics right.

    Minimal buzz can be felt while accelerating, the kind that makes one feel the bike is alive, and cannot be called unpleasant vibrations in any case.

    Once the bike catches momentum and is cruising in proper gear/speed, there is hardly any more buzz felt.

    It feels like riding a smooth twin. The engine doesn’t like it if ridden in higher speeds and low gear (as one would expect from 30NM @3000rpm) but that is not a problem at all.


    GEARS

    No complaints, smooth, clutch lever is light, slots into gear effortlessly, easy to find neutral.

    1-3 gears one can experience the power, the pull. 5th is more of a cruise only gear and 4th is like the transitional gear from acceleration to cruising.

    Gear position indicator is a boon and works without any glitch.


    EXHAUST

    Bliss! One can easily mistake the exhaust note to be from a twin.

    Honda has nailed the exhaust design from an engineering perspective.

    It is such that the note changes with how one modulates the throttle.


    While accelerating it gives a thumping sound and while cruising it smoothly transitions into a burbling sound, it is like the best of both worlds.

    The downshifts are a bliss to listen to, the popping noise it makes while rev-matching gives you that oomph of riding a higher cc multi-cylinder bike.

    One really feels like a King while riding through the busy city roads.

    The way the exhaust note transitions with acceleration, cruising and deceleration, it just plays with your emotions. Overall the sound is loud without being unpleasant, as it is very bassy.

    You’ll want to keep listening to the exhaust even after you stop and switch off the ignition.


    HORNS

    Be ready to blow anyone out of the way with the dual horns in the DLX PRO model.

    The horn sounds like that from a premium car. And is adequately loud.


    HEADLIGHTS

    Headlights are quite adequate for me.

    Here you can see I have attached pictures of headlight performance in pitch black conditions:


    The always-on turn signals which work like pilot lamps also makes the bike stand out if seen from the front.

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    Pitch black conditions

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    Low beam

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    High beam


    SUSPENSIONS
    Only complaint I have with this bike.

    The suspensions are not as soft as one would expect in a bike of this category made for longer comfortable rides.

    The rear can be adjusted but the front can’t be adjusted and it is the front suspension that needs to chill.

    It is very stiff. One can feel every small pebble and unevenness on the road in the handle bars.



    LOOKS

    From every angle the bike looks classy. Screams of quality. One cannot miss it if it passes by.

    From the front side, the turn signal cum pilot lamps attracts attention, the rear brake light is circular normally, but on braking, the rectangular shape lights up causing people behind you to look at it.


    From the side, a classic
    silhouette that is the reminiscent of Honda’s 60s-70s CB bikes. Just beautiful.

    Sitting on the saddle, viewing the cockpit gives you a premium feel,
    the analogue speedometer gives a vintage feel. The wide tank is easy to hold and aesthetically pleasing.

    The center set chrome fuel cap is beautifully designed and reminds of the old school bikes.


    Chrome fenders, popping silver colored rear shocks, beautifully finished engine casings
    with the HONDA logo in chrome truly takes you back in time.


    HANDLING

    The bike is surprisingly easy to maneuver, U-turns are a cake walk,

    I had more problems with my Hornet 160r taking U-turns.

    The weight disappears once you sit on the bike, and only noticeable if one rides a lighter bike back to back. I have had no problems in filtering through tight spaces in bumper to bumper traffic.

    Bike feels quick in changing directions too if you have to avoid sudden potholes found in our miserable roads.

    Taking long sweeping corners is also very nice due to the wider tyres.


    COMFORT

    I am a 6’3” guy, the ergonomics are good enough, upright seating, no stress on any joints.

    If there are more bad roads nearby where you live, the suspension will disappoint as they are quite stiff, especially the front. That is the only complaint I have regarding comfort.

    The seat though, I have to get used to the hardness. I had modified my hornet’s seat with a softer cushion. Could be the effect of that. Will be able to judge it after some more miles.

    I noticed the rear brake paddle is located such that you have to turn your ankle up to apply the brakes.

    The Gear lever too, I only use the toe shifter for both upshifting and downshifting, the heel shifter is placed a little up and I have to lift up my leg to reach it, maybe I am just not used to the heel shifter.


    CONS

    Suspensions, everything else is more or less what one expects. The suspensions are stiff. The front specially, one can feel every minute undulation and pebble on the road on the handle bars .


    I am not sure if this is only in my bike, but if one drops the front wheel into a pothole or takes a huge speed breaker without slowing down, the fender gets unsettled and makes a clunking noise. Have to get it checked.
    Edit: view post #10.. regarding the source of the sound.

    Ot
    her than suspension, in my about 200kms of riding, I haven’t found any real drawbacks in the bike.

    CONCLUSION
    Honda did a commendable job with this bike. There is hardly anything to complain about.

    It is amazing in all the aspects, I have received quite a few compliments while riding through the busy streets of Bangalore.

    People seem interested and want to know details like price, mileage, weight etc.

    If Honda can address the availability of this bike, it will be a bestseller in no time as they have managed to grab attention of a huge number of audience and people want to experience the Highness first hand!

    I have fallen in love with this bike and pretty sure anyone taking a test ride will too. Kudos to HONDA! Honda is Honda.


    And another capture:
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    Last edited by elviento; 11-04-2020, 08:21 PM.

  • #2
    Re: Honda CB350 Highness.

    Thread approved.

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Honda CB350 Highness.

      Congrats Elviento. The suspension seems to a pain point on YouTube reviews as well so, it is probably not a one off issue with your ride.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Honda CB350 Highness.

        Beautifully written and congratulations on your new ride. I did suggest this to one of my friends over a Classic 350. How is the pillion comfort and is it practical to use it as a day to day commuter? Also give us update about the service situation as my friend fears mechanics wouldn't be trained enough(lost between a crowd of activas and shine) as it is anew offering.
        Ride hard, Ride safe
        Amogh Sharma

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Honda CB350 Highness.

          Congratulations on the purchase. Nice first impression. The suspension is typical Honda (since you're a Hornet user you must have experienced it). It'll get softer with usage.
          [My Motorcycles]

          2019 - Honda xBlade Non-ABS (2018)

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Honda CB350 Highness.

            Originally posted by V 12 View Post
            Beautifully written and congratulations on your new ride. I did suggest this to one of my friends over a Classic 350. How is the pillion comfort and is it practical to use it as a day to day commuter? Also give us update about the service situation as my friend fears mechanics wouldn't be trained enough(lost between a crowd of activas and shine) as it is anew offering.
            Ride hard, Ride safe
            Amogh Sharma
            This video summarizes the first service impression of the bike. Pretty neat job by Honda.




            Originally posted by elviento View Post
            This is more of a first impressions on my CB350 after about 200kms of riding it in the city mostly.

            Wonderfully first impression. Simple reviews do radiate and echo well. Congratulations on your new acquisition and wishing you more and more happy miles and smiles per hour. What I would love to add is though I haven't had a chance to even see the bike, the twin cylinder rumble you mentioned is absolutely correct. The exhaust resonance is perfectly tuned by Honda to give you that lovely thump and rhythm. Sounds like a cylinder at decel, like a twin in the midrange and like a classic at upper RPM. I truly hope Honda does give this bike the attention it deserves and this will be a great cash register.

            Ride safe

            Cheers!
            VJ
            Once upon a time, a guy asked a girl 'Will you marry me?'
            The girl said, 'NO!'


            And the guy lived happily ever after and rode motorcycles and watched sport on a big screen TV, went fishing and surfing, and played golf a lot, and drank beer and scotch and had tons of money in the bank and left the toilet seat up and farted whenever he wanted.


            THE END

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Honda CB350 Highness.

              Congratulations on your purchase, and wishing you many happy miles to come.

              Looks like Honda has made a very competent product. Even I'm 6"3 and was contemplating the Himalayan mainly because of my use cases and lack of good all-round options for a tall rider. Now that you claim the bike is comfortable for you, I'm inclining more towards the CB350 as the bike suits my needs more than the Himalayan does. Eagerly waiting for a Big wing to open in Chennai.



              Originally posted by elviento View Post

              CONS

              Suspensions, everything else is more or less what one expects. The suspensions are stiff. The front specially, one can feel every minute undulation and pebble on the road on the handle bars .


              I am not sure if this is only in my bike, but if one drops the front wheel into a pothole or takes a huge speed breaker without slowing down, the fender gets unsettled and makes a clunking noise. Have to get it checked.

              Was the air pressure in front tyre as specified/recommended in the manual? Usually the SVC guys tend to fill up a lot of air for the new bikes. So just curious to know whether that's the case here. If that's the case, please try filling up the air to the recommended PSI in manual and see how the suspension behaves.

              Cheers!

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Honda CB350 Highness.

                An update on the front suspension and the sound I mentioned.

                Edit: view update 13 for updated info.

                I tried riding over potholes and bumps to see if I can figure out from where the sound was coming
                No luck. There was no sound.

                Now I feel it was the petrol tank. I had half filled it in the first day and over bumps there were noises coming from the front of the bike and it felt like the fender was wobbling around. The sound was like it was coming from a metal piece so it misled me into thinking it might be the fender.
                But now I think it was the petrol bouncing around in the big half empty tank. [emoji28]
                Fender is sturdily fixed so it can't move around easily.

                Today my tank was full and I didn't hear the same sound even after going over bumps and potholes.

                Originally posted by GandalfTheGrey View Post
                Congratulations on your purchase, and wishing you many happy miles to come.

                Looks like Honda has made a very competent product. Even I'm 6"3 and was contemplating the Himalayan mainly because of my use cases and lack of good all-round options for a tall rider. Now that you claim the bike is comfortable for you, I'm inclining more towards the CB350 as the bike suits my needs more than the Himalayan does. Eagerly waiting for a Big wing to open in Chennai.





                Was the air pressure in front tyre as specified/recommended in the manual? Usually the SVC guys tend to fill up a lot of air for the new bikes. So just curious to know whether that's the case here. If that's the case, please try filling up the air to the recommended PSI in manual and see how the suspension behaves.

                Cheers!
                Last edited by elviento; 11-13-2020, 06:23 PM.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Honda CB350 Highness.

                  Originally posted by elviento View Post
                  An update on the front suspension and the sound I mentioned.

                  I tried riding over potholes and bumps to see if I can figure out from where the sound was coming.

                  No luck. There was no sound.

                  Now I feel it was the petrol tank. I had half filled it in the first day and over bumps there were noises coming from the front of the bike and it felt like the fender was wobbling around. But now I think it was the petrol bouncing around in the big half empty tank. [emoji28]
                  Fender is sturdily fixed so it can't move around easily.

                  Today my tank was full and I didn't hear the same sound even after going over bumps and potholes.
                  That's really strange, but glad that you aren't hearing the sound anymore!

                  Was the air pressure in front tyre as specified/recommended in the manual? Usually the SVC guys tend to fill up a lot of air for the new bikes. So just curious to know whether that's the case here. If that's the case, please try filling up the air to the recommended PSI in manual and see how the suspension behaves.
                  Were you able to see regarding the suspension and tyre pressure I told in my earlier post? Looking forward to hearing on how front suspension behaves on recommended tyre pressure.

                  Cheers!

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Honda CB350 Highness.

                    [MENTION=99063]elviento[/MENTION] congratulations brother. I have been very happy with my cb trigger and looking for a upgrade. Please let me know how the temperature is managed by this engine on long rides. I hope there are no over heating issues.
                    Happy riding !!!

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Honda CB350 Highness.

                      Originally posted by GandalfTheGrey View Post
                      That's really strange, but glad that you aren't hearing the sound anymore!



                      Were you able to see regarding the suspension and tyre pressure I told in my earlier post? Looking forward to hearing on how front suspension behaves on recommended tyre pressure.

                      Cheers!
                      I'll haven't got the opportunity to check the pressure. will do it in the weekend.

                      Update: the cause of noise from front end while riding over potholes is identified to be from the front suspension itself.
                      (A YouTuber went for 1st service and diagnosed the problem)

                      Now I think that could be right.
                      I had quite loud noise the very first day while riding over bumps...it did reduce now..but there is still a squeak sometimes when ridden over bumps and potholes.

                      Let's see maybe overtime the front suspension settles down.
                      Really wish Honda didn't cut corners here and provided showa or any good quality suspensions.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Honda CB350 Highness.

                        Hi Adibaba,
                        I rode about 50kms non stop. I could touch the engine with bare hands[emoji28] ..so it doesn't overheat at all.
                        Originally posted by Adibaba View Post
                        [MENTION=99063]elviento[/MENTION] congratulations brother. I have been very happy with my cb trigger and looking for a upgrade. Please let me know how the temperature is managed by this engine on long rides. I hope there are no over heating issues.
                        Happy riding !!!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Honda CB350 Highness.

                          Originally posted by elviento View Post
                          Hi Adibaba,
                          I rode about 50kms non stop. I could touch the engine with bare hands[emoji28] ..so it doesn't overheat at all.
                          Thanks. Would love to know more when you go for a longer ride .

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Honda CB350 Highness.

                            Originally posted by elviento View Post
                            Really wish Honda didn't cut corners here and provided showa or any good quality suspensions.
                            I think the front suspension is showa itself, see this . . https://youtu.be/0tuTr73LyrA?t=398

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Honda CB350 Highness.

                              Originally posted by Adibaba View Post
                              Thanks. Would love to know more when you go for a longer ride .
                              Hope this helps, having ridden it for about 280 kms in a day with 140 odd kms non-stop, I didn't experienced any excessive engine heat coming off of the engine onto my legs or anything. It was a fun ride overall with that sweet exhaust note.

                              Comment

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