Launched in 1996, the CBR1100XX Super Blackbird was Honda’s answer to the developing ‘Hyperbike’ market started by the Kawasaki ZZR1100, a bike capable of 175 mph which had claimed the title of fastest production motorcycle from 1990 to 1995. The Blackbird was soon tested at 178 mph but its blistering top speed was only half the story, the CBR1100XX is also a very capable mile-eating sports touring bike that still enjoys an enthusiastic following.
A very advanced design at its launch, the Blackbird saw few major changes throughout its life, though the 1997 model year saw fuel injection replace the original carburettor setup. Production ended in 2007 though you may find an odd one or two registered in 2008 as some bike remained unsold at Honda dealers. Legendary Honda build quality and a reputation for reliability means that a well-cared for Blackbird can make a great buy and even very high mileage examples tend to hold up well provided that they have been regularly serviced. Still a very quick bike, the Blackbird handles well but bear in mind that it’s still a relatively heavy machine so is much more suited to high speed touring than knee-dragging cornering. The CBR1100XX’s popularity means that good used examples still command high prices particularly if they are low mileage with Honda main dealer service history, but don’t overlook well cared for examples with higher than average mileage which can offer excellent value.