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From urban commuter to weekend explorer – the 2019 CB500X is ready for anything. Its 2019 styling is much sharper - with a harder adventure edge, taking cues from the Africa Twin, and is complemented by longer travel suspension, high-specification single-tube shock absorber, enhanced rider ergonomics and a 19-inch front wheel.
The CB500X’s usefulness is down to a straightforward equation - a perky, well-regarded twin-cylinder engine which produces real torque and drive from low rpm (and revs hard up top) – plus a chassis that gives a supremely comfortable ride both around town and out on the open highway.
2019 sees a major evolution for the CB500X. More sophisticated adventure style – that highlights and confirms the unique proposition it offers – plus more engine performance and a number of chassis upgrades ensure that while the new CB500X remains confident in its wide-ranging abilities, its ‘X’ factor has been amplified a good deal louder.
The CB500X’s A2-licence friendly, 8-valve liquid-cooled parallel twin-cylinder layout offers a well-proportioned balance of compact size and willing, enjoyable power output, with an energetic, high-revving character and zappy top-end.
Already strong off the bottom, the target for 2019 development was faster acceleration through a boost in low-to-mid-range power and torque in the 3-7,000rpm range; the 4% improvement comes via altered valve timing – with ‘close’ timing accelerated by 5° – and lift increased .3mm to 7.8mm.
Feeding the PGM-FI fuel injection is now a more-or-less straight shot of airflow through the airbox and throttle bodies. The battery has been re-positioned further away (44.1mm versus 13.4mm) from the rear of the airbox intake duct to allow greater airflow; the exhaust muffler now features dual exit pipes, adding a sportier sounding edge to each pulse. Peak power of 35kW arrives at 8,500rpm, with 43Nm torque delivered at 7,000rpm.
Bore and stroke is set at 67mm x 66.8mm and compression ratio remains 10.7:1; the crankshaft pins are phased at 180° and a primary couple-balancer sits behind the cylinders, close to the bike’s centre of gravity. The primary and balancer gears use scissor gears, reducing noise. The crank counterweight is specifically shaped for couple-balance and its light weight allows the engine to spin freely, with reduced inertia.
The crankcase uses centrifugally cast thin-walled sleeves; their internal design reduces the ‘pumping’ losses that can occur with a 180° phased firing order. Using the same internal relief structure as that of the CBR1000RR, the oil pump features improved aeration performance, with reduced friction; a deep sump reduces oil movement under hard cornering and braking. Oil capacity is 3.2L.
A six-speed gearbox mirrors that of its RR cousin and uses the same gear change arm structure and link mechanism. New for 2019 an assist/slipper clutch enables lighter upshifts and smooths out any hard downshifts.
The 2019 CB500X has been reborn with a much more aggressive, ‘ready for the wild’ adventure style. With the popular CRF1000L Africa Twin offering a guiding light, Honda’s development engineers have extended the radiator shrouds and fairing with substantive angles that give a strongly three dimensional texture and feel, while the fuel tank now interlocks with the side covers, cohesively linking the front and rear of the machine.
And while the CB500X styling may have come of age, its redesign is about much more than looks. Thanks to improved aerodynamic performance, the high-pressure air flowing around the fairing and screen has been reduced, improving wind protection for the rider at highway speeds. The seat profile, too has been slimmed by shaving the shoulders at the front, allowing for easy movement around the machine, and aiding the already comfortable ground reach. To help the CB500X’s manoeuvrability the steering angle has increased 3° to 38° from centred to full lock, and the addition of a gunmetal grey tapered steel handlebar further aids control.
The CB500X features a new inverse-display LCD dash with Gear Position indicator. Tapered aluminium handlebars offer leverage and complete handling control, and full LED lighting, including indicators, is a premium finishing touch. The long travel 41mm telescopic forks are adjustable for spring pre-load, as is the Pro-Link rear monoshock.
The 35mm diameter steel diamond-tube mainframe is unchanged for 2019. It’s light and strong, with a tuned degree of yield that gives plenty of feedback to the rider as road surfaces change. The shape and position of the engine mounts, plus the frame’s rigidity balance reduce vibration.
Wheelbase is 1445mm and rake and trail are set at 27.5 108mm giving nimble, yet confidence-inspiring steering. Mass centralisation, with the engine in close proximity to the swingarm pivot point, delivers turning agility and optimum front/rear weight distribution ensures stability. Kerb weight is197kg.
Seat height is 830mm; overall dimensions are 2155mm x 825mm x 1410mm, with 180mm ground clearance. The fuel tank holds 17.5L including reserve, and combined with the engine’s excellent fuel economy of 27.8km/l (**mpg) (WMTC mode) gives a range of 500km (over 300 miles).
The 41mm preload-adjustable telescopic front fork features an extra 10mm travel, up to 150mm; rear wheel travel has been raised from 118m to 135mm and a new single-tube rear shock absorber (as found on larger capacity sports bikes) replaces the double-tube design of the previous model; its large-diameter piston ensures excellent suspension response and temperature management.
The 17-inch front wheel has been replaced with a 19-inch which – along with the longer travel suspension – ensures confident, supremely stable handling on rough surfaces. The lightweight aluminium rim wears a 110/80-R19 trail-pattern tyre, the 17-inch rear a 160/60-R17 tyre. A single front 310mm wave-pattern disc and two-piston brake caliper is matched to a 240mm rear disc and single-piston caliper. ABS is fitted as standard.
A range of Genuine Honda Accessories are available for the CB500X. They include:
Grand Prix Red
Matt Gunpowder Black Metallic
Pearl Metalloid White
To ride a CB500X, you will need a minimum of an A2 licence.
The minimum age to hold an A2 licence is 19. With an A2 licence you can ride a standard motorcycle up to 35 kW (and a power-to-weight ratio not more than 0.2 kW per kg), the bike must not be derived from vehicle more than twice its power.
To acquire an A2 licence you can take the direct access route where you take a theory and practical test. The other option is to take the progressive route. If you decide to take the progressive route, you must have 2 years experience on an A1 motorbike and take a further practical test.
All information on the licence required to ride the bikes are correct at time of publication but may be subject to change. We endeavour to maintain accurate information, however cannot guarantee the details to be accurate all the time due to legislation changes. Cox Motor Group and North West Honda accepts no liability for any misrepresentation and recommends that the individual dealer be contacted to confirm the licence required to ride the bike.
|Bore × Stroke (mm)||67mm x 66.8mm|
|Carburation||PGM-FI electronic fuel injection|
|C02 Emissions||80 g/km|
|Engine Displacement (cc)||471cc|
|Engine Type (cm³)||Liquid-cooled 4-stroke DOHC parallel twin|
|Max. Power Output||35kW / 8600rpm|
|Max. Torque||43Nm / 6500 rpm|
|Clutch||Wet multiplate, A.S.clutch|
|Battery Capacity (VAh)||12v 7.4Ah|
|Dimensions (L×W×H) (mm)||2,155mm X 825mm X 1,410mm|
|Frame type||Steel diamond|
|Fuel Tank Capacity (Litres)||17.7 L|
|Fuel Consumption||28.6km/L / 3.5l/100km|
|Ground Clearance (mm)||180mm|
|Kerb Weight (kg)||197kg|
|Seat Height (mm)||830mm|
|ABS System||2 channel|
|Brakes Front||310 mm x 5 mm disc with two piston caliper|
|Brakes Rear||240 mm x 5 mm disc with single piston caliper|
|Suspension Front||Conventional Telescopic, 41mm, pre-load adjustable|
|Suspension Rear||Prolink mono with 5 stage Pre-load adjuster, steel square pipe swingarm|
|Tyres Front||On-Off Pattern|
|Tyres Rear||On-Off Pattern|
|Tyre Size Front||110/80R19M/C|
|Tyre Size Rear||160/60ZR-17M/C|
|Wheels Front||Multi-Spoke Cast Aluminium|
|Wheels Rear||Multi-Spoke Cast Aluminium|
|Instruments||Digital Speedometer, Digital Bar Graph Tachometer, Dual Trip Meters, Digital Fuel Level Gauge & Fuel Consumption Gauge, Digital Clock, Water Temp, Gear position indicator|