“The Hornet has always been a very special motorcycle for Honda. Exciting, engaging performance has always been matched to nimble, agile handling. Before starting this project, we thought long and hard about what kind of performance we wanted to give to the rider. We knew that it was essential to keep the classic Hornet top end power ‘hit’ and at the same time, as a new generation Hornet for modern times, we wanted the engine to have a really strong torquey feel and ‘throbbing’ sensation at low to mid rpm.
Our aim has always been to match these to the lightest, most agile handling possible, to make every ride – even in town – as engaging and fulfilling as possible. To get the kind of performance and lightweight handling we wanted, we knew we had to develop an all-new short-stroke twin-cylinder engine, with a 270° crankshaft. This would not only deliver that top-end rush, but also the sporty low-down torque, ideal for riding in urban environments and powering out of corners on the open road. For us, the Hornet has always been the ultimate representation of the streetfighter concept and this new Hornet, proudly carries on this tradition.”
Fuyuki Hosokawa, Test Project Leader, Honda R&D Japan