- Price new - £1000
- Engine – 902cc air-cooled dohc four
- Power – 89bhp @ 9000rpm
- Top Speed
Honda’s claim to be the best engine maker
in the world looked a bit suspect in the late
1970s. Every model it released seemed to have
reliability issues, usually involving cam chains.
Even the CX500 suffered and that had pushrod
Launched in 1978, the CB900 dohc fours were
no exception. Great bike when they were running
properly but a nightmare when the two cam chains
started to saw their way to the outside world.
If that didn’t get you, the big ends would
sometimes fly apart, causing more mechanical
mayhem. It’s a bit ironic that the engine
was developed from Honda’s endurance racers.
Brits could choose between 750 and 900 fours
bur Americans had to do with the 759 until 1980,
when the CB900 Custom was introduced. In this
case the word ‘Custom’ meant a lot
more than high bars and a set of stubby exhausts.
While the sporty CB900F sold in the UK used
chain drive, the Custom had an extra dual-range
gearbox and shaft drive tacked on the back of
the engine, which was now rubber mounted. This
made an already large and heavy bike even larger
and heavier but it was smooth and relaxed cruiser.
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