Back in 1987, the ‘Hurricane’ took the world by storm. Honda’s first entry into the new-found Sportsbike category could be considered as tame by today’s standards. However, back in its day, this was a marvel, capable of reaching 137mph… It is impressive by 80s sportbike standards. Cycle Magazine dubbed the Hurricane ‘The best motorcycle we have ever tested’, with others mirroring that in their reviews.
If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!
By the turn of the 1990s, Honda decided to update its successful CBR600F, with the CBR600F2, dropping the Hurricane name. It gained 10mph on the top speed (Now capable of 147mph), a slight weight increase AND the modern 160-wide rear tyre. Winning almost all of the journalist comparisons and tests, it fulfilled the Hurricane’s legacy and was considered the ‘best motorcycle money can buy’, winning the AMA 600 Supersport Title by winning every single race in 1991.
By 1995, a third update (Not re-design) hit showroom floors, this time called the, you guessed it, F3. The CBR600F3 received numerous updates, it featured a modified engine, ram-air intake, and cartridge forks. According to a review from Cycle World, the introduction of the CBR 600 F3 in 1995 raised the stakes for Honda, despite the company already dominating the 600cc class.
The F3 had a liquid-cooled, 599cc, inline four-cylinder engine that produced around 100 horsepower at the crank, with a top speed of around 155 mph. The engine was mated to a six-speed transmission and featured a ram-air intake system that increased the engine’s power output at higher speeds.
The CBR 600 F3’s styling was also updated, with a new aerodynamic fairing and a sleek, aggressive look. The bike was available in a variety of colours, including red, black, silver, and yellow. Overall, the CBR 600 F3 was a significant improvement over its predecessor, the CBR 600 F2, and it quickly became a favourite among sportbike enthusiasts. In fact, it was named the best 600cc sportbike of 1995 in the annual Cycle World Ten Best Bikes awards.