For many new motorcycle enthusiasts, a 1,000cc big bike, regardless of the make or model, is the ultimate goal. Quite a few newbie motorbike enthusiasts tend to become extremely enamored by a bike’s displacement figure, and you’d all too often hear the question “ilang cc yan?” thrown around.
While a motorcycle’s displacement is by no means the only barometer by which performance is measured, it can be argued that the 1,000cc class of naked bikes is chock full of performance. Having said that, let’s take a closer look at two of the most popular liter-class naked bikes from the Land of the Rising Sun—the Yamaha MT-10 and Honda CB1000R.
Big bikes, particularly 1,000cc naked sportbikes are all about performance. With that, let’s take a look at the hearts of these two bikes. Both the Yamaha MT-10 and Honda CB1000R sport engines derived from race-oriented supersports. The Honda CB1000R makes use of an iteration of Honda’s 998cc inline four-cylinder motor found on an earlier generation of the CBR1000RR sportbike. On the CB1000R, it’s been tuned to produce a decent 143 horsepower. This makes this retro-styled naked sportbike a rather approachable machine, from a performance perspective.
Meanwhile, Yamaha’s MT-10 features the 998cc inline-four, crossplane inline four-cylinder engine we find in the Yamaha YZF-R1 supersport. On the MT-10, however, the engine has been tuned to produce peak power and torque lower down the rev range for improved street use. As such, it pumps out an exhilarating 158 horsepower—a substantial bump compared to that of the Honda. Additionally, the MT-10 features a very aggressive throttle response, making it a rather manic machine with an angry demeanor.
On the feature front, both the Honda CB1000R and Yamaha MT-10 are rather simple liter-class machines. Bereft of the highly sophisticated technology found in their European counterparts, both bikes do, however, feature electronic rider aids such as riding modes, traction control, ABS, and stability control.
What sets the two bikes apart is arguably their styling. The Yamaha MT-10 and Honda CB1000R sit on opposite ends of the spectrum when it comes to styling. On the one hand, the CB1000R sports Honda’s Neo Sports Café aesthetic—a harmonious blend of retro styling and modern-day sporty design. On the other hand, the MT-10 features Yamaha’s dark and dystopian Master of Torque styling—inspired by the Dark Side of Japan.
As far as pricing is concerned, both bikes are priced within the same ballpark, with the Yamaha MT-10 undercutting the price of the Honda CB1000R by just a few thousand pesos. At a price tag of P799,000, the Yamaha MT-10 presents itself with the best peso-to-performance ratio in the naked bike segment. Meanwhile, the Honda CB1000R, with its P865,000 price tag, is undeniably the more refined choice—perhaps for someone who isn’t really looking for an outright performer, but rather, a good-looking, powerful machine that can turn heads no matter where you go.