Honey, I shrunk the CB500X! With a freshly unveiled Honda CB200X for India adding to a popular small-capacity ~200cc two-wheeled market, we ponder if the bite-size adventurer could be a hit in other countries – like the UK.
Last week Honda showed the first official details of the CB200X, something that was initially touted as a model derived from the Hornet range at a (quite frankly) ludicrously cheap price point – ₹144,500.00 or £1,420.
Yep, that’s right, under £2,000 for a baby Honda adventurer. Outrageous!
As quoted in RideApart, Atsushi Ogata, acting Honda Motorcycles and Scooters India Managing Director and CEO, said “It is my great pleasure to introduce a new motorcycle, inspired by Honda’s legendary CB legacy. CB200X gives today’s youngsters a riding experience that pushes them to explore more. It offers a perfect riding companion for their daily city rides and short weekend getaways beyond the cityscapes.”
With 184cc air-cooled single, the beginner-friendly bike provides around 17 bhp with Honda’s own PGM-FI tech, complete with a swap to USD forks (compared to telescopic on the 500cc model), LED lights, and adventure-ready tall screen, belly pan and hand-guards as standard – stuff we would have liked on the CB500X in our recent review.
Honda CB200X spec
So it ticks a lot of boxes, but to bring it back to the original point – would this do well in the UK?
At that price point, yes, 100%. But delve deeper with me for a second, and consider that the 184cc motor puts it out-of-reach for the 125cc CBT friendly market, and way below the A2 47bhp limit.
To ride sub 200cc bikes in our little island nation – and much of Europe who play by the same rules – you’d need to pass a full motorcycle test on a bigger bike to then be eligible to ride with that handful of extra pony-power than your CBT entitles you to.
But, to play devil’s advocate (and sit here arguing with myself), the Meteor 350 is in that exact same boat, and has sold really well in the first months since its release.
At this point, you’d probably just consider a CB500X, Yamaha’s Tenere 700 or Tracer 7, Aprilia’s Tuareg 660, even Triumph’s Tiger Sport 660 (depending on what you’re looking to do with it) amongst a growing number of other A2 friendly motorcycles.
Perhaps the issue would be with pricing and the sheer lack of ‘CBT+’ sized bikes in this country. There’s a reason Yamaha, Honda and other big manufacturers don’t bother bringing the 150cc-200cc bikes (like the MT-15) here. It’s just a different market, perhaps as a result of the licence laws are being completely different.
One last point – perhaps a literal ‘CBT+’ could be introduced, letting you ride up to 200cc for 2/3/4 years if you’ve already passed a CBT previously, or are older than a certain age? Just a thought!