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 Honda - CX Turbo
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Honda D2-492-03-07
Photo ou archives : F-M. Dumas

Capacity : 500
Model : CX Turbo
Production : 1981 - 1981
Category : (R) Street Bike


500 CX Turbo – 1981

The big challenge


The race for technological supremacy was at its height at the beginning of the Eighties - multicylinder, multivalve engines were all the rage, and the latest novelty was the turbocharger. Costly, and often imperfectly engineered, the turbo proved a flash in the pan, but that didn't prevent the best of the turbo bikes from acting as a superb technological showcase for their makers.


High-Tech Turbos

Launched in 1980, the Honda CX 500 was the most daring attempt at producing a high-tech turbo bike. The world's leading manufacturer at the time, Honda had chosen to turbocharge a relatively small engine, and complicated the problem further by choosing a V-twin.


Technical Complexity

Honda achieved its aim in a masterly manner, though at the expense of fearful technical complexity. If the original CX 500 was plagued by a turbo that came in too sharply, the CX 650 that followed was one of the best sports/touring bikes ever built. But it came too late. The turbo craze was over soon, and performance-hungry motorcyclists began turning towards increasingly large naturally aspirated engines. Honda had done its best to make the CX Turbo a success by employing the renowned Italian automotive stylist Giovanni Michelotti, who created a shape that was as practical as it was innovative. The CX's fairing offered a rare level of protection while forming an integral part of the machine.



Engine: transverse 497cc (78x52mm) vee-twin four-stroke

Power output: 78 hp @ 8000 rpm

Valves: 4 overhead valves per cylinder

system: electronic injection with IHIHonda turbocharger turning at 150,000 rpm

Transmission: 5-speed gearbox; chain final drive

Suspension: (front) telescopic forks ; (rear) aluminum swinging arm

Brakes: (front) twin discs; (rear) single disc

Wheels: Comstar" composite; (front) 18 in;(rear) 17 in

Weight: 500 lb

Maximum speed: 115 mph


The CX 500 was a marriage between Japanese know-bow and Italian style that resulted in an excellent touring bike.


Motorcycle encyclopedia Moto Passion, realised by François-Marie Dumas, include almost 2000 photos presented with an exhaustive history of the motorcycles exhibited.

This unique collection has been realised with the participation of many specialists. With many thanks in particular to Yves Campion, Michael Dregni, Didier Ganneau, Jean Goyard, Helmut Krackowizer, Michel Montange, Christian Rey, Bernard Salvat, Mick Woollett, etc

One can order here

  • Original cards on paper (in french)
  • High resolution scans or original documents presented and signed with my name.

Please contact me at info@moto-collection.org for conditions and copyright.

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François-Marie Dumas

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