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 Honda - 500 GB
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Photo ou archives : H. Ludwig

Capacity : 500
Model : GB
Production : 1989 - 1992
Category : (R) Street Bike


GB 500 -1989

A British touch

In 1989, Honda launched its GB500 as a retro-bike with styling and components that recalled fond memories for many motorcyclists of the classic British cycles. The GB500 was a clever package, designed to appeal to a new market that no current motorcycle maker had tapped: the classic, collectible cycles and the older enthusiast. And while numerous British-cycle riders may have never given a second look at a Honda, the GB5OO won many a heart.

GB for Great Britain

The GB500's nomenclature spelled out exactly what the cycle was designed to be: the GB stood for Great Britain, belying the bike's styling heritage; the 500 denoted the 500cc displacement, in itself a tell tale, classic engine size. To top it off, the black and gold paint scheme of the GB500's gas tank, side panels and rear seat cover immediately called to mind the Velocerre and HRD-Vincent colors.

Revival of the "Thumper"

The most important aspect of a motorcycle is of course the engine, and Honda got that right as well. The GB500 was powered by a simple engine with a single, near-vertical

cylinder, which reminded riders of many a classic British "thumper," from Norton to

BSA, AJS to Matchless. And even with current noise and exhaust emissions regulations, the GB500's engine emitted a deep-throated howl that echoed back to the past.


Engine: 500cc air-cooled single-cylinder fourstroke

Power Rating: approx. 40 hp at 8500 rpm

Valves: overhead

Fuel System: carburator

Transmission: 5-specd gearbox

Suspension: telescopic (front); swing arm (rear) with twin dampers

Brakes: single disc (front); drum (rear)

Wheels: wire-laced aluminum alloy rims

Weight: approx. 400 lb

Maximum Speed: 100 mph


The GB500 revived memories of many a past ghost - the beautiful British motorcycles of the classic era - and won riders' respect as a strong cycle in its own right.



Le fichier Moto Passion réalisé par François-Marie Dumas réunit près de deux mille photos accompagnées d'un historique très complet des machines présentées.
Il sera progressivement mis à jour ici et toute information complémentaire est la bienvenue sur info@moto-collection.org.

Cette documentation unique, qui constitue sans doute l'encyclopédie la plus exhaustive jamais écrite sur l'histoire de la moto, a été réalisée avec l'assistance de nombreux spécialistes dont principalement Didier Ganneau, Christophe Gaime, Mick Woollett, Jean Goyard, Bernard Salvat, Christian Rey, Yves Campion, Helmut Krackowizer, Michael Dregni, Michel Montange, etc. que je remercie ici.

Disponible sur demande :
- Les fiches originales sur papier
- Les photos et archives signées de mon nom en haute définition ou les documents originaux.
Me contacter sur info@moto-collection.org pour les conditions et droits d'utilisation.