Honda CBF125

Hi All,

I wondered if you’d give your opinions on this as a first bike (not the look of the bike though please - that’s too subjective :D)

I’ve been researching my first bike whilst waiting for my provisional license to come through and had nearly settled on either a Honda CG125 (for it’s reliability and reknown as a “1st bike”) or a Honda XR125, because it’s basically a CG engine with a higher riding position (I should mention - I’m a bit of a shortie, so seat height is an issue!).

I was thinking the to get a CG with reasonable mileage, year and condition, I would be looking at around £1200 and the XR in the same nick would probably set me back £1600.

Then I came across the new CBF125 - and I was kinda taken with it - apart from anything else it’s £1795 OTR brand new!

I’ve read a lot of reviews on it (Bike magazine, MCN TV, The Daily Telegraph, The Sun etc…) - there was no consistent problem found in any of the reviews and most seemed to like it.

It’s built mainly at a Honda factory in India, but I understand that the final assembly and quality checking is carried out within the EU.

Whilst Honda claim 134mpg was put to the test by the Telegraph, who reckon it is closer to 120mpg - not far off Honda’s claim and still outstanding performance. It has 14% more torque than the CBR125 and 6% more torque than the CG, achieving both at lower revs (2000 and 750 rpm less, respectively).

So I know a fair bit about this bike already - so what am I asking the great and the good (and the rest of you :D) on here for?

Because as much as I can quote all of these facts, I could also tell you that the chemical formula of sodium sulphate is Na2SO4, and I can tell you that because I can Google it - doesn’t mean I can make total sense of it - my point being that Google helps stupid people find answers everyday - but it takes some knowledge to interpret them!!!

Your thoughts would be much appreciated :smiley:


i think its a good choice, its replacing the cg125 which honda is making redundant

Latest issues of Bike and Superbike both have reviews of the CBF. Quite impressed with it by all accounts too. The 100mpg fuel economy would have it sold to me were I in the market for a 125!!:smiley:

Cheers both :slight_smile:

Yeah - saw the Bike mag. review - they weren’t overkeen on the handling / tyres, but a lot of other reviews liked it, so could have been their reviewer just not getting on with it methinks :smiley:

Will check out the Superbike review :slight_smile:

i think it looks quite good, but then it looks like the 125 market is getting on a par with its heady days back in the late 70’s early 80’s. if youve test ridden one and like it go for it.

We looked at these at the NEC show in November. My son was looking for a 125 to learn on and then take his test and move up when he passed. The bike looked good and felt nice to sit on but did feel a little built down to a price compared to a CBR 125.

So he bought a nice low mileage 2007 CBR125 for £1500 with the intention of reselling it as soon as he passes his test losing as little money in depreciation as he can. Incidently, we did see some shockers, lots of crashed damaged-repairables out there so be careful.


Cheers Phillh,

You just opened up another possibility for me - I had it in my head that Leaner Legals were up to 11bhp, but after checking the CBR125, I saw that it is 11kw / 14.6bhp - I had previously thought that the CBR was out of my power range as a learner so glad you mentioned it :slight_smile:

My thinking was that on my salary, this will probably be the only time I can afford a brand new bike and although I have a few mates who are bikers and a brother in law who is a mechanic (and lives 3 doors down :D), I didn’t want a lot of problems with my first bike, so I’m prepared to take a bit of depreciation to get a brand new bike this time round.

I reckon as I move up in power, I will be limited to second-handers, but hopefully I’ll be a bit more bike-savvy by then :w00t:



if it was at the nec it might be at the london bike show in like 2 or 3 weeks, so you could see it in the fleash

I think it all depends on your age.

I think that you will soon get bored of the 125s lack of power and be keen to step up if the law allows. Therefore it would be silly to spend lots of money on a 125 in that situation.

If, however, you are going to be restricted to 125 by your age, the CBF does look an ideal bike. Then again, I hear great things about used Varadero 125s

Cheers Joe - am off to the London show so am planning to have a look then.

Cheers chunkymonkey - I’m 33 and haven’t ridden since I was 16 (I lived in Spain and rode 50ccs & 125s since age 14 - no license or anything like that :D). I’m looking to use it for a 15 mile commute but I didn’t want anything too powerful until I find my road wits :slight_smile:

I like the look of the varadero, but will need to have play around with one first :smiley:

At your age I would suggest doing your DAS and then getting something slightly bigger than a 125 for that 15 mile commute.As I say I think you may get bored with the 125 rather quickly after taking your first steps.

On the other hand you might find a 125’s fine to start with- when I came back to riding after a similar gap I bought a new Vespa, used it for two years trouble-free and sold on without much depreciation. I didn’t want a bigger bike at that point and only really got the bug when I’d done my DAS training. I suppose it all depends on the individual but IMO 125’s are fine for a 15 mile commute. If you are looking at a sports bike why not try one of these?



And why do you think that was?:wink:

Okay…it was the power…the power…:Wow:

To be honest, I know what I’m like - I like fast :w00t:

For that reason alone, I don’t want to do my DAS until I absolutely can’t bear a 125 anymore - otherwise I’d just do it, get a 600cc and not respect the power between my legs… er… maybe I should rephrase that :smiley:

you said your not very tall, varadero’s arnt small either, have you ever sat on one?

though i spose the bike show could sort that too lol

maybe ill see you there


i saw the cbf125’s when i went india, they r nice bikes and if they can survive in india they are built to last.

personally i got a cbr125r…but the cbf doesnt seem bad…

you will got bored of the speed of a 125, no doubt, but there wont be much difference between the cbr and cbf unless you are looking at higher end speed, in which case the cbr will be faster due to fairings and gearing

as you’re old enough to do DAS i would say get a cheaper 125 like a CG, get the hang of biking and do a DAS course…then you can progress to larger cc’s as your ability grows…and you dont have to jump straight onto a 600cc supersport…but it just means u have the freedom to get say a 500cc naked bike or something with a little more grunt.

the only reason ive kept my CBR is because i can only get upto a 250cc until im 21 at which point my license will get de-restricted…otherwise the cbr125r’s speed is mediocre and will barely outrun a scooter around town.

also test ride the cg/cbr/cbf to get a decent comparison between the 3, the only real differences are a slight increase in power and fairings as your move up from cg > cbf > cbr. see what riding position and supsension suits you as they dont have adjustible suspensions.

I applaud your careful approach. I started on a Nifty Fifty, outgrew that after about 3 monhts and jumped straight on a 650 naked. In retrospect I’m glad I didn’t go straight from nothing to a 650 naked because it felt to me like an ungodly amount of weight and power at the time.

Also… have you considered buying used? Since it’s your first bike, odds are you’ll drop it more than once… it hurts less when it’s some couple hundred pound beater you picked up off of Gumtree, rather than a brand spanking new machine.

Save the 'glam for when you have 2-3 year experience on 2 wheels :wink:

If the CBF125 is as good as the CG it will be around unchanged for years. Bike questioning the handling?!?! WTF it is a seventeen hundred pound bike FFS!

I had a Varadero 125 and loved it! It is a brilliant bike for what it is but stay away from the pirelli tyres on it they are shite. As for the height I not the tallest person around (5’9" or 175cm) and I found it fine.

I know exactly what you mean. I took DAS two years ago and was similarly cautious. My experience was that I never really felt safe on a 125 - they do not have much presence on the road and there is not enough power to get way from cars. I felt much safer as soon as I got on a 500cc - the bike felt more stable and it could hold its own in the traffic. I bought a Honda CBF600 as soon as I passed DAS and although this is a gentle de-tuned 600, I have to confess that it terrified me for the first few months. I have now mastered that and really enjoy biking. On Saturday I put down a deposit on a CBF1000.So my advice would be to avoid buying a new 125 unless you are sure you want to keep it for a decent length of time. My 600 is a very popular bike but I lost 35% in depreciation over the two years. You could always do a couple of days DAS training and see how you take to a 500 cc and then make the decision as to whether you do a DAS test or a 125 test.