Written on: 23/08/2010
I am now on my second Silverwing, the first (non ABS model) having lasted 104,500 miles before the radiator let go (having the radiator so low down on the bike means it is very exposed to the spray off the front wheels and hence the salt during the winter months) unfortunately 2nd hand radiators are in short supply with the price of a new radiator making it an uneconomical repair.
I commute 11-12,000 miles a year with this bike an can thoroughly recommend it. It is comfortable, Honda reliable & most of all practical with lots of storage compared to most scooters. Insurance costs are reasonable for a 600cc (generally these bikes are not targeted by thieves as they are not everybody's cup of tea). With heated handled bars and the excellent weather protection on offer there is no better all round, year round commuter scooter/bike.
It is fast and will just about make a real 100mph (the speedo overreads generously) when fully wound up (my bike has been upgraded to a tall Givi screen & wind deflectors for better weather protection but this does have a negative effect on top speed & fuel consumpion when on fast roads).
Cornering is fun and you can easily get far enough over to scrape the centre stand along the road if you push it! Acceleration is repectable for a 600cc (this is a heavy bike) and due to the seamless acceleration other 600cc + motorbikes will have to stretch 2nd gear & 3rd to keep you behind them.
Realistically, this scooter will keep up with any batch of motorbikes riding out.
Brakes are OK and will stop this bike. Keeping the tyre pressures right is important on the front otherwise I feel the ABS cuts in too early & often if you are making an emergency stop.
As for tyres I have experimented a bit and have not found a better tyre than the Bridgestone Hoop for the rears. I currently have Avon Viper on the rears which are wearing well but feel it is a little squidgy & less planted in the wet. The Bridgestone Hoop front tyre is good but I will be trying the Pirelli GTS23 this winter.
Bridgestone Front tyres have lasted over 9,000 miles & Bridgestone rears 5,000 miles.
The tank is 16.3 litres from dry and could do with being larger for longer range between fill ups when commuting long distances.
I have tracked my fuel consumption closely and achieved the following (99% of the time rider only 100kgs, top box with spare 5 litre fuel)over 4 years of commuting 35% motorway/dual carriage, 20% A-road,20% B-road & 25% city centre:
Average range on a full tank is 161 miles = 46 MPG.
Best range 183 miles on a full tank = 54 MPG
Worst range 149 miles on a full tank = 42 MPG
The gauge is a bit funny as you can do between 35 & 44 miles before it comes off full. Similarly you can do the same range on flashing empty! You have to have guts... Otherwise the gauge goes down in roughly 15 mile increments.
The drive belt is good for 16k miles but believe the manual calls for 12k.
Brake pads do need monitoring as the they do wear out as the bike weighs 250kgs + rider.
I have also upgraded the headlight bulbs as the original OEM lamps were in my opinion very poor.
All in all if properly maintained I would recommend this bike for reliable high mileage use as it is difficult to take the engine to the red line unless trying to hit top speed and realistically this is not something normal people will be doing regularly.
Hope this information is useful. Happy riding. DP